The Importance of Decision-Making in Dog Training
The overarching intent of dog training is to enhance the relationship between the pet and pet owner. We accomplish this by eliminating unwanted behaviors, encouraging desired behaviors and ensuring the safety of you, your pet and others.
What sets an ethical and effective dog trainer apart from our less principled counterparts is how we achieve these goals.
Even the most renowned or accomplished pet trainers in the world can’t succeed in serving the needs of their clients – pets and owners – if they focus solely on the dog. The key to lasting change is helping the pet’s owner(s) become effective decision-makers where it concerns their dog.
Effective Dog Training Works in Any Location
Your dog doesn’t live at the training facility. No matter how perfectly Rex performs in the presence of his trainer, it won’t matter if these behaviors go out the window when you get home.
Likewise, you may have your dog’s full attention and cooperation at home but, if you can’t maintain that level of control in public spaces, none of it matters.
Just like humans, dogs make many choices every day. We train our pets in ways that encourage making good choices. But, because the process requires ongoing interaction between dog and human, the handler (owner or trainer) must also make choices – in advance of the dog.
To do this effectively, the dog’s handler must develop good decision-making skills.
Dog Training Includes Training the Pet’s Owner
Have you ever noticed that reputable trainers always involve a pet’s owner in the training process?
Even if you send your dog or puppy to boot camp, where the pet stays for days or weeks with a trainer, you will be brought in toward the end of the program for your portion of the training.
A part of this transition period is designed to help you learn the commands and skills we have taught your pet. But this involves much more than having you replicate a series of commands. Our goal is to teach you how you can apply these new skills in the real world, and that requires decision-making skills.
Applying Dog Training in Real-World Scenarios
Dog owners learn to make good decisions based on an accumulated body of knowledge. This includes an understanding of the basic dog commands, of course, but owners must also become familiar with proven training techniques such as positive reinforcement.
But, equally as important, you must know your dog.
Every pet has limits, including how comfortable and confident they can be in specific settings. For example, if your pet is easily distracted by other people or animals, how effectively can you handle him in a hotbed of distractions like a busy outdoor café? If that’s an environment you would like to enjoy with your pet, ongoing work will get you there. But taking him before he’s ready will set you both up for disappointment.
Dog training isn’t magic – although it may seem that way the day you pick your pet up from boot camp. It’s a disciplined process based on scientific principles of canine behavior. By understanding how the process works and how your pet responds to different types of stimuli, you will enjoy continued training success with your canine companion.
The expert training staff at Innovative K9 Academy is dedicated to building a relationship of mutual trust and respect between you and your pet. We offer a full range of services that include dog and puppy boot camps and obedience training for groups and individuals. Contact us today to learn more about how you can benefit from our proven successful dog training methods.