I feel like the training of my Dalmatian is going backwards. He has started to not obey when I say simple commands like sit, shake etc. He will even walk away sometimes like he doesn't even hear me. I then grab him and force his bum to sit then praise him and show him affection etc. HOWEVER, put some food in my hand and he's SUPERDOG....the Best Sitter/Shaker/Do-Anythinger in the World!!!! I have read that Dals are VERY food motivated. He is 18 weeks. Does this behaviour sound normal? Maybe this is that independent/stubborn streak they talk about with Dals. What should I do? I don't want to have to carry around food ALL THE TIME for him just to do something simple like sit down?
Keep the leash on him at all times so if he walks off, he doesn't get far. Alternate food with praise during all training sessions, so he will not know when he is getting food and when he isn't. Take him outside and to the park and practice, so he learns what he is supposed to be doing outside of the home was well as at home. Have you enrolled in puppy classes yet?
Considering age and breed this is normal. My dal is doing the same thing. Definately alternate the food and praise. I have found out that dals love vegetable like cauliflower, which is nice because it is low-protien. Don't let is bother you too much. Make the treat less and less common during training to help ease your dog off the treats.
He's already been to puppy preschool....and he was really well trained and learning well for weeks and weeks after. Now, the past 2 or so weeks he is going backwards. Floyd is a huge "Daddy's Boy" so I am beginning to wonder if my partner is being as strict on him as I am....in fact, I am wondering if he even reinforces any commands AT ALL!!!!
You have to remember that dogs are just like kids...they go thru phases! Depending on the age of your dog is how you should work on the behavior. Personally, we as a training company, do not believe in food reward, but if it has been started you need to slowly remove the treat with LOTS of love and voice praise. If you notice when you talk to your dog in a voice that is normal and not exciting the reaction is, well, not really interested. If you use a voice that interests the dog you are going to get more attention and the ability to get your command without the treat...just a lot of rubs and atta boy (or girls). As I read earlier in the discussion a leash on the dog at all times inside the house is an EXCELLENT suggestion. THis way you have the ability to take corrective steps without playing the chase game, the I am ignoring you game or I am just going to walk or run away from you game. Work on the steps of leadership (alpha) which will lead to loyalty and then to a much more loving relationship. And, you shouldn't have to rely on treats at all.
I like the clicker training, although you use the food to begin with, the clicker becomes the reward once they get it. It will take time, but before you know it, your pet will be doing what you ask without the food.
when you give a command, only give it once then enforce it (but not with force.) and i agree about the food, give it randomly so he never know if he is getting it, and give LOTS of praise. do a training session then have a play session or a walk as a reward at the end. everyone in the house has to follow this. do a basic obedience class now that he is done with puppy class, but find someone who does not use food.