026: Balancing Independence & Handler Focus in Obedience

In this episode, Jerry Bradshaw discuss:

  • The struggle between dog independence and handler focus, ways it comes up, and how to handle it.
  • Striving for balance in your training.
  • Every dog is different and you do not need to use every type of training and technology of training at every moment of training.
  • How the nature and temperament of the dog can affect the balance of independence and focus.

Key Takeaways:

  • Learning a new task, and successive repetition of the task, creates new neural pathways in the brain.
  • Habits that become deeply practiced become sharper and harder to extinguish.
  • Have balance in your training.
  • You don’t have to do everything in the first 6 months of the dog’s life.
  • Understand temperament and how it plays into training methodology.

If we look at the symptom of lacking independence, the cause can be both too much pressure or just too much motivational engagement with the dog. You can’t tell the difference from the outside unless you know how that dog was trained as a puppy. —  Jerry Bradshaw

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