Good Dogma Training Tips

Communication Skills

It cannot be emphasized enough that understanding how your dog thinks  is critical to getting the response or behavior you desire. It is Good Dogma’s mission to educate people on how to use their body language and vocal inflection, in unison, to reinforce or correct behavior and extinguish inappropriate behavior.

Positive Reinforcement

Good Dogma relies on the use of a variety of positive reinforcement training techniques to promote the continuation of desired behaviors. When your dog associates good rewards with a behavior, they are more likely to repeat those behaviors.

Basic Clicker Training

A clicker is a small hand held tool used to reinforce good behavior. It is always followed by a treat. This routine is called Classic conditioning, where the stimulus (clicker) is followed by reward (food) — think Pavlov and his dogs. At the point, when the dog’s brain has been wired, or conditioned, to the new behavior, the clicker and treats are eliminated.  Clicker training is an effective tool, but takes some coordination and timing practice to get used to.

Behavior Modification

Good Dogma can help you eliminate, manage or change unwanted canine behaviors. Instead of telling the dog what you don’t want it to do, teach alternative behaviors that will earn the dog praise. Good Dogma uses a tool bag of methods including positive reinforcement, games, sound and treats to change behaviors. We do not believe in using punishment, at any time, or any stage, as a tool to change behavior.

The Backyard Dog

     They are just about everywhere, in almost every neighborhood. A dog left alone in a backyard tethered to a tree, to the ground, or sometimes to a doghouse. Water and food bowls may be empty, absent or just beyond the dog’s reach. Isolated and captive, a backyard dog suffers from lack of companionship. Dogs, like humans, did not evolve as solitary creatures; they are essentially pack animals and thrive in the company of others. As domesticated companion animals they need the bonding that comes from the pack: you and your family

     They are the barking, whining, destructive dogs living in someone’s yard, trying their hardest to attract attention of any kind. Even getting someone to come outside and yell at them offers the reward of contact. People that consistently keep their dogs outside rationalize, saying they spend time with the dog when working in the yard, taking a walk or throwing a ball for a few minutes. Providing food, water and some engagement is not enough if once you’re back in the house, the dog is again isolated from the pack.

     One way for bonding to take place is for the dog to share the den (your home) with you. Unfortunately, many dogs are made to live outside the den, separated from the rest of their pack. Alone and abandoned outside, they become stressed, anxious, bored and frustrated. In addition to destroying two of thier strongest instincts: bonding and denning, these factors may also lead to illness, aggressiveness and destructive behavior. 

     All this is not to say that one must spend every minute catering to and entertaining the animal. Training will allow bringing them indoors to join the you, even if it is just lying nearby as you read or watch TV. Many times the dog may just curl up under your feet and sleep; otherwise, providing a fun, appropriate chew toy keeps them happy! The important thing to remember is that being incorporated into the family pack is both comforting and necessary for your dog’s mental and physical well being.

We enjoyed this class; very comfortable environment to bring our pup. The smaller class size is great!  Thank you!

Kim, Rick and Toby

We enjoyed the class and Vicki, our instructor. Small classes are great!  Max has grown so much and has excelled. Thank you Good Dogma and Vicki!

Joseph, Mary, and Max

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