FunNature & AnimalHow to get my dog to listen to me

How to get my dog to listen to me


The role of friendship

Dogs are not machines. They are living beings with feelings.

And they are a different species from us with their own instinctual basis.

Its gregarious instinct, as a social animal , allows it to establish bonds of friendship with other individuals. The fascinating thing is that this, added to his ability to understand and anticipate our intentions , has led him to be able to become our best friend.

And the same thing happens to us

The chemistry of this relationship is found in a hormone called oxytocin . This hormone is responsible for strengthening emotional ties between individuals and also acts as a buffer against stress, making us feel good.

This hormone is secreted in dogs and humans when they are together , and it indisputably makes us love each other and enjoy each other’s company.

operant conditioning

Love and wellness is important in learning. It has been shown that children who feel loved by their teachers learn better.

However, it is not the only thing that counts when teaching behaviors to a dog. Dogs, like people and other animals, are perfectly capable of relating causes to consequences.

Just as a rat associates that if you press a button, food will fall out. Similarly, a dog learns that if he sits down, he will receive a piece of sausage.

By the same mechanism, they learn to avoid

A pigeon will avoid going through a circuit in which it receives a shock, just as a dog will stop walking away if doing so gives it a shock.

However, this method of training through avoidance and pain, although it manages to improve obedience, alters the well-being of the dogs very negatively.

cognitive training

With these values and thanks to the boom in studies on animal cognition in recent decades, a way of training dogs and other animals based on their cognitive abilities instead of their ability to associate causes and consequences has become fashionable.

Cognitive training occurs when the dog understands what it is doing. It goes one step beyond the association of events or cause-consequence.

If the dog has a good time, the brain learns better

In cognitive training , the dog does not act just to achieve selfish goals like a piece of food. Intrinsic motivation is activated in him. This is the personal satisfaction, the overcoming and the affection for his teacher to guide.

This works for people too. For example, there are people who go to work because they have learned that this is how they will be paid at the end of the month. Others do it because they like their work, they are happy when they do it and they enjoy improving their skills.

They also know that they will be paid at the end of the month, but this is not their only reward. Intrinsic motivation and personal satisfaction are in the equation.

The role of emotions

Behaviors are maintained and become much more consistent when they are not solely dependent on external reinforcement . For this, you will always be better in a job that turns you on and passionate.

And, to top it off, if the work environment is good and you feel recognized and loved, you will perform better.

This also happens to your dog

The relationship with you as a teacher, as well as the environment will influence their learning. An environment free of fear and stress will facilitate learning and obedience.

a different species

Our cities are a challenge for our dogs. Noises, vehicles, and too many people and dogs to deal with on a daily basis. Understanding this and patiently adjusting to his emotions will make all the difference in training him.

A correct socialization

If you have adopted or fostered a puppy, you have a huge job ahead of you, because what it learns in its first few months will greatly influence its development.

The most critical stage to introduce a dog to the environment in which its environment will be, is between 2 and 4 months.

In this period, if we present him with the stimuli, contexts and situations that he will have to deal with on a daily basis, as well as the animals of other species with which he will have to live, it will be easy for him to accept it with pleasure and tranquility.

It’s not about obedience

It will only take a few repetitions for your dog to learn to sit or come when called. What works in different situations will depend on how you teach him to manage his emotions appropriately. Learning that will be convenient to start with time, patience and empathy.

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