2 months, 4 weeks ago Dave PageParticipant
I’ve searched this site and the web for answers, and unless I’ve overlooked it haven’t seen it addressed.
Reading threads elsewhere it seems there is a 50/50 split on whether a persons dog obeys commands from others.
I always thought a dog had to be taught to obey others in the family from the one who trains them. (Another step in training, which I’ve never seen addressed.)
Doing searches on the topic it appears some don’t have this issue.
I don’t recall ever having a dog I have worked with who would obey commands from others unless I told them to, and then was only guaranteed if I was there. The last few dogs I’ve had wouldn’t. Has this just been by chance?
Luke is maturing and starting to show a possible propensity to be territorial. For safety, If I’m not home, I would like my wife to be able to control him, if need be, without having to pen him up like she had to with our last protective dog. Our last dog was much more protective if she was home alone.
What are others experiences?
Do you have to teach your dogs to take commands from others in the family?
What is the best way to do so?
I’ve seen the videos here where the 2 year old follows commands from both; how do you do that?
2 months, 3 weeks ago Davis TranSpectator
There can be many reason why your dog won’t obey other people/family member.
2 reason that quickly comes to mind is:
1) lack of relationship and/or leadership
2)It’s a “technical” training issue and can be troubleshooted.
The first reason is simply that your wife/other family member do not have a relationship(or rather correct relationship) with your dog. Being in the same house does not automatically equals relationship, let alone leadership. Your dog needs a reason to obey. Does she feed the dog? exercise the dog? play with the dog? train the dog? And if so, is she in charge of these activities (is she the initiator)?
You can look at the leadership page to help put your wife into a “leader” position, in your dog’s eyes.
A great way to “hit 2 birds with one stone” is to have your wife use your dog’s daily food to train him. This way she becomes relevant in his life by becoming his source of food, but at the same time, he will learn to work for her and take direction from her.
The second reason may be that this can be a “technical issue”.
Either the dog simply does not understand the command, OR he is not motivated enough to comply.
Do your dog truly understand the command you are asking of him? Can he perform those commands from you using ONLY verbal command? Or is he relying on your subtle body language? A lot of people give off subtle body cue to the dog (raising your head or hand a bit when you say “sit” for example) without realizing it. If he is relying on your body language, then it would make sense that he wouldn’t understand your wife since she won’t be giving off the same body language as you.
Even if he understand the verbal command, sometimes when a dog has only been trained by one person, they are only used to that person’s voice. They respond only to a very “specific” sound (your voice in this case), since they haven’t had a chance to generalize it with different tones, accent, and voices.
Remember, our dogs are a different species, they don’t speak english, spanish, chinese, etc. To them, it is all just different sounds. “Sit”, “SIIIITTTTT”, and “SIT!!!” is 3 different commands to them, until they generalize the sound.
Motivation (lack of) can also be a reason, not all dogs obey commands simply to “please” their owners. There needs to be motivation for the dog to obey obedience commands. Reward is a great motivation (phase 1 training). The avoidance of correction is also a great motivation (phase 2-3). Used together, we give our dogs more reasons to obey.
This is another reason I recommend having your wife use your dog’s food to do obedience with him. Start with her simply doing phase 1 OB (very important!!). Then phase 2-3, so he knows that not only will she reward him for compliance, he also learns he MUST obey her.
Video instruction can be found here:
Hope this helps!
2 months, 3 weeks ago Michael D’AbruzzoKeymaster
I agree with Davis. It is generally something that can be explained if you trouble shoot it. I am in the process of adopting out one of my dogs now to a new family and I told the father, who is coming to work with the dog, to not stress if the kids bark commads at the dog in a non-technical manner.
It will not hurt how the dog responds to him because the dog, just like us, will learn with experience who reinforces what.
Usually, when you see videos of a dog listening to a child, it is because an adult is hovering over like a guard and the dog believes consequences (good or bad) will be delivered by the adult, or the child has learned some basics on maintaining the reinforcement, OR the dog is basically humoring the child because the dog has a temperament that enjoys the child’s attention.
Basically a lot of factors, but as a rule you can’t expect a dog to obey anyone unless the relationship is correct and the dog has motivation to respond to the command.We welcome these dogs as they are. With respect, compassion, and devotion We will lead…
2 months, 3 weeks ago Dave PageParticipant
Thanks for the replies. Could kick myself for not realizing this.
Evaluating this evening it seems to be more technical with Luke and both with Lexi. Since they are still pups they get fed twice a day. We will start one of us feeding in morning and the other at night. Adding in her working with them more.
Besides a little less consistency with Lexi on my wifes part it seems Lexi doesn’t understand the words from her. She sat and looked at her when my wife told her to get the tug toy, Until she understood what my wife wanted.
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