Lesson  One

training formula

How to get the best out of your training sessions

Food rewards

The right treats can make or break your training. it is crucial that we have treats that they crave, especially for dogs who have had trouble listening in the past. If you have already found your dog’s special treat keep on using that one. In the end the dog decides what he likes best. For some dogs this is something as exotic as pieces of watermelon or apple, for others is maybe as simple as just their regular food.

If however you find that your dog refuses your treats as soon as there are distractions around, it is time to search for some that will capture his attention anywhere.

You may be using treats from a pet store. There is a big problem with many of those: Most are made to be shelf-stable. As a predator, your dog likes meat, dairy, eggs, anything that comes from prey. What he is not really into is flour, preservatives and all the other things that are added to make treats shelf-stable. Always check the ingredients when buying treats. 

When trying out new treats, go for as high of a meat content as possible. Ideally 100% – such as in human-grade meat products – 

There are many meat products intended for humans that dogs go crazy for.

Try:

  • Chicken (boiled, grilled, roasted.)

  • Hotdogs 

  • Cheese

  • Salmon (dogs LOVE fish, often the stinkier, the better)

  • Roast Beef

  • Meatballs

  • Liver

Chop up your treats into tiny peaces. Pea sized or even half a pea size will be ideal

Marker Word

Conditioning your marker word:

A marker word such as “good” or “yes” is used to pinpoint the desired behaviour. Let’s use sit as an example. Ask your dog to sit, as soon as their bum hits the floor that’s the point where you will use your marker word “good” or “yes”. Follow up by giving your dog a reward.

  • A marker provides information and feedback to your dog.

  • It makes your dog becomes a more effective learner which intern helps to speed up your training 

Eye Contact

Eye contact:

Eye contact is the foundation for many other important behaviours such as recall, loose lead walking, learning to pay attention to you and so much more.

  1. Drop a treat on the floor.

  2. Wait for your dog to eat the treat.

  3. Then wait for your dog to look up towards your face.

  4. Mark that behaviour by saying  the word "good" or "yes"  

  5. Reward your dog by dropping another treat on the floor.

Homework

Downloadable work sheets:

Areas covered for training

Cambridge

Great Shelford

Hauxton

Harston

Whittlesford

Duxford

Hinxton

Girton

Oakington

Longstanton

Papworth Everard

Newmarket

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Areas covered for dog walks
   Cambridge CB2
   Chesterton CB4
   Hauxton CB22
   Whittlesford CB22
   Hinxton CB10