Some Useful Tips
Always use your dog’s name to get his/her attention before any command which should always be given in a firm but friendly voice. Give the command once and expect to be obeyed but help the dog by giving lots of praise and encouragement. REMEMBER!! A command should not sound like a reprimand.
Both handler and dog must enjoy every minute of training to obtain the best results. Many dogs are very sensitive so do not make the mistake of shouting or adopting a bullying attitude. This is disastrous for a satisfactory relationship.
Always be patient, NEVER get angry, remain calm. Over excitement on your part transmits to the dog and will excite them up or make them fearful, making the situation worse.
Be consistent. It is unfair to allow your dog on the furniture one minute and not the next. Ensure all the family keep to the same rules. If you are training your dog, ensure you are consistent with what you do at training classes and at home. It is no good allowing your dog to pull you around on walks during the week, ignoring your requests to sit and then expect them to walk at heel and sit when asked in class.
Don’t tell your dog off for something they did some time ago, or if you did not catch them in the act. The guilty look on their face is fear or submission; they will not understand the reason for your chastisement.
Reward your dog immediately they have done what was asked, even if it has taken several attempts before they achieved success. Do not reward failure.
Always aim for your dog to succeed even if you need to drop to a simpler level of exercise to achieve this e.g. it is better to have a successful short stay rather than a broken long stay.
If your dog does not do what you ask of it, do not give up or they will learn to ignore you.
Remember – lack of concentration by the handler during training sessions quickly transmits to the dog who then becomes inattentive.
It is better to call the dog to you if you wish to attach their lead or give them a cuddle rather than you going to the dog as this helps to avoid problems with the recall and reduces the risk of an unwanted game of chase.
Be fair to your dog. Put yourself in their shoes and look at things from their perspective. We expect our pets to fit into our lifestyle and on the whole they do a very good job of coping in a human environment but you should not take this for granted.
Give your dog plenty of opportunity to play but remember they also need relaxation too.
FINALLY – it is essential to practice with your dog between training sessions.