Ultimately you are struggling at getting your dog to listen and you want your dog to listen to you.
Through my many years of Salt Lake City dog training, I have learned some common myths that can block peace of mind between you and your dog.
Learn about these myths so that your dog will reliably listen to you.
1.) My dog will become dependent on the clicker. Many of our clients resist using the clicker before they meet us because they think they will have to use it forever.
A clicker is just a training tool when you are teaching your dog a new behavior. Once your dog is obedient you will no longer need to use the clicker.
2.) Reward-based dog training only works for certain dogs and definitely doesn’t work well for aggressive dogs. Guess what? Reward-based training has proven to be successful for ANY behavioral issue that your dog may have.
It also decreases the chances of furthering aggressive and fearful problems with your dog. Now you will have much more fun during dog training. Salt Lake City would benefit from this knowledge.
Julie Keller and I trained her red heeler, Beau, that was very reactive toward people with reward based training. She created immense success with her dog.
We gave Beau treats around people and had Beau perform fun tricks. Beau began to associate people with good things. The featured photo in this post is of Beau and Julie. In the photo Julie is asking Beau to perform a fun trick, “spin.”
3.) I need to be alpha, and I need to talk in a firm my voice for my dog to listen to me. If I use a happy voice my dog won’t listen. Your dog will listen to you because you give him a payoff.
He receives a consequence for listening which is usually a treat. The tone of voice doesn’t matter. Many of my Salt Lake City dog training clients are surprised to hear this one.
4.) I must be the leader of the pack. This means I eat before my dog and let myself out of the door first (before my dog.). I also should not let my dog on the sofa or on my bed.
Guess what folks! This doesn’t affect anything. It is your choice whether you want to eat first or not. It is your choice to let your dog on furniture or not.
The only exception to this myth would be if your dog is possessive with certain locations like your bed. Then your dog may benefit from not being allowed on the bed.
If you treat your dog as an equal you can have a happy life with your dog! You just want to make sure you are only rewarding behavior that creates happiness in your life.
This varies from person to person and is the main thing that differs from people to people in their dog training. Salt Lake City has a variety of people who want their dogs to do different things.
Some are okay with their dogs on their beds and some are not. There is no right or wrong answer here.
5.) If my dog pulls strongly on the leash I must use a choker or prong collar. Guess what there are a lot of other options now. You can use a front hook harness, freedom harness, gentle leader, or a newtrix collar. All of these will work better.
Dogs actually like to feel pressure on their neck. It is called the opposition reflex. As a result, the choker and prong collars have to exhibit a large amount of pain for them to work.
One of my new Salt Lake City dog training clients was talking about the stress her dog felt when she wore a prong collar. She had great awareness of her dog’s body language. Her dog was in pain. Of course she stopped using it.
We hope these myths help you with your dog training. Salt Lake City deserves happy dog owners. Spread the knowledge to others as well!
Johanna Teresi, Professional Salt Lake City Dog Trainer and Owner of Four Legged Scholars LLC, Dog Training, Salt Lake City, Utah