Mike Lardy's Training Tips
Updated Principles of Training
Total Retriever Series and Retrievers Online
Training Principles and Guidelines
1. Respect and care for your dog is a primary consideration
-Proper care, diet, exercise and watering regimes affect response to training and stress.
-Proper nutrition and conditioning reduces injury and improves concentration and health.
-Violence is not acceptable. Confront your dog’s weaknesses - not your dog!
2. Effectiveness of training is due to: methods, effort, and resources
-Results depend on methods, time, effort, efficiency, grounds, equipment and help.
-Use a proven sequential program as a basis for advanced work.
-Be prepared for variables of tests, environments, and dog behaviour.
3. Work to achieve balance in training
-Training that enhances one aspect of training often diminishes another.
-Remember to maintain the ABCs; Attitude, Balance, and Control.
-For success, seek the all-around balanced dog with sound fundamentals.
4.Emphasize communication and teamwork: training retrievers is a “team sport”
-Consistency in commands and cues will lead to better communication.
-Communicate that a decision was wrong at the instant the dog makes the decision.
-Use praise wisely- at the instant of doing well.
5. Establish and Maintain Standards
-Dogs deserve and thrive on consistent rules.
-It is better to reduce the level of difficulty of the task than to reduce the standard.
-Avoid habits that will have to be changed later.
6. Don’t teach with the e-collar
-Attrition is a safe and first consideration tool.
-Use the collar to enforce the command after the dog has been taught.
-Always give a command before a correction.
7. The approach to using pressure is a critical aspect of training
- Dogs can thrive with reasonable amounts of pressure if they understand it.
- The dog should be capable of giving the correct response after the proper correction.
- Correct for a lack of effort not just a flawed decision.
8. Design your training for predicted outcomes
-Seek success more than failure.
-Be sure to teach before you test.
-Simplify after repeated failure.
9. Match the training to the nature of the dog
-Strive to make the dog the best he can be but not more.
-Recognize a dog’s strength and weaknesses and train accordingly.
-Basics and fundamentals don’t change but implementation may.
10. Training is an art as well as science- it involves communication, analysis and interpretation
-Learn to read your dog and respond to what you see.
-If the dog has a problem ask if and how you caused it.
-Exact methods may not be as important as the overall approach.
These Principles and Guidelines are derived from Total Retriever Training and Retrievers ONLINE
©-Mike Lardy and Dennis Voigt