Dog training, whether it’s teaching your dog to ‘stay’ or learning complex agility routines, makes perfect sense to our human brains. But have you ever considered what it’s like from your dog’s perspective?
Child behaviour experts often advise getting down on all fours to see things the way a baby or toddler does. And in many ways the same advice applies to dogs – although perhaps not quite as literally (although feel free to get down on the floor to play, your dog will love it).
To borrow from that O2 advert, if we ‘be more dog’ we can transform our training and enjoy more success.
So why is perspective so important?
While the human thought process is complex, for dogs it’s a lot more simple. They want to please us and be rewarded, but they often don’t understand the complex things they need to do to achieve that.
In training, we create games and tasks for them to complete but our concept of success (for instance, completing an obstacle course in record time) is meaningless to our four-legged friend. It’s no surprise, then, that learning a new trick or routine takes so much repetition. To your dog, it just doesn’t make any sense.
But what if there was a simpler, easier way to do get to your end goals?
Thinking about things from your dog’s perspective, and finding out what really motivates them, can be a real game changer.
The driving motivating force for all dogs is instinct. Even though dogs have long been domesticated, the instinctive urge to hunt is still very much part of who they are. This can manifest in a number of ways.
Maybe your dog’s motivating force is to chase? Maybe they are motivated by tugging or playing with a ball? Or maybe they are motivated by the desire to eat?
After figuring out which of the above best applies to your dog, your next task is to utilise it during training.
That’s where the right dog training toys come in.
At Tug-E-Nuff Dog Gear, we’ve designed a huge range of toys that every dog can find a favourite from.
For dogs that love to chase, there are toys like the Rabbit Skin Chaser Tug With Squeaker. It’s made with real (ethically sourced) rabbit fur that awakens the instinctive urge to hunt and is hugely motivating. Once your dog manages to catch it, it even squeaks – the perfect reward.
We know first hand that the best way to successfully train a dog is to make it fun by using cleverly designed dog training toys that act as the perfect reward and tap into your dog’s instinctive nature.
If you’re still not sure what the biggest motivator is for your dog, read more in this blog or experiment with a few different toys and see what works best.Don’t forget to let us know how you get on by leaving a review or posting in the comments below!