As dog owners, the idea of training reads as having a definitive end point. Once the dog is trained there is nothing else to do and we can all live a happy life. However, just as a person never stops learning as they grow, animals continue to mature and have new experiences that can affect the training we have already put effort into.
Every good trainer will tell you that training is never ending. It requires daily practice and should now be a part of an everyday lifestyle for yourself and your dog. Does this mean that your dog will never understand what you teach him? Absolutely not! What it means is that we may discover that perhaps we, inadvertently, neglected some part of their education. In order to improve what we thought we had, we must now put it into practice. Continuing to add to a dog’s education only improves their quality of life.
Some examples of behaviors that usually require our continued attention are recalls, stays, engagement, and greetings with strangers. We teach all of these things at a young age, but anything environmental can affect their progress. Think of them as synonymous to practicing a skill in math or learning new vocabulary. There is always more to expand upon as new things arise. My dog can stay in a controlled environment, but can he stay if a squirrel runs past him?
At Applause Your Paws, we have the knowledge base to work with you and your dogs through all the ups and downs. Training is a journey, not a destination.