Published at Friday, 24 May 2019. Dog Training. By Chanelle Guyon.
In some ways, reward training is the opposite of aversive dog training, where dogs are trained to associate undesirable behaviors with negative reinforcement such as scolding, corrections or outright punishment. The negative reinforcement stops when the dog performs the desired behavior. In theory, this process discourages dogs from repeating unwanted actions and trains them to do what owners want, but in the long run it's an unpleasant process and not nearly as effective as reward training. Instead of punishing your dog for what he does wrong, reward training lets you show your dog what you want him to do and then reward him when he does it.
Although some owners don't like reward training because they think dogs trained this way follow their commands simply because they want a treat and not out of a sense of obedience or respect, there's no question that reward training is effective. And, even if you accept the premise that dogs learn from reward training strictly because they're being ”bribed,” isn't that better than obeying out of a fear of punishment? Not only that, but treats aren't the only type of reward that can be used as positive reinforcement. Praising your dog with an excited, happy tone of voice, giving him toys, and giving him lots of physical affection can all be just as motivating as giving him treats or food.
The number one dog training tip is to understand that your dog is not beyond training. In fact, your attitude and approach will have great impact on whether your dog gets trained or not. After all, nearly every dog wants to please their master. You need to keep in control of the training and not allow the dog to control you by getting upset or losing your temper. If you respond to his bad behavior by first understanding why he behaves that way in the first place, you will go a long way in gaining the upper hand and seeing him come into submission.
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