It is so frustrating when we can’t get our dog to learn commands that we think are so simple he should “naturally know them”. We see our neighbor dogs behaving so well and responding to all the regular doggie commands like “Come”, “Sit”, “Stay”, and “Walk”. The only thing that our dog can do is “Don’t Pay Attention to Me”.
It isn’t that our dog can’t learn or doesn’t want to learn. All dogs want to please us, and they really want to positively respond to our wishes. Being social animals, they have a natural need to fit in with the rest of the group. They want to know the rules and norms. They want to be a part of the group activities. This is all based upon their ability to know what we want them to do.
The problem lies in a break between our commands and their ability to appropriately respond to those commands. It is centered on what our dog has the ability to currently learn and our ability to teach them the appropriate lesson. Let me clarify this point by giving an example of when we were in grade school.
Let’s say that we were called to the black board to work a math problem that the teacher had just written. We go to the board and can only get through part of the problem. At that point we had failed the problem. Our teacher now comes over and helps us understand what to do next. All of a sudden, we can answer the problem!
Our teacher understood where she needed to show and guide (teach) us to allow us to proceed to the correct answer. This is what many of our clients are lacking in their teaching process. Robin and I have a great article that walks you through the process by presenting a simple dog training lesson and the teaching steps involved in success. Please read our article titled “Why Isn’t My Dog Learning His Lessons”.