The secret to communicating with your dog so they understand!
We talk to our dogs more than we know. Through body language, baby talk, or reinforcement communication is key with your dog. But even though dog-human understanding is high, our communication can easily become confused. Taking the time to figure out effective strategies for getting your point across to your dog can make all the difference in preventing frustration for you both in the future!
IT'S NOT WHAT YOU SAY, IT'S HOW YOU SAY IT
Our intelligent pooches are quite capable of adapting to different situations; you as the dog owner have to determine what message you are trying to send to your dog. Is it praise? Discipline? Our message comes across in our tone and our dogs interpret that communication from both our verbal cues and non-verbal cues (AKA your body language).
Your facial expressions, tone of voice, body language, and even attention can influence how your pooch reacts towards you. For instance, disciplining your dog while laughing versus being very direct and serious makes a big difference, especially if you want to avoid repeat behaviour in the future. Get in the habit of checking in with your mood before communicating with your dog- if you're stressed, angry, happy, or sad, your dog can sense this. It may be in your walk, the way you hold the leash or the tone of your voice. Try to keep this in mind and readjust your communication tactics if you're not getting the reaction from your dog that you expect!
KEEP IT CONSISTENTLY CLEAR
Communication with your dog goes beyond teaching them tricks.
You can teach and train your dog to respond and react the way you expect to various situations and interactions by corresponding the desired behavior with certain vocal cues and signals and following through with rewards and praise. Conditioning your dog through clear and consistent repetition is a great way to train both you and your dog to understand one another. The key is to be in the moment, be aware of your mood, be consistent with exercises, and patient with what you are asking.
The internet is full of great communication training exercises you can practice at home, but if you find you and your pup are still speaking different languages it may be time to look into hiring a dog trainer to assist.
The goal is to create a positive, consistent, and loving environment for you and your dog. Take it slow, keep it simple, make it fun and you will find you and your dog will have a better understanding, and relationship, in no time.
Treats can be provided as a positive reinforcement tool when training your dog. Click below to browse our selection of cute, quality cookies that work great as high-reward treats!