Becoming Your Dog’s Yoda


No mat­ter how smart, obe­di­ent, or well-behaved your dog is, he will need to be trained to some extent.  Train­ing a dog can be an extremely reward­ing or ter­ri­bly frus­trat­ing process depend­ing on how you do it.  You can either form a deep, trust­ing bond with Fido, or you can scare him so badly, he won’t want any­thing to do with you.  If you want to fos­ter a friend­ship with your pup, here are a few train­ing do’s and don’ts:

DO: Be nice to your dog when­ever he comes to you.

DON’T: Do any­thing to your dog that he can per­ceive as unpleas­ant when he comes to you.


DO: Give com­mands to your dog only once.

DON’T: Nag your dog by repeat­ing com­mands over and over.


DO: Use a nor­mal tone of voice.

DON’T: Raise your voice, yells, or use ridicu­lous baby voices and the like.


DO: Use com­fort­able, dog friendly col­lars, train­ing equipment.

DON’T: Use pain-inducing equip­ment, like shock collars.


DO: Give your dog an out­let for his ener­gies.  Get him out­side and let him play.

DON’T: Coop your dog up or sup­press behav­iors that need an outlet.


DO: Social­ize your pup with peo­ple and other dogs.

DON’T: Lock your dog up or put him out because he hasn’t been trained.


DO: Make your dog works for his rewards and toys.  Don’t just give them away.

DON’T: Use force or pun­ish­ment when train­ing your dog.


DO: Con­sis­tently praise or reward desired behavior.

DON’T: Reward your dog for unde­sired behavior.


DO: Spend plenty of time play­ing with and giv­ing exer­cise to your dog.

DON’T: Neglect your pooch.  You’ll break his heart.


DO: Get out­side train­ing help when you get stuck or hit a snag.

DON’T: Blame your dog if you don’t do a good job train­ing him.


DO: Build a coop­er­a­tive rela­tion­ship with your dog based on com­mu­ni­ca­tion and self-respect.

DON’T: Use con­fronta­tional meth­ods that may hurt, threaten, or frighten your dog.


DO: Keep try­ing.  It may take time, but your dog will get what you work hard to teach him.

DON’T: Give up on your dog.  Remem­ber that any­thing worth doing is worth tak­ing the time to do.


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