Labradors are one of the most popular breeds of dogs, and people prefer them for their friendly nature. They certainly make the cutest puppies, but that cute little thing soon grows into a big, boisterous dog, so it is important to lay down the rules at the very onset.
Retriever training should start as early as possible. Your Golden Retriever should know who the master or Alpha dog is. Labs are naturally curious and inquisitive. They try their best to please their masters. So all you need to do is to be patient while training your Lab, and soon your dog too will be doing all the tricks your neighbors’ dog does. If you don’t want your shoes chewed up, your furniture scratched, and your ankles nipped, start teaching your Lab the right commands.
Golden Retriever training should start from the very moment you bring the puppy home. He has to learn to respond to his name. Use his name frequently and reinforce it with a treat every time he responds to it. Try to train him to come to you when you call out his name even in crowded places.
Outside the home environment, there will be many distractions, and he should thus learn to obey you in such situations. Also teach him to ‘sit’ and ‘come’ to you. Both these are important training processes to help you gain control. When Golds are small they are unaware of danger, so it is very important to teach them when to stop prancing around.
An easy way to teach pups to sit is to hold some treat over his head. The Gold will naturally sit down and observe. Bring the treat closer and then hold it over his head again. Once he sits on his hind legs, give him the treat while repeating the command. Keep doing this frequently so that he associates the command with the sitting action. You can follow this up with ‘stay’ and ‘heel’ commands. It will be a fun time for you and your family.
In the beginning of Golden Retriever training, take small steps. The puppy might find it too complicated or monotonous, so conduct your sessions in short spans. You might also get frustrated, but do maintain your patience. Also, it is important that there should be one main person in the family who is responsible for the training, although everyone should know the commands.
In the beginning, there should be no distractions during training. But after the initial results, incorporate some disturbances such as playing with a ball or toy, keeping aside some treats etc. so that your pup learns to obey you despite such
distractions. Try to keep some playtime after the lessons, as your pup will come to recognize training time as something that will lead to play.
It is important to be very consistent in your commands. Do not make exceptions, otherwise your intelligent dog will realize that it can push you to change the rules. If the rule is not to jump on the bed or the couch, it should always be that way. If you allow an exception even once out of indulgence, be ready to take what’s coming your way!
Retriever training can be both verbal and with hand gestures. You can use the verbal command with the associated gesture so as not to confuse your dog. Keep repeating the same commands to ingrain it in him. Praise him for his efforts every time. After the basic training is over, the pup is ready for more complicated training. At the age of 3-6 months, he can be taken to a qualified instructor for further training.
In German Shepherd obedience training, or with dog training in general, the trainer plays a key role as to the outcome of the whole program. A trainer that cuts corners, or settles for mediocre results is the one to blame and not the dog. The reason as to why I started this article with that statement is because, most people are quick to point an accusing finger at dogs.
What we sometimes forget is that dogs are a totally different species, with its own language. To further cement my argument, do you speak Nepalese? If you happen to meet a person who speaks that language, would you be able to hold a conversation with him or her? The whole point to this rambling is “patience”.
In obedience training, patience is one virtue that needs to be developed and applied.
Dissecting Dog Training
Training an albino German Shepherd, or any dog breed for that matter, have different components to it. Though there are no huge difference in methods used for puppy training and that of training a much older dog, the similarities end with age. In puppy training, you still have the opportunity to mold the personality of the dog. Since puppies have not yet formed any bad habits, they are much easier to train. The downside though is the fact that they have a short attention span. Just like human babies, puppies only have three things in their mind. That is to eat, play, and sleep.
The right age to start training German Shepherd puppies is when they reach the age of 6 months. When the puppy hits this mark, start with basic potty training and later on progress to German Shepherd obedience training.
Training For More Mature Dogs
For more mature Shepherds, you will notice a huge difference in pace. Since this breed is considered to be one of the most intelligent, the speed at which mature dogs responds to his or her training is faster. A mature dog is not easily distracted compared to that of a puppy, and because he or she might already have an idea of the “reward system”, the dog will be more eager to please his or her trainer. The only stumbling block in obedience training for more mature dogs is the possibility that the dog may have already developed bad habits. These habits include licking, barking, biting, etc. Though these can be easily corrected, it can set back or add more components to the German Shepherd training that you are conducting.