Dog Training Reward System Overview

The dog training reward system is one of the oldest methods of dog training.

It is possible that reward training for dogs has been around as long as there have been dogs to train. Early humans used some informal kind of reward training when taming the wolf pups that evolved into modern dogs.

Principles of modern reward training date back many decades. However, “reward dog training” has enjoyed popularity since the year 2000. Reward training enthusiasts are less enthusiastic about other methods of dog training, such as the traditional lead and collar dog training method. The best approach to dog training is often a combination of lead and reward training.

8 Fascinating Facts About Dog Training Reward Systems

Fact 1: Two Extremes

A dog training method that works perfectly for one dog may be inappropriate for another.

Some dogs respond to reward training and not at all to lead training, while others respond to lead training and are not at all motivated by reward training.

Most dogs fall somewhere in the middle of these two extremes.

Fact 2: Clicker Training

Clicker training is one of the most popular forms of dog reward training.

While clicker training is not the answer for every dog, it can be an effective method of training many dogs. In clicker training, the dog is taught to associate a clicking sound with a reward, like a treat. The trainer clicks the clicker when the dog does something good, followed immediately by a treat.

Eventually, the dog learns to respond to the clicker alone.

Fact 3: Food Reward 

Most reward training uses some sort of food reward or a reward that is associated with getting food.

In most cases, complex behaviours can only be taught using this kind of positive reinforcement. You will find that the people who train dogs for movies and television use reward training almost exclusively.

Fact 4: Police & Military 

Reward training is used in all forms of dog training, including police work and military applications.

Most scent detection, tracking and police dogs are trained using some form of reward training. Reward training is also a very effective way to teach many basic obedience commands.

Fact 5: Lure 

Reward training often incorporates the use of a lure (e.g. food) in order to get the dog into the position desired by the trainer.

The lure is used to get the dog to perform the desired behaviour on his or her own and of his or her own free will. It makes sense to get the dog to perform the desired behaviour without any physical intervention on the part of the handler. Getting the dog to perform a behaviour without being touched is important.

Fact 6: Treats

After the dog has performed the desired behaviour, it is given a reward, also called “positive reinforcement”. Treats are often used as reinforcers, but praise, such as “good dog” or a pat on the head, can also be effective rewards.

Fact 7: Outside Safety Zones

Many dog trainers make the mistake of only training the dog inside the house or back yard, and only when the handler is there. In order to become a reliably trained companion, the dog must be taken outside the confines of its safety zone and introduced to novel situations.

Fact 8: Pay Attention 

It is important to teach the dog to pay attention to the handler at all times. Having the attention of the dog means having control of the dog. Reward training is very effective at getting the respect and attention of the dog when used properly.

Before you go, read on to discover the secret sauce to dog training success...

Loving Leadership

Have a philosophy of loving leadership when training your dog.

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As a loving leader, you should be constantly working on the communication pathways with your dog. At the bare minimum, your dog should also have some basic commands such as the lie-down command, sit command, and stay command.

When your dog knows a few basic dog obedience commands he or she will feel loved because they know what you want and have no anxiety or fear about what they should be doing and when.

Once your dog has a few commands under his or her belt (I mean, collar), practice behaviour dog training, command dog training and tricks dog training regularly to ensure your dog is physically and mentally healthy. As you are probably acutely aware, untrained dogs have a way of taking over the control of a home if not taught otherwise (which can be a nightmare). A trained dog, however, will bring years of doggie love to your household.

Pssst. Don't tell anyone, but you can become a loving leader by getting your paws on my Dog Training Planner. You can get my Dog Training Planner for a limited time at a 70% discount.

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