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Before we progress further with training exercises you need to be aware of another aspect of training your dog … distractions.  Your dog needs to respond to you the first time, every time, despite distractions.  To have a completely reliable dog they need to respond to you despite the distractions that are around them.

Some distractions that your dog may respond to are:  squirrels, other people, other dogs, cats, cars, fire hydrants, treats, and even strange smells.

To get your dog not to respond to distractions you need to train him to do it.  It doesn’t automatically happen.  Before training your dog to ignore distractions he should respond to the command the first time, every time with treats.

Training your dog to respond without treats is also important, but your dog should learn not to respond to distractions while using treats.

In part two we will go over exactly how to teach your dog to work with distractions.