Helping Your Dog Win:
It is very important in your relationship with your dog to make everything a Win-Win relationship.
If you ask your dog to come to you after playing at the dog park, the come command comes to mean “fun is over”. This makes your relationship a win-lose relationship- you win and your dog loses. Your dog will not do this more than once.
What to do:’
Have a very high value treat or toy when you call your dog in from play. This creates a win-win relationship.
Also, call your dog regularly during play and let your dog go back to play again to solidify the win-win relationship, as play is a reward in and of itself.
Top Mistakes Dog Pet Parents Make:
· Give too much freedom too soon
· Giving No Limits in the yard or house (ie letting the 16 year old take the car keys and go wherever they want whenever they want)
· Not using confinement or boundaries inside the home
· Letting dog be off leash outside in unfenced areas
· Free Feeding or feeding too much or table food (If your dog is not finishing the meal, you are feeding too much, if your dog will not eat without people food on the dog food that is because your dog is training you).
· Give the food, leave down 15 min then take away twice daily
· Using Punishment as a training technique- this includes raising your voice and instances when your emotions take over (ie even if you “do not mean it”)
Reading Material: “Take Control But Don’t Lose Control: Help for people with Dogs that are Excellent Human Trainers”
For Territorial Dogs (barking at windows, fence fighting): “The Sentry Dog’, Lulu Press
Tools Needed to Train Your Dog:
· Crate for sleeping, eating, when pet parents aren’t home (A quiet place to eat/sleep alone)
· There should be toys and chewable items (make it a nice den)
· Do not force if your dog is scared of the crate
· Puzzle toys & Kongs with frozen canned food or peanut butter
· Privacy fence in back yard if possible
· Invisible fences are for back yards only, not front yards & are not a physical barrier so cannot keep your dog from leaving the yard or prevent other dogs from coming in.
· ID Collar warn at all times (Ok to use a safety break-away collar)
· Regular 4-6 foot leash for sidewalk walking
· Flexi leads are only for wooded trails or open fields.
· Gentle Leader Head Collar, Easy Walk Harness, or Thunderleash
· These discourage pulling forward
· Long line for recall practice (coming when called)
· A flexi lead works for this- start inside without distraction and gradual increase distractions- make it a win-win
· Doggie Please or Learn to Earn
· Your dog should sit to get anything valuable- sit for meals, treats, attention, to come inside, to go outside (sit is please for a dog)
· Positive-reinforcement training
· Carefully monitored small-play-group, doggie daycare, or friend with compatible dog playmate (appropriate play groups are 2-4 dogs and should be personality matched)
· Non-emotional consequences for wrong choices
· Punishment teaches what not to do but not what to do
· Teach alternative behaviors to undesirable ones
· Balanced Diet (such as Royal Canin, Science Diet, appropriate for age, size (large, medium, small), breed)
· Dogs are omnivores and need 26% protein or less.
· Treats and chews should be 10% of the diet or less
· Ingredient lists do not determine the right food, research and nutritional content does