Training your dog is a great way for yourself and others to truly enjoy the companionship and love your four-legged friend provides. From young puppies still learning and growing, to senior dogs that we’re never truly shown proper behaviors in their young years, there is a large range of times and ages when training can happen for dogs.
Each of these will have their own unique set of challenges, but once training is successful and you’re able to confidently have your dog with you and others around or while you’re out and about, you’ll be happy you put the effort.
Here are some of the reasons positive reinforcement is key to successful dog training.
As with Humans, Rewards Motivate
Earning a reward for a job well done is something most can relate to. All those allowances you earned as a kid when you did chores around the house are one way to think about it. For dogs, the motivation works much the same. Once they learn what actions evoke a positive reaction and enjoy the reward they receive after doing it, they’ll soon make the connection that repeating this in the future will likely get them rewarded again. That is how positive reinforcement works in dog training. What the reward is can vary though. It could be a treat, an overly excited petting or some additional snuggle time. How you present these rewards, when and how will all affect how well the dog is trained. Fine-tuning your plans to match your needs is key.
Punishment is a Difficult Tactic All Around
While using punishment tactics like losing your attention or being put on the leash can also work good to train your dog on certain actions, it is not the optimal way to help them learn new habits. There is a very thin line between having a dog understand the punishment being given to them and correcting their action without them possibly becoming afflicted by it.
As an added bonus, dogs who are given positive reinforcement are typically also, happier, more confident and the types of dogs that make dog/human companionship admirable.
If you’d like to incorporate dog training as a way to give them more freedom around your home or while outdoors, DogWatch of Western Massachusetts has professionals that tailor their training programs to help your pet learn voice commands and their boundaries in that space. Together with a hidden dog fence, that means your pet can enjoy more freedom and you can have peace of mind knowing their safety won’t be put at risk.
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