A Girl and A Well-trained Dog
Credit: Fran Hogan

From: publicdomainpictures.net

Dogs, unlike their wolf ancestors are adaptable to change. Throughout the years, canines have evolved to become man’s best friend. Although some of our beloved canine friends prefer to do things according to their instincts, you can change these undesirable habits if desired. Basic obedience training is the first step in modifying your dog’s unwanted behaviors.

Most people think that dogs are incapable of learning human livelihood. But, the truth is, with consistency, they will and can definitely understand what you want. Proper training and building a strong bond with them are some of the crucial steps to make this happen.

With that being said, you will learn how to properly train your lovable canine pets. 

Understanding dog behavior before training

Akita DogCredit: Kim Newberg

Before you try and do any forms of dog training, you have to fully understand a dog's innate behavior. Dogs and humans have different point of views in life. However, this does not mean that both cannot live side by side with each other in peace and order. The key to this goal is understanding their instincts or behavior.

As dedicated pet owners, you may have found yourself wondering why dogs act the way they are. The simple answer to this question is because of how they are born and raised.

A dog’s learning process begins at birth. As the grow old, their mother teaches them about pack behaviors and basic survival skills. By the time you take your puppy home preferably by 2 months age, they have already learned pecking order, survival skills and other habits such as digging, biting and chewing.

Basic obedience training will not correct these behaviors. But, it will definitely form a leader-follower relationship between you and your beloved pet. Through this, they would learn to rely on you for survival and at the same time obey you requests.

Training Tools and Requirements

Once you have fully understand dog behavior, you are now ready to start your dog training sessions. For basic obedience training, you have to find a specific area where you can train without distractions. You’ll also need a short and a long leash to make sure you get your dog’s full attention. And of course, you will need some treats and toys as rewards. Dogs love food and you'll be surprised how a tasty treat can give them the right motivation. 

dog in a parkCredit: pdphoto.org - public domain

Remember, dog training is not about building fear, but trust. One way to gain your dog’s trust is by being a provider. Hurting your dog if he does not follow your commands is not strongly advised. This is not only because of the animal abuse law. You have to understand that a dog when frightened or over dominated will eventually retaliate.

What commands should you teach?

During basic obedience training, you will teach your canine friends to follow your commands. These commands are necessary to ensure safety not only for your dog, but also for the people around them including yourself.

In doing this, you have to be patient and consistent. Depending on your dog’s breed, some may learn it fast while others would be stubborn about it. But, you have to keep on going until you reach your goals. 

Dog TrainingCredit: Peter Griffin

In teaching basic commands, the first commands you should teach are “come”, ”heel” and  ”sit”.  Your dog should learn to immediately come to you when called. This is essential in out-of-your-home situations. The sit command is useful during situations that you need him to stay still such as pre-feeding time. Lastly, the “heel” command is vital for a peaceful and orderly walk. Remember, your dog needs to walk with you side by side and not towards different directions. Other commands such as “stay” and “down” is also included in basic training.

After you have completed teaching your dogs those basic commands, you can go further. Advance commands such as “drop it”, “leave it” and “give” are also vital for your pet's safety. There are actually dozens of commands you can teach your dogs. But, as for basic obedience training, these commands are the most important. 

Below are videos explaining and demonstrating the proper way of doing the basic obedience training for dogs. 

Dog Training: Teaching your Puppy to Come and Walk

Karen Pryor, Getting Started: Clicker Training for Dogs Kit
Amazon Price: $19.95 Buy Now
(price as of Nov 25, 2018)