I was reminded again the other day, the importance as a teacher of recognizing that different animals learn differently, have different thresholds for frustration, and different values of reinforcement. That recognition and application to the lesson at hand can very well be what either helps and animal succeed…or fail.
The Red Light, Green Light game uses play and exercise to build skills of self-control in your dog. It is a ton of fun for both you and your four legged friend.
A pre-requisite for this game is to first work on teaching your dog controlled behaviors such as sit or down. This is a great way for building more value for those behaviors.
There are so many benefits to giving your dog a stuffed Kong, or other food chew toy or activity toy. When you just put food in a bowl, typically either your dog will either gobble it up quickly or graze slowly which may lead to your leaving food out all day. In either case, there the opportunity for enrichment really is not there. And by leaving food out all day, your dog will tend to value it less (not to mention it makes house training pretty difficult). Think about these food toys as enrichment and trouble prevention.
Commonly, people who are having trouble teaching their puppy a proper potty area, or who are having problems with their puppy chewing on things not meant for puppy teeth, also happen to be people who do not use a crate – or practice good management.
I have been working with this Havanese puppy, Migo, on training him to go into his crate. I did this by making the crate a hugely valuable place to be (from his point of view), by using clicker training and positive reinforcement.
The other day, I had a second training session with this adorable labradoodle puppy and his family. He laid patiently at their side while we began talking through solving the issues that come with bringing a young, energetic companion into their home with sharp teeth and an incomplete understanding of human household etiquette. (It is so awesome that their whole family is on board and eager to learn about training.)