Can you train your dog to become obedient or do you need to send your beloved pet to a dogs obedience school? The answer depends on you. With proper training, all dogs can become obedient. Just like humans, dogs can be trained and taught to behave.
The amount of time it takes for your dog to be obedient depends on several factors. It may depend on your goals. Do you want to teach your dog basic skills or do you want your dog to get rid of unacceptable behavior? What training techniques did you use on your dog in the past? Was your dog ever trained through punishment? These questions will help determine how long you can train your dog to obey. There isn’t a clear-cut answer to this question but one thing you can be assured of it’s the fact that you can always train your dog to become an obedient pet.
Although it can be difficult to determine the exact duration, we can give you some insight so you’ll have an idea of what you can do to speed up the training. The following are time-tested tips that will help you achieve success in dog training.
Let Everyone In The House Know The Rules
One of the most important things to remember when training your dog is to make sure everyone in the household has been briefed about the rules. You all have to be on the same page, otherwise, dog training will become a struggle for you especially when it comes to training your dog new skills. One example is teaching your dog not to jump on people. Everyone in the household must agree not to give the dog a reward if it starts jumping on guests. Over time, your dog will understand that jumping will not get rewarded. If one member of the family gives rewards whenever the dog jumps, the dog will get confused and think it’s okay to do it sometimes. You will never be able to train your dog if not everyone in the home is on board.
The Training Methods Must Be Consistent
Rule number one is to get everyone to follow the same rules and rule number two is to make sure the training methods are consistently practiced. If you successfully trained your dog not to jump on guests when it gets excited but one time you gave in and handed your dog a treat after jumping on a visitor because you were distracted, all the efforts you made to instill discipline is gone because now your dog will think that it’s not a big deal and that jumping can still get rewards. Make an effort to practice consistency in your training.
It’s More Difficult to Teach Good Habits Than Getting Rid of Bad Ones
Bad habits are difficult to break especially if you’ve become accustomed to them for years. Have you ever seen a chain smoker quit smoking that easily? Or someone who’s orally fixated on biting his nails and then all of a sudden stops? We can all agree that breaking bad habits is much harder than learning new habits. This principle applies to your dogs too! Teaching your dog new tricks and skills is faster than disciplining your dog to get rid of bad behaviors.
Behaviors Based on Emotions Are Hard to Change
Every dog is unique and its learning capacities are different. But generally teaching dogs basic commands such as down and sit are easier compared to improving anxiety or fear-based behaviors. These behaviors take more time to correct. When you use counterconditioning or desensitization you’re targeting the root cause of the problem in your dog’s nervous system.
You can think of dogs as people. It’s challenging to teach someone afraid of heights because you need effective methods to convince that person to overcome it. It’s not easy and it requires several sessions of therapy to finally overcome it. The same goes with your dogs. You won’t be able to know how quickly your dog will overcome its fears because that would also depend on what methods you use to teach your dog. Give your dog time. Don’t pressure your dog to learn. Go with its pace.
Your Dog’s Learning Capacity is Uniquely Its Own
Some dogs are quick to learn and there are also those that take their time. Some of the factors that influence a dog’s learning capacity are age and breed. However, studies show that dogs are quick to assimilate new learnings if they are taught in a quiet and peaceful environment.
It’s not about the time it takes for your dog to learn because if you focus on the timeline you might get discouraged or frustrated. The important thing is you are consistent and that you use the proper training methods when teaching your dog to be obedient.