Do's and Don't

DO’S

  • Do be nice to your dog every time he comes to you (even if he’s just coming back from an unexpected romp around the neighborhood).
  • Do get into the habit of giving a command only once. If your dog doesn’t respond to a command you have taught him, reinforce the command.
  • Do use your dog’s name to get his attention, and then tell him what you want him to do.
  • Do eliminate the word “no” from your training vocabulary.
  • Do use a normal tone of voice when you give a command. Your dog’s hearing is quite acute.
  • Do be consistent in your actions and expectations.
  • Do provide an outlet for your dog’s energies.
  • Do keep your dog mentally stimulated by training him.
  • Do understand that your dog is a social animal. Train him so he can be a part of the family.
  • Do socialize your dog with people and other dogs.
  • Do become your dog’s teacher.
  • Do make learning fun for your dog.
  • Do consistently reward with praise the correct behaviors.
  • Do spend plenty of time with your dog and give him lots of exercise.
  • Do keep trying, and your dog will reward you by getting the message.
  • Do get outside help when you get stuck.

DON’TS

  • Don’t do anything your dog perceives as unpleasant when he comes to you.
  • Don’t nag your dog by repeating commands — nagging teaches him to ignore you.
  • Don’t use your dog’s name and then expect him to read your mind as to what you want.
  • Don’t expect your dog to know what the word “no” means.
  • Don’t yell at your dog. He’s not deaf. Raising your voice doesn’t improve understanding.
  • Don’t confuse your dog with unrealistic expectations.
  • Don’t try to suppress behaviors that need an outlet.
  • Don’t let your dog stagnate.
  • Don’t lock up your dog or put him out because you haven’t trained him to behave.
  • Don’t isolate your dog — he’s a social animal.
  • Don’t expect your dog to obey a command you haven’t taught him.
  • Don’t get too serious in your training.
  • Don’t reward undesired behaviors.
  • Don’t make your dog neurotic by neglecting him.
  • Don’t give up when the going gets tough; keep trying.
  • Don’t blame the dog; you are his teacher.