Are You a Dog Whisperer?
If your dog is healthy and you feel you need to raise your voice to get a desired behaviour, there just might be a better way to get through to them.
IT'S NOT ABOUT SIZE OR VOLUME
A dog’s ability to hear is significantly greater than our own. You don't have to be a big “tough guy,” or have a booming voice to train a dog. Dogs can detect and hear four times as many sounds, and on average double the range of frequencies that we can. To put it into perspective, what a person can hear at 20 feet a dog can hear at around 80 feet.
Although we primarily communicate verbally, dogs do not. Dogs respond much better to body language than verbal cues. Notice how your dog reacts to your body language and pay attention to theirs. Hand signals are a very effective training tool used either on their own or in combination with your voice. Signals are especially good for deaf or aging pets that become hard of hearing. In these cases using vibration, like tapping the ground can be good to get their attention.
IT'S ALL IN THE TIMING
Dogs learn to associate their behaviours with your feedback within a quarter of a second. What this means is if you want to reward your dog for a desired behaviour, you need to give the positive feedback while your dog is doing the behaviour. Yes, you have to be quick! It takes a lot of practice to get good timing. Essentially you have to mark the behaviour which can be done successfully with various methods such as clicker training or using a monosyllabic word.
BE A LEADER
Sometimes there is miscommunication between us and our pets. Be sure to teach your dog what you expect of them. Be fair and consistent when you are practising commands or teaching good manners. Some dogs learn quickly and are more intuitive than others. Be patient and teach them what you want from them, before raising your expectations. Your dog is more likely to follow your guidance if you are fair, have clear expectations, are consistent, and reward them for good behaviour. Remember to have fun, play and bond with your dog –all this without having to raise your voice!
Copyright © 2015 Caley Morris