It’s certainly a challenge to train a dog. Usually, you will notice many glaring problems in the training techniques followed by inexperienced pet owners.
More than often, dog owners will use abusive methods on the wrong notion of being the ‘leader’ of the pack. Of course, you need to be in a leadership position when training a dog.
However, abuse is not the best practice to showcase your leadership qualities. By abusing your pet, you are ruining your relationship with him/her.
So, ignore all the ‘dominance’ bullshit that inaccurately represents dog training psychology. Don’t be a kindergarten teacher. At the same time, don’t be a Hitler.
Keep in mind that incomplete knowledge is equally dangerous. For those who don’t know, dog training is a highly unregulated industry. There is no mandatory education requirement to be a dog trainer.
As a result, aversive methods and tools are often used by unskilled and non-licensed dog trainers across the globe to correct certain behaviors.
To salvage your relationship with your furry friend, it’s better to know what is the worst way to train a dog so that you don’t follow them knowingly or unknowingly.
What is the Worst Way to Train a Dog?
Beating/hitting or resorting to any type of physical abuse to train a dog is a complete ‘no.’ The fact is, dogs often won’t understand what they are punished for.
After all, it takes time for our pets to connect the dots. So, do not assume that dogs will be able to connect undesirable behavior with punishment and stop the unwanted behavior.
Punishment doesn’t make matters better. On the contrary, it makes them worse. Therefore, you should have a zero-abuse policy when training your dog.
Zero Abuse Policy:
Physical abuse aside, other violent behaviors, such as screaming, rushing through the training process, and providing lengthy commands, should be avoided as well.
Even if your pet does something that you don’t like, you should never hit him/her. Basically, ‘punishment’ is one of the worst mindsets to have. In a scenario where the dog attacks you or your family member, you can use force to fend off the dog. This would be considered self-defense.
Keep in mind that you don’t want to abuse the dog. At the same time, you don’t want to spoil your pet. So, you should know where to draw the line.
Stop Using Shock Collars
Shock collars are for dog trainers who are looking for an easy fix. Often, pet owners are found guilty of using this device incorrectly. They not only have very bad timing and technique; they also don’t set the voltage right. They fail to realize that the pain tolerance level is different in each dog.
In short, most pet owners don’t use it with a rational mind. They start using it in anger. Subsequently, they end up torturing their pet. Physical pain aside, shock stimulations gives rise to stress response in dogs. It increases both their cortisol levels and heart rate.
Worse yet, dog collars and other torturous devices along the same lines don’t fix any behavioral issue. They only mask them. Most of the dogs revert back to the old behavior.
Studies have shown that positive reinforcement training methods work much better and are beneficial for maintaining a good bond with your furry friend.
In short, the cruel and thoughtless use of shock collar needs to stop. Although such tools usually don’t cause long-lasting physical harm, they are simply not the right tools to train a dog.
What should you know beforehand?
-Before you start training a dog, you should know whether or not you have the necessary skills or knowledge to train a dog.
-Apart from good knowledge, you should also know whether the training goal chosen by you is suitable for your pet or not.
-You should understand the needs of the breed you own. Some breeds need more physical activities than others.
-Furthermore, you should have a great deal of patience. This also means that you should not set the bar very high initially.
-You also need to be highly consistent. This is probably a game-changer.
-Above all, you should keep the training session short and sweet. In other words, don’t train a dog for long hours at a stretch.
What’s the best way to Train a Dog?
Now that you know what is the worst way to train a dog, you will surely not follow the footsteps that can make you a bad/worst dog trainer.
So, what is the ideal way to train a dog? Positive reinforcement is the answer. Yes, the best way to train a dog is through praise or small treats.
Keep in mind that food treats should be of pea-size and should be offered promptly after your pet performs as expected. It’s a bribe that’s proven to work.
With consistent reward, most dogs pick up what you expect out of them and ultimately ditch the bad behavior. Of course, some days can be tough. But you shouldn’t give up.
Of course, take the time to understand what motivates them, what scares them, and what makes them feel comfortable. Also, give your dog enough time to learn new behavior.
In short, don’t expect instant perfections. Long-lasting results don’t come from haste. They come from consistent efforts. So, take it slow and steady.
For instance, train in one-word commands as opposed to long sentences. Dogs don’t understand sentences. So, you will have to condition your dog to respond to individual commands.
It’s not magic. But then, it will take a lot of effort from your end. As long as you don’t get abusive and never reward bad behavior, you will meet success with dog training sooner or later.
Remember, no two dogs are the same. Each dog has its unique personality, needs, and way of living. If you are looking to own a dog, make sure that you be good to him/her at all times.