Positive reinforcement has been proven again and again as the most effective dog training method. A classic example of this is giving a food reward for a particular behavior. When your dog sits, he receives a cookie.
Treats are a great training tool, but don’t forget about all of the other possible forms of positive reinforcement that can be used to train your dog.
If you think about what your dog wants, then you can figure out other ways to reward him for good behavior. Activities such as going outside, receiving praise, or even putting on the leash to go for a walk can all be rewards.
While tricks are fun, these rewards can be used to shape your furry friend into a respectable canine citizen. A good dog listens to commands and can remain calm when necessary. A variety of rewards can be used to create these behaviors.
For example, the next time your dog wants to go outside, make him sit and wait quietly. Once he is calm and waiting, open the door. If you make this a routine, he will learn that he needs to be calm and sit before going outside. After time, he will sit at the door without you asking, as he knows this is the expected behavior. Similarly, make him sit and wait for a meal, or before you put on his leash for a walk. Combined, these expectations will improve your dog’s impulse control and overall manners.
Training your dog is far more than teaching tricks. Basic manners can be taught, you just need to see the rewards all around you.
For more information on this type of training, check out Dr. Sophia Yin's website.