Joseph's Laws of Dog Training:
The World Is My Toilet:
If I can eliminate anywhere outside then I can eliminate anywhere inside.
Make the choice for potty pads. Best results are using the edge of your
property for a designated zone away from dwelling area. This also
transverses into the concept to the dog that if "you give me anything I
want without permission, everything is mine." This idea to the dog is
where authority comes into place taking control over your household and
utilizing your basic and advanced obedience commands to shape behaviors.
With consistency throughout the household you'll achieve a stable and
trustworthy dog much more quickly. Dogs are impulsive animals, generally
a few moments behind or ahead in thought. Hence my "Goldfish Rule"
mentioned below. Dogs do not react out spite or premeditated
retaliation. Handler error or incorrectly communicating with your pet is
generally the common denominator in behavioral issues.
The 4 R System:
Reprimand, Redirect, Retrain, Reward.
Hand signal, hand signal with vocal reinforcement then "look" stare down, repeat step 2 without "look" and if your pet still doesn't follow through go to your 4 R's. Turn your back, tease and shun. Stand your ground to redirect and retrain the behavior. Then reward consistently until it's a consistent behavior. Then fade the reward because you haven't asked you've directed. That's the beginnings of setting the expectation of obedience you have for your pet. Changing the mentality of the animal from "what do I want?" to "what can I do to make you happy?"
Dogs are simply domesticated, it's through training they become civilized. Just like people they need structure in their lives and in that structure they thrive. In comparison to humans their lives aren't much different. They are born, nursed by their mother until they feed on their own, potty trained, socialized to understand how to behave with con-specifics, then through training they enter elementary school to learn the basics, intermediate education to prepare for advanced education, only before they enter college to prepare for and earn their freedom in the household understanding their boundaries. You can't learn to read before you know the alphabet. You can't do multiplication and division until you learn addition and subtraction. It's all tiered to accomplish a finite goal for success by building an extensive vocabulary for your pet, learning to utilize it, then condensing it. Set them up for failure but end on success. If you become frustrated, change command sequence to one that is reliable: reward and stop. Then come back later. That's finding the cusp of their attention span and your ability to keep their focus.
Take authority. Don't just talk to your dog, listen to them as well. But use your command system to guide them to the checkered
flag. They sit in the back seat and you keep on racing until you get to the finish line together. With that being said, don't let them be the
back seat driver and tell you how fast to go or which turns to make. As a parent to your pet, you lead the way and encourage them to desire to follow you. Not forced to stand in line. Stimulating the mentality in the dog to please you is your ultimate key to unlocking all the doors needed for a stable, happy, and pleasurable pet.
Read your 5 categories of distress and/or desire:
Barking, Whimpering/Whining, Growling, Huffs and Puffs, and Sigh's *listed in order of severity*
2)Jumping and Pawing
Jumping on your person, pawing or scratching at your hands or legs, etc.
3)Nipping and Biting
Typically puppy behavior often inadvertently taught by accident. This behavior can carry on through maturity especially with puppies who have not went through the transitional phase from 6 to 9 weeks. It's oftentimes reinforced by the family by immediately redirecting to a toy and engaging in play. Give time between engaging back with the puppy with play to prevent them inadvertently learning that nipping and biting stimulates you to play with them.
4)Head Nudges and Body Budges
Head nudges are most commonly associated with the desire for affection while body budges are more often directly a signal of need for comfort in situations of fear or discomfort.
Very commonly rewarded as a puppy being misconstrued as a kiss. Though it can be taught later on as a sign of affection, if commended too frequently as a puppy it can become a compulsive behavior as an adult and undesirable.
Systemically eradicate all of the categories by towering them down the totem pole and reward calm behavior. Tail, ears, paws. Listen to what you see, see what you're hearing. Within those categories their are tiers that you'll need to understand to raise and lower intensity. Going back to the checkered flag, your typical untrained dog is running at about 70mph in a 45mph zone. That's where you find yourself running around yelling "No" yet the dog doesn't learn. Understanding the categories of stress and desire along with the 4 R system you can tier your pet up and down. Assuming they are steady over the speed limit, once you have a line of communication with your pet you can read those categories and use them against the pet to take them to 100mph. When you can control them at 100mph, it's only then you can tier them back down and set your cruise control to 45mph.
Once you've mastered the aforementioned you should be capable of turning your dog on or off. Down is completely off. Sit is a semi untrustworthy position as they can easily engage. In a stand, their mind says they are free. We teach sit first to learn the down. But to fully stabilize the dog and turn it into a pet you must build it from the ground up. Down is a position of vulnerability. In the animal kingdom you're either predator or prey, down is one of the more commonly difficult commands for the parents of pets to master. But once mastered it needs to be earned out of respect and most importantly trust. Trust that when you say or signal for the "down" the dog trusts your judgement and not their innate mentality toward that position. Then they are brought to sit followed by stand. With each step of the way up from the floor advanced with duration first, then distance, and lastly distraction. When your dog is refined in the standing position and completely focused on you the task of training has been completed but it still needs to be reinforced throughout their lifetime to inhibit complacency. Teach the sit, earn the down from them out of respect and trust. Then teach the stand and have them earn it from you.
"Leave It" and "Take It" becomes "Take It" OR "Leave It"
Tire the Body, Focus the Mind, Train the Dog, Feed:
Exercise to wear some of the energy down, then more focus and disengagement from handler will be more manageable making training much easier to teach new cues, commands, and shaping commands for sequences, ending with feeding and affection. A tired dog is a good dog. When you assess all of their physical, mental, and emotional needs you'll begin to see quicker results with training your dog into a pet as it becomes somewhat of a job to them. Setting designated time slots, over time your dog will begin to thrive on that structured and earned interaction responsiveness and consistency will be more reliable as time goes on. You'll own your pet it's entire lifetime ranging from 8 to 15 years on average. Take advantage of the first year of its life and make the best of it as they absorb more not only more rapidly but you also have the opportunity to nip potential problems in the bud rather than reverting back and having to focus on correcting undesirable behaviors later in life.
The 9 to 12 Month Pitfall of Training:
Around this time frame most all dogs seemingly begin to unlearn everything taught to them. This is untrue, in comparison to people they're entering adolescence. Recall you teenage years. Your time of rebellion, coming into your own, and testing your parents as to what you can and can not get away. During this time frame it's best to go back to the basics once more, despite them knowing. Amplify your 3 D's and increase difficulty, set expectations higher, and challenge your dog. By increasing that cusp of patience and focus from pet to handler and handler to pet, after the year mark you'll see a more refined maturity level after the year mark as they reach adulthood ranging from the 18 to 24 month mark.
Set your your expectations. They are born a dog, it's through training they become a pet.