Training Tips For Sporting Dogs

Training Tips For Sporting Dogs – Dog Training 101 – How to Set Realistic Goals and Where to Start : A Life Pack If you’ve recently searched the Internet for “dog trainers near me,” there’s a good chance you’ve come across immediately with votes, letters and words. There is a lot of content! So we spoke to some experts about where to start. Here’s what they say.

Winnie, Samantha Balaban’s dog, shakes hands with her human. Balaban says dogs can benefit from working with a trainer, whether it’s improving their skills, manners or behavior. Photo by Becky Harlan / hide text

Training Tips For Sporting Dogs

Training Tips For Sporting Dogs

Winnie, Samantha Balaban’s dog, shakes hands with her human. Balaban says dogs can benefit from working with a trainer, whether it’s improving their skills, manners or behavior.

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Editor’s note: This story has been updated to include additional warnings about e-collars and shock collar training aimed at the audio portion of the story. Listen to the show above to find out more.

My (Samantha) dog, Winnie, has always been barking at the door – either for the mailman or her best friends. This was always difficult but manageable. Until we moved to a big house in D.C. consisting of nine units. There are nine doors, including the front door, and Winnie was barking at all of them.

I tried to say “UH UH” and pointed my finger angrily. He wasn’t moving. I tried to pet him every time he stopped barking. He was barking. I tried to separate us with the door. I tried not to schedule another Zoom meeting.

This story comes from the Life Kit podcast to help improve life – covering everything from exercise to parenting to making friends. For more, sign up for our newsletter.

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“Helping the dog feel comfortable in his own skin, comfortable in your life together—that’s the best goal I can have for any dog,” says Kayla Fratt, certified dog behavior consultant and owner of the Way. Dog training.

Regardless of the situation – whether you have just adopted a puppy from the herd or have had your dog for many years – all dogs can benefit from training throughout their lives.

But where does the process begin? If you’ve just done an online search for “dog trainers near me,” there’s a good chance you’re immediately overwhelmed with options, qualifications, and terms. There is a lot of content! So we spoke to some experts about where to start. Here’s what they say:

Training Tips For Sporting Dogs

Margo, Winnie and Zero show off their skills in the giveaways below. Photo by Becky Harlan / hide text

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There are (basically) two levels of dog training. If you are interested in training skills, or basic techniques, such as teaching your dog to sit, sit and lie down, this is the place for a dog trainer. If your dog has a behavior problem – anxiety, anger, fear – what you need is a dog behavior consultant, like Brianna Dick of Pack Leader Help.

Dick, who is a member of the International Association of Canine Professionals, says: “The way I approach dog training is based on good behaviour. “We’re not just looking at the physical behavior of the dogs. We’re looking at their attitude and their relationship with their people.”

If you need skills training and behavior training, start with the more difficult of the two: behavior training. A dog walker will also know how to teach your dog to sit, but a dog trainer will be less equipped to help your dog deal with separation anxiety.

As Fratt says, “Not everyone is going to learn to love by going to raves, and not every dog ​​is going to learn to love to go to the park.”

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Kim Brophey is a professional behaviorist, family dog ​​advocate and owner of Dog Door Behavioral Center. He also wrote a book titled “Meet Your Dog: A Game-Changing Guide to Understanding Your Dog’s Behavior.” Brophey uses a framework called L.E.G.S (learning, environment, genetics, self) to explain dog behavior. Say, for example, your dog barks at your guests.

“Maybe that’s a dog that was chosen over the centuries to guard against people walking in your door,” says Brophey. Since you can’t train the genetic influence of a German shepherd to defend its territory, you may need to change your expectations, instead.

When it comes to training methods, you have several options: group classes, individual training, board and training, day training and self-training, to name the most common. Group classes are affordable but not personal. Fratt says:

Training Tips For Sporting Dogs

“If a trainer spends all this time training a dog in this particular way, then takes a leash, takes your check and walks away, there’s a good chance it won’t you will be able to apply these new strategies and skills. for success in your home.”

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Your choice will depend on your budget and your training goals. For example, if your dog is acting aggressively towards another dog in your home, training outside your home may not be best.

Also know that you need to be involved in training your dog, but it doesn’t have to take up a large part of your day. Fratt says he spends about five minutes a day exercising. Many of the homework activities that teachers give you can be fun and easy to work into your everyday life.

If you don’t want to pay a fortune for dog training, our experts recommend the free or low-cost resources you can find online:

Dick has also put together some free resources on his website, and Fratt has a series called Tuesday Free Lessons.

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Dog training is a completely unregulated field, which means anyone with a website, Instagram page or retail store can claim to be a dog trainer. This also means that there is no definitive rulebook on what techniques to use when training a dog, and many trainers agree. However, most educators fall into two broad categories:

The first is strong powertrains like Fratt. Reinforcement means giving your dog something good – like a treat – when he does something good, so he repeats the behavior. Or to give something good to your dog so that they associate something (they think is) scary with a good experience.

The second is moderate educators like Brianna Dick. Balanced trainers use good strengthening techniques, but are also willing to incorporate modifications, such as collars, into their training.

Training Tips For Sporting Dogs

E-collar training involves “a collar that your dog wears, which you control remotely, that sends a stimulus to your dog’s neck – a shock, a sound or, say, a citronella spray – at any time.” existence ” “, explained Dick. E-collars are divisive in the dog training community, especially those that create fear.

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Dick says to be wary of any trainer who uses e-collars on all dogs. “I’m a cookie cutter, and it will never produce great results,” she wants someone who gets to know you, your relationship, your lifestyle and your dog.

If what you need is a solid list of strength trainers or balance trainers in your area, a good place to start is with the lists compiled by various professional organizations. There are many, including:

Then do the interview! Call previous customers. See which trainer makes you feel most comfortable. Make sure they can explain their training methods.

Changing your dog’s brain chemistry can be scary. But if your dog has fear, anxiety, panic or aggression, that cannot be cured by training alone. And you should treat it as a medical condition.

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“It’s like having a diabetic patient, right? You don’t give your dog insulin for diabetes, because that’s what he needs to keep the right amount of hormones in his body,” said Dr. Andrea Y. Tu , behavioral veterinarian and medical director of NYC Behavior Vets.

What if you’ve tried everything – from strength training, balance training, medication to fitness trainers – and nothing works? Maybe your dog can’t get over his fear of your children, or he’s afraid to run outside on a busy city street. At the end of the day, and this is not a fun thing to bring up, you may come to the conclusion that your home is not a good fit for your dog.

“It’s difficult, but I think back, if you have a good choice for a dog … where all the conditions can be arranged to give that dog, it can be the best step better,” said Brophey.

Training Tips For Sporting Dogs

There should be no shame in thinking about giving back. Sometimes this is the most loving decision you can make. But we hope this is not the case for you! There are many things you can try to train your dog before you get to that point.

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As Fratt says, lots of dogs

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