Recent trends suggest that you can teach your dog any number of tricks in just two weeks! Some even claim that almost every canine mood or behavior can be corrected within this time frame.
This isn’t necessarily false, but it is very misleading.
Two weeks is not enough to train most dogs. In fact — and I’m being totally honest here — there are only three scenarios where a novice trainer could succeed in teaching their dog anything in less than a month:
Dogs who already show strong obedience at a young age
Dogs whose owners pay close attention to them and make sure they’re well-trained
Smooth, intelligent breeds like Labradors or German Shepherds
If you’re reading this article then chances are you don’t fit into any of these categories. That’s okay though, because we're going to talk about some strategies for creating a bond with your dog and training him or her how to do something helpful.
I've spent years developing my skills as a trainer, so if you want to learn something from me, I'm willing to help you out. You might find it interesting to know that many of my best tips come directly from studying the psychology of animals. It's all about understanding what motivates different species and using that knowledge to motivate your own pet.
Here are seven things that take more than two weeks to really nail.
Decide what you want your dog to learn
The term “training” usually implies something that requires longer than two weeks. This is not the case when it comes to teaching your dog basic behaviors like walking, sit, down, or coming back.
There are many different types of training courses available at any given time. Some focus more on socialization, while others teach discrete commands such as walk, sit, and stay.
The most efficient way to train your dog depends on your goal. If you just want your puppy to be comfortable around other dogs, then there are several low-cost options you can try out. For example, doggy day care facilities offer play dates for puppies so they can meet some other dogs!
If you would like your dog to work for command, then there are strategies that require less intensive supervision. A well trained dog will understand what commands mean, but he may need extra help putting them into action.
That’s where we come in! We can help you choose the best strategy for your specific needs.
Write down the methods you would like to use
There are several different training strategies that can be used with every breed of dog. Some dogs require verbal commands, while others learn by example or direct instruction.
Certain types of dogs also need more formalized lessons to understand how to respond to certain behaviors. This is typically referred to as teaching a behavior set and allows for repeated experiences of the same thing happening so your dog gets the picture.
A few weeks ago, I mentioned some easy ways to train your puppy using basic principles. These are very effective starting points when it comes to educating your furry friend.
In this article, we will go into detail about another great way to teach your dog new tricks! He or she does not have to know any fancy terms or concepts to receive their first lesson. All they need is someone willing to help them out at least once per day.
Find a trainer
First, you will need to find a dog training professional or instructor. There are many ways to learn how to train your puppy. Some offer one-on-one lessons with your puppy, while others have group classes where there are several puppies of different levels.
Some trainers only teach certain types of dogs (for example, those who work with Lab mixes can give tips for teaching your Labrador retriever). Others may focus more on behavioral issues than practical skills like house breaking. This is okay!
Most importantly, be sure that you feel comfortable being around the trainer and the other people that your puppy meets on a regular basis. You want to trust them, so make sure that you both agree on things before starting training sessions.
General tips when looking into potential canine educators include checking their certifications, speaking with past students, and getting references from family members or friends.
Consistency is important
Recent studies show that even a few days of training can result in major changes to dog behavior. Technically, this means that even if you only have two weeks until the summer season, you can start teaching your new puppy or dog basic commands!
Two weeks may seem like an incredibly short amount of time, but it’s all about consistency. The hardest part will be sticking with it every day for at least ten minutes, which is totally doable.
Every week, try to spend one hour each day working with your dog on their commands. If you need to, you can break up the session into several shorter ones throughout the day.
It’s best to begin by giving your dog a simple command (like “Sit” or “Down”) and seeing how quickly they respond. Once they get the concept, add some more difficult ones such as “Take off leash walk” or “Come here”.
Hold your dog accountable
A lot of people assume that if they put in enough effort into training their dog, whatever behavior they want will happen eventually. This is not true at all!
If you keep looking until you find what you want, then you will never learn anything. You have to be careful about how much time you invest into training because it can quickly become wasted energy.
Some dogs take weeks or even months to really get going, but some dogs are faster than others. If you do not expect the same from your pooch, then you need to know that before starting any lessons.
There is no way to tell how long it will take for your puppy to “get it” unless you actually teach them something. Starting off with a quiet game of fetch is better than teaching them to sit using the classic method of holding up food while waiting for commands.
Consistency is one of the most important things when it comes to dog training. If you go back and look at all the videos where the puppy learns something, there’s usually a lot of lagging behind what the trainer is teaching them.
This can be due to many things—the puppies sleep, they get distracted, or their attention wanders.
What seems like a simple task gets interrupted, which makes it more difficult for them to retain what they were just taught.
If your puppy has been doing an exercise correctly with little trouble, then try to do it outside the house so that he doesn’t have his distractions inside the home.
He may need some help from friends or other dogs while practicing away from home.
Once he has mastered the skill, you can take him somewhere less busy so that he does not have to work as hard. He will make mistakes, but if you are able to repeat the lesson until you see the positive changes, then you should give credit for his new behavior.
Consistently reinforcing good behaviors will reward your dog and keep him motivated to continue working on learning new lessons.
Practice makes progress
Even if you are working with your dog for very little time, they are still investing their energy in these sessions. They are spending hours every week trying to teach their dogs new things, which is more than most people do! This is important to remember as you continue training your puppy or older dog.
The more times your dog practices something, the better they will get at it. There is no quick fix way to train a dog, but many strategies can be learned and applied over time. Don’t give up hope!
It takes about twenty minutes to achieve a success result, so pick a day that works best for you and start each session strong. Once your dog has mastered one thing, move onto the next!
Practice, practice, practice!
User error is another big reason why some dogs take longer to learn certain commands. Some owners may not know what kind of reward to use when teaching their pooches new tricks.
Some rewards such as treats or toys may need to be repeated several times before your dog understands that they should only play with them after a given command.
For example, if someone asks their dog to sit, they might give them a treat once the dog sits. But if the person then says “Sit down!,” the dog could decide that sitting isn’t worth the reward anymore.
Use rewards consistently
Recent research suggests that it is possible to teach almost any behavior to most dogs in just two weeks if you use a systematic, reward-based approach.
The term “reward” can mean many things to different people depending on what type of dog training you are looking into. For some, it means food or play sessions for good behaviors, while others may use praise as a form of reward.
Either one works, but they all have their benefits and drawbacks. Food is definitely your best bet when choosing how to motivate your canine student, but too much at once could cause negative reactions such as vomiting or diarrhea.
On the other hand, no matter what kind of trainer you are, never forget about the importance of consistency! If you ever notice a drop in interest or performance, make sure to look into why this happens and try to fix it.
What makes this theory interesting is that it does not require using punishment (such as removing toys or treats) as a tool to get results. Instead, the animal learns by offering something they want, and then practicing these new skills with help from someone who has learned them before.
Hello, I'm Cindy, the founder of PetsForLife. I am a true animal lover with 3 cats and 1 dog of my own. My passion for all things pets has led me to create a unique collection of personalized pet gifts. Check out our personalized pet gifts on our website.
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