RSS

Practice makes perfect!

26 Apr
Practice makes perfect!

As I’m sure any person knows, when you learn something new, the only way to get better is to practice. Many dog owners teach their dog how to sit at home and with a treat and when they take the dog out to the park they expect the dog to perform the sit the same way they did at home with the treat. This is called generalizing. Dogs do not generalize, they need to be taught how to generalize. Simply because your dog knows one thing at a certain place does not ensure that they will know it in a brand new place.

I tell each one of my clients that dog training is like math, you start off easy and gradually increase the difficulty. For instance, you gradually increase the difficulty by adding distractions that are more and more challenging. If you don’t practice with your dog in those situations, your dog will never perform perfectly in them. Just like math, if you stop practicing, you begin forgetting.

It is extremely important that you first have faded the lure before trying to add more distractions. If you don’t know how to do this, check out one of my older posts called Fading the Lure.

When beginning in a new environment, always expect to re-teach your dog the behavior, even if they already know it at home. This will start to teach your dog how to generalize. Take your dog several places and practice with treats as if they don’t know the behavior at all. As your dog begins to catch on and is doing the behavior easily, start fading the lure in each place. After you have faded the lure, you can start adding distractions slowly. If for one minute your dog gets confused or too distracted, take a step back and try it from the beginning. If your dog gets frustrated, he will not enjoy training any longer. Keep him motivated and interested by raising your voice, getting more exciting or even giving him treats for small things. Never get frustrated that your dog is confused, this will put a stumbling block in your training and in your relationship with your dog.

Good luck and keep training positive!

Advertisements
 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

3 responses to “Practice makes perfect!

  1. Tiffy the Yorkie

    April 26, 2012 at 12:57 pm

    Great info. 🙂

     
  2. cbandkona

    April 26, 2012 at 5:16 pm

    You are absolutely right – it’s so important to mix it up with locations. I find mixing up the type of stay also makes it a little more interesting and fun.

     
  3. Science of Dogs.

    June 19, 2012 at 2:06 am

    “Perfect practice makes perfect”

     

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
%d bloggers like this: