How to train a service dog without a personal trainer is actually possible. Dog that has been properly trained will be a great asset for any person who lives with disability. Besides they will accompany the handler wherever the handler goes, service dogs are good company. You can take the dog at the public spaces too even though the area is such of off limits to the dogs like cinemas, hospitals, theaters, museums, libraries, and shops.
But unfortunately, since the service dogs are so important and helpful at the same time, you probably will be on the very long waiting list to get what you want. But if you have time to train your service dog then why do not you do that? It is not impossible and it will also increase your chemistry between you and your dog.
So by that, I will try to giving you tips in training a service dog without a professional trainer. It will keep you away from the long waiting list that I told you before. All you need to do is read this article till the last word and get your service dog right now.
Assessing potential service dog
You should get a dog. But if you want to train them to be a service dog, try to get one with age above 6 months old. 6 months old dog or more will show their characteristics like the ability to pay attention and good intelligence. It is also suggested to find it on the shelter rather than buying breed dog, you know. There are so many dogs in the shelters that need home. So, by adopting them, you will have a dog to be trained and give them a place to be called home.
Make sure that your dog is healthy mentally and physically. Since they will be your service dog, they should meet the requirement before doing their job. For example, if the dog has arthritis then it probably will be difficult for them to move around that much. Other than that, you cannot put the responsibility of responding any door bells later. The other example is if the dog has diabetes, they surely will have special need for their own. So, make sure that your dog is really healthy.
The other characters of service dog are the good intelligence and they have eager to please. If your dog has this kind of characteristic then your job in training dog will be a lot more easily. The sign is typically on the young dog that came near you very calmly and without fear on his eyes. Confidence dog is really good for this job. They will keep their heads up.
As I have said before, the dog should be confident and in this case, it has to be confident in any kind of situation. Anxious dogs will put you in harm. And you can know if the dog is fearful by looking at its body language like cowering, keeping the tail between its legs, and anything like that.
The other thing you should be aware is if the dog is docile. Docile dog will more likely obey to what you say or what you ask them. Since it is supposed to be a service dog, you cannot take aggressive dog with territorial in high level or over protective dog. The dog should spend more time to help you in the future. If you find a dog that like to have physical contact with you or banging it head to your head then it is a good one.
Training the service dog
The first thing you do is spay or neuter your dog. It is just like the standard to be neutered. Female dog will be difficult to work while it is in the heat situation. You will also notice if your female dog will be followed by bunch of male dogs tailing on her. Meanwhile, the male dog will have territorial issue if you did not spay or neuter them. In other hand, it helps to calm down the aggressiveness level of the dog which is what the service dog should have in its character.
After that, you can teach your dog the basic skills of command. Just like the other dog, you should teach them the basic skills like stay, sit, come and lie down on cue. And as the service dog, it has to walk right next to the handler with good and controlled manner. This is why you need to control your dog all the time. Service dog will find it easy to follow though.
You can use clicker training to the dog. The clicker training is supposed to use the noise of click-clack so your dog will memorize the exact moment if they did a good job or not. If your dog did a good job or stay in the good behavior, just give him a reward. Your dog will be more eager and full of anticipation when they heard that click-clack noise.
Service dog needs to be trained with or without leash. It makes them know if they should obey to the handler command no matter hey are leashed or not.
The other thing you should know is make sure that your dog only puts the focus on you. Not greeting people is kind of selfish but your dog should take care of you. They should have not distracted by anything in the road. People with disabilities need immediate and instant help. If your service dog ran to other people, they will miss your command if you need immediate help.
It is also advisable to train the public access with your service dog. Since your dog will be your company anywhere you go, it is important to make sure that your dog really has good manner. Some people just could not accept the dog. So, by having the good manner, your dog will stay focus on you, not getting distracted and of course, accepted. So, I think this is the end of how to train a service dog.