When it comes to dog training, there are several misconceptions about it. In order to make sure that you’re training your dog the right way, it’s important to understand the truth behind these common myths.
Myth 1: Positive reinforcement training only works on well-behaved dogs.
Using positive reinforcement is the most effective way to train dogs in general, including dogs with behavioral problems or energetic dogs. Training with methods that punish dogs can cause them to become fearful and aggressive instead of teaching them to follow commands.
Myth 2: Old dogs aren’t able to learn new tricks.
One of the most common myths about dog training is that older dogs can’t be taught to follow new commands or do new tricks. However, dogs of any age are capable of learning new commands and tricks. Just keep in mind that it might take a bit longer to train them if they’re used to doing things a certain way.
Myth 3: Using food for training spoils dogs.
Giving rewards is an important part of positive reinforcement training, but it doesn’t mean that you’ll be stuck handing food to your dog all the time. Instead, you should work on phasing out food or treat rewards over time as your dog learns to successfully follow commands. Eventually, your dog should be able to follow commands without being given any food rewards.
Myth 4: Establishing yourself as the alpha of the pack is crucial.
At one time, dominance was a common part of dog training based on studies of wolf packs. However, additional studies have shown that there are important differences between the way wolves and dogs act. Dog training shouldn’t involve having to establish yourself as dominant in order to teach your dog to listen to you.
Myth 5: Some dogs just can’t be taught.
A common dog training myth is that some dogs are unable to learn any commands due to a lack of intelligence or stubbornness. While some dogs do take longer to pick up on what they’re supposed to do, all dogs are capable of figuring out how to follow commands. Stay patient with dogs that take longer, and they’ll eventually learn what to do.
Keep the truth behind these training myths in mind when you’re working on teaching your dog how to follow commands. This will help make training sessions more rewarding for both you and your dog.