Good dog, bad dog, sit, staay, staay. Discipling your pooch is a little more than giving simple instructions in a voice that you reserve for your 3 year old nephew. Discipling your dog requires alot of positive affirmation, empathy and love as screaming (or barking) down the throat of your dog is not going to cut it and will leave your dog distressed.
Discipline and Dominance are two different things
Although a previously accepted form of discipline, shock collars and verbal (or physical) abuse does more harm than good. This form of discipline can cause aggression, anxiety and further behavioural problems. Positive affirmations and reinforcements has been proven to work significantly better.
Positive reinforcement includes the praising and rewarding of a dog’s good behaviour. You are also able to use vocal queues to interrupt your dog’s bad behaviour. Punishments such as moving your dog to another room, alone time or withholding rewards are also non aggressive ways of showing your dog that he’s misbehaving.
Timing is everything
It is important to reward your dog at the right time. Although it’d be nice to be rewarded for every little thing we do, this does not discipline your dog. Many people use an ‘event marker’ which is a device that makes a sound that signals to your dog that they have demonstrated positive behaviour. You can also use a clicker or a specific word.
Praise, Treats and Toys
This is the part where I wish I was a dog. After you’ve established to your dog what is good behaviour and what is bad behaviour, you may now solidify this set of rules through the use of praise, treats and toys. Different things work for different dogs as some dogs would prefer their favourite toy whether others would prefer their favourite food. Consistently praising your dog isn’t necessary as you can sometimes mix it up, giving praise one day and there favourite toy the next.
Communication is key
I cannot stress this enough, it is absolutely imperative that you make a set of rules and stick to them. If you live with multiple people, make sure they too stick to them as wishy washy dog parenting is not effective and, although not explicitly giving permission, encourages your dog to behave poorly. It is also important to maintain the rules set by dog trainers at home.
Attend training class
You and your precious pooch may be able to attend training sessions. If you live too far away from a training centre you may be able to watch Youtube videos. If you’re reading this and you live in Sydney, we recommend giving the Puppy to Dog Training School a try.
It is important to have a firm but loving relationship with your dog. Dog’s, like children, require empathy and clear communication in order to change their behaviour. It is imperative to chastise bad behaviour and reward good behaviour.
Puppy To Dog Training School Website: https://www.puppytodogschool.com.au/