Some owners think that their dogs have a rational understanding that “ she gives me food and love and toys, so I should do what they ask, and behave nicely”. Between two people, child and parent for example, the child might understand this and feel indebted to the parent for all those nice things. However, with dogs, they do not. Their thought process is “ I get those things anyway, whether or not I behave so why would I do what they ask? They will always feed me morning and evening, give me love when I ask for it and have a basket of toys in the corner to help myself to”.
At Bark & Birch we believe that dogs must work for those 3 fundamental things and should not be expected. Food, toys and attention are the 3 main motivators in dog training and should be used as such to better the relationship between dog and owner through mutual respect.
In our board and train programs, whether be it for obedience, protection or anxiety/aggression, dogs need to work for their meals. They do not have set meals but have several training sessions throughout the day where they will be rewarded for correct behaviours with this food, toys and attention.
We use all motivators to create a dog that listens in any situation to the owner however food is the only one which is guaranteed to motivate a dog, as all living organisms need food to live. This is a technique which has worked time and time again and has transferred seamlessly into the home environment.
Try it and see the results yourself.