Teach Your Dog to Speak
“Speak” is a fun dog obedience exercise for you and your dog to enjoy–one that will be both entertaining and educational for your pet. Learning how to bark on command may be a little bit tricky for your dog at first, but it can be accomplished easily with dedication, repetition and maintenance.
Below we show you how to teach your dog to speak in five steps.
How to Train Your Dog to Speak
The first thing you need to do is create a stimulus. In order to train dogs to do this command, they need to be excited. You should begin by playing with him. A game, such as fetch or tug of war, will create enthusiasm, thus making him more likely to be attentive to your commands. If he is energized, it will be easier to reinforce the positive rewards of the training.
Reveal a Treat
Once your dog is riled up, cease the prior play and reveal to him you have a treat in your hand, but do not give it to him. Instead, start by holding the treat behind your back. If your dog begins to whimper, but doesn’t bark, try waving it around. Revealing and then re-hiding the treat again will also cause him to react with sound.
Reward a Bark
As soon as he barks, reward him with praise and a treat. Then, repeat the second step using the cue word “speak.”
RELATED: Training Your Dog Through Your Tone
Another tip for positively reinforcing this behavior is by keeping your voice at the same tone and volume level each time you make the “speak” command. That way, your dog learns to associate your positive tone, reward and praise with the desired action, thus making him more likely to repeat it.
The most important aspect of this training exercise is repetition. Just like any other cue, memorizing the command will make it easier for your dog to understand what you are asking him. By spending a little time each day going over the steps with him, he will pick it up quickly and be less likely to forget over time.
Through this exercise, you’re able to educate your dog in one of the many positive tricks he can learn and keep his mind active and stimulated. To learn more fun tricks to practice with your dog, consult your dog trainer.
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