Did you know that dogs have the same intelligence level as a two to three year old human child? Dogs are capable of understanding somewhere from 150 to 200 words, as well as hand signals. Because dogs understand so much, it is possible to teach them how to obey and respond to commands. Here is a quick guide to pet training that will improve communication between you and your pup.
1. When it comes to new puppies, many people want to know how to house train them. House training can take up to six months, so patience is required here. The puppy has to learn to understand that the home is their den, and that it is not a place they should soil. Reward the puppy with treats when they pee and poop in the correct location, and give them frequent access to whatever their toilet area is. Puppies have to go more frequently than older dogs, about once every four hours on average.
2. Dogs have lived alongside humans for over 14,000 years, and part of the original attraction of this relationship was the rewards dogs received from humans for good behavior. Rewards work better than bribery for dogs. If you bribe a dog for the purpose of enticing compliance, about half the time your dog will get the treat but not perform. If you only reward the dog after they have done the right thing, you will be establishing positive associations with the behavior 100 percent of the time.
3. Online pet trainers recommend that you be specific with your commands. Instructions that might seem simple to us can be confusing to a dog. If you tell your dog NO when they jump on the couch, they might think you mean the right action is to jump higher, or approach the couch from a different angle. A more direct command is to direct your dog to sit on the floor after this happens. Online pet trainers also recommend using hand motions to accompany words, since dogs tend to recall prompts better when the two are used in tandem.