Train your dog like a pro by choosing the best techniques

Today, there are now more ways than one to achieve the best behaviour dog training results. But why is it that some pet owners find it more challenging to get their furry friend to obey their commands? Are you just not communicating effectively with your canine companion?

An article on time.com featured an excerpt from the book “TIME How Dogs Think: Inside the Canine Mind”. The write-up basically says that people and dogs have a very special bond. As a result, humans are actually able to have a pretty good grasp of dog language.

Therefore, it is not impossible to effectively communicate with them. Perhaps, there is just a lack of understanding or a lack of guidance on which methods are more effective. Maybe the trainer may also need some training.

Also, remember that just like any other close relationship, you play an important role in establishing a connection with your four-legged friend. In addition, your relationship is a two-way street—the more you give, the more you receive.

When to start?

Most experts say you should immediately start training puppies. Based on an article on the EUKANUBA website, by the time pups are two months old, they are ready to learn because they will have developed about 80% of their adult brain and that will continue to develop in the proceeding weeks.

Also, it is easier to teach them now while they are still younger than when they are older, bigger, stronger, and more set in their ways.

Can you train an old dog?

Teaching an older dog to fetch is still possible with patience and perseverance

Despite the saying “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks,” some trainers have actually succeeded in training older adopted dogs. It helps when you allow your new furry buddy to have enough time to transition to their new surroundings. This is especially necessary when you take in a rescue pet.

Another great tip is to start training right away, but instead of beginning with skills (come, sit, down, etc.), you should first try to change the temperament of your new canine companion. This way, they will hopefully change the way they feel towards you and other people, start trusting you more and be more open to following your commands.

How can you successfully train your dog?

Although there are many factors that affect how quickly and successfully your pet learns and obeys (age, breed, temperament, etc.), there are certain techniques that have proven helpful. Here are several of the best dog behaviour training tips given by experts.

  1. Siccaro Establish the rules early on

    If you allow them to get away with certain things when they are still settling in, it can be more difficult to change those behaviours later on. That is why it is important to decide your house rules before bringing your new furry friend home.

    • Siccaro Will you allow them to sleep on the bed or in your room?
    • Siccaro Can they sit on furniture?
    • Siccaro Which areas in your home are off limits?

    Establishing what isn’t allowed immediately can make it less confusing for the both of you later on.

  2. Siccaro Have realistic expectations

    Keep in mind that you can’t change your pet’s behaviour overnight. It will take time, especially if you are dealing with normal dog behaviour, such as barking, jumping, or digging. There are just certain behaviours that take longer to change, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible.

    Jumping is regular dog behaviour which you can control better with proper training

    This is also the case when you are trying to alter a certain habit which you have allowed for a long time but want to change now. For instance, if you have been letting them sleep on your bed for the past three years, don’t expect them to comfortably transition to sleeping in their own bed by the end of a week.

  3. Siccaro Give them freedom gradually

    One mistake some owners make is giving their new four-legged buddy too much freedom too soon. If they are free to roam anywhere, they can eliminate all over the place and chew on just about anything. Not establishing boundaries right away can cause problems with behaviour training.

    It is wise to confine your new canine companion to a specific spot in the house when they just arrive. Usually, this means placing them in a crate, but you can also put them in a particular dog-safe room. Make sure to also close the doors to unused areas in the home and to place baby gates in closed off spaces.

    When your pet starts to learn to follow the rules and to do their business outside, you can start giving them more freedom to roam the house little by little.

  4. Siccaro Provide a relaxing and private place

    Do what you can to make your new dog feel more comfortable and at ease in their new environment. Set up their own, private sleeping place where they can enjoy some alone time. Make sure no other pet or family member uses that space.

    Have you prepared a special sleeping spot for your new puppy?

    Having a spot for themselves can be especially helpful for pups or rescue dogs who have come from a busy and loud pet shop or shelter.

    One trick from Pedigree to make puppies feel more relaxed and comfortable in their new surroundings is to place a ticking clock near their bed and to give them a warm hot water bottle. These can imitate the heartbeat and the heat from their littermates.

  5. Siccaro Be consistent

    One of the best behaviour dog training tips is to make sure everyone in the household is on board with the goals and methods of how to train your four-legged family member. It is important that everybody uses the same commands and enforces the same rules to avoid giving mixed messages and confusing your pet. Consistency is key to achieving your desired results.

    In addition, dogs tend to live in the moment. This means that when they do something, they forget about it after around just two minutes. So, if they do something bad, you must immediately correct that behaviour so they can make the association. Consistency and repetition are vital in reinforcing their learning.

  6. Siccaro Give specific and clear commands

    Since dogs aren’t good at making generalisations, it’s better to use specific commands instead of just saying “no”. For instance, if they tend to jump when meeting someone for the first time, say “sit” rather than just saying no. By telling them what you want them to do, they avoid getting confused. It also helps to use clear and concise words.

  7. Siccaro Be attentive and listen

    Pay attention to how dogs react and respond to certain things. There is a reason why they act that way, so learn how to listen to them. For example, your pup may not like a certain treat and that’s why they aren’t excited when you give it as a reward. Or your puppy might get uncomfortable when introduced to a new person or animal. Make sure to never force them and to respect their feelings. Be attentive to what they like and enjoy as well as to what triggers negative emotions.

  8. Are your pups digging those treats you’re rewarding them with?

  9. Siccaro Reward good behaviour

    Rewarding your furry friend is a highly recommended technique to positively reinforce good behaviour. You can use treats, toys, playtime, walks, or affection and affirmation (more on this in the next tip).

    Some owners are worried that by giving their pup food or a good belly scratch every time they do something good the reward soon becomes a bribe. But this doesn’t have to be the case. An expert tip is to slowly wean your puppy. How?

    Give frequent treats at the beginning of the training sessions in order to establish that a certain behaviour is good. Once your dog understands the concept, start weaning your pet off the treats. Use the treats unpredictably so they don’t know when they will be rewarded. Also, avoid showing a treat or toy while you are giving a command. This way, they learn that they will get a reward only for performing a good behaviour.

  10. Siccaro Be generous with affection and affirmation

    Sometimes, dog owners give more attention to the bad behaviour because let’s face it, it can be so stressful when your pup still fails to relieve themselves outside after several weeks of trying. You make it a point to clearly show your disappointment.

    Dogs certainly love a good scratch, hug, and other forms of affection

    Due to the frustration, you also end up not seeing the other achievements of your puppy or forget to show your appreciation when they do something good. But that is a big mistake.

    It is important and helpful to show your furry buddy that they did something good by showing them affection or giving affirmation. Pat them, hug them, shower them with praise, or play with them for a few minutes. This can make them more eager and readier to work hard during their next training session.

  11. Siccaro Avoid outdated training techniques

    While there is still much debate as to which methods are the best behaviour dog training techniques, there are certain methodologies that must be avoided because they are unkind, unsafe, and outdated.

  • Siccaro Showing that you are the “Alpha” in the relationship so your dog won’t become “dominant” - Recent studies show that using heavy-handed methods are ineffective and negatively affect your bond.
  • Siccaro Training with intimidation and pain – Using prong or shock collars and choke chains not only chip away at your relationship with your pup, it can also harm them. These training “aids” can cause injury to your pet’s neck, spine, and eyes, among other problems.
  • Siccaro Rubbing their nose in their mess – No matter how difficult it is to potty train them, it is never right nor is it ever effective to rub your puppy’s nose in the puddle or pile they accidentally made. Spanking doesn’t help either. This will only make them scared of you.
  • Siccaro Giving no treats – The most effective way to teach good behaviour to your canine companion is by using a primary reinforcer such as food.

Two-way Training

The best dog behaviour training requires give and take and teamwork

We sometimes expect dogs to instinctively know how they are supposed to behave as domesticated companions. We often forget that certain behaviour isn’t normal for them. This is why it is essential to understand how they think and communicate. Train yourself to observe and listen, and be open to learning more about them and how to effectively deal with them. If you feel like your methods aren’t working, seek reliable professional advice.

Many experts also advise prioritising building your relationship before trying to teach your pet certain skills or tricks. Building a bond with your new furry friend can make it easier to build a foundation of trust and to establish clear communication between the two of you.

As a good owner, you also want to provide the best care for your four-legged buddy. And that’s why we at Siccaro are dedicated to providing dog care equipment of the highest quality. Our products make bathing, swimming, or having a fun and wet time outdoors so much more enjoyable and easier so you can have as much playtime as you need with your best friend. Check out our dog range here.

 
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