I always stress the importance of consistency and want to make sure you know what that means, and why it is so important.
Did you know that there are training tasks you can work on when you are with your dog without even much thought? I always stress to my clients to "put the trainer hat on" a little more frequently throughout the day to achieve their goals. If you just think about training a little bit more every day, you can work on a list of goals whenever you are with your dog and he will be better trained before you know it!
If you are a savvy trainer, you can teach your dog to do behaviors on cue that are initiated by a change in the environment that happens naturally or that is part of your normal daily pattern. Unless you are working on a sophisticated trick, the reason to implement this strategy is to alleviate the need to ask your dog to a cue.
Providing clear instructions is critical in dog training. Have you ever thought about the cues we give our dogs from their perspective? Over the years I am sometimes completely amazed that a given dog is able to understand the trainer at all.
It is a bit ironic that this is the recommendation that I repeat most to my clients. But, this makes a HUGE difference in training. Any animal learns faster if there are clear instructions.
Performance is something that changes moment to moment. When you are training your dog, you need to always pay attention to how well she is doing. If she is consistently distracted by something in the environment which causes her behavior to fluctuate, you have a few options.
I got a sad call from a new client yesterday. She said her dog was showing signs of dog-dog aggression and, from the advice of someone in the dog park, she hired a trainer that uses choke chains. She said initially the training wasn't too physical, but she ended up firing him because of his increasingly abusive techniques when dogs were around her dog.
Everyone is busy. My wife and I are taking a guitar class together and it is amazing how the week flies by and I realize I haven't practiced enough.
I am sure you are busy as well and can never find enough time to train your dog. Here are some tips to help you find the time.
I work with dog-dog aggression a lot. I get lots of practice in the congested city of Chicago, and I use techniques that work. As with any training topic, there are many competing strategies out there, but I urge you to think about the psychology of anxiety and aggression.