Reward Based Dog Training- 5 Basic Steps

The goal is to motivate your dog to willingly offer desired behaviour, using very small-sized treats, verbal praise and affection (proven one to one trainingscientifically to be the most effective way to train animals and people!) Click here for 0ne to One Training Help!

  • Use short, preferably one-word commands for the behaviours you want to teach your dog. Examples are Come, Sit, Down, Stay, Heel, Off, etc. Let all the family members know these words so everyone in the house can consistently use exactly the same command for each behaviour. If not you will just confuse the dog.
  • As soon as your dog performs the desired behaviour, reward him/her immediately with a treat and verbal praise. (a treat is anything which your dog really likes, it doesn't necessarily have to be food) Do this every time he/she responds appropriately to a command. You want them to connect the behaviour they performed with the treat. This of course means you’ll need to have treats on you whenever you give your dog commands in the beginning. Nobody said training  dog was quick!
  • Keep training sessions short and fun. You want your dog to associate good things with obeying your commands. You also want to use training time as an opportunity to deepen your bond with your pet. Don't allow the dog to get bored with the exercise and always finish the sessions on a positive.
  • During training sessions, gradually reduce the amount of treats you give, so that you are only offering them intermittently. Eventually, you won't need them, but you should always provide verbal praise when your dog offers a desired behaviour.
  • Continue to use reward based dog training methods to maintain these behaviours (eg. treat occasionally for a particularly good performance), and to help your dog learn new ones. Reward-based training helps create a range of desirable behaviours in your pet, which helps build mutual feelings of confidence and trust.

Jamie Muir,  "I primarily use Positive Reinforcement when helping to train dogs or modify problem behaviour. This is a modern, scientifically validated, reward based method, which seeks to change or add new behaviour through motivating the dog to behave in a way that keeps both you, and him/her happy"

For help with behavioural problems, Contact Jamie Muir for a one to one Consultation!

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