Dog Training in Chicago Helps Pets Learns Through Positive Reinforcement

Professionals who offer sessions for dog training in Chicago know that positive reinforcement works. Positive reinforcement is a psychological principle addressing a strategy to modify behavior, and it works well for dogs as well as for humans. It involves providing a reward, also known as a positive stimulus, to strengthen a certain type of behavior. In contrast, negative reinforcement essentially adds a punishment in an effort to stop unwanted behavior. Research has found that positive reinforcement is much more effective for encouraging a dog to behave in ways the owner wants. However, pet owners often feel frustrated when trying to convince their dogs to behave, and that can result in their issuing negative reinforcement responses.

Rewards during dog training in Chicago primarily involve praise, although some trainers may use treats sparingly, especially in the first stages of training. They may begin by providing a treat to reward behavior and then gradually reduce the handing out of those snacks. Dogs respond well to praise as positive reinforcement. Dog owners shouldn’t feel the need to carry treats everywhere they go to make their pets behave.

Professional trainers at a facility such as Chicago Canine Academy know they must be patient when working with these friendly creatures. They spend time shaping a dog’s behavior to respond to commands instead of expecting the dog to fully understand what is being asked. For example, if they want a dog to learn to lie down on command, it’s generally more effective to teach the dog to sit on command first. “Sit” is usually a prerequisite to the stay command as well. Contact us for more information.

When dogs learn to consistently and immediately respond to commands, owners are able to bring their pets to a variety of locations and know the animal will behave. Instead of the dog jumping uncontrollably on other people or refusing to come when called, the dog responds to the owner’s command. Eventually, the animal learns to anticipate what the owner demands and the unwanted behavior stops altogether. There is no more jumping up on people or continuing to run around a yard when the owner has called “come” or “stay.”

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