Guest Post from Mo Ali from sparkpaws.com
Training a pet ideally must start when they are just mere babies. As the saying goes, “You can’t teach old dogs new tricks.”
Here are a few tips on how to train your dog.
1. Create a safe place in your home
Like babies, puppies are not good left unsupervised. So before you bring home that little puppy you are so excited for, make sure your home is puppy-proof. Put gates, especially near the stairs, create a space for your little pup to call his “bedroom” or a pen.
2. Show rather than tell
Dogs have no idea when you tell them “no.” And they definitely don’t understand why you are screaming at the top of your lungs. So instead of telling them no, show them what you want them to do. Just be prepared to keep on doing this though for quite a while. Very few get it right on the first few times.
3. Understand their body language
You might buy him dog clothes and dress him up when you go to the mall. Unfortunately for you, he doesn’t like it, so he keeps barking and making a ruckus at the mall. To avoid such problems in the future, try to understand his body language. They usually manifest moods like distaste, frustration, uneasiness, and even happiness through body language.
4. Reward good behavior
When you see your dog slowly getting what you are teaching, be quick to reward him with a yummy treat. This enforces learning of the acknowledged behavior and a desire to remember it.
5. Be consistent
Regardless of whether it’s the reward, or the behavior that merits the reward, or even the command that you use in order to elicit a specific response from your dog, you should always be consistent. If you want to use hand gestures to train your dog, then use the same hand gestures all throughout. Don’t expect your dog to respond the same way if you suddenly use verbal orders instead of the hand gestures that they were familiar with. Avoid exemptions in rules and variation of tones and commands. This will only lead to confusion and frustration for your pet. On the other hand, being consistent makes it easier for them to understand and remember behavioral patterns.