Positive Dog training is how all pets will effectively benefit from what you are trying to teach them. We love our pets! They are a part of our family and anything that hurts or is not loving to them feels well, just wrong. So positive techniques are the solution to training because all dogs need to learn rules and boundaries.
As the owner it is our job to ensure our pup’s are well trained and this experience shouldn’t be anything but positive. To be on your way to the right training environment you have to learn the right methods and have the right attitude. Positive reinforcement is the main method behind positive dog training that we can all feel good about.
Positive Dog Training Methods
There are several ways to use positive dog training methods to teach your pooch. Anything that is non aggressive or does not use violence could ultimately be considered a positive technique. Below are some suggestions.
* Use food as a reward for listening to commands. Find tiny treats and keep them on hand everywhere. You know your dog will love you for this, so what is more positive than that.
* Some dogs are less food driven than others. In this case other positive reinforcement would be praise, play, or toys as a reward.
* Use exercise to drain energy as a positive preventative for destructive behavior, as well as making it easier to train your puppy/dog.
* Take your dog to a local training class that supports positive reinforcement and condones the use of shock collars, choke collars and violence as a part of training.
*Don’t use violence or fear creating techniques that can cause anxiety. Anxious dogs come with a whole other set of problems of their own.
*Always remember the most important rules when training dogs are persistence, consistency, and calm assertiveness.
Be Calm, Assertive, Consistent, and Persistent
It is important to be calm, assertive, consistent, and persistent in your training. Dogs are intelligent but if you are not consistent in your own behavior and expectations they might not be consistent either. This goes in hand with persistence – if you let a dog get away with a behavior, you can expect them to try to get away with it more often, for example. You need to be persistent no matter how often you are tested and eventually a dog will recognize, you aren’t giving in.
It is also important to recognize that being assertive is not aggressive, and you certainly aren’t usually calm when being aggressive. Calm assertive is not positive or negative either way, it is just control. It’s a feeling of, this is the way it is and that’s that. Thoughts that go along the lines of, “there is no other option than what I expect”. I don’t think there is ever a place for anger when it comes to pets. They don’t do things specifically to make you angry, it is not in the nature of an animal. They may push their boundaries out of desire to do what they want, like dig a hole or relieve themselves- not to make anyone angry. Therefore it is our job to understand why they do what they do, and to alleviate it with our training and persistent corrections to help them learn.
Ways to Stay Positive During Training
To stay positive during training try walking your dog or taking him for a run to burn off some of that excess energy before you start. This will prevent you from getting frustrated at your dog’s inability to focus. Some of that energy that is driving them to be restless will be worn off.
Tell yourself that the short term pain is worth the long term gain. Even say it repeatedly, especially when you have been waiting 10 minutes for your puppy to pee on the pad before you let them go. It is true, in the long run you will be thankful you put in so much work in the beginning.
Remember that once Fido knows what you want and how to give it to you, he will likely never forget it. Dogs are intelligent beings and they typically want to make those they love happy. Our biggest hurdle is getting over the language barrier that makes it difficult to clearly express what the boundaries and rules are. This and the fact that when a dog acts out, its usually out of a frustration of some kind and can be helped. Don’t forget to stay positive and your dog will thrive off your attention and should learn your expectations easily.