Dog Training Tips - Things I've Learned About Agility Dog Training - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Dog Training Tips - Things I've Learned About Agility Dog Training


Dog Training Tips - Things I've Learned About Agility Dog Training – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Dog Training Tips - Things I've Learned About Agility Dog Training

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Dog Training Tips Things I've Learned About
Agility Dog Training
I've owned many dogs, throughout my life, but
have never known exactly how to train them
properly. I based my training on punishment and
just couldn't figure out why that didn't work
that well. But, almost two years ago, I started
training my Papillon for agility competition. She
was extremely high-drive and I knew she'd really
love it. So, I found a good agility training
school and off we went. We've been competing,
very successfully, for almost a year now and,
looking back, I learned so many important things
about dog training!
First of all, most trainers require that
dogs have completed at least a basic
obedience class before proceeding to agility
training. This is critical to agility training
and, in my opinion, every dog and handler could
benefit from a basic obedience class. I learned
that I have a food-motivated dog and that she
will work her heart out for highly prized treats,
not for punishment! There are skills you and your
dog will learn, through an obedience class, such
as recalls, sit/stays, down/stays, and walking
nicely on a leash. Each of these skills is
something you will need every time you compete,
not to mention day-to-day life with your dog.
The pace of your training will always be set by
your dog. Each dog learns at a different speed
and, what comes easily for one dog, may not come
easily for another. So, be very patient while
training your dog any skill. Make it a game. Let
your dog take as much time as it needs, without
getting impatient or frustrated, to figure out
what behavior you want from it.
All tasks must be broken down into small pieces,
whether the task is a simple sit, the beginnings
of obstacle training, or more complex tricks or
agility sequences. If you break the task down to
something small, then mark/reward and repeat,
several times before making the task larger, you
will have success without stressing the dog out.
For example, when training an agility tunnel, you
scrunch it up to its smallest form. Have someone
place your dog at the entrance while you sit on
the ground at the exit, with a treat, and call
your dog. As soon as the dog comes through that
little piece of a tunnel, you mark/reward. Slowly
begin expanding the tunnel using the same
technique. In just a few minutes, you'll have
your dog going through however long a tunnel you
For agility training, once the dog begins
obstacle training, there is never a wrong
answer. Dogs get confused, and may shut down, if
they start being told they're doing the wrong
thing, so keep the training light and never scold
for doing the incorrect thing. If the dog
doesn't do what you want it to, you simply do not
mark/reward for that action. You just ask again
and, the minute you get the correct response,
mark/reward and make a huge deal of it. That will
make your dog more anxious to give you that same
answer again. As you start competing, you might
want to use a particular word to indicate the
incorrect response, such as "uh oh," or "oops,"
but not with a scolding tone. This will indicate
that the dog will be asked to try again but
everything is fine between the two of you.
Lastly, always keep the training fun for both you
and your dog. Even when you start competing, or
have been competing for a long time, this is
critical. If you start getting caught up in the
competition and title-winning, you might forget
why you started agility to begin with because
it's fun! When the game stops being fun, your dog
won't enjoy it anymore and neither will you.
Agility is a wonderful sport and will forever
secure the relationship between you and your dog.
Run fast, run clean, and, above all, have fun!
To Learn More About Dog Training, go to
http// htt
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