RSS

Tag Archives: exercise

Practice makes perfect!

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!

 

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

Fading the Lure

Fading the Lure

Does your dog rely on seeing treats to perform anything for you? Does he only listen when you show him a piece of food?

Well this is one of the most common issues I have seen with my clients. They lure their dog into doing several tricks with the treat but seem to miss the part where they are supposed to fade the treat out. It’s extremely important to fade out your luring by using hand signals and then eventually fade out the treats completely. Here is a very easy way to fade the treats out for your dog.

I made a quick video to demonstrate the process below. If you would like to not only read it, but see it, go to this link: Click Here

Step #1 • Show your dog the treat, get him to do something and then toss it to him

Step #2 • Pretend you have a treat (mimic the hand position), get him to do something, show him there is an empty hand and then give him the treat from somewhere else.

Step #3 • Show your dog the empty hand, pretend you have a treat, show him the empty hand again and ask him to do the behavior. Give him a treat from somewhere else.

Step#5 • Show your dog the empty hand, give him the hand signal, then give him the treat from somewhere else.

If you follow these steps, in no time your dog will not even need to see the treat!

Tips on how to not even use treats.

• Start varying the reward! Don’t give them treats for everything, use a toy, praise, and affection

• Give him treats once in a while for the behavior (without him seeing them) so he never knows when he’s getting one or not. Make sure to not give treats in a pattern! They will figure it out.

I hope this helps you and your dog learn how to fade the treats! Good luck.

-Amber

 
2 Comments

Posted by on February 20, 2012 in Training tips

 

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

The importance of the walk

The importance of the walk
Most people know that if you have a dog, you should walk it. It’s general knowledge that walking your dog is good, but how important is it really? Your dog probably isn’t terribly behaved, so why do you have to walk him?

Imagine yourself in his shoes for a moment. He is either stuck in your house or back yard every single day and the closest exercise he gets is chasing a ball back and forth. I don’t know about you but I would definitely lose my mind if I were that dog.

Lack of exercise is actually the leading cause of all problem behaviors! Does your dog bark constantly? Does he jump up on every single person without fail? Does he destroy things in your house or dig in your yard? All of these behaviors have a root cause, and it’s usually lack of exercise. I ask every single one my clients who is having constant trouble with their dog, “Are you exercising him? How often are you taking him on walks, jogs, or runs?” Their answer is always the same. Either they aren’t taking him out at all or they take him out every once in a while. I cannot stress enough how important it is to take your dog on walks every single day!

Now some people get lucky with a dog who doesn’t have to go on walks because she’s more laid back than the average dog. If you have one of these dogs, it does NOT make you and your dog an exception. Just because your dog is not destructive and doesn’t have any problem behaviors, doesn’t mean she won’t benefit from walking.

Taking your dog on a walk every day is an essential part of being a dog owner.

Taking your dog on a walk has MANY advantages.

Your dog will be calmer and better behaved. 

Your dog will have a longer and healthier life. 

Your dog will respect you more and have a stronger bond with you. 

Your dog will become well socialized with people and other dogs.

There are many other advantages but those are just a few.

I hope that this quick post will have encouraged you to start walking with your dog every day! Make it a routine and a part of your schedule. It will even help those who want to get in shape to stay motivated too! If you set aside time every day to spend walking, jogging, or running with your dog, both you and your pooch will live a much healthier, more enjoyable, and easier life!

As I tell all of my clients, as much as you can afford to walk your dog, do it! If you want to go on several walks a day, even better!

If you are wondering how to have a successful walk without pulling, lunging, ect. Keep reading as it will be coming very soon! Good luck and go take a walk with your dog today.

 

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

 
%d bloggers like this: