What is meant by dog training?
Table of Contents
- What is meant by dog training?
- Popular dog training methods
- Do Dogs Really Need Training?
- Dominance Dog Training Model
- Electronic Dog Training Method
- Prevention Based Dog Training
- Obedience Based Training
- Clicker Dog Training
- Positive Reinforcement Method
- When Is The Best Time To Start Dog Training?
- Basic Must Haves For Dog Training
- Dog Crate
- Dog Leash
- Calming Aids
- Dog Harness or collar
- House Training and Crate Training
- Leash Training
- Dog Body Languages and What They Mean
- Training a Deaf Dog, What To Consider
- Dog Training Tips
- 1. Be Determined
- 2. The Health Of Your Dog Should Be A Top Priority
- 3. Train Your Dog In A Destruction Free Setting
- 4. Use Your Dog’s Name During Training Sessions
- 5. Do Not Condone Irresponsible Behaviour.
- 6. Ensure that your dog feels secure at all times.
- 7. Help Your Dog To Exercise Regularly
- 8. Use Simple Commands At The Beginning Of Your Dog Training
- 9. One Person Should Instruct the dog At A Time.
- 10. Everyone or most of the people who live with you must agree to the decision of getting a dog.
- 11. Make sure your pet is relaxed.
- 12. Be ready to repeat previous training sessions.
- 13. Make dog training fun.
- 14. Wear comfortable clothes during training sessions.
- 15. Learn from expert dog trainers.
- 16. Consistency and immediacy are important.
- 17. Your mood matters.
- 18. Punishment in dog training
- 19. Reward Your Dog After Every Training Session
Dog training is the process of modifying the behavior of a dog for a specific purpose. Dogs can be trained for domestic security purposes, as pets, and professional purposes.
Popular dog training methods
There are several dog training methods. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages. Some dog training methods include relationship-based training, Koehler method, dominance-based method, clicker training method, and positive reinforcement.
Do Dogs Really Need Training?
Dogs just like other animals may be naturally uncouth. They will require some kind of training for them to behave the way you want them to. Untrained dogs can be worrisome, annoying, dangerous, destructive. They can destroy their surroundings or cause harm to people around them. You will also not really enjoy the conveniences and fun part of having a dog as a pet. After all, they cannot do what you expect them to do. They do not understand your language either can they differentiate between good habits and bad habits.
These are enough reasons why you should train your dog. However, another important reason why you should train your dog is that it improves the relationship between you and your dog. You get to understand your dog better and your dog would also get to know you well. Dogs pick up habits from people and you would find your dog doing things you usually do just because you spend time training your dog.
Dominance Dog Training Model
This is an old traditional dog training process where the trainer or owner exerts power and authority over the dog. This authority gets the dog to do what the owner expects the dog to do. This process of dog training has been over ruled over the years. Dog experts have identified negative impacts of this training on dogs and have established that those negative impacts far outweigh the positive ones hence the over ruling. According to them, using dominance in dog training only incites fear in the dog and makes him or her uncomfortable and timid. They might aggressive as a way of fighting back against the tough treatment. It has been established that dogs have different personalities and it would not be wise to treat all of them with the same approach. Some dogs are already timid and fearful, it will be disastrous to use the dominance-based method on them since they already feel dominated by everything around them. It has also been established that it is true the owner must be a leader to the dog, however, leadership and domination are two separate things. People often misinterpret the two. They think being a leader to your dog only means making your dog do what you expect it to. Getting your dog to follow all your instructions. This is however not true. You can only be a good leader if your dog trusts you. They would only follow your lead if they believe you have their best intentions in mind. Force is only applicable if you want to suppress a behavior to has proven difficult to suppress. You should only use force when you have exhausted all other methods.
Electronic Dog Training Method
This method uses shock effect to tell the dog he or she has made a mistake. This method usually involves putting a shock inducive collar on your dog. This collar is meant to shock your dog when he or she does something wrong. Several models of this dog training collars have been developed over the years. Some of these collars are now remote controlled. Most of these collars are anti-barking collars and they will shock your dog if he or she barks when he or she is not supposed to. Another feature about this collar is that it is waterproof and rechargeable. The benefits of these collars are controversial as many people think they might unnecessarily shock the dog even it does not need to. It may be triggered at a time when it is not expected to. This may cause confusion to your dog since the shock is supposed to be a punishment. Many people are off the opinion that this method causes trauma and pain to your dog. They believe this might cause emotional instability to your dog. This method has also been rejected by many dog experts. It can however be useful in certain circumstances.
Prevention Based Dog Training
Another method of training is prevention dog training. With this method, you will have to take away on the things you think will make your dog misbehave. This will prevent your dog from being motivated in the first place. If you find objects that causes your dog to be aggressive or violent, it would be great to take those objects out of the dog’s sight. This could save you time. This is so because, you might have to train the dog not to misbehave even with such objects in sight. The latter waste time and energy since your dog might take a long time in accepting not to cause a fuzz due to the presence of that object.
Obedience Based Training
This method allows you to train your dog to listen to you even when they do not to. This training method focuses on getting your to do basic things like sitting, walking, going on errands, and standing. This method involves effective communication with your dog and understanding your dog. You must note that dogs are different; they have different behaviors and it would be unfair to your dog if you do not take his or her limitations or weaknesses into consideration.
Obedience dog trainings are effective if you do them yourself. The goal of this method is to establish a bond between you and your dog. If you have another person train your dog, they might get attached to the person and that person might effectively communicate with your dog while you cannot. Even if you still think you need someone else’s help during the training method, you must still be involved. This will make the dog realize that you are now an important person in his or her life. It is also easier to bond with your dog if you are involved in the training sessions. Also, it is better to start the dog training in your home. In this way, the dog will be familiar with the home. He or she will easily understand instructions at the end of the training. You would need to remain calm and confident during this type of training.
Clicker Dog Training
This method involves using sound, light, or words to signal your dog when he or she does something. The signal is sent through a clicker to your dog. Usually, there is a signal to show approval or disapproval. Your dog might not understand in this beginning but he or she would eventually learn to identify signals of approval and disapproval signals as well. you can make the process faster by accompanying the clicker signal with a facial expression. When it is an approval signal, you can smile to reinforce your intentions. If it is a signal to show disapproval, you can frown or show an unpleasant face to make the dog understand that you did not like what he or she did. You can also reward your dog with treats right after the approval signal to tell him or her that you approve of what he or she has done. Eventually, the click signal would be easily understood by your dog and you do not have to reinforce it anymore.
If the clicker signal involves sound or words, you should start the clicker training in a quiet environment so that the dog can hear the sounds clearly. You can often test your dog when he or she is not paying attention to you. If the dog instantly responds, then your dog beginning to adjust to the signal. It is important to use the clicker immediately after the dog has performed the action. This will make it easier for your dog to connect his or her actions with the signal.
Positive Reinforcement Method
This method involves highlighting the positive behaviors of your dog and ignoring the negatives. When your dog does something good, you would then give him a treat, reward, or praise. For instance, when you ask your dog to sit down and he or she does it, you can use cool words like “good dog”, “clever dog” etc. you can also make your dog do something he or she likes doing as a reward. Some dogs really love car rides, if your dog is like that, you can take a dog on a car ride as a reward. He or she would look forward to such rewards and would try to behave well. keep treats in handy when you are using this method.
This method is highly appreciated because everyone can get involved in the process. Anyone can give praises or treats to the dog. This method involves everyone in the household. Many dog experts are of the opinion that this method is really effective. This method works well on aggressive dogs and fearful dogs. Aggressive dogs become more aggressive when you punish them. It is important not to also use punishment when they go wrong. They tend to be calm when you ignore their bad behaviors and rather reinforce the positive ones. Fearful dogs on the other hand become more confident if you encourage them when they do what is right. Always punishing them when they wrong would only make them more fearful.
When Is The Best Time To Start Dog Training?
It is best to start dog training when your dog is still a puppy. They learn faster and at that time, it is very likely they have not adopted certain unwanted behaviors. They have a fresh mind and they will only learn what you are teaching. Usually, it is best when your dog is 6 to 8 weeks old. However, you can still teach your dog a thing or two even when he or she is old. Dog training sessions should not last for more than 20 minutes. This is because, dogs are known to have shorter memory span and they might get bored and tired after the first 20 minutes. They might stop paying attention to you and what you are trying to make them do. The training sessions should also be regular. Two times a day is great.
Basic Must Haves For Dog Training
You would need certain items to make your dog training faster and easier. These include:
The crate is important in keeping your dog safe when you are supervising it. it also prevents your dog from bad habits such as chewing on items.
The leash helps you to control your dog when you are going for walks or you are going to a crowded or public space. The leash keeps your dog in check. It takes sometime for your dog to get used to the leash but with training, your dog would be comfortable in the leash. Make sure the leash is quiet loose and comfortable on the dog.
This is really important since some of the training methods involve you handing treats to make a statement. Identify treats that your dog loves and keep them in handy. These treats include treat rolls. This treat is a well-balanced meal for your dog. There are also packaged treats that have been prepared for training purposes. These treats can be bought in dog supply shops. Cheese sticks are also loved by dogs. Hot dogs and kibbles are also great dog training treats.
Dogs also love toys and you should have some for your dog. They love to play and giving them toys is one of the ways to keep your dog active and happy. Toys such as buster cubes or Kongs are really great options.
You should also get calming aids to keep your dog calm when they are under pressure or when they get scared. There are several options for calming dogs.
Dog Harness or collar
This is necessary for identification purposes. You can easily identify your dog by the kind harness you use. The modern harness also features reflectors to make your dog visible in the dark.
House Training and Crate Training
Crate training is an essential part of house training. This involves confining your dog in a crate. This training is aimed at getting your dog to be comfortable when confined in a crate and also getting your dog to hold it in when he or she feels like urinating and pooping when they are not at the appropriate place. The first step in crate training is to choose a crate type. There are four main crate types. The type of crate you choose should depend on the type of dog you have.
There is the wire crate. This type of crate is strong and open. It allows air into the dog’s habitat. It is great for aggressive dogs since they might attempt to break the crate. Wire crates are difficult to break. Dogs who like chewing can also use the wire crate. There is the plastic crate that has only one opening. This locks the view of the dog. It is not great for the dog who likes to chew on things. They might end up chewing the entire crate. This crate is great when you are traveling on an airline with your dog. The nylon or soft-sided crates are ideal for dogs who do not like chewing on things. This crate is light in weight and can be easily packed for travels. the size of the crate is also important. It should not be too big or too small for your dog.
The next thing to do after choosing your crate is to introduce your dog to his or her new crate. This process should be done at the pace of the dog. Put some of his favorite toys in the crate and also add some treats. You should also line the crate floor with a soft fabric to make your dog comfortable. Make the crate visible and encourage the dog to go into it. if the dog goes in there praise the dog. When this continues, the dog would love his or crate and would not feel pressurized to go into the crate. When your dog goes into the crate, close the door for some time. As long as your dog remains quiet, keep the door locked. Open it the moment you realize your dog is uncomfortable. The dog will eventually feel comfortable in his new home.
It is important to note that it is wrong to confine your dog in his or her crate as a punishment. When you do that the dog may hate going into the crate since he now sees the crate as a punishment. You should not let your dog out of the crate simply because he is whining or barking. Letting him or her out when he or she makes noise will teach the dog to make noise whenever he or she wants to go out of the crate. Do not leave your dog in the crate for more than 3 and a half hours. This is because dogs cannot hold their urine in for more than four hours. It would be a punishment if your dog has to hold his or her urine in for longer hours. The dog might end up hating the crate.
House training, on the other hand, is the process of training your dog for him or her to know how the appropriate way of doing things in a home. This includes how to urinate or poop at the appropriate place. Where to drink water and eat, and even where to sleep. This is important to ensure that your dog maintains proper hygiene. To achieve success with house training, you should sturdy your dog and identify the times he or she does basic things such as urinating and pooping. When you are able to identify such things, you can lead the dog to the appropriate place when the time comes. This training is beneficial to you the dog owner as well. you do not have to through the hell of cleaning urine and poop around your house.
Your dog does not easily get comfortable with a leash around his neck. You need to train him to be comfortable with that. The first process is to choose the right leash for your dog. If you have the option, choose a color that would attract your dog. The dog would be attracted to the leash if the leash the is his or favorite color. After choosing the leash there is a lot more to be done before you set out on the streets. You would need to practice with your dog indoors. Consider putting the leash on the dog and allowing him or her to go about with it for some time. You can then proceed to hold the leash and walk about in the house. You can call your dog, pick up the leash and start walking about. This will help your dog to get used to the leash. Do not pull on the leash as a way of punishing your dog. Your dog might hate the leash when you do that. Do not allow your dog to chew on the leash as well. gently stop him if when he does that. When your dog is very comfortable with the leash, you can now set out to the streets.
Dog Body Languages and What They Mean
Your dog might try to talk to you in several different ways. It is true that every dog is different and they try to communicate in different ways. But there are some standard body languages dogs use when they want to say something.
Your dog might try to express his or her feelings with his or her mouth. When the dog lifts his lips vertically baring his canines, that is an indication of fear or aggressiveness. You should watch out, your dog might be tempted to bite. You should try to calm your dog or make him or her feel safe. When the dog flicks his or her tongue, that is an indication that he or she intends to lick your face.
When the dog’s eyes are droopy, it shows excitement. When he or she looks at you without blinking, he or she is challenging you. In the sense that he or she wants to dominate you. If a dog, on the other hand, takes his or her eyes off, it could mean the dog has mellowed.
When the dog wags his tail upon seeing you, that is the dog’s way of extending a friendly welcome to you. Other tail positions including crooked tails mean other things.
The ears are also a great way of telling how a dog feels. Understanding their ear languages can go a long way in helping you establish a good relationship with your dog. When the ears are erected, it means the dog is interested in what is going on around him or her. When the ears are flat that could mean the dog is scared.
Training a Deaf Dog, What To Consider
Training deaf dogs can be challenging but it is still possible to train them. These dogs cannot hear so it can be difficult to get their attention. You can stamp your feet to get their attention. Stamping your feet on the ground would send vibrations to your dog to get his or her attention. You can also use flashlights to get their attention. The flashlights are usually effective when the place is dark. Learning how to get the dog’s attention is the first step in the training process. If the dog gets to understand that you are trying to get his or her attention when you use those signals, you can proceed to the next level.
Since the dog cannot hear you, you should adopt hand signals in the training process. The dog should be able to understand you when you use the hand command. Do not use the same hand signal for two different things. Be consistent in the signals you are using as well. there are standard hand signals used by dog experts. You can sturdy those ones and use them. Using the standard hand signal can be beneficial since the dog would be able to understand any other person who uses the hand signal. However, you can adapt your own hand signals for your dog.
You should also keep your dog on a leash. This is necessary to keep your dog safe. Your dog will not be able to hear people or sounds of impending danger. This means it is entirely up to you to keep your dog safe. Because of that, a leash is really important. It would be really helpful to keep your dog on a leash because it allows you to have enough control over your dog. It helps you to also lead your dog.
You should also train your deaf dog in a way to makes him or her comfortable of being touched. Deaf dogs are usually startled when they are touched from behind or when they are sleeping. This is because they are not able to hear footsteps. You should train him or her to gradually accept that they can be touched and that people who touch them mean no harm. You can start this by occasionally touching them tenderly and calmly.
What To Do To Prevent Your Dog From Biting
Your dog can bite irrespective of the kind of dog you have. Most dogs bite out of fear, you can only prevent your dog from biting if you train them. Biting is like an aggressive fightback reaction dogs develop to protect themselves against harm. It can be embarrassing and unfortunate if your dog goes around biting people without. Of course, the dog might have a reason to bite but we not understand his or her actions. It is important to stop from biting without cause. This is because your dog can land you in big trouble if he keeps biting people without any cause. it could cause you financially and some can even land you in legal battles. You also risk losing your dog to someone who is intolerant of the dog’s actions. He or she might hurt your dog before you know it.
You can start the process of preventing your dog from biting by socializing your dog. You can introduce him or her to your immediate family, friends, and neighbors. This will make the dog familiar with them. The dog might get comfortable with them and not feel the need to be aggressive towards them. Do not assume also that your dog would not bite since it is not an aggressive dog. Your dog might have remained calm because there is no need for it to be aggressive. If your dog finds himself or herself in an aggressive situation, he or she will bite. Still, do everything necessary to prevent your dog from biting even if he or she has not shown signs of aggressiveness. Reward your dog if he or she does not bite even when the situation calls for it. Also, train your dog to be obedient; in this case, the dog will listen to you even in a situation where he or she wants to bite. Once you issue a command for it to stop, he or she would not bite. You should also spay or neuter your dog. This is helpful in a number of situations. It helps to make your dog less aggressive. It is also a very good way of preventing your dog from biting.
You must also understand your dog’s body language and act accordingly. You should sturdy your dog to know when he or she is comfortable. Dogs tend to be aggressive when they are uncomfortable. When you identify such situations, make sure you avoid them. Also, advise other people against it. you can also hire a dog behaviorist to help you train your dog against biting.
Dog Training Tips
You should regard some of these things when training your dog. Although there are methods to consider when training your dog, there are also some tips you can use at all times to ensure that your dog behaves well under any circumstance.
1. Be Determined
You should have time for your dog. You should put dog training into your schedule and make time for it. You cannot have time for your dog, then there is no need owning one. You should also have the zeal to train your dog. This will make the process fun and easy. You should not consider calling it quit when the process becomes difficult. The process will definitely become difficult along the way and you would need a lot of patience if you want to go through the process successfully. It might take some time for your dog to understand what you are trying to teach but with patience and continuous teaching, your dog would understand.
2. The Health Of Your Dog Should Be A Top Priority
You should make sure you take your dog for regular checkups, and also make sure they eat well. be attentive to your dog so that you can spot any change in behavior, body temperature, or even weight. When you spot any of these things, take immediate action.
3. Train Your Dog In A Destruction Free Setting
Choosing the locations for your dog training is equally important. Choose a place that does not have lots of things to capture the attention of your dog. You should first identify things that easily distract your dog and keep them away from those things during training sessions. For instances, if your dog gets attracted to the TV a lot, do not have your dog training sessions in front of the TV. Also, if there are family members or pets your dog loves to play with, keep them away during dog training sessions.
4. Use Your Dog’s Name During Training Sessions
It would be great if your dog gets used to his or her name. if you continuously use the name during training sessions, it would be easy for the dog to respond to it when you are elsewhere. It is also easier to control your dog if they respond to your calls. They can only respond if they can identify with the name.
5. Do Not Condone Irresponsible Behaviour.
When your dog does something bad, make it a point to let the dog know it is wrong. Dogs have the ability to act bad but cute. You might be forced to admire their cuteness even though what they are doing is bad. In that case, you would have to stand your ground and make your dog know that what they did is wrong and unacceptable.
6. Ensure that your dog feels secure at all times.
Your dog should feel safe whenever he/she is with you. You should be protective of your dog and try to keep him or her from harm as much as possible. If your dog keeps getting hurt when he or she is with you, he or she may feel insecure around you. You should also provide proper shelter for your dog. The shelter should protect your dog from the cold, sunshine, insects, and other unfavorable conditions.
7. Help Your Dog To Exercise Regularly
Take your dog for regular walks and also play with your dog. Help him to do lots of physical activities. Keeping your dog healthy and fit is as important as keeping yourself healthy.
8. Use Simple Commands At The Beginning Of Your Dog Training
Do not use complex instructions at the onset of the training. For instance, when you want to instruct your dog to come to you, you should use ‘jump’ instead of ‘jump up’. Dogs are able to easily pick up simple words. Your training sessions will be easier if you use simple instructions.
9. One Person Should Instruct the dog At A Time.
Your dog would love to follow your instructions. He or she can only follow, however, if it is an instruction he or she can follow. If there are many people instruction the dog at the same time, it will be difficult for the dog to choose who to follow. If the dog has to choose between several instructions, the dog might decide not to follow any. That will be the precedence of you losing control over the dog.
10. Everyone or most of the people who live with you must agree to the decision of getting a dog.
If you are getting a dog, make sure your entire family is in agreement. They will be a part of the dog training even if they would not play a primary role. Make sure they at least support your decision. Those who do not support your decision should agree not to be hard on your pet simply because they do not agree with your decision. Their interactions with the dog would help modify his behavior hence the importance of their attitude toward your pet.
11. Make sure your pet is relaxed.
Design his new home to make it similar to his litter. There should be a warm water bottle as well as a ticking clock in his new room. This will make him c
omfortable in his new home. Also, allow your dog to move about freely to give him the impression that he is welcome in his or her new home. This will be beneficial during dog training because the dog has begun to accept his new owners as family and he or she will like to impress them.
12. Be ready to repeat previous training sessions.
Your dog might forget some of the things you have taught him or her. That is natural, and you do not have to reprimand your dog for that. You should rather make it a point to take your dog through those training sessions again. You can only identify the things the dog has forgotten if you continually test him or her on the things he or she learnt during the training session. Once you have identified the things he cannot remember, you will have to patiently take him through again.
13. Make dog training fun.
Make sure your training sessions are fun so that your dog enjoys it. if they enjoy the training sessions, they would always look forward to training sessions. Identify games he enjoys and incorporates them into the training sessions. You should also give him or her treats during training sessions.
14. Wear comfortable clothes during training sessions.
Wear non-slip shoes so that you can run around with your dog comfortably. Your clothes should not hinder you from effectively partaking in activities with your dog. If a dree will hinder your movement, wear pants. Comfortable clothes will make the training sessions more effective.
15. Learn from expert dog trainers.
One way to effectively train your dog is to learn more dog training tips from expert trainers. Watch these trainers during their training sessions. Watch dog training TV shows and read books on dog training to learn a thing or two. You could also watch internet videos as well as visit websites that feature dog training tips.
16. Consistency and immediacy are important.
You should be consistent in your dog training process. You should be consistent in your response towards certain actions. For instance, If your dog is jumping to greet you and your initial response was a smile or laughter, you should maintain that response even when you are angry. Exerting your anger on the dog would confuse your dog. He would not know if what he did is right or wrong. This is not helpful in the training process. Also, you should immediately react to a dog’s actions. If he did something right and you intend to reward him, reward him immediately so that he or she cannot connect the two. If you wait till he is doing something else and then you decide to reward him, you will confuse the dog. He or she might think you are rewarding him or her for what he or she is doing at the moment.
17. Your mood matters.
When you are training your dog, it is important to be in the right mood. You should not be angry or stressed when training your dog. This will end up scaring your dog and pushing him or her away from you. Even though you should be firm in the process, you should not be too harsh with your dog. Your dog can tell if you are in bad mood and this would not help the process.
18. Punishment in dog training
If you want to punish your dog, it is better to take way rewards than to inflict physical pain on your dog. Inflicting physical pain will make your dog timid and scared of you. It can also cause your dog to develop psychological problems. You can also take your attention from the dog as a way of punishing him. This is effective in dealing with dog’s behavioral problems.
19. Reward Your Dog After Every Training Session
This will help your dog to look forward to every training session. This reward does not depend on whether or not your dog did well. this is just to encourage them and make them know you appreciate their effort.
In conclusion, we would like to emphasize that, no dog training method has been recognized as the best training method. all these methods have their short comings. It has however been established that any method that instills fear in the dog is not a great training method. this is because dogs under perform when they are scared. They cannot learn well, and they are not able to develop themselves very well. Such methods can be used once in a while, but they should not be the sole training method for the dog.
It is also good to note that several methods can be incorporated into the dog training process. However, the methods should not be contrasting. They should have a similar them. You can incorporate obedience training with clicker method. This has proven to produce good results. In as much as there is no ideal dog training method, you will have to choose a method that works for your dog. What works for an aggressive dog would not work on a fearful dog. Sturdy your dog and know his weaknesses as well his strengths before selecting a method. this will produce good results. Learn to change tactics if one does not work as well as you expect. Always remember to choose a tactic that does not contradict the previous one you were using.
We have this write up has given you more than enough information in training your dog. Happy dog training.