Hi friends, and welcome to this week’s Tip Tuesday!
This is the second blog post that’s part of a new series on dog training tips featuring the best advice from dog parents.
Last week’s Tip Tuesday featured: How to Build Confidence and Trust With Your Dog.
In today’s edition, Ashleigh will share some of her tips and tricks to becoming the leader of the pack and building a strong bond with your dog.
Ashleigh gets a lot of questions about where she went to train her Malinois. Well, truth is, Ashleigh trained Remi, her 1 and a half-year-old Malinois in the convenience of her own home.
Tip: If you’re looking for more ways to improve your dog training and obedience be sure to check out:
TODAY’S TIP TUESDAY
Becoming The Leader of The Pack & Building a Strong Bond With Your Dog
Remi was adopted in Oceanside, CA at 8 weeks old. I had done my research on the breed for years and knew that a Belgian Malinois was right up my alley as a companion, family dog, protector, and workout partner.
Being active myself, I knew I needed an active dog that could hike, run, and be willing to accept any challenge we face in this crazy thing we call life.
Immediately Remi was taught basic commands and rewarded with happy dances and lots of treats. Like any dog or animal rather, Mal’s are always in sync with our emotions, they know when were angry, sad, happy, etc.
Always keeping positive and encouraging verbal and nonverbal cues will keep your dog confident and excited to learn new tricks.
4 OF MY FAVORITE DOG TRAINING TIPS ARE:
My boyfriend and I decided right away that Remi would not be allowed on furniture of any kind. However, short-lived, our couch potato watches TV with us during the week each night.
With that being said, don’t give your Mal mixed messages by sometimes punishing or not allowing a certain behavior and other times letting it slide.
If you tell your dog to “wait” make sure he/she waits until your release cue (Ours is ‘OK’) before moving on to the next task. If he/she disobeys your command, be sure to start over and have them “wait, sit, stand, down” until your release cue to allow them to move on.
If you don’t want your dog to jump up, don’t allow them to jump on new friends. Even if your friend requests them to jump up, immediately correct the behavior. When the task is completed- happy dance!
2) YOU Are The Boss:
If your Mal is anything like Remi, food is the priority.
When we wake up in the morning the first and only thing running through his mind is FOOD. So make sure that you’re the boss and not your Mal (by this, ask yourself, does your dog eat before you?).
Have your Mal go potty outside. After, have your Mal patiently wait while you prepare your coffee and breakfast.
Remi has a ‘spot’ and when I tell him to go to his ‘spot’ he quickly rushes to the stairs and sits until I am ready to pour his food. After I do this, I continue to pour my coffee and when he hears ‘OK’ he is released and allowed to eat.
This applies to everything! Make sure he/she ‘waits’ to leave the front door, hop out of the car, walk into the dog park, etc. Your Mal needs to respect you as their owner and not run the relationship. “But, Mom….”
3) Trust Me, I Trust You Too:
In order to continue a positive relationship, your Mal depends on you for their safety and livelihood.
An amazing bond is formed with any owner and their dog and just like human relationships, we need a strong foundation of trust.
Remi has a weird fear of miscellaneous objects (a computer cord, really?). So you can only imagine what he thought when the vet was trying to scan his microchip and check his temperature…
If your Mal is fearful of something or someone, make sure you show them it’s okay and don’t quit until they realize it’s safe. However, you want to make sure you’re consistent as I mentioned above and finish the task entirely.
For the computer cord, I showed Remi and spoke softly and told him its okay as I held it in front of him. He still wasn’t having it. So I placed it on the ground and allowed him to smell it and check it out while I encouraged him it was safe. In due time, he realized he’s a dork and everything was cool.
Don’t force anything on your Mal, some things just take time.
4) Balance and Confident Dog-Parenting:
Keep up on your training and serious business but allow for plenty of doggy play time. Lastly, please don’t be a helicopter dog-parent.
Just like children, dogs react based on emotion, you start freaking out: the baby cries, you laugh and tell them their okay: they’re just fine.
If your dog is feeling uneasy at the dog park or playing a little rough… remember, they are dogs and there’s no reason to intervene (unless there’s, of course, a life-threatening risk or extremely aggressive behavior).
If your dog jets between your legs, step aside and allow them to gain confidence and not hide under you. If you continue to allow this behavior and hover over them while they play with other dogs, this may lead to aggressive behavior or a very timid dog. Let them be dogs and let your Mal grow their own confidence and not always go to you for protection.
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