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Six Principles To Apply When Training Your Dog

May 5, 2008
Training your dog is a richly rewarding experience. Those of us who've done this remember the moments fondly. Bonding with your dog is a memory to treasure. But do keep in mind there are elements affecting your dog's training; these things you must know about, because each element contributes to the outcome of your dog's training.

Timing

This is crucial because this would be enforcing discipline and also focus on your dog. Should you witness an unacceptable act your dog did, you would have to respond immediately to punish him, to let him know you disapprove. So when he destroys something in your home, walk up to him immediately and let him know you will not tolerate such acts in your home. When your dog does a good thing, though, reward him immediately so he'd know you approve of what he did, and so he'd do it again.

Fairness

Fairness is crucial, too, in training your dog. He looks up to you as his master. So it's best if you retain a consistency in what you do. So if you want to teach your dog to keep still and stay, but then you constantly move around, you dog will know you are not consistent, you are not fair. When you give the order to stay, you stay first. Keep still and stop walking around, pay attention to the same activity.

Consistency

Related to fairness above is consistency. When you lay out the do's and don't of your house, you had better keep to it. Regardless. If you want your dog to stop eating your morning newspaper, you have better be firm about not tolerating his behavior. Otherwise you could be angry one morning and passive the next and the dog would be confused when you punish him again. He might not do as you say next time.

Fun

Training is not some stay at home army boot camp. Have fun when you spend time with your dog. The more rewards you give him for good behavior the more better behaved he will be. Try to be more cheerful and consistent with your behavior and orders so he'd do as you say, and both of you will have fun. Other than teaching your dog tricks, play some games. He'll be more lively and more interested in doing activities with you.

Praise

His behavior, when good, should be followed by praise. The more you do this the more your dog will like it, the more he'll keep doing the good things. Like people, dogs just like to be pampered. So feed him, pat him on the head, tell him sincerely that he really is a nice dog.

Firm and Gentle

Dogs also should not be inflicted physical harm on. Don't hit him. How would you feel if someone hit you? You can be firm with rules but not excessive in punishment. Your dog can sense when what he did is not commensurate to what you do to him. Be firm with rules but gentle in treating them. Otherwise it will be even harder to train your dog.
About the Author
Increase the happy years of your dog by checking out my free e-book. In it I reveal all the secrets I've used to develop a happy, healthier dog. Visit Dr. Alfonso's dog training blog right now...
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