Dogs and humans are very similar in many things and often form a harmonious team. Nevertheless, there may be misunderstandings that ensure that things somehow do not go as are not beings from alien stars. Nevertheless, they often feel some things differently and speak a different language than we humans. Here we show you the most common misconceptions about dog training.

Body language – Show me what you want!

Dogs react much more sensitively to human body language than many owners realize. In general,rat terrier characteristics they pay much more attention to what we do than to what we say. It always becomes problematic when these two actions – doing and saying – do not coincide. This often leads to misunderstandings during dog training.

A typical example: you call your dog in a friendly voice. In order to encourage him to come to you quickly, you bend over to him, maybe even stretch out your hands and look him in the eyes. rat terrier your dog starts running towards you, but then turns, stops or starts sniffing.

What happened? Although your voice has issued an invitation, your body and eyes have said, “Stay away!”. rat terrier characteristics dogs communicate with each other much more through body language than we humans still consciously do. Standing head-on to the dog, preventing yourself and a fixing look are a threat. It is better to stand sideways, stay straight or squat down, and avert your gaze slightly. So the body also says “Come here!”.

In many situations, we get into a threatening posture: putting on and taking off dishes, drying the dog, lifting the dog into the car, etc. Some dogs simply endure this and have less of a problem with it. Other dogs sooner or later begin to react in such moments with avoidance behavior or stress. It is therefore worthwhile to check for yourself where you take unfavorable postures that make it difficult for the dog to show the right behavior. This is where you can start and often make it easier for the dog through small changes.

Ambiguity – What exactly do you want from me?

One of the most common misconceptions in dog training results from the fact that owners do not always know exactly what they want from their dog. They don’t have a clear picture in their heads of exactly how their dog should behave when they give a certain signal. Sure: “Seat” means “Take the Popo on the floor”. There is usually agreement on this. How long the dog should sit, on the other hand, is often no longer so clear or is not consistently implemented. Maybe in most cases it is enough for you if your dog sits down briefly when you tell him, and it is ok for you that he gets up again on his own, for example, if you leash him.

But now you’re at a red light and you want your dog to stay seated until you allow him to get up again and keep walking. If your dog gets up again in this situation after two seconds and wants to continue, you will correct him. However, your dog cannot distinguish when it seems ok that he himself dissolves the seat, and when he is suddenly reprimanded for it. Your dog can’t understand that “sitting” once means “sit down for two seconds” and another time “sit down until I say otherwise.” Therefore, for each signal that you want to train, think about exactly what it should look like beforehand.

To do this, answer four simple questions:

What exactly should your dog do? – e.B. take the Popo to the ground

When should your dog do this? – e.B. when I say “seat”

Where should your dog do this? – e.B. wherever I say “seat”

How long do you want your dog to do this? – e.B. until I say “Continue” or give another signal

Once you have defined your goal in this way, stick to it and be consistent, i.e. this really always applies. So you are clear for your dog and avoid unnecessary stress.

Stimulus – here and now too?

Many owners have the idea that a dog masters a signal when it has successfully learned it a few times without much distraction. If, for example, B the dog sits perfectly in the kitchen. It is assumed that he can sit – always and everywhere. If he does not sit down in a certain situation, this is often interpreted as refusal or stubbornness. Unfortunately, it’s usually not that easy! Dogs learn incredibly strongly contextually, i.e. they involve the environment, people present, etc. in the learning.

So a seat in the kitchen is completely different from a seat in the garden. If the different types of rat terrier dog has understood the seat in the kitchen, then in addition to the owner and his signal “seat”, the whirring dishwasher is also a stimulus. How is the dog supposed to know that the dishwasher is totally irrelevant to the seat if it has always been present when practicing? If the seat is now required in the garden, the dishwasher is missing, and thus a stimulus that the dog has learned so far. So dogs first have to filter out what is really relevant to the signal through many repetitions in many different places!

Distractions – Too much, too fast!

Another factor in misunderstandings in dog training is distractions. For dogs, there are countless distractions: sounds, smells, movements, people, dogs, cars, animals… Often these distractions are underestimated by owners and behavior is demanded of the dog that he simply can not implement yet! Learning steps are skipped. As a result, the dog reacts with stress and skipping behavior; i.e. he shows behavior that does not seem to fit the situation, e.B. biting into the leash, jumping, etc. Dogs must gradually learn to execute signals even under distraction. It is important to train from easy to difficult. Imagine if you should have solved functional equations after learning basic arithmetic!

To be able to practice in a structured way, it is best to write down all the distractions for your dog: food, toys, people, animals, smells, etc. Then rank the distractions. At the bottom is the easiest distraction and at the top the hardest distraction. Now train from bottom to top and always go up one step further if the previous step works perfectly. So your dog can learn to always carry out your signals and you train without misunderstandings in dog training and without overstrain and stress!


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