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Training Truisms: Truthiness You Can Trust

Pooch Perfect has gathered a few training truisms that you might find helpful as you navigate training issues with your dog -- in fact, many folks could have been saved a lot of headaches had they kept these gems in mind.

Keep in mind that although these training tips are quite general and hold true the majority of the time, they still qualify as online advice so please take these tips with a grain of salt as described in this Blog. Contact us if you have any questions or concerns.

  • Any advice (especially free advice) is worth only what you pay for it.

Do your own research and talk things through with people you trust or Contact Us.

  • Easy answers are usually worth less than free advice.

More often than not, there’s no such thing as a free lunch and if something seems too good to be true, it just might not be. Err on the side of caution and remember that working towards something and then achieving it is pretty much always worthwhile.

  • If something isn't working, stop doing it. If things are getting worse, you can bet you need to change up your strategy.

  • If something is working and things are getting better, keep going!

  • Fixing problems early on, when they’re still new -- or better yet -- preventing problems from happening in the first place, is far easier than to trying to undo damage after it’s been done. Feel free to contact us for some free advice if you aren’t sure.

  • Be open with yourself and with your trainer. Are you making an honest effort to change things for the better? If the trainer doesn’t have the whole story, it’s going to be a lot more challenging to get to a good solution.

  • Trust your gut. If something seems like a problem to you, it's a problem worth looking at in detail. Better to ask one too many questions than to try to make the best of a bad job on your own.

  • Human feelings can be a challenging part of training and rehabilitation for everyone involved (pets included). Try to be conscious of how feelings related to the situation may be colouring your point of view and your approach to solutions.

  • One single training trick, one piece of equipment, or an isolated incident in your dog's history can never tell the whole story in terms of solving behaviour problems. What you repeat habitually is what you become. Change is all about how you change routine expectations and rewards, then adapt over time. (added in 2020)

  • You are responsible for making sure your dog happily "eats his 'broccoli' before 'dessert'" -- especially as a puppy. By this I mean "behavioural 'broccoli'". If you're not sure what "the broccoli" and "dessert" are in your situation Contact us (added in 2020)

  • You can't blame a dog for following its nose. They are just doing what feels right. Most dogs come by behaviour problems honestly -- and once they develop a certain pattern of behaviour pattern, they mostly trust that pattern and take to heart the emotions that come along with it. You are responsible for what your dog experiences and learns -- especially if you haven't trained preventively. (added in 2020)

Have any other good ones to add? Let us know!

Continue reading on this subject:

  • Which popular advice you can take, which is best left alone and how to tell the difference (*Blog coming soon)

  • When you've gotten in over your head -- and what not to do in the face of behaviour and training problems (*Blog coming soon)

  • Things I've learned from Cesar Millan: Lessons in Critical Thinking (*Blog coming soon)

  • How to judge trainers by their "What you should look for in a trainer" articles (*Blog coming soon)

Questions, comments?

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