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DOG TRAINING TIPS

The easiest and most effective way to train your dog is by building training into your dog's every-day routine.  In this way you will always find the time to train and your dog will quickly learn to co-operate with you by consistency of daily training.

I have outlined some points below which I hope will help you.  Dogs are referred to as 'he' but the training tips are equally for the ladies!

 

Socialisation
Firstly, please ensure you give your puppy or dog the correct socialisation skills to enable him to have a happy, well-balanced outlook on life.  This is one of the most important things you can do and should be done on a structured and well thought-out basis to ensure your dog has plenty of positive experiences in the home and elsewhere.  If you take on an older dog with some socialisation issues then I can work with you to improve your dog's perception of the things he may have become fearful or aggressive to.  Whilst socialisation is extremely important during a puppy's early days, you can still make improvements with older dogs if handled sensitively.

Build a good relationship with your dog
Your overall aim should be to have a good relationship with your dog which means he will view you as his best friend, playmate and senior manager!  If you achieve this then your dog will be eager to please you and much easier to train.

You need to consider your dog's needs and ensure these are met.  This includes obviously food, water, a quiet place to retreat to where he is not disturbed and also relevant physical and mental exercise for his breed and character (you may need to do some research on this).
 
You will need to understand how to tell him very clearly what a great boy he is for doing well and also how to let him know if you are disappointed in him when he behaves inappropriately.  However, if you are spending too much time being disappointed with him rather than praising him then please find professional help to put you back on the right track, otherwise you will end up with a very unhappy and misunderstood dog.
 
Choose and Use Rewards Wisely
Consider which rewards your dog will most appreciate and use them wisely - remember that if he receives too many of any of these then they begin to lose their value and novelty.  However, don't forget to be generous when it is well deserved!
 
Consistency with Training and Guidelines
Decide amongst your household which rules are really important (and reasonable for your dog) and which your dog needs to learn to abide by.  Write them down and ensure everyone in the house agrees to them.  If just one person coming into contact with your dog rewards unwanted behaviour (such as jumping up, pulling on the lead or allowing a dog in a place where he is usually banned) then the dog cannot be expected to understand what the rules are.  Remember that communication must be clear and consistent to the dog - all the time.
 
Make sure that everyone involved in training is using the same clear verbal and visual commands and signals to make it as easy as possible for your dog to understand and therefore learn more quickly.

Quality Time for You and Your Dog
Try to make training fun via the use of short play-training sessions each day (if done correctly, this helps with training and at the same time teaches good manners during play and in daily life).  The saying of 'play together, stay together' is very true when sessions are both fun and educational.
 
Spend quality time with your dog which means doing something together that he will enjoy.  This could be some fun play-training, interaction whilst on walks, a tummy rub, etc, etc (again, think of what will suit your particular breed and character of dog).
 

I hope these tips help to get you started on the road to a happy and long-lasting relationship with your dog.                                       CONTACT
                       
Good luck!

Sally Bartlett
Co-operative Canines Dog Training