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by Dan Beard

How to Train Dogs

First of all teach your dog that you mean exactly what you say, and that he must obey you.  To do this you should never give a foolish command; but if a thoughtless order be once given, even though you repent it as soon as it has escaped from your lips, do not hesitate, but insist upon your pupil instantly obeying--that is, if the dog, in your judgment, understands the order.  Never under any circumstances, allow him to shirk, and even a naturally stupid pup will learn to took upon your word as law and not think of disobeying.

Strict obedience to your word, whistle or slightest gesture once obtained, it is an easy task to finish the dog's education.  Bear in mind that there is short as great a difference in the character and natural intelligence of dogs as there is in boys. Not only does this exist between the distinct varieties of dogs, but also between the different individuals of the same variety.

All Newfoundlands possess similar characteristics, but each individual varies considerably in intelligence, amiability, and those little traits that go to make up a dog's character.  I mention this fact that you may not be disappointed, or make your poor dog suffer because it cannot learn as fast or as much as some one you may know of.

Never lose your patience and beat an animal.  To successfully train a dog it is necessary to place the greatest restraint upon your own feelings, for if you once give way to anger the dog will know it, and one-half your influence is gone.  To be sure the special line of education depends upon the kind of a dog you have, and what you want him to do.

The pointer or setter you may commence to teach to "stand," at a very early age, using first a piece of meat, praising and petting him when he does well, and reprimanding when required.  Do not tire your pup out, but if he does well once let him play and sleep before trying again. As he grows older, replace the meat with a dead bird.  The best sportsmen of today do not allow their bird dogs to retrieve, saying that the "mouthing " of the dead and bloody birds affects the sensitivity of their noses.  To bring in birds, the sportsman has following at his heels a cocker spaniel, large poodles or almost any kind of dog, who is taught to follow patiently and obediently until game is killed and he receives the order to "fetch."


American Boys' Handy Book






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Last modified: October 15, 2016.