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Training for your puppy
As for obedience, I know this is easy to say, but the best obedience training is consistent day to day actions and re-
It is important to try to see how the pup views the world around him in order to know how to respond.
First, he does not really think of you as his owner but as part of his "pack", and as such he will test you and others around him to see who the “Dominant dog” is. Depending on the personality of the pup, this can be a short lived test or a life long struggle for dominance. Regardless, your response needs to be the same, when challenged as head of the pack, you need to be firm and use a voice of authority. I do not mean that you need to "yell", but dogs are very good at interpreting tone of voice. I think it is sometimes their best insight into what "we humans mean". So don't ask him to obey, command it and always use direct and sustained eye contact when doing it, do not let the pup stare you down in these instances, this is a challenge to your authority and is very normal.
If this does not get a desired response, you need to be able to follow through with physical reinforcement. I do not mean hitting or spanking, this does not work and will only leave the pup confused and eventually the pup will fear you, not look to you as his leader. The best advice I received for physical reinforcement was to do what a mother dog does to her pups. She will push them to the ground and hold until they stop resisting. This is what dogs understand. When they get too big to push to the ground by hand you may choose to lie down on top of them and restrict their movement until they stop trying to resist. The intent here is not to inflict any pain but to demonstrate your dominance.
Again, the most important thing to do is be consistent. They must know that the rules always apply and you are always the "head of the pack". Do not give a command that you do not have the time to enforce if necessary.
Obedience training can be very good, but choose the program wisely, the "Dr. Spock" method of child raising does not apply to dogs. Some say it does not apply to children either but that is another topic and one that I am not qualified to comment on.
My recommended reading for a method that I know works is the book "Game Dog", written by Richard Wolters. And some of the above advice is derived from his work.
Mark J. Duty
Our favorite training books and reference material
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Now revised, this clear, step-by-step guide shows how to develop any of the popular retriever breeds from a seven-week-old pup into a finished hunting companion. This updated edition includes the use of new training equipment and new findings about a dog's mental development.
The Labrador Retriever
A fascinating and thorough history of Labs and the people who have developed and trained them over the years, this definitive new edition of a classic is by far the most beautiful and authoritative book on the subject. 36 full-color plates. 224 photographs.
Widely recognized as one of the great dog trainers of his time, Richard Wolters's tested techniques continue to endure. Family Dog was the first book written for any member of the family, from age six to sixty, who wants to train a dog fast. By following the book's simple instructions, anyone can have a well-trained dog in just sixteen weeks. In Family Dog Wolters teaches: * How to choose the right dog for your family and lifestyle * The benefits of play and relaxation * Talking with your dog-- it's not what you say, but how you say it * All the fundamentals of training-- house-breaking, basic commands, and tricks * Tips on grooming * The best dog diet in the world * First-aid and medical advice, and much more More than 200 all-new pictures in chronological, step-by-step sequence illustrate exactly what to do with your pet in a way that takes the frustration out of training and works for all breeds and any age.
Gun Dog : Revolutionary Rapid Training Method by Richard A. Wolters Revised Published in 1961 by Dutton Adult