To have a good relationship with your dog and a good living environment that suits you both, training is essential. Good training requires good communication between the owner and the animal, and therefore by rules established from the start.
What to know before you start dog training
- The animal must be available and receptive. To understand what you want to train him, he must be comfortable and happy to listen to you. For example, avoid interrupting his nap or his meal to train him, he will not be in good shape. If your dog is not ready, if he is confused, there is no need to do the training session immediately, it will be wasted time.
- The training must be done a little every day, on short time slots. This involves capturing the dog’s attention as much as possible to be effective and repeating the learning every day.
- These regular training moments imply a need for consistency in your animal’s training: in this way, he will be able to have good points of reference as soon as he arrives in your home.
- The main point is to make your dog understand who the master is. Right from the start, you need to establish your authority and never let your dog know that he can lead you by the nose. For example, when you go out the door, walk past him.
The basics of dog training
Walking on a leash
Whether in town or in the countryside, a dog needs to know how to walk on a leash: this makes him understand that he does not decide everything and depends on you. It is an element of security for him and for others. Be sure to make him walk beside you and not in front of you: you are the one leading the walk! Do not choose a too-short leash, as your pet will quickly be tempted to pull on it. If the dog pulls on his leash, the owner must apply small pulls to hold him back.
Call back your dog
Once your dog knows how to hold himself and obeys you on-leash walks, you can try to give him more freedom. But for that, you have to know how to call your dog back in case of a problem. The dog should know and be able to recognize his name when you call him. Also, don’t just say the name but then add a specific order like “come” or “here.” Do not yell, do not make sudden gestures to call him, otherwise, he will not understand and will be afraid.
The basic orders: not move, sit, stand, lie down.
Dog training involves learning basic commands. You will teach him at the same time, step by step, the following commands: not move, sit, stand, lie down. For this, you will support him at the start in the execution of orders.
For example, to “sit,” hold out a treat to your dog, above his head, extending his arm behind him: he will instinctively sit down instead of turning around. Take advantage of this moment to say “sit” when he sits down. Likewise, when he gets up, say, “stand up.” In the meantime, you have to keep it still by saying, “don’t move.” And when he is seated, pull him slightly by the front paws to make him lie down, and at the same time, say “lying down”.
The goal is for your dog to assimilate these movements to the sound he hears. Remember that it takes time for him to understand all of this and do it on his own. Stay patient! Good things come to those who wait.
Protect prohibited spaces
If your dog is urinating all over the place to mark his territory, you can use an indoor repellent; it will help train him. Above all, never put his nose in his needs: he will not understand his mistake and will subsequently risk wanting to hold back when this is not the message you wanted to convey. Likewise, to protect your flower beds, you can use an outdoor repellent.
Reward and punish your dog
To train your dog, it is better to carry out positive training than negative training. Positive training is about rewarding your dog (in different ways) when it deserves it. Negative training is about acting through rebuke and punishment.
Reward your dog!
To train a dog, you have to be patient because it can seem long at the beginning. The reward helps you in the learning process: it allows your animal to understand when he has executed the orders correctly. The reward must have value: it must retain an exceptional character, do not use it all the time, or lose its worth. Use the reward when your dog has reached a milestone in his training.