How training your dog is like training your ear

dog training and musicI recently adopted this rescue dog named Bloo. He’s only a year old and already knows how to sit, shake and come when he’s called.

But like all rescue dogs, and dogs in general, it takes time to teach them to behave like you want them to so they can live a happy and healthy life.

I have been reading a lot of articles on dog training, most specifically how to cure separation anxiety. This seems to be one of Bloo’s biggest problems. And what I learned most is it takes time and patience. Lots and lots of time and lots and lots of patience. Just like training your ear or for me, learning a tune.

Here are a few tips to get you started:

  • Start with small increments – When trying to cure separation anxiety they suggest starting in small increments. Leave for just a few minutes to get the dog used to you being gone and each time after that increase the time you spend away. It’s similar when practicing music and learning to train your ear. Start in small increments practicing your scales and intervals for just few minutes. After a while increase the amount of time you spend practicing and it should get easier.
  • Practice every day –  Make practicing a part of your daily routine. The only way to get better is to practice. Dogs and people are creatures of habit. Make your exercises a part of your day.
  • Be patient – As with anything some days are better than others. There are days when my pooch is tired and will just do what I ask because he’s too tired to do otherwise and other days where he’s so wound out he has no interest in doing what I ask. On those days I am reminded to be patient. It’s the same with music, there are days where practicing is tedious and you just sound like crap and other days where you feel like you’re actually making progress. The key is to be patient and not be too hard on yourself (or your dog).

Though I have a long way to go when it comes to training my dog and training my ear, I do see some improvements when I take the time to practice on a regular basis. Good luck.

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