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Dog Focus

Jul 2, 2008
Focus is one of the most important commands to teach your dog. If your puppy is looking away from you, he is listening to what he is staring at. Interruptions are a huge part of life, and you need to train your dog to pay no attention to them and pay attention to only you.

You cannot achieve focus by your dog's name. Daily, you will use his name for a variety of reasons. Worse yet, you will more than likely yell his name out when he is doing something badly.

The phrase you will use to teach your dog focus will be a constantly positively reinforced phrase. He will first learn how to look at you on command regardless of what is going on around him. Next, he will come to you when you call rather than running off to who some unknown territory. Here are the first steps in order to teach your dog to pay attention.

1. Start training your dog when he has not had any contact with you for a few hours. The beginning of the day is preferred because you usually have had no contact with him the previous night. A puppy that has barely had contact is more likely to want to give you his full attention when the opportunity presents itself. Make sure that you walk your dog before starting the session. Don't play with him or talk too much, put him on a lead and walk him for removal purposes. Later, take your dog back inside so you can start training. Keep a leash on him so that you can keep control of him.

2. Use a snack- as a reward. It is very imperative that you know the types of edible highlights that will work on your dog. A starving dog will be motivated by a snack. A well-fed dog may show that he's not interested. Caution: Never feed your dog food prior training.

3. You will be training your dog to look at directly at you on command and a reason for him to look could be that there is food actually falling out of your mouth. Try spitting out bits of food at your dog; this can be any food that he likes. If you have a young puppy, you may get on your knees and show him a pretzel hanging from your mouth. When he sees this, you can let him take a little it from your mouth. Your puppy must be able to take this little amount of food in a gentle way, to avoid any unintentional bites. If your pet is very rough in taking this snack, hold the snack in your hand but near your mouth, and give him little portions as he looks at you while giving the command. You must stand straight with your dog looking directly at you.

4. Usual commands like "ready," "look," or "focus" can be used just make certain to be regular with your terms. The dog's name should be called out before giving the focus command. Simply make a little clicking sound with your mouth after your command. This will help train him to look at your face.

Practice this regularly and reward your dog for it. Insist longer periods of focus, and focus with distractions. Enhance the distraction level while demanding short focus periods. After you have attained focus at high levels of distraction, for example, someone calling his name, you can continue increasing focus time. When commanded to look directly at you, the dog must offer persistent focus on you until he's free to do the next task.
About the Author
Written by Kelly Marshall of Oh My Dog Supplies - your source for luxury dog carriers online
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