A weak spot we’re all responsible of is coaching the issues which are already going nicely. We might have a really motivated, pushed canine who’s nice at enjoying with toys, nice at dynamic methods, nice at recollects. Naturally these are the behaviors which are probably the most enjoyable to work on. So we maintain engaged on them and our canine will get higher and higher at them. He might wrestle with behaviors that require being extra calm and picked up: maybe a sit keep or ready his flip when you practice your different canine are actually arduous for this canine. You could simply select to not work on these behaviors as it’s much less enjoyable, much less rewarding and more durable.
However, perhaps you’ve got a fairly tender, calm canine who’s a bit more durable to inspire. You could select to work on sit stays and static methods as a substitute of looking for new methods to play with him or making him a bit extra spunky. It’s straightforward to work with what we received – and quite a bit more durable to push for modifications!
Coaching is Rewarding for the Coach
On the finish of the day, the overwhelming majority of the time we practice our canine as a result of it’s rewarding to us as trainers. Very not often do I would like to coach my canine as a result of in any other case they’re problematic. I practice as a result of I take pleasure in it, it’s enjoyable and naturally it’s as rewarding to me as it’s to the canine.
We as people are educated to search for immediate gratification in canine coaching – the faster our canine will get what we would like, the sooner and extra exact he carries out our objective habits the happier and extra completed we really feel.
Now in fact this gratification is less complicated to seek out if we practice behaviors that come naturally to our canine. We have a tendency to construct on their strengths time and again, making them tremendous strengths – and on the identical time not work on the areas that they’re weak at, since it isn’t as enjoyable for us. One other issue comes into play that I willingly admit has at instances stored me from engaged on my canine’ weaknesses: it’s a lot more durable to consider options for behaviors which are arduous for our canine. We have to suppose outdoors the field, and we want to have the ability to settle for our personal defeat and failure and nonetheless proceed to seek for new concepts.
If I’m coaching one thing my canine is already good at, I don’t have to invent numerous new approaches. If he’s a wild little factor and may weave by way of my legs and bounce over my arms, he can most likely additionally study to spin and to leap over my legs. It might be a very completely different story to show him to sit down nonetheless whereas one other canine is spinning and leaping!
My canine Kix is a 3 12 months previous Border Collie and the poster youngster of a wild canine. She is pushed, quick, loud and all the time up for lots of enjoyable. She loves agility and methods and he or she has no issues to go go go. The one factor she is fairly unhealthy at is endurance. So, greater than half of her each day coaching time is devoted to being affected person. She lies down and waits her flip whereas my different two canine practice. I’ve her keep and wait whereas the others play with toys with me. She does numerous methods that problem her physique consciousness and are solely doable with numerous calmness and focus. Going quick and livid will get her nowhere.
In fact she nonetheless will get to let the crazies out day-after-day, however we by no means solely go loopy. We go loopy, after which we focus and acquire.
Listed here are among the video games we play:
(Curious about extra video games? Take a look at Mind Video games On-line Class)
With these practices I’ve a canine who can use her mind even when very excited. At first this entire endurance coaching was not inherently enjoyable, I might have a lot moderately simply performed wildly along with her (as you might be able to inform, I positively have the identical strengths and weaknesses as her). However the finish end result – a canine who has each self management and sky-high motivation – was nicely value investing the time to extend her endurance.
If you begin to work in your canine’s weaknesses, it’ll most likely not be as a lot enjoyable as engaged on their strengths. Don’t be discouraged and search the instant gratification of coaching the issues he’s already good at. When you undergo the much less enjoyable means of increase their weaknesses, you can be a lot happier with the top end result. You should have a canine who doesn’t actually have “weaknesses” and “strengths” anymore, however solely strengths! Whereas they’ll all the time are typically just a little bit higher at one space of coaching than one other, a balanced canine who is ready to do all of it is probably the most enjoyable to coach.
(There may be one exception to this. If I’m working with an anxious or fearful canine, I’ll all the time begin with their strengths and maintain working with these till the canine is brimming with self-worth and behaving very confident in coaching. I would like each canine to really feel like a brilliant star after we practice, and for fearful canine it’s particularly essential we by no means give them the feeling of failure. We wish them to study that coaching is an excellent recreation at which they all the time, all the time win. That is the best if we solely use their strengths at first.)
How are you balancing your canine’s strengths and weaknesses?
Completely satisfied Coaching!
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