In the last post, we talked about Preschool training for your pup. We are now going to cover the Second Level – Basic Dog Training.
Basic Dog Training 101:
This Second Level is meant for dogs that are at least 5 months old and is known as the basic dog training. The duration of these classes is usually about 8 to 10 weeks. This is the basic course, where your dog is taught:
– Sitting and Staying,
– Coming and Heeling,
– The Art of Walking properly on a Leash
Basic Dog Training is meant for Beginners. Although it’s mostly for young puppies, this course is also essential for grown-up dog who are being trained for the first time.
As with All Levels of Training, be sure and have Dog Treats.
Make sure that you choose a quiet place for training, so as not to distract your dog’s attention. Ask your dog to sit again and again while you hold the treat over his head. He will have to turn his head up and will sit there, willingly, in order to get the treat.
If he still doesn’t sit, gently push his back down. When you have made him sit, praise him and give him his treat.
If you repeat the word “sit” your dog will realize that the command is related to sitting and will obey you in order to receive his reward.
This is a command which your dog will have to learn first before teaching him to “Come”. The overall purpose is to make your dog sit in one place, without any direction, and stay there.
Repeat the word “Stay” as you gradually walk back. Maintain an eye contact with your dog. If he rises from his position, say “No” and start all over again. This training does take some time and patience. It would be easier if you, initially, could get a friend or family member to sit and hold him back if he doesn’t “Stay”.
Once he has learned to sit and stay, when you back away from him, try walking away with your back towards him. He will probably rise to follow you! Tell him “No” and repeat the process, asking him to stay in his position as you move away.
Once your dog has passed the “Stay Test”, it’s time to teach him to Come.
Ask him to Stay and then call him in a Cheerful Voice; thump/pat your knee as you repeat the word “Come”. Be sure and reward him, as he will probably respond to your call promptly!
Once you have mastered these steps, move on to walking on a leash.
WALKING ON A LEASH:
When you first put a leash on your dog, first reaction will be to dance around and become overly excited. Just stand there and let him get this out of his system. He will realize you are not going anywhere until he calms down.
You should hold the leash waste high and not any higher. Start off by training your dog inside. Walk around inside with leash in hand. If he walks along on a loose leash, praise him and give him a treat. If he starts to pull – Stop! Stand Still. Don’t yank him towards you, or pull him back to you. Instead call him and then reward him when he does. Once he has mastered this inside, it’s time to venture outside. This will be more challenging, because there will be distractions – people, other dogs, birds, etc. You still follow the same regiment. Stop and stand still if he pulls or decides to just sit.
When training, take two steps forward then stop. Ask your pup to sit. Then start again, increase the number of steps only when he has mastered walking properly on just 2 steps. This takes some time but over time you will increase the increments to six, eight, ten, etc.
Again, the key word of training your dog is Praise – and Not Punishment.
Once your pup has mastered this level, he will be ready for Intermediate Training. I have listed below training contacts that you might want to look into, if you need assistance. Each one of these places have inexpensive training classes.
I’ll be back later with Intermediate Training!