Dogs will always need obedience training, at least at a basic level. This is true even if the breed is well designed to fit the needs that humans have. You need a minimum level of obedience training because you can't expect them to learn what you want on their own. There are some principles behind obedience training that insure that you get the results that you're going after.

Principle One: YOU SHOULD BE CONSISTENT

Consistency is an important part of obedience training, probably the most important. You should be consistent in the actions that you use together with commands or words, and you should also use a consistent tone and words when you talk with him. When you start the obedience training, you should decide what parameters you are going to use and what do you want the dog to learn.

Just saying a command, like "come" doesn't mean that the dog will understand it. Obviously, a dog can't understand out language or thing in the same way that people do. Using the same command on a regular basis and consistently, makes sure that in time he will associate the meaning with the word you're using for it.

In the example I gave before, for the "come" command, everyone in the house should use the word in its singular form. He needs to understand that "come" means that he needs to approach the person that gives him the command. When you give him the command "come", you should not be doing anything that will confuse him in regards to its meaning.

If he doesn't obey the command, you shouldn't force him to do it, and then punish him for coming to you. This way, the dog will associate the punishment with the command. Since he thinks that this command will bring him a punishment, the dog will not obey it in the future.

That's why it's important that everyone that deals with the dog uses the same form of the command. A good example that you see in everyday life is the substitution of the "come" command with words like "come here boy" or "here".

Principle Two: YOU SHOULD KEEP IT SHORT

You should keep both the command words and the training sessions short. Dogs don't have the biggest attention span in the world, and training sessions aren't exactly activities that can keep them interested for very long. In the case of puppies, a stimulus that will keep them interested is a moving toy car that they can follow, and once they lose interest in it they would do something else.

The interest they had in the beginning isn't the same as it will be a few minutes later, so they get bored quite easily. 10-15 minutes of training should be enough for each obedience training session.

Principle Three: YOU SHOULDN’T PUNISH YOUR DOG

If you want to train a dog to listen to you, punishment isn't an option. Forcing a dog to obey the commands you give him if he isn't prepared is also not an option.

During training, don't push the dog too far. Since he thinks he's playing, he's not prone to learning things right then, just by hearing a command only once. He will only see that you're upset at him, but he will not understand that you want a faster progress.

Negative reinforcement is a much better choice for training, since force will not bring your point across as it should. Praise him when he does something you want, and don't do it when a command isn't followed.

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