Training your dog yourself

Paying someone to train your dog is mostly a waste of money. Only you can train your dog. The reason is that dogs form a relationship with whoever is working with them. Just because the dog learns, in the context of a kennel, to obey the trainer that don’t mean he will obey you when he gets home. (Different person, different place.) You might just as well hire someone to take your place in marriage until your spouse is “trained”. the well co-ordinated human dog team is a relationship, Not something that comes out of a package.

Dogs are absolutely genius at figuring out how to “plug in” or get along with practically anyone, but as with any relationship the bonding process takes time and trial and error for both parties to learn how the other operates. This is why the best trained dogs are the ones that eat, sleep, and work with their handlers 24/7 (seeing-eye dogs, police dogs, etc.)

Dogs are “context specific” learners. that means that if you teach him to lie down and stay by the living room couch. you are in for a big surprise when you try it out in the yard because it/he is in a different place and situation. Therefore whatever he learned in the kennel he is going to have to relearn when he gets home.

In order for the dog to reliably obey a command like “sit” or “down” he must be taught to do it in a lot of different places, times, and situations. Only then can he be relied on to “sit” anywhere, anytime, and anyplace.

The foundation of good training is Proximity, socialization, and consistency. That means keep your dog/puppy with you as much as possible,taking your new puppy to playgrounds, flea markets, trips to the store, etc. and always be consistent in your behavior toward the dog. Don’t encourage him to bark to go outside and then punish him for waking you up at three in the morning. Crate training is an excellent way to train the dog to wait until its “time” to go out.

If you are desperate and need immediate help with training, your money would be better spent on a dog training class such as are taught at large retail pet stores or through the AKC (American Kennel Club)

One last thing, don’t let the “pack dominance” theory of dog training stop you and your dog from working as a team. Dogs instinctively know who is boss, That being said, if you give in to their demands you are the one being trained. good luck!

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