Training dogs isn’t a black or white thing. I say all the time “dog training should be made simple.” I think in the moment you should keep your training simple, but when you take a look at it, dog training is complicated. It’s not always black and white, there are differences between each individual dog and you have to take those into account any time you’re training.
One thing I’ve heard over the years is, “we have this great older dog, they do everything we want and now we’ve got this puppy and it’s a mess. This dog doesn’t train anything like the other dog.” You may have had a string of really good, easy-to-train dogs, and the next one you get may just not be. However, if you keep it simple from moment to moment with that dog, those complexities tend to go away.
So what are some things you should be doing? I like to narrow it down to these things. You should be teaching the dog how to stay where you tell it to, so you first teach the dog and then start including the dog from room to room in your home, teaching them where to stay. For example, let’s say you have a Zoom conference call today and you’ve taught your dog to stay already. When you have your conference call, put your dog into a stay for a portion, if not the entirety of the call. As you’re doing it, reinforce them for getting it right. If you’ve never done any stay training, you should teach that first. Text me at (832)734-5189 if you need help with this.
If you’re looking to do some leash walking with your dog, maybe walk them up and down the hallways of your home before you head outside into the neighborhood with all of those distractions. I’m not saying don’t take your dog outside, but a good place to practice your leash walking is in a long corridor of your home a few times a day for 3-5 minutes. It’s a great exercise to show them how you’re going to use their leash and their food, I like doing that quite a bit with dogs.
Again, to wrap this up, I feel as if dog training is not all black and white and it is a really complex thing. However, if you can keep it simple and narrow it down to the things you want the dogs to do, such as to stay, come, heel, and play well with you, some of those complexities can go away and you can really focus on being great at those things.
Happy training you guys!