River, 10 weeks old! Photo Credit: KaityJo Photography
So What Is The Secret?
Dog trainers are capable of training their dogs to do pretty much anything; it’s just a matter of how much time and effort you want to put into it. We’ve all seen some pretty incredible YouTube videos I’m sure! I’m here to let you in on a secret, though. Just because we can doesn’t mean that we do. In fact, there’s a secret we use on a regular basis to ensure happy dogs and happy people. It’s called management.
In the dog training world, we often talk about management and training together. Typically, with a behavior issue, you need both. The steps you take to control the environment and prevent the unwanted behavior from happening is called management. We pair that with training a behavior we do want in place of the unwanted behavior. The two work hand in hand.
The secret, though, is that we often use management with our own dogs rather than train them to be perfect. It takes a considerable amount of time, effort, forethought, and persistence to teach a near-perfect recall. That is, teaching your dog to come when called in any situation. It can be done, but the work involved is significant.