Making sure your best friend is a well-behaved pup takes time and effort. While some people take their dogs to training schools, not everyone can afford the luxury. There are many ways you can train your pooch from home, without getting a professional trainer in.
Over the years multiple training techniques have been developed, all proven to improve classic behavioral problems. In this post we’ll take a look at some of these methods.
1. Positive Reinforcement
As the name states, you’ll reward your pooch for good behavior while ignoring bad behavior. Good behavior is rewarded with treats, while bad behavior is either ignored, or a treat or toy is taken away. This method should be done immediately after the desired response is displayed.
2. Training with a Clicker
Often combined with positive reinforcement, clicker training is based on operant conditioning. In this method, a clicker or dog whistle is used when the dog has behaved the way the owner or trainer wanted it to. This can be used to add verbal commands and ultimately shape desired behavior.
3. Relationship-Based Training
This technique combines multiple methods and focuses on both the pet and the parent or trainer. Here, an individualized approach is taken to ensure the relationship between the two is solid and that both parties’ benefit. It focuses on communication and bonding.
4. Electronic Training
Electronic training requires the use of an electronic collar that shocks whenever the dog shows unwanted behavioral patterns. It does not rely on positive reinforcement and can cause stress to the dog. This technique is best for serious trainers, but should still be avoided as it can lead to anxiety problems in the dog.
5. Mirror Training
In this training method, your dog will learn from example. It can be used to act as a rival where the dog competes to get a specific reward for doing a task or behaving appropriately. Simply put, the dog learns from observing another dog or person being praised or scolded for good or bad behavior. Here’s a video that shows what mirror training entails.
While it is best to have a professional trainer’s assistance and input, you can try some of these methods at home. Remember, a healthy and happy home relies on a happy environment where both dog and owner feel that they are loved and appreciated.
Training your dog takes time, effort and patience but is worth it at the end of the day. Keep in mind that not every type of training method is going to work for you and your pooch, and you’ll have to select one that works well for both of you.