Dog Balancing: Your Dog Follows Your Every Word

Harmonious coexistence is only possible if a dog has mastered the basic commands. Therefore, the first lessons are important for young dogs, but also for “old hands”. Luis Schnitzbauer initiates you into his dog balancing method.

Exercises not only for “school beginners”

You can start as a puppy. Introduce your dog to the tasks in a playful way. Practice first with, later without a leash. If he has already mastered the basic lessons, refresh them regularly. Because just as we humans forget vocabulary when we no longer use a foreign language, a dog also forgets what has already been learned. Make sure that a training session for an adult dog never lasts longer than 15 minutes.

Get your dog’s attention

Dogs are often unfocused, especially when they are young, and are easily distracted by their surroundings. The first thing your dog needs to do is learn to give you their full attention. Before each training session, call your dog by its name first. He pricks up his ears, is attentive, and therefore ready for every command.

If you call, your dog should come

If the dog’s attention is aroused, the command “Come here!” is given. You can also choose a different signal (“Come!”, “Here!” etc.), but you must use it consistently. While doing so, pat your thigh twice with the flat of your hand and praise the dog as it approaches: “He’s so good!”. The dog positively associates the command and immediate praise during the reaction and remembers the desired behavior. The body signal and subsequent reinforcement with a reward are very important. If your four-legged friend is already conditioned to come up with his name, this can lead to dangerous situations (e.g. when there is a road between the two of you). Therefore, this behavior should be reconditioned. The name should only mean attention. If you call him, he should immediately stop what he is doing and concentrate on you. Then you can immediately make him “sit” or “down” from a distance and only let him come over when the dangerous situation is over. Reprogramming should be done under professional guidance if possible.

Reinforce each praise with pets and treats

When your dog arrives, reward him with treats. Always show him with a body signal that he has done everything right: stroke him appreciatively to show him that he has done his job well. He will do everything in his power to be praised by you again in the future.

Practice the command “Sit!” with the dog.

Once your dog has mastered this lesson, you can move on to the next. Although the command “Come here!” is not necessarily another command, at the beginning of dog training it is the basis for the next step: the “sit!”. You can practice it first while squatting, later while standing. Let the dog come to you, praise him with a “He’s good!” and reinforce the praise with a treat. Raise your hand with your index finger extended and give the command “Sit!”. Again, the combination of language and gestures is very important. Your dog is watching you very closely. He associates the sounds with what he sees. The clearer your gestures, the easier it is for him to understand you. If your dog doesn’t immediately understand what you want from him, take a treat between your thumb and middle finger and run your hand from the snout over his head. He will sit down immediately. To make your dog confident in the exercises, connect the commands “Come!” and “Sit!” again: take a step back and repeat both lessons.

Reinforce the praise with treats

You can and should reinforce the praise initially by giving him a treat every time he correctly executes the command. Because motivation is a very important element in education. As a result, your dog will learn much more quickly what you expect from him and can act accordingly. However, the reinforcement must not take place later than half a second to two seconds after the command has been executed.

Consolidate the “sit” command

Has your dog also commanded “sit!” learned and stays in that position, you should reinforce that command with him. Slowly change your position by taking a maximum of one or two steps backward, to the right or to the left. Now go back to your dog and give him lots of praise for staying put. After repeated repetition, your dog will have internalized the command. And you both have fun in the future.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *