Have you discovered that your furry, four-legged friend is just not listening to you? If so, you may need to brush up your voice command skills and ensure that your dog not only understands what you want, but also what to do in various situations.
Voice commands for dogs can be tricky; however, with a bit of practice and training – for you and your pet – you can both master this training and feel more secure and happier along the way.
Before you jump into voice command training, it is a good idea to get to know the Do’s and Don’ts of this process.
There are a few don’ts that you need to be aware of, as well. These will also help to guide your training experience:
Now that you fully understand the do’s and don’ts of voice training, you can get started.
Your voice is the key element of effective communication with your dog. The mood, commitment and tone you convey is giving the command. Your voice is a tool that can affect your dog, how they behave and how well trained they are.
One of the first things you need to change is the tone of your voice. Women have an easy time when it comes to praise, due to their soft, sweet voice. Men, on the flip side, have the best “bad dog” tone – this is one that is stern and gravelly. In most cases, the tone is the first thing the dog will respond to, even if they understand some of the words that are being said.
There are some people who have a hard time getting their dog to listen to and obey the commands they give. This is often because they tell their dogs what to do, but form it as a question, “siittt?” Commands have to be short, firm and to the point. Don’t ever allow the word to drag on.
When you begin teaching your dog your language and voice commands, you need to combine the words that are being said with an action that will let your dog know exactly what you want, as well as some type of reinforcement.
The first step of teaching any new command is to first say the dog’s name, which gets their attention. Follow their name with the command and then show the dog what you want. Praise the dog right away when the action is completed – even if you had to make them do it. Eventually the dog will begin to respond to the command without having to have you show them – but the praise is something you should always provide.
When it comes to a training session, it is best to keep them short and sweet. This is because if you opt for more than 15 minutes of training, your dog will likely get bored and not perform as you would like them to. Also, as you are training, keep the following in mind to achieve the best possible results:
In many situations, words will not be enough when you are trying to communicate with your dog. Since dogs have to learn what each word means, all of the “extra” words are gibberish to them. It may be necessary to change your vocabulary a bit to make it clear the issue you are having – especially when you are working with a puppy.
For example, if they are teething on your toes, then a shrill “OW!” would likely be more effective than a “no.” This is because in the litter, other puppies will make this type of sound when their littermate is chewing on them – it is something that is easier for them to understand.
Your puppy or dog, will be happier and healthier when they know what you want and how to earn praise from you. In order to successfully train your dog, you have to be consistent and learn what will work and what doesn’t work when it comes to giving voice commands.
If you are not willing to voice train your dog, you should choose some other method of letting your pet know what you want – such as clicker training. You should not leave your dog to their own devices or allow undesirable behavior to be punished by isolating the dog. These actions will damage a dog in the long run.