Teaching Basic Commands
Dogs can understand more than 150 words each, differentiating between their toys, bones, balls and sticks – all because they identify words, tones and cadences.
When training your dog, follow these basic tips:
- For everything your dog does give it a name. If your dog drinks, say ‘water’ when he drinks. If he stretches, say ‘stretch’. Create a vocabulary for a running dialogue with your dog. This helps strengthen your bond and teaches him a very limited mutual language. Be consistent and use these words at the relevant times.
- Be precise with what you say, how and when you say it. Use words he knows, at the time he needs to know them.
- Light, happy tones encourage activity while long, drawn-out works like ‘goooooood’ to either praise or sooth. A low-pitched, growly voice promotes authority.
- Yelling doesn’t generate results, it only causes stress and dissolves trust.
- Give your dog a break. If he understands commands 95 percent of the time, that is a good result.