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Canine University 71 Clinton St. Malden, MA


Canine Behavior

Secrets of a Successful Dog Trainer

Your dog doesn't listen to you, he sits when he feels like it or comes only when it's dinner time. You're frustrated, you're at wits end, you can't figure out what's gone wrong. You want a crash course in dog training techniques and you need it fast.

Most people who have owned a dog have tried to teach it something at some point. For the unenlightened this can seem a daunting task, and depending upon the temperament of the dog, a frustrating one at that. There are four simple secrets of becoming a good dog trainer. If you follow these to the letter, your dog will be on its way to becoming a well-behaved companion.

  1. Motivation - usually in the form of food, but a happy attitude toward training is accomplished by making the whole experience fun. Following up a short training session with play usually does the trick.
  2. Praise- if you don't praise your dog in a happy voice he will never really comprehend what's going on. Your dog interprets your response to his behavior by the tone and pitch of your voice, so practice your praising voice and make it sincere, dogs can spot a phony a mile away.
  3. Repetition - dogs learn by repetition, the more times he accomplishes a behavior and gets praised for it the more likely he will be to repeat the behavior again to please you. This translates into....practice, practice, practice !!!
  4. Consistency - if you give a command and the dog ignores you, you must take the time to make the dog do what you've asked. If you allow the dog to ignore you or play deaf as many do, your role of leader will not be respected. If you want an easy to manage dog that you can take with you anywhere, you must follow through with each command. This goes for all family members.

Altogether it looks something like this...

  • You show "Bingo" a treat, say the command and lure him into position.
  • You praise him for complying and tell him what he did for you.
  • Next you practice 3-5 times in a row, take a break and repeat.
  • Lastly, you have everyone in the family do it the same way.