Things to know about the history and development of dog training
Working dogs have always had to learn to obey commands relating to their area of service. For instance, herding dogs have learnt to lead a herd of animals in the specified direction upon the shepherd's instruction. Following on from this original task they memorised, herding dogs now happily chase balls during training.
What is the difference between obedience training and obedience trials?
The biggest difference between obedience training and obedience trials is that dogs get rewarded much more often in training. For instance, the objective can be that a dog needs to perform to a level 50% higher than would be necessary for a competition before it gets a reward in training. Prepare your dog to go through longer periods without getting a treat. However, there is of course always a reward for our canine companions at the end of each sequence.
Obedience training ranges from very simple methods that teach dogs to obey commands like “sit” to very high-level competitions, as organised by the American Kennel Club, United Kennel Club and Canadian Kennel Club, where additional commands, precise execution and performance are evaluated by a jury.
In order for your dog to actually deserve the label “obedient” rather than simply “trained”, it really does have to be reliable in its reaction to and execution of all its owner's instructions. Handling an obedient dog is a real pleasure for the owner and it proves fun for the dog too. If the dog isn't obedient, this can be stressful for the owner, their surroundings and to some extent for the dog too. After all, it's incredibly important in a societal context too for dogs to obey their owners – not least in order to not endanger other humans or animals.
How long does obedience training generally last?