Is your dog trained? Or is Fido still learning? Our canine friends are capable of mastering some very complex tricks, but your pet doesn’t need to become a furry genius to become a wonderful, loving, and well-behaved pet. He should, however, be housetrained, and know at least the five basic commands, which are Sit, Stay, Come, Lay Down, and Heel. In this article, your North Hampton vet offers some pooch-training tips.
Consistency is very important when it comes to training animals. If you’re trying to train Fido to stay off the couch, for instance, you have to address his behavior every single time you see him hop onto the sofa. Reprimanding him one time and ignoring the next incident will only confuse him.
Use Positive Reinforcement
Never punish your dog for making a mistake, or not catching on quickly enough. Negative reinforcement rarely works, and can even backfire. Your canine pal won’t understand what he’s done wrong, and may end up becoming anxious, sad, or even scared of you. Instead, use positive reinforcement: praise Fido’s successes with snacks and compliments. In fact, the term ‘use positive reinforcement’ can be loosely interpreted to mean ‘reward Fido’s achievements with doggy treats’!
You can, indeed, teach an old dog new tricks, but that doesn’t mean it’s okay to delay your pup’s schooling. The sooner you start training your pooch, the better!
Less is More
Don’t try putting your pooch through hours of training on end. Short, frequent sessions are better. Work with your furry pal for ten or twenty minutes a time, a few times a day.
It’s best to skip Fido’s daily lesson if you’re upset, agitated, or in a bad mood. Your canine pal will quickly pick up on your frame of mind, and it may send mixed signals.
Remember, it takes time, consistency, and patience to train a dog. Once your canine pal has mastered the basic five commands, you can move on to teaching him some cute and fun tricks. You might find that your four-legged pal loves absolutely loves learning new things!
Do you have questions about your dog’s health, care, or behavior? Contact us, your local North Hampton vet clinic, anytime. We are here to serve all of your pet’s veterinary care needs!
To read more pet care articles, please visit our website here.