Building respect and trust in any canine, starts the moment you bring him into your home.
Committ yourself to forming a respectful relationship with your canine companion, and a lifelong bond of trust and respect will form. Whether he’s a young puppy, an adolescent or an ageing canine, a special partnership of understanding will formulate.
Don’t sit back and wait and watch your furry friend, engage with him, become pro-active in everything he does. Take the leadership role, become his pack leader by giving him direction, rewarding him for good behaviour and correcting him when he makes mistakes [a correction could be an assertive voice tone ‘uh’ or ‘no’]. If he is on lead, a short sharp tug on the lead across your body.
No rolled up newspapers, smacking, hitting or kicking. These methods are well and truely out of date, all they do is have your dog fearful of you and your actions, he won't trust you.
Don’t allow your puppy or mature dog to ignore your direction and commands. One command from you, your dog must follow the guidance on the first command, don’t nag, whether its' name recognition, a sit stay etc. one command only.
Your training and your walks will become challenging, if you permit him to assert himself in the role of leader.
This is where the majority of canine/human relationships fail.
Daily training sessions should be fun, reward every small step forward, some dogs learn faster than others, consistency and high value treats work as positive feedback for any canine. These short training sessions, build trust and respect. Children should be supervised when completing a training session.
If you give 100% he will return 100%, don’t be slack and be thinking about work or family, concentrate on your furry friend and the goals you are seeking to achieve.
Puppies are like sponges, be consistent with every interaction.
Introduce a hand signal along with a word for behaviours you like.
• when he is NOT barking
• when he is NOT nipping the kids [ don’t wait until he is pestering them]
• when he is NOT chewing on your laces.
• when he is NOT jumping up.
• when he is NOT seeking your attention when he is ‘being the canine’ that you want. All canines, especially young puppies respond well to this training!
When you reward good behaviour always, negative behaviours disappear.
All family members must adopt the same respect, after all, he is a member of your family!
Include your puppy in everything your daily routine allows. If it’s possible to take him with you, do so as this is great for socializing.
Have a game with your puppy with one of his toys. Name the toy. Have him find the toy [as you place it under a cushion]. This is great stimulation for any age dog. Play establishes leadership, building trust and respect along the way.
Puppies need lots of controlled exercise, this brings about coordination, body awareness and trust.
With multiple dog/cat households, treat them all equal, again, this builds trust and confidence. Don’t play favourites, because the puppy is cute and tiny. They do grow!!
Trust and Respect must be earned with regular training.
written by Lee Hettiger - Centenary Dog Obedience