What goals do you have for yourself and what goals do you have for your dog?
Your goals and your dog’s goals might be more similar than you realize. For example, working with your dog on positive reinforcement training techniques is similar to you buying yourself those new shoes for achieving your goals. Dogs love praise from their humans, and, yes, those extra treats are appreciated, too!
Remember when setting training goals, you need to make sure that they are realistic. You can’t expect your dog to learn a new behavior or command in one week; it could take time. Fetching Tails Foundation encourages all dog owners to sign up their dogs for training classes because they are fun and beneficial for both dog and human - when done right, training is just as much about teaching people how to interact with their pets as it is for dogs to learn new tricks and behaviors. FTF even requires adopters of puppies and dogs under 5 years old to sign up their new pups for classes to help new families start off on the right foot together.
Here at FTF, we believe in-person classes (either group or one-on-one with a trainer at your home) are ideal because they help dogs socialize with new people and animals, and feel more comfortable in a variety of settings. In these trying COVID times, in-person classes can be a challenge, but many trainers have spent these past months figuring out ways to keep classes safe for pets and humans alike, including incorporating virtual options as an added supplement to in-person sessions. Of course, no matter what training option you choose, you need to remember to put in the homework and set aside time to work with your dogs on what is learned in class!
Here are some tips for achieving training goals with your dog this year:
Be clear about the behavior you want to see from your dog while training them
Never give up on your dog’s ability to learn and better a habit
You must be consistent with positive reinforcements
Short and successful practice is best
Go back to the basics and build up from there
Encourage your dog and be positive
Set goals and make 2021 a pawsome year!
Written by: Lauren T