If you're like most people, training your dog is a bit overwhelming -- often we don't even have clearly defined objectives. We know we want a well-trained dog that is enjoyable to have around, and some of us also want a performance dog - agility, obedience, hunting, etc. But what does that look like, and how do we get there?
The Cato Board method of training is incredibly effective because it provides an objective for not only your dog, but also for YOU as the trainer. Negative behaviors can be stopped and positive behaviors can begin by teaching your dog that the Cato Board is a safe place where they can't be in trouble, and where positive reinforcement happens.
What does that look like? When I first introduce a puppy or dog (age doesn't really matter) to a Cato Board, it is immediately rewarded for getting on the Board. For some dogs that means a retrieve, for others a treat, for others it's a verbal praise (a clicker could work here as well). Once the dog understands that the Cato Board is a trigger for a reward, they will gladly hop on the Board trying to trigger that reward. At that point, I can start to ask for more out of the dog - longer sits, delayed retrieves, going to the place board for the doorbell, going to the Cato Board before being let outside, going to the Cato Board at dinner time, etc. Negative behaviors are REPLACED with a positive behavior (going to the Cato Board). This creates a dog that KNOWS how to be a good dog, rather than just being scolded for negative behavior, it can now channel its energy into a positive behavior.
For those dogs that also need to be trained for a working purpose, theCato Board naturally transitions to this type of training. Agility dogs understand how to be rewarded for using an obstacle, hunting dogs have learned patience staying in one place and can also learn to be handled to objectives (place boards) at a distance, etc.
You and your dog are going to benefit from the Cato Board because it's going to give both you and your dog an objective to work your training around - and ultimately you're both going to have more FUN during the training process!
Please be sure to check back frequently to the "Videos" page for more ideas on how to use the Cato Board!
(ALL DOGS FOR ALL PURPOSES CAN BENEFIT FROM THE CATO BOARD!!)
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