I often talk about not needing treats and food during training as much as we should use affection and praise. But what happens if your dog can't get past it's own fixations or behaviors to focus on you and receive that praise?
This is a time that introducing meals during training can be helpful! All the dogs we train start with Hand-feeding. While not all of them will go on to integrate this into their walks, some dogs really need this component when they begin training. I DO believe in using clickers when it will help a particular dog break thru to new behavior!
Franks owner @sarbashaw145 was struggling with reactivity and barking, especially in the home with the door. So Zoe (my Vancouver trainer 🎉) @bobbysangeltraining began teaching clicker training to help him reassociate sounds that flipped him out to a new behavior: focusing on his owner and making eye contact to receive reward. This works for Frank! So we moved on to integrate the clicker sound with some leash work, still requiring eye contact for reward. Soon, we will phase out the treats and begin to give a YES or GOOD when he makes that eye contact. Look how amazing he's doing in the videos!
Some dogs work best with affection like the Pom I had in Brooklyn, some might enjoy working for a special toy (Enzo's fave), some are food motivated like Frank here. It's important to find out what is best for your dog, but don't keep switching methods! Consistency is just as important. Study your dog. Pick the method you believe is best. STICK WITH IT. Choose what's right for your dog with the help of a trainer!
Frank and his owners learned all this thru our 4-week virtual program working with Zoe (a naturally gifted trainer) DAILY to help Frank get the structure he is thriving in! His owners have done all the work and it is evident! So proud of you guys! 💙🐾