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  • Robyn-rose Murphy

Why we want to Train YOU and Your Dog!

You often hear people talk about how their dog will not behave for them or learn. The common excuses are ‘they just don’t listen to me’, ‘I tried that’ and ‘they’re just not that clever‘; my answer to that, YOU are most likely the problem!

Every dog from Chihuahua to Great Dane is trainable, however we often place the blame on our dogs rather than take a step back to look at what we as owners and handlers are doing. Dogs learn through Operant and Classical conditioning.

Operant conditioning is formed on the consequences of the dogs action’s. For example, no matter how many times you tell your dog to ‘sit‘, if you haven’t yet paired the command with a positive reinforcement (toy/treat/affection) it is unlikely to be performed again. The word becomes associated with the action because of the consequence of the reward. This can also work if there is a negative consequence (usually known as positive punishment). If your dog tries to take something they shouldn’t have (your sandwich for example!) and receives a leash correction or verbal correcting, they will then be reluctant to steal your sandwich in the future.

Sometimes these associations can be made purely by accident, alongside a stimulus. A usual example of this is dog and it’s lead. The owner picks up the lead, the dog sees the lead, the lead = going out, which in turn creates excitement. This is a clear example of Classical conditioning.

Knowing how a dog thinks makes training much easier and helps you to get in the dogs mind. This is why training You and your dog is so important to us!

(Nelly & her bff Isla the Lab)

Robyn @Nelly&Co

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