Dogs make the best companions for people of all age groups. This is why they are, without a second thought, referred to as ‘man’s best friend’. You may train your dog yourself or seek the assistance of professional trainers for training your dog. An untrained dog can be very difficult to handle and can make you run out of both time and energy. If you are in Los Angeles, you can check out the services of companies like iWorkDogs to help you out in this regard. You can check out their website http://iworkdogs.com/ to decide what type of training you would like to opt for your dog.
There is no set age limit for dogs to go through the training process. However, like human beings, dogs tend to get trained faster as pups. The best age to get started is when the puppy is between seven and eight weeks old. Some ways to train your fur baby are listed below.
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Food Lure Training
Food lure training is a great dog training method to make the young dog learn the concepts of basic commands like sit, stand and lie-down. You can treat your dog to a little piece of food for performing these instructions properly.
For example, you can hold the food in front of the dog’s nose and move it backwards to make it sit or place it on the floor to make the dog comply with a lie-down instruction. Taking the food from the floor can be used to make the dog stand. Holding the food at a distance from the dog should make it come towards you. You must use the command phrase along with your action for the dog to follow your instructions. Rewarding the dog for adhering to the instructions correctly along with an affectionate pat can make it learn the commands faster.
Use the command phrase once and then repeat your actions with the food until the dog follows the instructions. Repeating the command many times can make the dog feel it is acceptable to get you to repeat what you say before it obeys.
Toilet training is another important aspect that you must pay attention to so that you can avoid a messy house. As a puppy, your pet will likely want to empty itself every couple of hours. Older dogs will be able to hold on for a little longer. However, irrespective of the age, they will usually give you cues like sniffing in corners or moving in circles when they want to go. Take the dog out immediately after it has woken up after a night of sleep or it has had something to eat or drink. Use a command like ‘Go Now’ that tells the dog it is alright to relieve itself. Remember to use the same phrase always in order to avoid confusing the dog. Praise your pet when he does the job correctly and ignore if it makes a mess inside. Avoid using food as a treat every time to make sure you don’t overfeed your pet.
However, ensure that you punish your pup only if you see it doing the job inside. If not, the dog will not understand why it is being punished. Keep in mind that pup accidents are bound to happen as they may want to go at least 12 times a day. You can spread newspapers and make the pup go on them. Slowly, move the newspaper towards the door so that the dog gradually understands it has to do the job outdoors. In case of an accident, wipe the place thoroughly so that the dog does not get the scent as it will make it do its job at the same spot again.
Training With Harness
Dog training with a harness is a good idea if you want to take your four-legged baby along with you when you go for a walk in Los Angeles. Rest assured that a proper fitting harness will not harm the dog’s neck, throat and spine. Therefore, there is no way that a harness will choke your pet. The advantage is that you have better control over your dog when it accompanies you during your daily walk.
To teach the dog to walk with you, stop moving when you find the dog pulling itself forward. Control your temptation to move forward along with the pet. Instead of correcting your dog, allow it to correct itself and come back to the original position on its own. As usual, when your pet comes back to heel, give it an affectionate pat with a word of praise and resume your walk.
Typically, it takes about four months to train your dog to be adept at hunting. Introduce your dog to places like hunting grounds and the countryside by taking it for a walk to such areas. Let him run free and explore different areas, game birds and so on. This improves its predatory instincts and boosts its confidence, apart from strengthening your pet’s body. But make sure that the dog does not go out of your vicinity.
Give him basic commands like sit, heel and fetch. Do not give multiple commands right away as it can confuse the dog. To get started, place a dead bird in front of the dog and allow it to explore the prey. Let it take the bird in its mouth. But do not allow the pet to bite or shake the bird.
If you are starting the training at a very young age, then you must keep in mind that the puppy’s attention span is limited. So the training session must be for a short duration. But do make the dog training an on-going activity. You can increase the duration as the puppy grows older. You can use any training approach that you feel works appropriate for both you and your pet.
The above tips are just some pointers for you to get started and you do not have to follow them to the tee. However, remember to make sure that gentle teaching and positive reinforcement always back up the method you follow.