Holy crap y’all, I could probably write a book about everything pertaining to dog psychology (I fact, many already have), but to save you the time from having to turn all those pages, I’ll jump straight to the good stuff.
1.Dogs are opportunistic creatures. What I mean by this is that dog very much try to get the most bang for their buck, and do the least amount of work for the most amount of reward. This is one of the main reasons that I use high value rewards when I’m training a dog I’ve never met before, as well as when I’m training a new behavior.
It’s important that you can get your dogs attention and keep their focus during training because if you didn’t, the training would be useless, right? In the beginning, you have to give them a reason to pay attention and let them know that they’re not only going to get the WIN but that the reward is going to be awesome.
2.Dogs want to have a leader. Just like every human has a different personality, so do dogs. And yes, there are dogs who have extremely strong and confident personalities, known as the “alphas”, but how many human alphas do you know of? Same goes for dogs. There are many more followers than there are leaders.
When you’re leading your dog, you need to set up boundaries and rules. Remember the “opportunistic creatures”? Yea, if you let them, you’re going to inadvertently let them walk all over you.
3.Dog have to understand what you want from them. I was out on a walk the other day and as I was walking, I noticed that I was stopping my dog from doing something I didn’t want her to do. I was dining the work.
If ANY of my past clients are reading this, they’re probably shaking their heads at me because that’s such a big thing I preach. NEVER. DO. THE. WORK. FOR. YOUR. DOG. Let them do the work. Then it hit me that because I was tired and not really into the walk that day, I was impatient and not even giving my dog a command. I basically wanted her to read my thoughts and, let’s face it, that’s just not going to happen.
Dog training is so much fun but it does take some work to learn how to talk to our dogs in a way so they can understand us.
What about you? What have you learned about how your dog understands things? Do you think I left something off the list? Leave me a comment below and let me know.
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Until next time, show your dog some Love, and Happy Training:)