Category: advanced

Teaching Dogs to Make the Right Choice: Learning to Come

I’ve previously shared games for teaching a strong recall, but this one is always my favorite. I use it in my recalls class at Superior Dog Training.

It’s called the magic bowl game and it’s all about teaching dogs how to make the right choice—namely, coming to you, even when there’s something else in the environment they want.

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Beyond the Backyard: New Location in Week 3

I’ve talked before about Denise Fenzi’s Beyond the Backyard book and class, which I teach — today I wanted to share a few additional exercises that I’ve added into the class during Week 3.

As the “bonus” exercise for week 3, Denise suggested trying to work in a new location.

I teach the class indoors at our training center — and so our “new location” is outside. And, as almost any dog trainer would predict, the moment we go from inside to outside we suddenly have very different dogs.

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Beyond the Backyard: Train your dog to listen anytime, anywhere!

Late last year Denise Fenzi released her book, Beyond the Backyard: Train your dog to listen anytime, anywhere! and with it she released an instructors guide, for dog trainers who wanted to offer it as an advanced dog training class.

I’ve run through the program several times now with my own classes; I’ve found it to be an excellent program for teaching distraction proofing basics and helping to bridge the gap between rewarding all the time and weaning dogs off of cookies.

While working my way through the program, I’ve come up with a number of “games” that I use as bonus games…

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When Do You Add a Cue?

One of the most common questions I get when I’m teaching is, “should I be telling them to DO something?”

While there are many opinions on when to begin using a cue, I believe there’s little point in saying a word you want your dog to listen to instantaneously before they’ve learned how to do the behavior — so I teach the behavior first, then teach the dog that the time they can get rewarded for that behavior is when I say that specific word.

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What Goes Up Must Come Down – Making Things Easier As Well As Harder

Dog owners often like to make things progressively harder on their dogs, because they know they’re working toward a GOAL and they want to get there — but our dogs are more like kids, and if the math problems just continue to get harder, they give up.

In order to keep our dogs in the “game” and working with us, it’s important to alternate hard work with easy work.

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