Using positive reinforcement is one of the easiest ways to train a dog.
Rewarding the behaviours you want and ignoring the ones you don’t will quickly teach the dog what you expect from them in a way that is fun for the dog.
There are a few different ways you can reward your dog:
Using treats is the easiest and fastest method. The best treats used for training are soft and small – around the size of a pea – so the dog can quickly eat the treat, being reinforced immediately for good behaviour. Using a variety of different food treats will help keep your dog focused and interested in your training sessions.
Using toys to play with your dog is a good way to reinforce wanted behaviours as well. A quick game of tug with a toy immediately following a wanted behaviour will tell the dog they did well. Using toys can also help the dog raise their willingness to focus and work for their reward.
Lastly, verbal praise is useful in rewarding your dog. A ‘marker word’ (like yes or a click of a clicker) paired with a treat will quickly tell the dog they are doing something you want, which will help them learn new behaviours faster. Additional verbal praise can help keep the dog focused and encourage them they are doing a good job and are on the right track.
Make sure you ask Megan at Paw Prints Doggy Daycare for other tips and tricks as she is our Head Trainer!