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Monday, July 28, 2014
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How to Train a Dog to Speak

By Susan Paretts
 

Overview

Short, positive training sessions will serve best when you teach your dog to obey various commands. Some examples of commands are "sit," "stay" and "speak." The "speak" command teaches a dog to bark once or twice in response to your verbal cue. Training not only provides mental stimulation for your dog but gives you more control over his behavior. You can combine commands to teach more complicated tricks or tasks, such as "quiet" or "hush" for noisy dogs, after they first understand the command to speak. Use reward-based clicker-training techniques to train your dog to vocalize on your command.

Step 1

Train your dog to associate the sound of a clicker to a reward, using a dog treat. In short, 5- to 10-minute sessions each day, click a training device and give your dog a treat. Wait a minute or so between each click and treat. Continue this training until your dog expects a reward after hearing a click.

Step 2

Say the verbal cue, "speak," then trigger your dog to bark by waving a favorite toy in front of the dog's face but not allowing him to obtain it. Other ways to trigger your dog to bark is by knocking on a wall or door, or by withholding a treat from the dog. Once the dog barks, click the device and give your dog a treat.

Step 3

Train your dog for five to 10 minutes with the clicker and treats each day until he responds to the verbal command to speak by giving you at least one bark without your having to provoke him to bark with anything other than the verbal "speak" command.

Step 4

Teach your dog the "quiet" command to limit the amount of time your dog barks after being given the "speak" command. This further specifies the "speak" command to just a couple barks instead of constant barking for a longer amount of time. Give the dog the command to "speak" triggering him to bark, but don't treat him. Say "quiet" and wait until he is quiet for a few seconds before clicking and treating him. Continue this training giving the commands "speak" and "quiet" during each training session.

Step 5

Command your dog to speak; if he responds with a bark or two at most, click and treat him. If the dog continues to bark more than once or twice, don't click or treat him. Stop his barking with the "quiet" command. Prompt him to speak again, clicking and rewarding only when he barks once or twice in response to your command. Go back and forth between the commands as needed to allow your dog to fully understand what you're expecting of him -- that the speak command calls for one to two barks but not constant barking.
Comments (1)
Oct 24, 2013 dogpuplover123
nice article
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