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Positive Dog Training Methods

Dog training can provide a tremendous amount of satisfaction. Every dog should know at least the basics for living with people: come, sit, stay, don't jump up on people, and so on. Beyond the basics, there is an endless variety of things you and your dog can enjoy doing together. Dogs who are a joy to be with have much more flexibility in what they can do with humans, and so they have more fun. Positive dog training methods are often easier to use, as well.

So what are positive dog training methods? Different people will define them differently, but as a rule of thumb they are techniques that allow you to train your dog without causing it physical pain. So these methods enhance your dogs' natural trust and willingness. Dr. Ian Dunbar, Karen Pryor, Silvia Kent, Linda Tellington-Jones, and others have greatly expanded the popularity of this field in recent years. Training dogs can be a win-win for both humans and dogs!

The principles that are behind these methods are derived from sound scientific research: positive reinforcement is a central part of this approach. Clicker training dogs is perhaps the best known example, but there are other methods too. In clicker training, a small noisemaker is clicked at the very moment that the dog does exactly what you want it to. It's more precise than saying "Good!" or anything else. Then a treat is given, at least part of the time.

There are thoughtful people who advocate the careful use of devices that do cause pain in training dogs, especially when the problem seems intractable. I believe that in training dogs, many methods will work. But it is heartening that many dog owners and trainers have crossed over to using only pain-free, positive methods of dog training.

Rosana Hart is a dog owner who has trained all her own dogs and has helped her friends as well. She now uses positive dog training methods exclusively, and is very happy with the results. "Dog training sessions are way more fun now!" she comments. Whether you are starting from scratch or already experienced, Rosana Hart's website http://www.training-dogs.com offers you useful tips, tools, and tactics that have been proven by the dog training experiences of many people.

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