There’s no one-size-fits-all model to train every service dog because of the types of service dogs are used for. The training model or skills required for blind assistance service dog might be different from other service dogs. However, there are a set of skills every service dogs does require to communicate and follow the commands of the handlers or owners.
Training your service done can be done either by you or a professional training organization. Professional trainers might take a long time to train your service dog, like 120 plus hours.Make sure the dog is trained in a controlled public environment at least for 30 hours so that your dog behaves obediently.
Most trainers prefer going for dog, it would be ideal to check where to buy a service dog patch before you start training your dog. Just about any dog might not be suitable for service dogs, you might require a dog which comes with certain innate abilities that can be trained to serve as service dogs.
Here’s a list of skills every service dog should consider having:
- Clicker conditioning
Clicker training plays a crucial role in training your service dog, it trains your dog to obedience the commands and enhances its skills. The timing in clicker training is vital for the dog to be trained, make sure you treat the dog when it performs well in the clicker training to encourage a particular trait. A professional trainer might clicker condition your dog in a short span than what you might take.
- Respond to the name
The next thing you should train your dog after clicker training is to respond to the name called out. The handler might not be able to communicate with the service dog when it doesn’t respond to the name. It’s suggested that you condition the dog by relating its name with a strong reinforcing factor, like food.
Stand in a corner and call the dog’s name and feed them with food, your dog will eventually respond to the name when the same thing repeated for a while. You might also teach the dog to bounce when you hand-feed them.
- Staying quietly for a long duration
It might be difficult for the dog to quietly lay down and do its job for long period, however, service dogs are expected to do this almost every day when they are with the handlers. It’s recommended that you train your dogs to master the art of staying quite for a long time. Train your dog to sit in a place for a long span by tether training them with a tether, which enables them to change position but not move around.
The service dog will later be fitted with a dog vest, don’t go for a cheap dog vest; it’s recommended that find where to buy a service dog patch which suits best for the dog. The aforementioned are not the only training your service dog require, they are something to start off the intense training that would be followed.