In dog training there are ups and downs.
Good days, and bad days.
One day you might think your dog is an absolute genius.
And the next he’s dumber than a box of rocks.
He just doesn’t get it.
He wanders off.
Finds something better to do.
Anything is better than listening to you.
You know what? It happens.
Especially if you have a reactive dog.
One day he is walking perfectly, paying attention, not interested in dogs.
And the next… Well, the next is just hellish. Those who have been there know what I mean!
But that is how dog training goes.
You have to ride the rough with the smooth.
There are going to be situations you can’t control, like the ‘It’s ok, he’s friendly’ brigade.
Regression is normal
Just like us, it depends on mood, energy, motivation, distractions.
I have had so many training sessions, both my own and clients, that have had to change dramatically just because the dog wasn’t feeling it on the day.
We all have off days.
Puppies, for example, tend to have excellent recall.
Then they hit teenage, and they seem to forget everything!
So we go back to basics, and I’m talking the very beginning.
Are you rewarding enough?
We all like to think that we can stop rewarding our dogs.
That we don’t have to take a bag of treats to the park.
But in reality, why would you?
There has never been a time where trainers in the military or police, have not rewarded their dog for indicating a scent. Never. Not unless there is a good reason.
Never has there been a time where a top agility competitor has not rewarded the dog after a run. Good or bad. Clean run or elimination. There is always a reward waiting.
If you want to avoid those training mountains, then you have to pay your dog for his hard work.
Sure, it doesn’t have to be every time for a sit.
But at least give her a ‘good girl’ and a fuss.