Many things in life require planning in order to achieve success. Many of us float through life with a vague plan or with no plan at all. This explains how people near the end of their life ask themselves, “Where has my life gone and what have I been doing all of these years?” If you don’t take control of your life then life takes control of you. So, how does this relate to dog training?
Many people get dogs with this fantasy of what living with a dog might be like. They want a dog that behaves like the dogs in the movies, their childhood dog who went to the pond with them and played ball, or the well behaved dog who lays by the fire place. Unfortunately many people I work with come to a rude awakening and realize that dogs don’t come that way. If you don’t hire a trainer/coach to help you achieve training success with your dog then you may wake up one day and ask yourself, “Where has my dog’s life gone?”
They must learn what our expectations are and then training must be executed to communicate with the dog what those expectations are. Sounds simple, right? This explanation is only hitting the surface. There’s a lot that goes on in the background for dog training to be successful. Such as understanding the basics of learning theory and then getting a grasp on the application so you can achieve the goals you have in place for you and your dog.
Lets take one more step back, before you can execute a plan you MUST know where you want to go and evaluate if you are setting realistic expectations. For example you may have rescued a dog that lacks appropriate social skills and is scared of people and/or dogs. It isn’t realistic to expect that dog to become a therapy dog. As your setting your goals make sure they aren’t only realistic for you but for your dog as well.
Now you know where you want to go; so, how do you get there? Work with a trainer/coach who you trust and can build a good relationship with and have them COACH you and your dog on how to meet your goals. Like many things in life the more you put into it, the more you get out of it. It does take resources such as time and money to have a well behaved dog. If you don’t have these things you may want to evaluate if getting a dog is a good choice for you or your family.
Dog friendly events and the places you can take your dog are growing everyday. Help your community continue to grow into a dog friendly community by have a well behaved four legged friend. Get the proper training and have a coach to mentor you through the process to achieve training success!