At DTO our first goal is to support a community of forever dogs, one dog at a time. DTO training is a tool for you and your dog. Training helps prevent owners giving up and releasing their fur friend to a shelter.
The internet has raised (or changed) my expectation of ownership of my dog. I watch short clips of cute dogs performing tricks and suddenly I have to be not only a positive trainer but THE best trainer in the neighbourhood. Have you not felt that?! Oh! Then please miss this blog. 🙂 Skip to the end for a recap on leash training.
Being admired, and having a famous dog is not important (unless you decide it is). Or should I say that the cute moments in youtube videos capture our hearts but the desire to repost most adorable moments can be addictive. Brene Brown expresses this as “shame gremlins” created in our culture of social media in a “hustle for worthiness” (The Power of Vulnerability, Udemy “Shame Triggers”*). It is no longer acceptable to be just good family members, a good mother, a happy father, a happy person, or in our case a good dog owner and a happy, adjusted dog. In this way we miss out on the everyday and we become addicted to social media, and our consistently anxious, approval seeking behaviour.
Part of the training system DTO advocates is keeping an active schedule with your dog. This means meeting many people, each one who may have an opinion of you and your dog. I want to compare it to that crucial one minute in a job interview where you need to make the best impression.
Confidence is very important to training.
As an owner I can be aware of these expectations, acknowledge my feelings and then decide for myself what is important. I have noticed oncoming dogs and noticed the “well-mannered” troupe of dogs. I have come to realize the lack of importance of comparison. By the time those ‘well-mannered’ dogs reach us they are jumping on top of my pup, Knudsen, while he responds with his own brand of tail wagging. My dog has his own set of communication that he has been encouraged with the DTO training method.
Positive training allows a dog to express itself (tail wagging, barking (but not excessive). These cues are very important to dogs because they allow them to communicate not only with you but with other dogs. It gives them cues to other dogs to de-activate a potentially explosive situation, for example**. Dogs can turn sideways from another dog they perceive as threatened.
The other leg of DTO training is working with a dog’s motivation and paying attention to their behaviour and EMOTIONS.
The reality is that many dog owners and the public continue to have an outdated ‘dominance’ approach to dogs. This can impact a dog owner like myself who is struggling already to provide for their positive trained dog. I think a DTO member will pick up on the sadness of the punishment trained dogs. The growth of others however can not be my concern. I have found it is good to acknowledge my hurt feelings and then I can put them into perspective. Be kind to yourself.
When the electronic age is pulling us in all sorts of directions, peace requires special attention.
In a recent study it was determined that dogs recognize what people are saying by reading tone and words. This is a revelation. The revelation is that dogs have emotional range! The DTO owner, I think, can be somewhat surprised when they meet other owners who haven’t clued into this world changing revelation. The other side is that emotions, as humans learned in the 20th Century through the explosive field of psychiatry and psychology, implies growth. So ugly emotion can mean “change”, Change can be a messy thing.
The tool you and I have as DTO dog owners is our powers of observation and our commitment to our dog. This includes being consistent with rules in the house.
Apart from properly training your dog, it is also crucial to provide him or her the best items and accessories that he or she will need in training. To help you find the best quality items for dogs, you can visit https://www.meetyourdog.com/best-dog-harness/.
You have already reached a milestone when you see and notice your dog’s emotion. I noticed yesterday that we were having success when we took our Knudsen out for a walk with a ball. Knudsen has a nose for finding balls during our walk. I joked with a person that he needs to have every ball in the neighbourhood. When we consider his behaviour this can be seen as enthusiasm. However; excitement can change to anxiety quickly. Taking the ball along worked for our trip, but during the night walk when we don’t have a ball there was a new skittishness to our boy.
I asked Knudsen to bring his ball with us during our walk again the next morning. He was “excited”.
I suspected that he really didn’t want to bring the ball. So as we were leaving I asked him to drop the ball. He finally did so as I turned my back as we got ready in the front hall…he was able to ‘decide’ to leave it in that moment of pause.
We found a ball during our walk. I think his motivation is finding balls. What was interesting was that while we passed a house with a tennis ball sitting right at the street, he was able to keep his focus. I acknowledged Knudsen by saying, “Good scout. I see that ball too.”
Impulse control is a cornerstone to training. It takes effort to realize that each emotion does not mean action. For you, the owner, If you are frustrated in training, turn away from your dog, and take stock of your emotion. Give yourself a time-out. Take a breath.
Feel the sun on your face.
DTO Training helps to build a repertoire of activities with your dog as well as to chose the best methods and tools for training. When a dog has behaviour problems. a little more complicated, a behaviour certified trainer will codify the elements of a behaviour. A dog trainer has a great resource of training tips to apply in order to bring your dog into a better understanding with you and the rules of your home.
I compare this to various systems of psychological help. Anyone who has gone through a 12-step program, for example, will know that change is a slow, methodical approach. It takes daily effort and patience.
For leash training, DTO recommends a suitable calm location, free of distractions, such as a park. The weekend is a good time to put in quality training. Make a commitment every weekend. It is good to work in teams, so we recommend for best training results bring your friend or partner. In this way it is also a social (or family) event for you.
1.”Come When Called” (offered for free on our homepage), 2. “Testing your Dog’s Recall” 3. “Heel”, 4. “Advanced Heel” & “Heel Sneak Away Game” 4. “Long Line Recall”. When you are very confident, and your dog is used to returning to you: 5. “Off Leash Recall”. These sessions can be stretched over a month or two. Repeat “Testing your Dog’s Recall”. Make your sessions even more interesting by throwing in games with the “Leave it” module. Bring treats and toys to test your dogs ability to leave it, in creative game ways. This comes in useful when you come upon some unknown food on the ground during your walks.
Go to: Obedience Essentials and Advanced Lessons and Tricks to find these training modules
If your dog continues to have difficulty concentrating during your walks, consider increasing walks. Your puppy may need as many as 5 or 6 walks a day. Your dog will calm down when they know they will have regular, frequent walks. The benefit of the home business, if you are so lucky, is it allows to schedule for more dog-time!
Allow for sniffing time during your walks. Smell is important and natural to your dog.
Please be sure to connect to our Facebook page: We post the latest science on training, motivational memes, and stories from the DTO dogs!
Be happy, be confident. Seize the Day! with your puppy!
DTO puts all the training in one place. (See blog “Welcome to the DTO Family”…”training does not require a Phd )) . Dove is working with dogs every day and adjusting to many different types of owners and their expectations. We transfer that broad experience for your own training.