You have heard the old saying: “practice makes perfect”. The same holds true for dog training. As a Las Vegas dog trainer, I train thousands of dogs each year of all sizes, ages and breeds. Before a lesson even ends, pet parents think I have sprinkled their dogs with some type of magical, obedience dust. In fact, a few have commented that I must have switched dogs! Dogs on the other hand just want to go back to their misbehaving ways!
The key to successful dog training is consistency and communication. I teach you how to communicate with your dog so that he understands what you are saying. Although dogs come to understand certain words in English, when you speak in a language your dog understands and combine this communication with body language, you will be successful in your dog training efforts. The Bark Busters Las Vegas method sets you up for success!
The process of training your dog needs to continue long after I am gone. Here are five, simple tips to keep you on track. You need to practice your training exercises every day to get the best results. It should be fun — not something you dread.
- Establishing yourself as the “leader”. Remember your dog needs to see you as the “pack leader” (or “boss”). Otherwise, he will try and take control and think you are an equal. He prefers to learn from you and have rules so he will feel more secure. You will need to be leader-like and consistent. I don’t mean being physical with your dog. Use authoritative voice tones. Your dog will regularly test you and you need to win every time. If you keep reinforcing good behavior, your dog will learn to follow your new rules and behave the way you want.
- Reinforcement is important. If you are correcting your dog and he shows signs of yielding, reinforce his response by leading him to the right behavior, then praising him. Praising is very important and should be done the minute your dog displays the behavior you want. If you don’t praise your dog, you are missing a golden opportunity for your dog to understand exactly what you want. Once you have praised your dog, practice the behavior again until your dog learns door manners, not to jump up, not to bark at the doorbell, etc. You should keep repeating the same exercise until you are guiding and praising your dog for the right decision.
- Set up temptations to misbehave. If you are distracted, your dog is distracted. If you are in a rush, don’t use this time to try and train your dog. The minute you let your dog get away with his bad behavior, he will revert and test you. He is just waiting for you to give up! Set up the opportunity to misbehave when you have the time to teach him.
- Do your homework. I leave clients with a series of exercises to ensure success. The exercises are designed specifically for each client. I recommend doing the exercises several times each day at different times of day, in different places, etc. Take your dog on a familiar walking route and then introduce a new route. Have friends and family come to the door and make sure he doesn’t jump on them.
Practice will pay off because you will have a happier dog who knows the rules. Remember your dog wants to please you – he just doesn’t know how until you and BarkBusters Las Vegas shows him!