#AtoZ Challenge: Y is for Year-to-Year Progress

#AtoZ Challenge: Y is for Year-to-Year Progress

Do not fixate on what your dog is not learning. Or on a stumbling block that you’re trying to hurdle.

You can't teach every cue all at once, and your dog certainly can't learn everything you want her to learn in one six to eight-week obedience class.

Focus on the progress you're making from one year to the next. When you take the time to reflect on your dog's behavior from last year and compare it to present behavior, you're going to see improvements. 

Seeing growth

Every behavior may not be exactly where you want it, but if you train consistently, you will see growth. 

Others will see growth too. Our trainer has commented on how far Bernie has come over the two years we've known her. He's taken three classes with her in that period and last winter we started attending a few of her drop-in obedience classes. While she's definitely my go-to resource, Bernie has progressed because I force myself to take the time each day to expect him to behave well.

Last summer, Bernie and I spent most of our early morning walks around La Encantada Shopping Mall. Toward the end of the summer, another regular dog mom visitor commented on how much progress Bernie had made with his loose-leash walking and his reactions to other people and dogs. Even though I knew we still had progress to make, having another dog mom notice how hard we had been working felt pretty good.

Find your training groove

My suggestions in these #AtoZChallenge posts work for me and my dogs. Some of them may work for you. Others won't. However, you might read a suggestion and customize it to fit your life.

Find the routine that works for you, but keep looking for resources to help you stretch yourself.

You're a better trainer

As your dog matures, you’re also becoming a better trainer for your dog. You know his signals. You know when she’s done for the day. Your bond with your dog is stronger.

Instead of beating yourself up for what you’re not accomplishing, think about where you were a year ago. That progress is a data point that’s worth celebrating!

#AtoZChallenge - Y is for Year-to-Year Progress - Practical Dog Training Tips for Busy People on McSquare Doodles

What positive behavior is your dog capable of now
that he or she couldn't quite grasp a year ago?
Please share in the comments.