It's ALL About- The Nika!
|Barked: Sun Jul 1, '07 8:51am PST |
I have the perfect program for you! NILIF - Nothing in Life Is Free.
Very very simple training program that puts the humans back in charge.
This is a good article that outlines the basics of it:
Lisa Giroux, Corner Brook Newfoundland, www.k9station.com
The Nothing in Life is Free (NILIF) program is a system that has far-reaching effects and is a “first-level” approach to almost every behaviour problem. Puppies and dogs that don’t have “problems” also benefit from the program! All dogs in my obedience classes should go on this program for the duration of the classes for best results. Most “dog problems” start with relationship issues and simple lack of understanding what is expected. Pushy dogs, shy dogs, nervous dogs, “dominant” dogs, usually can become better companions with a better understanding of their place in the world. Clarifying what is expected of the dog allows the animal to relax in its relationships with people and in its interactions with different environments.
How to Do NILIF
First Rule of Thumb: The dog should react to YOU, instead of YOU reacting to the DOG. Your dog must learn to value your attention, playtime, food, and everything else he is currently getting for “free.”
1) Get the dog on a feeding schedule. NO FREE LUNCH. The dog must sit/stay and then be directed to eat his food. See article Feeding Routines for more specific information on this issue.
2) Pick up all toys except for one chewy bone that the dog can have available at all times. NO FREE TOYS.
3) Identify What the Dog Likes—Sit down with your family members and WRITE DOWN the stuff your dog gets excited about. A good way to do this is to go through the day and describe what the dog does, and note down what gets him excited. Examples: Going out the door, coming in the door, greeting guests, greeting dogs, getting the leash on, getting the leash off, eating, playing ball, peeing on telephone poles, sniffing marked areas, chasing birds, getting let off leash to play at the beach, and much more!
4) Make the Dog Work for Everything he Likes!—The dog must say “please” prior to being allowed to experience/have the things he likes, and then be DIRECTED to go do/have the thing. Saying “please” means that he must be told to do something, and perform that action, prior to getting anything he wants. Sit, down, paw, speak, anything can be used. Should the dog fail to comply, simply walk away for a moment or two, then come back and try again. Do not repeat commands and do not attempt to cajole the dog to say “please.” NO FREE FUN.
5) Identify Attention Seeking Behaviours—Make another list of things the dog does that are Attention Seeking. Examples: Nudging your hand to be petted, jumping up, barking, scratching at the door, grabbing toys and playing “keep away,” presenting you with a toy to throw, rubbing up against you, and more. Now that you know what your dog is doing to get your attention, you must begin IGNORING those behaviours. You can allow your dog to have your attention but ONLY if it was you that solicited the attention and not him, and ONLY if he has said “please” first. NO FREE ATTENTION
6) Provide Mental Stimulation--After the dog is on a feeding routine, at least one meal a day should come from a stuffed Kong. Teach many tricks. Take dog with you on daily errands, even if he just stays in the car. Find doggie playmates and free run in safe areas. Introduce your dog to new and various environments. Give plenty of physical exercise as well.
Note: The NILIF program is not a deprivation program. On the contrary! Your dog should get TONS of things he likes, and if followed appropriately, he might get more “stuff” that he got before you started! There’s just one major difference. He has to “pay” for that stuff now. This will help your dog become practiced in listening to you, willing to follow your directions, and a more relaxed and confident animal.
NILIF needs to be practiced religiously for a few week’s time, then slowly can be “phased down,” though your dog should remain on a modified NILIF for life.
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