Nothing for Free Policy
Your dog dropped his toy at your feet to signal he wanted to play NOW! We suggested to first ask your dog to do a “sit” or “down”. Once he has done what she asked, playtime can begin!
Games where you teach your dog to do an extended “sit-stay” or a “long-down-stay”, then go to another room and call your dog to you, will build obedience on your terms. Anything that delays the fulfillment of your dog’s request will build his coping skills and make you absolutely irresistible! You can implement this with his meals as well. Using a few pieces at a time, ask for a behavior, and then reward the completion with some food. It doesn’t need to be anything difficult or complicated, just some basic things to get the routine down. As he gets used to working for what he wants, implementing new training in the future becomes much easier – he already knows he needs to do something to get the prize, all you are doing at that point is changing exactly what it is he needs to do. A side benefit from this is that it builds engagement between you and your dog. If your dog is more interested in everything else around than you, it is very hard to keep his attention long enough to do much. If he already knows that doing something for you is how he gets what he wants, his attention will be much less focused on other things, and much more focused on you.
“Nothing for Free” games are best practiced before doing things that your dog really enjoys, like waiting quietly before opening the door to go for a walk. Just having your dog do a down-stay before meals or before jumping up for a snuggle-session on the couch is immensely helpful. Maintaining consistency is key. If you make your dog “work” for everything, but the kids or spouse gives him everything for free, he will quickly learn that the rules are different with other people than you, which makes keeping him engaged with you very difficult. Bring everyone in on the training plan so that the entire household will be on the same page and he will look forward to working with everyone!
You may notice that after practicing Nothing for Free games, that your dog will start to automatically do a behavior to get what they want (such as sitting before opening the door, or having their ball thrown) making another benefit to playing these games is teaching your pooch that having manners will get them what they desire. This can be very handy around the house and when guests come over, helping shape the polite dog that every pet owner desires.
With the KC Dawgz dog training system, your dog will obtain what he wanted and needed in line with his owner’s terms! Nothing for Free means your dog has to wait patiently and listen to you before he gets something he wants. You are trying to build the connection that after your dog pleases you he gets what he wants!