Categories | Pet Training
Training & Obedience
Pets provide wonderful companionship and bring real joy to their owner’s lives. However, training is needed to nip any destructive or potentially harmful behaviour in the bud and to create a truly special bond.
What is Training?
Training is about using certain methods in order to get your pets to do as you wish. This gives you greater control over your pets as they realise that you are top of the pecking order and allows you and your pet to develop a stronger, closer bond with each other. Not to mention, you won’t have the fear of your pet running away, going to the toilet where they shouldn’t, accidentally hurting a family member or friend, or anything else behaviour wise that you worry about as a pet owner.
What Happens With Training
Training can be provided in different ways depending on what you prefer. There are training and obedience schools that will run courses. These courses can be short one day courses, or run over several weeks, dependent on what they cover. You can also provide training yourself. If you choose to go this route, you may find it beneficial to look at DVDs, websites, or books for tips on how to train your pet in a rewarding yet effective manner.
Training your pet can involve a number of things. These include:
- Teaching them to go to the toilet in the appropriate place (litter tray, outdoors ,etc)
- Teaching them to sit on command and to stay in place until they are called for
- Teaching the pet to respond to its name and to come on command
- Teaching the pet how to calmly walk on a lead without pulling
- Teaching your pet not to perform undesirable behaviours such as jumping up, biting, getting on counters, chewing shoes or other property, excessive barking, and so on
- Teaching the pet how to use a scratching post
- Teaching the pet tricks (think high fives, begging ,rolling over, etc)
- Teaching the pet to respond to the word, no
- Reinforcing positive behaviours with treats and/or praise
The secret of pet training is to be patient with your pet, to be persistent (they may not learn as quickly as you like but they will learn), and to give them plenty of praise when they are doing what you want them to do. You must not punish your pet if they slip up and do something that you don’t like – such as rubbing their face in their accidents – as all this does is to make them fearful. Rather, stop the punishments and the reprimands and give them lots and lots of praise and rewards when they do the right thing. This way, they’ll quickly learn that this behaviour is preferable and will do it all the time.
How to Choose a Training Provider
If you are looking for a training school to take your pet to, there are some questions that you will need to ask them to ensure that you have the right one. Ask what methods they use. If they use training tools such as check chains, ask how they are used (the school should not rely solely on tools such as these but use them as an aid). Also ask how long the course goes for, what qualifications they have in training and obedience, what insurances they have, how much the training course costs and if there is a discount for more than one pet, and if they will give you the tools that you need to be able to reinforce the newly learnt behaviours at home.
If you wish to train your pet yourself with the help of tool such as a book, DVD, or website, ensure that the tool is tailored to your type of pet (a dog training book is no help if you’re trying to train your cat or bird!), and that they use modern methods of thinking (rewards instead of punishment, etc).
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