The 4 Most Common Training Mistakes

According to dog trainer Joyce Gifford, every dog owner has bad habits.

Here is her list of the top 4 offenders:

1. Calling a dog to you only to punish them, or do something they do not like.

Never make your dog come to you to do its nails, put it in its crate, or anything else the dog dislikes. If the dog does not come do NOT grab it and scold it. All this teaches a dog is that IF they come, something unhappy will happen. “Come” should always be a happy situation, even if you’re stressed or angry.  They will not listen to you in the future if they get a negative reaction when they DO come.

2. Ignoring “innocent” puppy behavior

Don’t ignore things when they are cute puppies. It is much harder to re-train a dog rather than train them  right the first time. If you don’t want the dog to jump on you as an adult, do not let it do that when it is a puppy. If you don’t want your Pointer grabbing you by the hand or arm when he wants to play, do not play “mouthy” puppy games.

3. Thinking that a dog will learn without training

While dogs will learn by themselves when dinner will be, commands do not work the same way. Dogs need to be “trained” to perform an action. You must show the dog what it needs to do (i.e placing them in a sit). You may need to place the dog in a sit 40 times a day for several days before you can get an automatic reaction.

4. Correcting your dog too often, or at the wrong time

One correction at the wrong time can really bewilder a dog, and then it can be very hard to train for the correct response. If a dog doesn’t understand why the correction happened, you are going to be harming your own work in training. Use positive reinforcement 5 times more often than you use a correction, and only after you are sure you have taught the dog the command.

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About BredByBitch

Hello! My name is Dani, and I've been in the "dog world" since I was 8 years old. My mother raises and breeds Irish Wolfhounds, which was my introduction to the show ring. I showed in Junior Showmanship for many years before aging out and getting my first German Wirehaired Pointer. I live in Tucson, AZ with my German Wirehaired Pointer, Luke. Luke is my man, from my first home-bred litter of wires.

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