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About Training

We have put together some basic information to provide you with a foundation of training your dog. Training a dog can be a slow or a quickly learned process. The more you know about the process will serve to benefit both you and your dog.

Please take a moment to understand the phases of training your dog in obedience, and contact us to see how our service will benefit you.

 
Three Phases

Below I have tried to break down the "training stages", that you and your dog will enter into.

The three phases are; shaping, correction, and distraction. For each command that we introduce to our dog, we should keep this outline in mind and we do not take "shortcuts" to achieve quick results.

Shaping phase - This phase of training introduces your dog to the common obedience commands of sit, stay, heel, down and come. The dog, through repetition and good timing, learns that his hind quarters on the ground equals completion of the task and gets his reward and praise. You will see the time it takes to hit the ground decrease, as he learns the object of the game.

Correction phase -We can now begin to use the collar to start re-enforcing our command. It is important that our corrections are not too severe for the dog. During this phase, the dog will learn to respond to a command through respect and to avoid a correction.

Distraction phase - When the dog is consistently responding to our command with only an occasional correction, it is time to begin the distraction or testing phase. There are a variety of distractions we can use in this phase to test the dog. Having someone bounce a ball, working in a building or park with lots of people, and working around other animals are examples of common distractions. We must remember that a solid foundation is a must before we can advance to this phase. If your dog doesn't listen to your commands without distractions, he certainly won't listen to commands with distractions.

Remember, your dog must have a solid foundation in each phase before moving ahead to the next phase.

 
Training Tips

Training Tips to Make Life Easier

  • Three 5-10 minute training sessions a day are much better than one 30 minute session. Dogs, like kids, have short attention spans and get bored which will lead to problems.
  • Identify one or two goals for each training session.
  • Never give a command unless you are in position to either reward or correct
(depending on your phase of training).
  • Remember to end each section of training with your "release or free dog" command.
  • Never allow the dog to just "leave" the last command given. This will re-enforce the concept that he needs to adhere to the last command you have given to him.
  • Using a ball to play fetch is a great stress reliever at the end of an obedience session.
  • Be patient. Dogs require 30-40 repetitions over time to achieve retention. Humans, generally, only require 5-10 repetitions.
  • Be fair and consistent. Dogs love consistency.
  • Always end your training sessions on a positive note.
(i.e. if the dog is having problems with the "down" command, end your session on the "sit" if he does that much better.)