Training Golden Retrievers – 5 Keys to Success
Article by Kristen Stevens
Training is essential to a healthy relationship between you and your Golden Retriever. Follow these simple guidelines to training your pet, and you will be well on your way towards raising a secure, well-adjusted, and happy dog. Whether you’re working with a new Golden Retriever puppy or an older dog, these 5 tips will set you on your way towards training the well-adjusted and obedient companion you’ve always wanted. Training Golden Retrievers are made easier by the naturally intelligent and happy nature of these dogs.
1. What Are Your Boundaries? Consider this point before you bring your new dog home, if at all possible. As soon as your dog starts to bond with you, he will be eager to please you, so you must know what you want and expect. Is the dog allowed on the couch or the bed? Is barking when someone comes to the door expected or discouraged? Whatever boundaries you decide upon, stick to them. It may make sense to you that a puppy is allowed on the bed but a 50-pound dog is not, but it won’t make sense to your dog. Maintain consistent boundaries and expectations to effectively training golden retrievers.
2. Start Immediately and Keep Going. If your new dog is a puppy, start your training right away by acclimating the dog to his water and food area, his sleeping area, and where he will go to the bathroom. Golden Retriever puppies are naturally exuberant and full of energy, so remember that you are working with a baby, and don’t expect perfect results immediately. Regardless of the age of your dog, the most important thing you can do is to keep the training going, with repetition and positive reinforcement.
3. You’re the Boss! Wanting your Golden Retriever to be a loving companion does not mean that your relationship should be on an equal footing. You are responsible for your dog’s health, safety, happiness, and behavior around other people and animals, and you will raise a better-adjusted dog if he knows from the beginning that you’re the boss. Dogs are pack animals, and your dog will be happier knowing that you are in charge and taking good care of his world than he will be if he struggles with you for control. Be stern when he misbehaves, reward good behavior immediately, and give your dog plenty of love and attention. If these tips are followed consistently, you should have no problem training golden retrievers, resulting in dogs that adore you AND obey your commands.
4. Nip it in the Bud. When your puppy or dog misbehaves, let him know immediately. Be gentle but firm, reward good behavior, and don’t confuse him by sending mixed messages about what is and isn’t allowed. Pick one simple word to use for negative behavior, whether it’s “No!” or “Stop!” or “Enough!” (Don’t yell your dog’s name when you’re mad – you don’t want him associating his name with misbehavior.)
5. School Time? Investing in a formal puppy training or dog obedience training program is a good idea even if you have had good results training golden retrievers on your own. Your dog needs to be socialized around other dogs and people, and to learn how to behave and obey immediately in unfamiliar locations. If you are trying to retrain an older dog, obedience school could be just the support you need. Make sure to investigate trainer experience, class sizes, methods, and facilities of any dog training programs you are considering. Classes can be a learning experience for you and your dog, and they will likely improve your training methods as well as your dog’s obedience.
Golden Retrievers and golden retriever puppies are quick learners and usually happy and eager to please. Once your dog knows what you want from him, he will enjoy making you happy with his obedience. Training Golden Retrievers can be a fun and rewarding experience, and you and your dog should both enjoy your interactions.
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About the Author
Kristen, after raising many Golden Retrievers herself, Kristen Dog Training expert decided to assist other Golden Retriever lovers with this simple but complex task. Many years of experience gives Kristen insight to the problems of an untrained dog and how frustrating it is when your family pet does not respond to your commands positively. Kristen has developed solid techniques to Golden Retriever Training and she will share them with you in her articles.