These are some tips to help you get results in your training.
* When working your dog be patient, positive and fair. Obedience training should be fun for both you and your dog. (this does not mean that the dog should never be corrected)
* If you are stressed, tired or just in a bad mood do not train the dog! You will do more damage than good.
* Corrections should be given in a fair manner; quick and firm enough to get the dog into position. Do not over correct the dog.
* Use praise and plenty of it! Always praise after every correction as the dog should be in the right position after the correction has been applied.
* Always end on a positive note. If the dog is not working well then use a command the dog knows well and end on that. Do not end a training session with a correction.
* Train at least 15 minutes a day. Obedience needs to be practiced on a daily basis to maintain the proficiency of the dog. The more you practice the better the dog will obey you.
* Never repeat a command! Give the dog the command once only. If the dog obeys, praise. If the dog ignores your command use a leash correction and a word such as “no” “phooey” or “aah” to get the dog back to position. Praise once the dog is in position.
* When using a word for correction, say it in a normal conversational tone. Never yell commands or correction words at your dog. You’re not trying to intimidate your dog you are trying to teach him.
* Use your dog’s obedience skills in everyday situations. Do not get in the habit of only having the dog obey when practicing obedience. If you give the dog a command in the house or yard be ready to enforce it should the dog disobey. It only takes 3 repetitions of a behavior to set that behavior, good or bad. If the dog knows that he only has to listen when the leash is on then you will be creating a huge problem that may be difficult to overcome.
* Do not give a command you cannot enforce. If the dog is loose and you are unsure if the dog will obey your command, DO NOT GIVE THE COMMAND!
* Always work a command on leash until the dog will listen to you even in the face of heavy distractions. Come up with as many distractions as you can possibly think of during the on lead training sessions (this is called “proofing”). The more distractions you work the dog around the better the dog will obey you in the future. The types of distractions you use are only limited to your imagination!
* Never rush into off leash work. You will ruin hours of training if you take the lead off too soon. Be patient and work through distractions while on lead. You will want the dog working at 98%-100% accuracy on lead before you ever think about taking the lead off.
* Remember to use a release word such as “Free” “Break” or??? to end an exercise. Never let the dog release himself from a command. Also, physical and verbal praise is not an excuse for the dog to break a command! Get your dog used to being talked to and petted while holding various positions. If the dog breaks position stop praising, correct the dog, then continue the praise. The dog must wait until you release him from command.
* Have fun when training! You get out of it what you put into it.