Does this dog sit or not sit? That was the question. We have a Vizsla staying with us for our 28 day Board & Train program. She was just over halfway through her program, and she had a decision to make. For two weeks, she’d been learning that before we head out for our daily walks, all dogs need to sit and wait for my release to exit the door. On this particular morning, she had the same decision to make. To sit or not to sit? It was her choice. I even gave her several attempts. She chose not to sit.
I do not force dogs to sit and wait before we head out for our walks. However, dogs at my house learn there are consequences to their choices. In this case, my little Vizsla friend discovered that choosing NOT to sit held the consequence of missing out on the walk. She was placed in the kennel while the rest of us headed out on our walk. She was not happy. I could hear her expressing her unhappiness as we headed off on our walk.
We went out for another walk later that day. Once again, she was given the choice to cooperate and sit. This time, she chose to sit and wait. And we all enjoyed a very nice walk.
At my house there are rules to follow. I am very consistent about what those rules are. And those who follow them do well and have a great time. Those who do not follow them learn quickly that there are consequences to your choices. I do not use force to gain compliance. I do not use physical corrections or punishments. But that does not mean there are no consequences. Most dogs learn very quickly to make good choices, because life is very good when that happens!