Rewarding your dog is so important. Each time you reward your dog for something they did that you liked this strengthens that behaviour.
Rewarding and paying your dog must not be mistaken for bribing your dog. If you are finding that you have to bribe your dog for everything you should contact a trainer for some help.
It’s a huge myth that giving your dog food to do things means you will always have to give your dogs rewards.
Dog training has evolved so much in recent years and has moved further and further away from old school training techniques. It’s much easier to teach your dog to do what you want rather than teach him what you don’t want.
by Ray Breslin from the K9 Academy in Letterkenny
Although using food is the easiest way to teach a dog it is not the only way to reward them. Rewards can be toys, balls, walks, playing or even just praise. It varies from dog to dog. What you need to do is find out what motivates your dog.
Rewarding and paying your dog for the correct behaviours will more than likely diminish unwanted behaviours. For example if you reward your dog for walking beside you and be consistent your dog will then walk beside you through habit and diminish any pulling on the lead.
Rewarding your dog near or beside things that frighten your dog can also create positive experiences. Depending on the severity of the case this is something anyone can try with their dogs. Another example would be a dog that is afraid getting in and out of cars. You can start of slowly by rewarding around the car, for touching the car, then eventually getting into the car.
Rewarding dogs is so powerful that often it only takes one time to feed your dog from the table for them to learn to hang around or beg during dinner. Often dogs have been accidently taught to jump up as they were constantly rewarded for it when they were puppies because we thought it was cute.
So remember it’s important to reward good behaviours not bad behaviours. Please try this at home.
If you are experiencing any issues or would like to learn more about teaching your dog new things. Check out the K9 Academy Facebook page. www.facebook.com/callK9academy