The Goog Dog Training Tips
I was doing an interview last night with Jeff Gellman on Periscope. It was the second part to a three part interview. (Go to Katch.me and look up @solidk9training to watch both parts.) We’ve been tracing my entire story, from the old angry, bitter, broke, blaming, valet days, to where I am now and and how I got here.
One of the parts that really stood out for me was when we were talking about regardless of how much things have changed for me, I still battle everyday with laziness, procrastination, avoidance, distraction, and fear.
Now with all the stuff I get done that might seem like a hard one to believe, but BELIEVE!! Every day I battle with wanting to let that little important thing (call/email/convo) slide, waste that 30 minutes surfing FB, create a plethora of unconscious tasks to derail doing what I SHOULD be doing, avoiding tackling things that scare me, and on and on.
What I manage to accomplish and create daily should in no way indicate or imply a lack of laziness or not having a predisposition to … Read More »
Answer: the same way you get a better body, better relationships, better finances, better career, and a better attitude and outlook on life. You work on it daily.
Ok, let’s break it down just a little more. All of these pursuits (including your dog) are improved by steady, disciplined, informed action. If you’ll take steady, disciplined, and informed action daily, you will get results – period! There’s no mystery, and no elusive secrets.
Making progress, moving forward, transforming any aspect of your life isn’t really complicated, it’s actually pretty straightforward. But what IS hard is the consistency. The effort. The study and work to stay informed and knowledgable (building skills). And especially the doing, when doing is the very last thing you want to do.
That focus on consistent daily work and small, incremental progress is where all the magic (if there is magic) lives!
It’s up to each of us to decide how bad we want whatever it is we might want out of this world. The sky’s pretty much the limit. It’s ourselves, and our limits that get in the … Read More »
So much of what we see with problem dogs and their behavior, is that people have unintentionally reinforced and encouraged the wrong stuff. And of course, none of us want to intentionally mess up our dogs (even though many of us – including your’s truly have).
So here’s a little list of reminders that we’ll call the “don’t do”, or “watch out for” list. 🙂
Trying to love a badly behaved dog better.
Coddling, nurturing, babying an insecure, nervous dog.
Allowing a dog to have constant access to you and your personal space. (Following you everywhere, jumping in your lap uninvited, always needing to be near.)
Constantly petting a dog.
Using your dog to fill emotional gaps in your life.
Not enforcing rules because they feel bad.
Accidentally rewarding whining/barking/growling by petting/talking to/letting in or out of a door/crate.
Letting stressed dogs (pulling, anxious, worked up) meet on-leash.
Letting dogs pull to trees or bushes on walks.
Touching, talking to, “enjoying” a dog who jumps on you.
Giving treats or petting a growling/barking/anxious/stressed dog to calm and soothe them.
Sharing only your soft, sweet, loving, affectionate side.
Using tools that allow dogs to … Read More »
It’s a weird thing that for some reason lots of folks want to make sure that dogs never experience stress or discomfort as a means to change behavior. I mean I get it, we love our dogs to pieces, but how come they get the pass on the natural order of things and us humans don’t? Seems unfair!
For us, we have taxes, and within our taxes are incentives to change behavior. Do this (buy a house, get married) and you get less financial discomfort. Do this (don’t get married, and don’t by a house) you get more discomfort. It’s designed to create behavioral changes and choices.
Same with speeding or parking tickets. Drive the speed limit or park in the right spots at the right time, and you avoid discomfort. Drive too fast or park in the wrong spot and you get lots of discomfort.
Do well on a paper in school, get an A and you get lots of comfort. Don’t study, or blow the test, get a big F, and you get lots of discomfort.
Do a good job at work, be … Read More »
Now here’s the thing, we see so many dogs that come to us that already have been through all kinds of training. They know sit, down, place, heel, leave it, off, come etc. Now, I said they know it. But knowing and doing are two very different things! (Didn’t Morpheus say something about this??)
What ends up happening is that many dogs are taught all these behaviors very clearly, patiently, and skillfully. Usually they’re taught through positive reinforcement only, which can be great for teaching all sorts of behaviors. (Positive reinforcement only is a method that uses only rewards for getting behaviors, and doesn’t allow for correcting for poor choices, bad behavior, or non-compliance.)
But then how come all these “trained” dogs keep showing up here, for more training???
Here’s what happens, a lot. These dogs are taught all these behaviors, but when the owners try to use the commands, the dogs realize there’s no way for the owners to enforce the rules or create accountability. So the dogs quickly learn to forget all that stuff they were taught.
Some dogs and owners get … Read More »
At our recent T3 Launch seminar, on closing night, as we were wrapping up, I sprung a last minute question on everyone: what is the one flaw, gap, trauma, pain, you’re carrying that would stop you from living the life of your dreams?
I knew it was a heavy one. I gave everyone the option of answering it internally to themselves – if they weren’t comfortable talking about it aloud – or sharing it with the group if they were comfortable with it.
We started with Jeff, myself, and Laura, and tears and heavy heart stuff were already happening, and we hadn’t even got to the group!
While this was totally unplanned, it turned out to be maybe the most special and transformative moment of all 6 days. Everyone in the room spoke. And they spoke deeply and from the heart about the blocks they were carrying, the fears they had, the pains they had endured, how it had affected them, and the one thing, the biggest thing, they knew they would have to overcome to achieve their dreams and a fulfilling life.
The … Read More »
Are your goals written down! (A survey!)
Ok gang, so I’ve talked previously about the value of making our goals conscious in order for the brain to prioritize them, focus on them, and go to work on them. Remember, goals not consciously decided upon are just brain noise, and they have no power to actually become reality. The brain is simply a complex goal achieving device, but it needs to know clearly what you want it to achieve, so it can filter in the helpful information and filter out the unhelpful. Like a GPS system, without specific coordinates punched in, all that great technology is useless.
And to share a personal touch, when I started working to really take control of my life and turn things around, goal setting was a HUGE part of that process being successful! (For perspective, this was about 6-7 years ago.) I can look back in the notes written clearly in the books I was reading at the time and see: Successful dog business in LA and Nola, having homes in LA and Nola, a big black … Read More »
We all can do better. We all can raise our game, make better decisions, and be better versions of ourselves. But often we fall below what we’re capable of.
When we see we can get away with less, give less, take advantage of more, and push boundaries for an immediate moment of gratification or personal benefit – and we don’t see an immediate downside or consequence for the choice or behavior – it’s easy to offer less than our best. Less than what we’re actually capable of. Yes, even you. 🙂
But then there’s the gift of accountability. It’s a gift that holds each of us to our best. A gift shared that’s says, “I know you’re better than this, I know you’re capable of more, and for your best and my best, I’m going to hold you to this best.”
Whether it’s with a co-worker, a family member, a mate, or your dog, when we allow those around us to give less than their best, we rob them, ourselves, and everyone else in their sphere, of the great stuff they’re capable of.
And … Read More »
I have an awesome GPS in my car. It can tell me exactly how to get wherever I want to go, no matter how far or complex the road. It can give me alternate routes if there’s traffic or an accident, and it can take me the quickest way or the scenic route depending on what I want to do.
And as awesome as all that is, if I don’t plug in some destination or specific spot I’m looking to get to, all that awesomeness just tells me “You are here” with a little display on the screen of my surroundings and where I sit in those surroundings.
I can drive for days and days, trying to get somewhere, and all that awesome ability and know-how will just sit there, showing me exactly where I am currently. Without any destination or goal plugged in, it won’t help me a bit.
Your brain is just like your GPS. It can guide you, illuminate a myriad of paths, approaches, resources and ways to get to your destination or goals – but it needs you to consciously … Read More »
Whatever dogs CAN do they WILL do if it suits them. Dogs are opportunists – cute ones – but opportunists none the less.
If they can pull on-leash and it meets no resistance, they will pull. If they can bark and it receives no correction, they will bark. If they can ignore you and chase a dog or squirrel off-leash, they will. If they can attack or bully another dog and it it isn’t corrected, they will attack or bully (if they’re so inclined). If they can steal food off the counter and nothing but a raised voice happens, they’ll likely continue to steal food.
Opportunity comes from a lack of clearly established rules and believable (and consistent) consequences for breaking these rules. Once a rule is pushed and there is no valuable consequence for the action, the dog was just taught that that choice is a good one. And you’ll likely see it again and again.
What can be pushed typically will be pushed. Rules that aren’t enforced quickly become noise to ignore.
Because here the upshot: If there’s something you’d rather be … Read More »
I see so many folks struggle unnecessarily with unwanted behavior from their dogs. Things like: Going crazy in the car at other dogs or people. Going bananas at the front door barking. Jumping on people. Counter surfing. Barking/whining from the crate. Mouthing and nipping. Fence fighting. Bullying the other dogs in the house. And on and on.
The problem is that most of us don’t know how to say no effectively. Dogs don’t come with instructions, and unfortunately, the popular dog training ideology currently is one of ignoring bad behavior and rewarding positive behavior. Correcting is looked down on and owners are told it will create more issues. So that makes it even harder for folks to figure out what to do.
Here’s the thing, I don’t have anything to gain from telling you what my experience has been. I just share here with folks to help them do better. To help them more clearly understand what I’ve seen that works and what doesn’t in real-life scenarios, working with a lot of dogs.
And here’s what I’ve found: Correcting/saying no to unwanted behavior, and … Read More »
Dogs are constantly working to figure out what works and what doesn’t. If it works for them they do it more, if it doesn’t they do it less.
If jumping on you gets a reaction THEY enjoy, they will jump more. If barking or whining from the crate gets you to let them out you’ll be in for a whole lotta barking and whining. If pulling you towards the tree or other dog on walks works – even 5% of the time – you’re in for some pulling. If barking or growling at guests causes guests to create more space and mice away, you’ll get more barking and growling. (This doesn’t mean to invite your guests towards your growling dog – that’s crazy and dangerous.)
It’s always the same, your dog is always looking for golden answer to what works for him or her.
The tricky part is that we’re often not sensitive to the fact that is happening.
We think telling our dog “no” for jumping and pushing him away is a clear conversation, but for your dog it’s a great interaction. So jumping … Read More »