Labrador Retrievers have been the most popular and loved breed since decades mainly because of their loving and docile nature combined with all the naughtiness. Before you decide to get yourself a Labrador Retriever, you should know that he was not born with all the discipline you see in other people’s Labradors. It is something you need to teach them, and this can only be done via proper training and positive reinforcement.
Your Labrador, or as a matter of fact, your pet will become what you train them to be. If you train them to be disciplined, they become disciplined. If you train them to be aggressive, they become aggressive. So, without a further ado, there are a few techniques that can help you train your dog and these are foolproof.
Try these tips that can help you train your Labrador Retriever on for size.
In the process of nurturing a puppy, training them is extremely important. Training of any dog, let along Labradors, starts when they are a puppy. Reason being, their mind is receptive at this time as children. They can learn and adapt thing easily. If you decide to train your 5 years old dog, I am afraid all your efforts will go in vain.
The first step to puppy training is puppy socialization. You need to let your puppy socialize with other pets and people. Moreover, you need to introduce your puppy to new places, new activities. This way your puppy will have an urge to be friendly and accepting. Since Labrador Retrievers are naturally friendly and accepting, they go through this phase successfully within a month or two.
Walk or Running
One thing you should know about Labrador Retrievers is that they have gallons of energy being produced in them every day which is why daily exercise and play time is very important for them. If they are not given proper exertion time every day, they get bored. This boredom combined with the energy they have turns into destructive behavior, such as nipping and biting, digging, and barking. These kinds of behavior problems are very common with Labrador Retrievers. Hence, playtime and exercise are imperative to burn energy.
Punishing your pet during training sessions is something you should avoid at any cost. Labrador Retrievers love to learn. They have extremely trainable natures which not only widen your horizon to teach your dog new things but also makes them easy.
However, negative reinforcement, which usually includes punishing your dog when he is not grasping a concept, is very dangerous not only for the training but for your dog’s personality as well. He will start dreading the training sessions and the charm of his personality.
Positive reinforcement will take you a long way. Now, what is positive reinforcement? The basic concept behind positive reinforcement is treating and encouraging good behavior rather than punishing wrong behavior. This way the dog is encouraged to do the tasks on which he gets a treat or encouragement.
Most kinds of positive reinforcement include giving treats to your Labradors. If you decide on this kind of positive reinforcement, give small treats don’t give chinks of treats at a time.
In addition to that, the basic obedience program classes are very famous. You can hire a Labrador trainer who can teach your dog the basic obedience skills but if you have time on your hands, it is advised you train your dog by yourself.
Training Sessions You Can Do At Home:
There are a few things that are already present in your dog’s nature and if you don’t like them, you need to train them in order to stop them from doing it again and again. Some of the things you need to teach your dog at home are:
Stop Leaping on People:
Labrador Retrievers are full of energy which is why they tend to leap on their owners as well as other people who tend to be affectionate towards them. In some cases, this behavior looks adorable, but it can offend some people and is also annoying at times. Moreover, if this behavior is not stopped, it sneaks up and keeps on getting worse.
For getting rid of this behavior, don’t go for negative reinforcement. The first thing you need to do is stop bashing the dog. Some dogs find this bashing encouraging. The next thing you need to do is take control of the dog. When he/she starts jumping, retrain it and don’t let it jump. Once he stops jumping reward him.
Another way to stop this kind of behavior is by distracting the dog. The moment he starts jumping, start doing something that diverts his/her attention.
Your last resort is teaching your dog “on your paws” when the dog stands on all his/her paws. So, whenever he starts jumping, you ask him to be on his paws and obeys. This is part of the obedience training.
Listening To The Owner:
This is another behavior problem that annoys many owners. Their dogs don’t listen to them, especially when there is another dog or new people around. This process can be completed in a 3-stage process. it is a long process but is very beneficial. You teach your dog to recall procedure.
The first step is to choose your cue. You need to choose your words wisely and then stick to it. It can be a whistle, name of the dog or something like ‘come here’. One thing you need to understand here is that just praising your dog is not imperative. You have to show affection and pat them on their head.
The stage-1 includes getting your dog to chase you. It can be with toys or with food. Just make the dog chase you.
The stage-2 includes familiarizing the puppy with the whistle or the recall and then making him/her run after you.
The stage-3 includes standing at a place and just blowing the whistle or calling out the cue and the dog will run towards you. Do this without distractions in the surrounding. In the next stage, do it with distractions around.
Pets are a full-time responsibility and an untrained pet is nothing but a nuisance, especially Labrador retrievers as they have so much energy. Training your dog has utmost important, it is beneficial for you and for the dog as well. As a reminder, it is no coincidence that Labrador is the #1 most popular dog breed in America. Be patient and train your Labrador the right way, he will become a great lifetime companion