• [schema type=”Blog_Post” title=”23 Things That Will Make Your Dog Awesome” Written by “Lynne Fedorick” url=”http://www.positivelyfuntraining.com” dateCreated= August 24, 2014 description=”Dog training advice” city=”Black Creek” state=”BC” postalcode=”V9J 1E2″ country=”CA” email=”info@positivelyfuntraining.com” phone=”12507923515″]

    23 Things that will Make Your Dog Awesome

    1.  Use positive training methods to engage and motivate your dog to want to learn.
    2.  Set consistent and clear rules of conduct for your dog.  If you don’t want him on the couch, never allow him on the couch.  If you don’t want your dog to chase chickens, don’t encourage him to chase other small animals.  Actively teach him that he will get greater rewards for ignoring the chickens.  
    3. If you ask for a behaviour, mean it.
    4. Be honest.  If you promise your dog a cookie, give him one. Don’t bath him with a hose  instead.
    5. Be fair.  Break new behaviours into tiny steps. Work on one step at a time. Don’t expect more than your dog is presently capable of.
    6. Spend a minimum of twenty minutes per day training your dog.
    7. Spend at least an hour per day exercising and playing with your dog.
    8. Feed him a decent diet, with a minimum of 25-26% protein,  whether it’s kibble, dehydrated, or cooked or raw.  Avoid diets corn, byproducts, rendered animal fat, artificial colours.  When possibly try to source locally.  Check the expiry date on the bottom of the package.  Don’t be afraid to add nutritious meat, fruit or vegetables to your dog’s diet.  Keep carbs to a minimum.
    9. Play brain games with your dog every day.
    10. Socialize your puppy with people, places, and things, repeatedly from the time you get him.  Now is the time to get him around gentle children, and teach him to love getting hugs by making tasty tidbits of meat part of the cuddling process.
    11. Actively teach your dog.  Don’t wait for problems to arise.  Show him he never has to worry about guarding his dinner, since food isn’t a really that valuable and there will always be more.
    12. Play retrieving games with your dog.
    13. Focus on teaching what you want the dog to do, rather than what you don’t want him to do.
    14. Remember you are dealing with a member of a foreign species with no intrinsic way of understanding our verbal language or cultural ways.
    15. Remember your dog learns how to behave from you.  If you are gentle, fair and consistent with him, and never rough, he’ll be gentle with others
    16. Include your dog in your daily activities.
    17. Give your dog a job to do.
    18. Have a routine.   You don’t have to feed, walk, train, play, at the exact time every day, but a rough idea will help your dog to be secure and happy.  Secure and happy dogs don’t develop phobias or aggression.
    19. Have fun with your dog.
    20. Chuck your choke chain, pinch collars, and electronic collars.  These devices can provide quick fixes, but the kind of stress they cause for the dog makes him less amenable to learning, and can cause him to develop weird phobias and aggressive behaviour.  Instead invest in a harness that attaches to the leash at the front of the chest.
    21. Train in a distraction free  environment to begin with.
    22. Wean your dog off food rewards after he learns a behaviour.   You don’t want to turn lures into bribes. Instead, use food to reward a series of behaviours.
    23. Work with a Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers CPDT Assessed Dog Trainer.  These trainers need references from another dog trainer, a veterinarian, and a client, must meet minimum requirements for hours of training experience,  must pass a written exam on learning theory and dog training, and must continue their education in order to maintain their certification entitlement.

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