I think it all started when the first Cliff Notes book was published. For those of you old enough to remember, “Cliff Notes” were shortened versions of books we normally had to read for school and then write book reports. The cliff note book would quickly allow us to get the “idea” of the story and then write a book report. This allowed us to get things fast, fast, fast. Even in reading the “shortened version”, we still got a lot of information and learning took place.
This early life experience, along with all the other expedient factors in today’s society has engrained a “faster is better” mentality in everything we do. Unfortunately, we take this same concept and apply that when we train our dog.
“If I just train my dog several hours a day as fast as possible, I will have a well-trained dog in absolutely no time!” We normally think that before we begin to train our dog. We follow this process that worked for us and if almost always fails when we try and apply it to our dog’s training.
The answer is simple. Dogs don’t learn instantly. In many ways, they don’t even learn quickly. They have a slow and methodical learning process. The good news is that this process mimics the steps we employ with some of our human educational experiences. The task at hand is to understand what the process are and to only engage them when training our dog.
Robin and I have a great article that explains all of this and will make the dog training experience simple and fun for you. Please check out our dog training article titled “How Fast Should I Expect My Dog to Learn”.