Three Tips to Improve Your Dog’s Behavior in a Week
We love our pups like family, which means we can get as frustrated with them as with our human family members when they aren’t behaving. But the issue is that we can’t communicate with our dogs in English (yet). So, when we need to correct a behavior, we must dedicate time to training.
Many owners get frustrated when they don’t see immediate results, which is understandable. Especially if your trainer doesn’t have any openings in their schedule for a few weeks, you’ll want to find a quick way to get a positive response from your pup.
Here are our five favorite tricks to make a difference in your dog’s behavior in less than a week.
1. Getting Your Dog to Respond the First Time
Having to repeat commands over and over again is exhausting. When you want your dog to sit, they should sit the first time you ask, not the tenth.
Grab some of your dog’s favorite treats, and let’s get to work.
At intervals throughout the day, you’ll ask your dog to sit. You’ll only say the command once, then wait for your pup to sit. Count to five in your head. If they haven’t sat after five seconds, grab the treat, hold it above their head, and move it back towards their tail until they sit. Once their bottom touches the ground, you’ll say “yes,” and give them the treat.
You should aim to repeat this exercise ten times throughout the day, and soon enough, your dog will be sitting before you finish counting to five. After a few days, your pup should be sitting as soon as you give the command.
Once your dog is sitting immediately, you can stop carrying the treats around and slowly stop the exercise. At first, it’s beneficial to keep saying “yes” and giving your dog a treat when they sit just to reinforce the behavior.
You can repeat this exercise with other commands as well.
2. Improving Your Dog’s Recall
You can do this recall exercise if you’re having trouble with your dog coming to you when you call for them. This training works best if you can get an extra special treat for your dog.
At some point in the day, when your pup isn’t doing anything in particular, say their recall word. For most owners, the recall word is “come” or “here.” Once you say the word and catch your pup’s attention, throw them the treat.
After doing this a few times, start dropping the treats at your feet so your dog comes to you to get them. After a few rounds of this, don’t drop the treat until your pup reaches you. You can repeat this exercise five to ten times throughout the day.
It’s important that you don’t wave the food or plead with your dog while doing this exercise. Simply wait for them to find you once you say the magic word.
3. Keeping Your Dog Close on Walks
Dogs can get really excited when it’s time to go for a walk; before you know it, it feels like your pup is walking you. If your dog pulls at their leash or gets too far away from you on walks, you can train them to stay close to you and reduce the tension on the leash.
We recommend a technique called the About Turn Walk. While this technique usually takes about a month to yield long-term results, you can make significant strides with your pup in about a week.
You’ll need to take your dog to a place where you can safely let them off their leash—plenty of space, they know the area, and there are no other dogs. Once you’re at that location, you can begin the training.
Armed with treats in your pocket, you’ll take your dog’s leash off. They’ll likely go sprinting off in one direction. Instead of calling for your pup, you’ll start walking in the other direction. When your dog realizes you aren’t walking behind them, they’ll come running after you.
As soon as your dog goes rushing past you, you’ll turn around and start walking in the opposite direction.
You’re training your pup to think you’re unpredictable, and they need to keep an eye on you, so you won’t call for them or try to get their attention. You’ll keep changing direction until your dog slows down and keeps pace with you. Then you’ll give them a treat.
When It’s Time to Go Pro
Effectively training a dog takes a great deal of time, dedication, and patience. You can always schedule a session with one of our expert trainers to nip bad behavior in the bud.
Contact one of our three locations today, and we’ll set you up with the perfect trainer to address your dog’s needs!