Mixed Messages

Mixed Messages

Dogs flourish with clarity. Mixed messages lead to trouble. Often times I go into homes where the family is having relationship difficulties with their dogs. This is mostly caused by inconsistency. For example, one person is strict and has the dog working for treats. While another person is basically tossing treats the dog’s way just for breathing. Much of the time, this is the same problem when it comes to rules and safety. The dog has different rules with different people … all in the same house.

Dogs want clear communication from you. Mixed messages confuse them. This is why you need to start being aware of what you are doing and how you are doing it. I always recommend filming a short session with the client working with the dog so you can view and discuss the video afterward. It can be eye-opening for people to see themself at work. People are often completely unaware that they didn’t follow instructions correctly.

Mixed messages pitfalls to look for:

  • How many times are you saying a command? (I have counted someone saying “sit” 9 times for 1 sit)
  • What does your dog do to get rewards? (I am referring to behaviorally not just being cute)
  • What does your dog do to get their bowl of food?
  • Are you having patience with the dog?
  • How soon do you give a reward/correction/marker after the behavior?

Inconsistent actions create mixed messages, this is why everyone needs to get on the same page.

 

Services and Area

We are located in Southern California and train service dogs nationwide. Hence, Total K9 Focus currently offers local service dog training in several areas. Riverside County, Orange County, San Bernardino County, Los Angeles County, and San Diego County. In addition, we offer our service dog board and train program and all virtual training services nationwide.

Are you looking to get your own service dog? You came to the right place! We are experienced service dog trainers. Consequently, we can help you with any service dog request. For many of our clients, we train a service dog from puppyhood. However, we also evaluate the service dog potential of existing pets or rescue dogs. Our flagship product is our board and train program. In addition, we offer owner-trained service dog support. Further, provide virtual service dog training worldwide.

Further, we can add tasks to an existing service dog you already have. Or help you solve a tasking, training, or behavioral challenge you may face with your current service dog. We offer several service dog financing options to make it possible for you. We recommend you start by reading our article on what makes a good service dog. Next, review the Service Dog Consultation page to understand the high-level process. Finally, once you're ready to move forward, please use our service dog contact form to schedule your free consultation.