A Guide to Traditional Dog Training Methods

There are a number of different commonly used dog training methods that offer you the chance to help build up positive behaviors in your pet. Behavioral training is a difficult procedure to take your pet through, and each breed or even each individual animal is likely to respond somewhat differently.

Knowing the different options that are available to you will help you to make the best decision for both you and for your pet as well. Read on for a brief guide to some of the traditional training methods for dogs.

Choke or Pinch Collar

A choke or pinch collar training method is primarily based upon both rewarding your pet for good behaviors and, more importantly, admonishing him for bad ones. The idea behind this method of training is to shock your pet into stopping any bad behavior as he is in the middle of committing it. With a choke collar, a quick tug on the collar will cause your pet some discomfort around his neck. A pinch collar will pinch at his skin.

Neither is designed to hurt your dog, though they may not be safe for certain pets. In these types of training situations, it's crucial that you reprimand your dog as soon as possible and preferably while he is committing the behavior that you wish to eliminate.

Shock Collar

Because it can be difficult to properly admonish a pet using a choke or a pinch collar and to have him understand the cause of your reprimand, trainers have developed a type of collar which can respond more quickly. The shock collar is attached to your pet's neck and delivers, at the push of a button on a remote which you can carry with you, a slight shock to your pet. Again, it is not designed to hurt your dog but merely to startle him into stopping the action that he's doing. The shock collar is better in many ways than either a pinch or a choke collar because you can activate it from farther away.

Positive Rewards Training

In contrast to the above methods of training a dog, which rely on admonishments for misbehaviors, there is another school of thought on training pets which focuses primarily on rewarding good behaviors. This type of training is effective for breeds of dogs that are naturally more mild mannered and more likely to not engage in misdeeds in the first place.

Under positive rewards training programs, you'll ignore or leave your pet if he engages in a behavior that you don't like. When he engages in an equivalent positive behavior, however, you'll reward him with praise, pets, small healthy treats and other similar bonuses. This method will not run the risk of making your pet afraid of you or scared of a reprimand, but it may be more difficult to eliminate bad behaviors through positive rewards training than it is through the other training methods listed above.