One of the hardest parts of training is communicating with the dog in a humane way that the dog understands. However, the underlining principle of all communication is simple: reward desired behavior while ignoring or correcting undesired behavior.
Listed Below Are Basic Pet Obedience Training Behaviors:
- Recall (“come” or “here”)
- Close (or loose-leash walking)
“Corrections” should never include harmful physical force or violence of any kind towards your puppy or dog. Using force while training is controversial and should not be taken lightly, because even if it ends the behavior when applied inappropriately with some dogs it may lead to a loss of drive (enthusiasm for the given task), stress, and in some cases even aggression. A handler or trainer may decide to use force, however, the standard used by most dog trainers is the minimum amount necessary to inhibit the unwanted behavior.
Fundamentally speaking, basic dog training is about communication. From the human perspective, the dog handler or trainer is communicating to the dog what behaviors are correct, desired, or preferred in what circumstances and what behaviors are undesirable. From the canine perspective, the handler or trainer must learn what motivates the dog if optimal results are desired.
A dog handler or trainer must understand communication from the dog. The dog can signal that he is unsure, confused, nervous, happy, excited, and so on. The emotional state of the dog is an important consideration in directing the training, as a dog that is stressed or distracted will not learn efficiently.According to Learning Theory, there are four important communication messages that the dog handler or trainer can send the dog:
1: Reward Or Release Marker
- Correct behavior. You have earned a reward
2: Keep Going Signal
- Correct behavior. Continue and you will earn a reward
3: No Reward Marker
- Incorrect behavior. Try something else
4: Punishment Marker
- Incorrect behavior. You have earned punishment
Using consistent signals or words for these messages enables the dog to understand them more quickly.
It is important to note that your dog’s reward is not the same as the reward marker. The reward marker is a signal that tells the dog that he has earned the reward. Rewards can be praise, trips, play, or anything that the dog finds rewarding. Failure to reward after the reward marker diminishes the value of the reward marker and makes training more difficult.
These four messages may be communicated verbally or with nonverbal signals. Mechanical clickers are frequently used as a reward marker. Hand signals and body language also play an important part in learning for dogs. The meanings of the four signals are taught to the dog through repetition, so that he may form an association by classical conditioning so that the dog associates the punishment marker with the punishment itself.
Dogs do not generalize commands easily. A command which may work indoors might be confusing out-of-doors or in a different situation. The command will need to be re-taught in each new situation. This is sometimes called “cross-contextualization,” meaning the dog has to apply what’s been learned too many different contexts of its training.
Hopefully, this article has given you a good basic insight into the more helpful attributes and techniques to use when training your dog. However, the subject remains pretty complex, and it’s a good idea to learn as much about effective training techniques as possible.
One excellent resource for dog training is SitStayFetch: the ultimate training and knowledge database for dog owners. With a focus on preventing and dealing with problem behaviors, as well as obedience work and ‘tricks’, SitStayFetch covers a wide variety of topics in minute detail – all round, an invaluable manual for dog owners everywhere.