Dogs 101: Dogs learn by association.

dogcookieThis may be the most difficult concept for us to understand, but it’s also one of the most important.  If your dog is wearing a prong collar and he pulls to get to other dogs, he may think that the pain from the prong collar is caused by other dogs and start being aggressive when he sees another dog.  On the other hand, if you give your dog treats when he sees other dogs, you can often change how he feels because now, he associates other dogs with something good happening.  When you’re training your dog, giving him treats when he stays near you on walks will teach him not to pull.  If you give your dog a treat when you see him sitting, your dog will start sitting more without being asked. You will be able to phase out the treats, but the associations will remain 

Next up: Positive, rewards-based training has many advantages.