It is never too early or too late to start training your dog. You can find lots of advice out there from the dog groomer to articles on the internet and though I know the dog whisperer is popular and famous I do think there is some better training advice available. Negative training uses fear, pain and dominance, using items such as pinch collars and choke collars. Science shows that the use of positive training is a much kinder and successful way to train. My personal favorite dog whisper is Dr. Sophia Yin who doesn’t use punishment or dominance to train but shows how we can shape a dogs behaviour with simple small steps.
This video documentary is quite long (36 minutes) and can be emotional when you hear what trainers have done and still do in the name of training. But it shows what the amazing things we can teach our dogs with positive training.
- I strongly encourage you to read
Perfect Puppy in 7 Days: How to Start Your Puppy Off Right
It is such an important read for all new puppy owners that we stock it at the FVAH and sell it at cost.
- Some important training tools include
- A treat bag (A great training trick is to feed your dog his or her kibble from the treat bag – your dog not food motivated? Watch How dogs learn under Behaviour Issues).
- A hands free waist leash
- A gentle leader – especially if you have a bigger dog who pulls
- Check out the basic 3 videos in the next session under Behaviour Issues but here are some great puppy’s first training step videos by Dr. Sophia Yin.
No matter what behaviour you are trying to work on, aggression, jumping, chasing the cat, or fear of an object in your house there are some basic training that you and your dog must have. You can’t do algebra until you know how to add and subtract. I recommend you watch the following videos and work on these basics before you more on to the specific issues.
- LEASH AGGRESION This is a common issue with many dogs and actually can be easily fixed but will take training, that means it is not instantly solved. Before you can start training outside around dogs you need to teach your dog learn to earn. Remember that dogs read our body language to try and determine what we want. The following four videos are some basic information to help start you on your way so that you and your dog can actually enjoy your walks together.
- JUMPING This common problem is not the dogs fault but we, unbeknownst to us, have trained this behaviour into our dogs, by rewarding our pets whenever they jump. Petting them or even pushing them back down has given the dog what they were looking for. You must ignore the jumping and immediately reward the sitting. If the dog sits and you miss it and/or do not reward then the dog does not learn how to get what she wants ie some attention.
- Scared of an Object Some dogs have developed fears of loud noises such as a bus going by or a particular object in the house or yard. Watch this video of how Dr. Sophia Yin trains her dog not to be afraid of the ironing board.
Dog Training Classes?
Dog training is not about sending them off to school and then ignoring them. Your children learn from you and so does your dog. BUT dog school is great because it (1.) Gets you out with your dog (2.) It helps with socialization and (3.) A good trainer may notice small things you are doing wrong. With dogs it is all about body language. And sometimes we can be making small mistakes we do not even know we are doing. This creates confusion for our dogs.
Looking for a good dog trainer?
We are presently interviewing and observing different trainers and classes so that we can offer you our best recommendations. If you have a great trainer that you recommend let us know so we can meet them and add them to our list.