Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Is Your Dog an Obedience School
"Drop Out"?

Is your dog an obedience school "drop out"? If not, congratulations! You've done a great job. But if your dog has failed to learn his lessons ... you are not alone.

I know lots of dogs that are obedience school flunkies, so to speak. I say this in a fun way, but if your dog is untrained or poorly trained, you know that there's nothing fun about it.

Some dog owners don't want a dog that is trained. But it is fun to have a dog that is well behaved, or one who will do tricks. If you are one of those people who would like to have this kind of dog, it is never too late to teach a dog new tricks.

The best way to teach or train a dog is to use positive reinforcement. Give praise or treats when the dog does what you want.

How do you do that?

After a "correct" response, immediately reward your dog. This should be done within one to two seconds of the command. If you wait too long to give the reward, your dog may not understand the connection between his good behavior and the treat.

For motivation and rewards, treats and praise work great.

Another great motivator is praise. A pat on the head or some cheerful words can be very effective motivators for many dogs.

Many pet stores have weekly training sessions for dogs and puppies. This can be a great way for your dog to start learning new "tricks".

But don't worry even if your dog is an obedience school drop out. All dogs are loveable! But remember - it is never too late.

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