You can build a strong bond and set an excellent foundation for any age dog through obedience training. This is totally doable without getting caught up in gimmicks, gadgets or stumped on behavioral problems! Follow these 7 great tips and you can learn how to train German Shepherd dogs smoothly and with great, reliable results!
Below are some of the tips on how to train German Shepherd adult dogs properly
Never Too Old for New Tricks
You might have read on dog training books or heard from professional dog trainers that old dogs are almost impossible to learn new tricks. This is absolutely rubbish as I have seen many old dogs including German Shepherds that are able to be corrected and trained properly when the right methods are used. Most of the professional dog trainers are still using the old chicken and cheese method which is outdated and may not work with older dogs. With the right method an older dog can actually respond better to the training. Find out how you can train older dogs using this new method
Whether you just adopted an adult or have had your senior since puppyhood, no dog is too old to learn new behaviors. Adulthood in dogs is usually right around the time their growth plates close. For large breeds, like the German Shepherd Dog that is usually around the age of 2 years. If your dog is physically capable, you can still teach him Agility, obedience or advanced obedience and even house training a dog who lived outside all his life. Don’t give up on teaching your dog new things just because of his age!
Listen to Feedback
Your dog will give you feedback every step of the way, but you must listen to it! You cannot learn how to train German Shepherd dogs simply by always telling them what you want. A dog will let you know if he is confused, frustrated or even bored during training sessions through his body language. Is he ignoring you? Is he getting too vocal for what you’re asking? You may be asking too much before he fully understands what behavior you want him to do! Go back to basics with your dog to find where he is having trouble and work on it together!
Some behaviors you may notice are looking away from you, not obeying and getting easily distracted could mean that your dog is bored. Maybe it’s time to teach him something new! If he starts offering off the wall behaviors for what you are asking, like pawing or barking, he could be frustrated. Getting frustrated can be a part of the learning curve, but it’s up to you to make learning a success for your pup. Listen to what he has to say and you can reach your goal.
It’s Not Instant
Adult dogs typically have a longer attention span and a more intense focus on work than puppies. However, that doesn’t mean you can keep your dog training for extended periods of time. You can achieve your training goals in brief but fun training sessions that last between five and fifteen minutes at a time. This breaks up the training schedule, allows for more sessions per day and keep learning fun for your dog. You can learn how to train German Shepherd dogs in these short training sessions by simply starting small and working your way up. Remember, no good things happen over night! It’s a team effort between you and your dog.
He’s Not a Human
One thing dog lovers get carried away with is humanizing our pets. It’s easy to think of them as little humans in fur coats, but that can actually damage your dog’s ability to cope in a human environment. It sounds silly, but during training it’s incredibly important to remember your dog is not human. He may look and act like he knows exactly what you’re saying, but he was not born with the ability to understand human speech. In fact, your dog will learn more every day basics just by watching your body language than by listening to your voice or commands.
Exercise – It matters!
If your dog seems to struggle to pay attention during training, maybe it’s time to re-assess his exercise regimen! Too much energy means difficulty focusing on the job at hand. Figuring out how to train German Shepherd dogs that are full of pint up energy can be incredibly challenging. Find a release for your dog before you begin training tasks. Sometimes a simple walk just doesn’t cut it, and your pup really needs to run or work his muscles. Flirt poles offer one way to get your dog use his strength and speed for fun to catch and tug a toy. Running an agility course could also help release some of that energy your dog has bottled up. An exercised dog will be better focused and more attentive than one that can’t sit still!
Don’t Skip the Basics!
This is especially important for a newly adopted adult dog. It doesn’t matter if you adopted a retired breeder or from a shelter, your dog must learn the very basics before he can move forward. These basics are sit, lie down, stay, leave it, drop it, heel and recall. While any dog can stop after mastering these basics, any working or performing dog needs these commands as a foundation to excel in his future competitive or working career. You can learn how to train German Shepherd dogs in these basics from a professional or by searching online for a progressive, positive trainer. Many dogs do well with balanced training as well.
Any trainer or pet professional will tell you over and over to be consistent! A lack of consistency will actually confuse your dog and cause your training efforts to actually move backwards. Consistency in dog training means to always reward to correct behaviors during training. Always tell your dog he is doing a good job when he reliably performs a task. It also means, however, to not allow certain behaviors. Prevent the unwanted behaviors just as consistently as you reward the good ones! Doing this will set good habits in him so that he will be a well adjusted and happy canine companion.
Never Stop Learning!
These tips will help you tackle the task of learning how to train German Shepherd dogs. Continue your own education in canine behavior and training so that you will become the best possible leader and best friend you can be. We are always learning new and better ways to teach our pets how to be good canine citizens, it falls on your shoulders to provide this for your German Shepherd!