The training of dogs does not commence until the dog is a year old. It then goes through basic training by sighted trainers for about four months. After that, the owner grooms and feeds the dog, intensive training is given in the various commands which must be given, and in the use of a harness that is sensitively and cleverly made so that the dog’s slightest change in pace and direction is conveyed to the owner’s hand. The dog is taught to obey all the commands, but more impressive. It is also prepared to disobey orders if and when it is not safe to follow.
During the early months of training, the puppy should be guided in the way he should grow, and the slightest show of physical force will more than likely call him. The furnace is usually necessary during that time, but the trainer should make sure that his pupil thoroughly understands his commands; otherwise, his mistakes will be taken for wilfulness, with unfortunate results. It is impossible to expect a young dog to understand an order unless he has previously been shown clearly what is meant and not crediting your puppy with more brains than he has got.
How can training a dog be quickly carried out if the pup is let out every two or three hours for a short spell and scolded every time he offences? The early obedience lessons are essential. It is helpful to accustom him to his bed by constantly putting him in it and saying ‘bed’, ‘kennel’ or what you will, and holding him down for several minutes, pointing to the bed and putting him back every time he clambers out. Do not use a loud voice and never use a rude tone. Never beat your dog while training him.
- Early obedience lessons
During the early works, keep the pup in the lead and make him work in the desired position at the heel, on your left side. If he runs or lags, jerk the information, hold him back and command ‘heel’. After a few lessons, he will follow naturally, and you can then lead the trail, stepping on it when he runs ahead. It gives him a jerk, and he will soon learn to heel.
- Outside Surroundings
‘Sit’ is the next item on the program. Take the pub on the lawn or into a field, and push him down on his haunches, hold him there a while, at the same time raising your right hand and commanding ‘Sit’.
- Response to your commands
The aim is to teach your pupil to drop sharply to voice, whistle or signal wherever he may and to stay in that position until it suits you to move him, even when out of sight. Only by constant practice and patients can this be achieved, and gradually the pup will drop to command when running ahead of you at exercise and let you get out of sight.
- Respond to signals
Teaching the puppy to command and signal requires a good deal of time and patience, but as one of the essential accomplishments, the trainer will do well to keep up the exercise until it has been completely mastered.
Of course, puppy remains tremendous in their attitude, and some dogs hate sitting still while others quickly take to dropping to command. If taught to sit Thoroughly while the trainer is close at the end, most puppies will go down to order when at a distance and running free. However, teaching him what is required is just as well, even though it is perhaps the most boring lesson for both trainer and training. Have your puppy on the usual training ground, and make him sit. Then, walk away 20 yards, turn around and call him up. When he is nearly up to you, give the signal and shop command to set. Repeat this each time, getting a little farther away from him and giving the order earlier and earlier until he will go down when halfway to you. Ultimately, you will be able to place him at quite a considerable distance by command and signal and later by movement alone.