Most dog owners dream of having a well-behaved dog—one that greets guests politely, walks down the street calmly and will come when called. We all know that dog training is a process that takes time and persistence, but often we become overwhelmed with the demands of our hectic schedules and the needs of our dogs. How can dog owners balance these conflicting interests, perhaps in addition to their own inexperience, and still develop a well-socialized, well-trained and well-behaved dog? One program, Bark Tutor School for Dogs in Indianapolis, offers an innovative way for dog owners to do just that. I had the opportunity to talk with Brad Phifer, CBCC-KA, CPDT-KA, the trainer who developed this exciting program.
It’s a sunny morning in Folsom and something odd is happening at the Folsom Zoo. Zookeepers and staff are waving their arms, flailing their legs, and balancing in weird positions. No, they’re not there to entertain the animals. They’re playing the training game. The game where two people collude to train a third person to perform behavior unknown to her.
I used to think that the behavior of just waiting for the human to provide a clue, the way your dog is, was a result of a dog being a cross-over from traditional force-based training methods. Or, that the dog had always been lured such that he never had to problem solve. While this is probably the case to some extent, sometimes it’s more than that.
Do you have suggestions for training in a multiple dog household? Of my three dogs, two are “sitting to say please” to go out. The other dog refuses. I started letting the two go on out and making the refuser stay until she sits. But she still refuses to sit at the same time as the others. How do I reinforce behaviors properly with three dogs who don’t always respond the same way or at the same time? (All three dogs are eleven years old.)