‘Speak Dog’ For Better Human-Canine Communication
With summer right around the corner, I’ve been thinking about activities to do with my dogs April and J.R. As I pondered activities to do with my dogs, I found some tips to help dog lovers build a stronger connection with their four-legged BFFs by learning to “speak dog.”
OneMind Dogs [https://www.oneminddogs.com/], is a dog teaching method out of Finland used by some of the world’s top agility trainers and their four-legged teammates. They’ve identified some tips on ‘how to speak dog’ to create a deeper connection between people and their dogs.
Speak Dog Tip #1: DOGS DON’T MAKE ‘MISTAKES’
A dog’s behavior is a direct response to the signals they get from us humans. Instead of blaming your dog, consider why the confusion or accident occurred. Remember, the behavior that is reinforced (consciously or not) is the behavior your dog will continuously display.
It’s important to remain consistent, reprimanding a dog one time for a behavior, but allowing that same behavior another time is very confusing to your dog.
Speak Dog Tip #2: BODY LANGUAGE COUNTS
While voice commands are useful in training, body language is what your dog naturally understands and responds to first. For example, If you teach your dog to sit and lie down using words and accompanying hand gestures, and tell your dog to “sit” but use the gesture for “lie down,” your dog will lie down – following the gesture, not the word.
Speak Dog Tip #3: SMALL TREAT PORTIONS WIN
When training with large treats as rewards, your dog will become full, gain weight and lose motivation quickly. Treat often using smaller portions. To keep your dog interested, spend time finding what treat works best as incentive. Some dogs respond well to attention rather than food, so try giving special attention from time to time.
Speak Dog Tip #4: EMOTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS
Dogs automatically associate the emotion surrounding an experience with the event itself – so if you’re having a bad day, it’s probably not the best day for a training session. Keeping an upbeat attitude will lengthen your dog’s attention and eagerness to learn.
Also, pay attention to the tone of your voice, it is always more important than your words.
I’m excited to try out these tips to better connect with April and J.R, as well as further strengthening the bond with my dog walking and petsitting clients. To find out more regarding training and agility check out their website. [https://www.oneminddogs.com/]
FTC Disclosure: This is a sponsored post and I have received compensation. I post only content I feel will be of interest to readers