How Dogs Learn

Association: is it safe or not

  • Make training fun
  • Dog will develop a positive emotional response 
  • Dog enjoys being with you and returning to you

Consequence: good or bad for me

  • Reinforcement increases behavior
  • Always reinforce a recall with high value reinforcer


  • Must be something the learner (your dog) LOVES
  • High value
  • Dogs perspective of high value
    • Food is primary reinforcer
      • Some learners love play like tug or ball


  • Dogs learn in the now
  • Reinforcement must be immediate