As we get through this crisis together, we’ll be posting regularly with ideas for you to do with your dog at home. Also, check in with our Facebook page where we’ll also be posting ideas and suggestions. Here’s an easy way to get improved behavior from your dog without spending any extra time.
IMPROVING YOUR DOG’S BEHAVIOR … without really trying
USING EVERY-DAY TASKS TO GET CALM BEHAVIOR
Train better behavior in 3 easy steps:
- Get it: Start by getting your dog to offer the behavior. We’ll offer suggestions for starting each behavior.
- Mark it: The moment—the instant—your dog has performed the behavior, mark it with “yes” or “good” in a neutral tone of voice. Don’t sound overly excited – just calmly mark the moment that is about to receive reinforcement.
- Reward/Reinforce it: After you mark the behavior, reinforce it:
- With a food treat … or
- With something else reinforcing
- Example: Mark your dog when s/he sits by the door and open the door to the yard.
Environmental Training: Environmental training is teaching your dog to offer behaviors based on your every-day interaction. Here are two examples of easy-to-achieve behaviors.
Sit for Dinner:
- Get it: Hold your dog’s dish close to your body about waist high and stand still. Wait for your dog to sit.
- Mark it: The instant your dog’s rear hits the floor, mark with “yes” or “good” then
- Reinforce it: Put your dog’s dish on the floor and let him eat in peace.
Watch for: If your dog jumps up while you’re holding the dish, utter a calm “Unh” and turn away. Turn back and repeat as above. Otherwise ignore undesirable behavior and be ready to mark the one you want.
Sit at the Door:
- Get it: Wait by the door with your dog and look at him/her with a neutral expression. Just wait.
- Mark it: The moment your dog sits, say “yes” or “good.”
- Reinforce it: Then open the door and let your dog out
Watch for: If your dog jumps up on the door, calmly say “unh” and move away a foot or two. Then return to the door and repeat above.
We’d love to hear from you. Let us know any ways we might help you and your dog. Please post your thoughts on our Facebook page and we’ll do our best to respond.