Published at Tuesday, 14 May 2019. Dog Training. By Lucile Mouton.
The Alpha Position: Every domesticated dog needs to be trained in this area. By no means should your dog be allowed to assume this role in your home or outdoors for that matter. Dogs do not speak, they bark, except for the Basenji breed of course, so do not assume dogs understand human language. Ultimately your dog needs to know that you are in charge and as such, your dog can relax, knowing that you will protect him. I know this sounds strange, as many of us assume the dog is there to protect us. Make no error, your dog will certainly ”come to the party” when his pack or any one of its members is under threat. This serves to re-enforce the concept of establishing the pack roles so that your dog knows exactly who is in and who is not.
Leash and Harness. One of the more commonly known dog training aids is the harness. A harness is a tool you fit around a dog's upper body that is most effective in teaching him to heel. With this tool, you can easily control your dog, since even with the slightest tug of the leash, it can pull your dog back to you with ease. This dog training aid is more commonly used for dogs that have difficulty restraining themselves during walks.
The Body Language of Effective Dog Training. Training your dog is the ultimate expression of leadership: you are taking the initiative to teach, guide, and direct your dog. Your body language, therefore, should reflect your role as teacher and leader, communicating a calm self-confidence and composure. Let's look at the components of non-verbal communication as they affect your dog: Invite learning with your facial expression and demeanor. Your body language begins at the top, with your face. Training should be a positive, pleasant experience for you and your dog. Before you begin, and periodically throughout, consciously relax your facial muscles. Smile gently. Soften your eyes. Take a deep, relaxing breath, and keep breathing! When you are relaxed and happy, you present a safe haven for your dog's attention. (And there is nothing to be tense about, right? This is dog training, not world peace!) A soft eye will invite your dog to seek out your face, whereas a hard stare may intimidate your dog into breaking off eye contact, reducing your ability to communicate clearly.
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