The Real Dog Training Secret
Posted on August 25th, 2012 by FetchMasters in Positive Dog Training
The “Dog Training Secret” … hmmm. I wrote this blog post a few years ago and figured it now was cosigned to the archives. However, I have seen a few ads pop up lately on social media for The Dog Training Secret. So, I decided to re-visit this post and update it.
Back when I first researched The Dog Training Secret, the company claimed to be able to cure 19 of your dog’s behavior woes in just 6 days. Now they claim to be able to help with 12 “and tons more.” While they do claim to teach hands-off positive reinforcement training, I was not willing to send them money to find out the veracity of their claim.
Do they have a secret dog training methodology? Let’s assume they are honest about using positive reinforcement. Is positive reinforcement dog training effective? Sure. Is it a secret? Hardly. Any trainer that claims otherwise is a snake oil salesman. In fact, I’d go so far as to say there are no secrets in dog training.
However, there are a few well-known principles amongst real dog trainers that are very important. Not all dog owners understand them, so let’s go ahead and indulge ourselves by calling them Dog Training Secrets. Here they are:
Dog Training Secret #1: Positive Dog Training
By positive dog training, I do not mean that dogs should think everything in life is rainbows and unicorns and getting treats every time you ask them to do something. Positive dog training also does not refer to an overly permissive approach. And it certainly does not refer to a notion that treats trump all other distractions in a dog’s environment. Most good positive reinforcement dog trainers will say amen.
By positive reinforcement dog training, I refer to a dog training methodology in which dogs are taught that healthy behaviors are the doorway to good things. And I refer to an approach that sets up smart training protocols that decrease the practice of unwanted behaviors, builds trust and a correct relationship between dogs and their owners, and which doesn’t resort to fear as a motivator.
Dog Training Secret #2: Consistency
Dogs typically become ingrained with new behaviors via repetition. It seems to me that it is human nature to be inconsistent in our expectations of our dogs. (Interesting, considering we want our dogs to be consistent 100% of the time.) But, half of the time we will reinforce a desired behavior with our dog. The other half of the time we will let unwanted behaviors slip under the radar.
An inconsistent approach to dog training increases the time required to ingrain desired behaviors. In fact, it may completely prevent the ingraining of those behaviors.
Dog Training Secret #3: Patience
I truly believe — and FetchMasters Dog Training in Denver, Colorado, regularly proves — that positive reinforcement dog training is one of the quickest ways to achieve the majority of dog training goals. That said, quickness in dog training is an over-rated concept.
While our society programs us to seek instant gratification in just about everything, the speediness of a dog’s training rarely is necessary. Even though I think positive reinforcement dog training is relatively fast, speed really is not the point.
The points are:
- Solid training that gets results in a reasonable amount of time
- Bettering the bond between dog and human
- Teaching the dog to like doing what you want him to do to the greatest extent possible
When you are ready to put these principles into practice, contact FetchMasters. We’d love to help.