Yorkies take pack leadership seriously, and if you’re not the pack leader in their eyes then they will happily take on that role themselves.
If you want to avoid getting bossed around by your pint-sized bundle of fur then you need to train them to obey your commands. You can do this by…
1 – Avoid Distractions And Interruptions
Yorkies tend to have a short attention span and get distracted easily. While you are training them, try to ensure that it is just you and your dog interacting together.
Avoid having other people around while the training is going on and minimize the number of distractions for the dog. If you have other pets then try to do the dog training in an area where your other pets can’t interrupt.
Quiet areas work best too, as noise from traffic, machinery, TVs, and other people can be distracting and can make it hard for the dog to clearly hear the commands you are giving.
2 – Teach One Command At A Time
Concentrate on teaching one command at a time and only move on to the next once you are happy with how well the dog has learned that command. Trying to teach multiple commands at once will only confuse the dog and will mean the training will take longer than it needs to.
Once the dog has learned that command to your satisfaction you should continue to use the command outside the training session to ensure the dog remembers its training, but stay focused on one word at a time within the training session itself.
3 – Be Consistent With The Wording Of The Commands
Make sure that you use consistent and exact wording for each command you are teaching. Avoid inconsistently using additional words that will confuse the dog and make it unsure what you are actually asking it to do.
Learning commands for the dog is like you learning a second language. Think about how hard it would be to learn that language if the sound for a particular concept sometimes randomly changed to something different.
You would be left confused as to what the exact wording for that concept was, just as your dog will get confused and frustrated if you are not consistent with your commands.
4 – Use Treats And Affection To Reward Good Behavior
Give your Yorkie treats when it does a good job of following your commands. Tasty treats reinforce that the dog is doing what you have asked it to correctly and give it an incentive to continue to try to work with you in learning new commands.
Use whatever food treat the dog likes the most, as long as it is not unhealthy for them to have too much of it. If you don’t want to overfeed the dog then you can substitute treats for warmly voiced praise and friendly pats, but either way the dog should feel that it is getting a reward for obeying the command correctly.
5 – Use A Consistent And Distinct Tone Of Voice And Gestures
Make sure that you speak in a consistently firm and strict voice when reprimanding the dog for making a mistake, and a warm and friendly voice when letting it know that it has done what you wanted it to do.
The tone of your voice is what the dog will cue on to let it know when it is doing the right thing or the wrong thing, so be consistent with your tone when talking to it.
Body language is also important, so try to be clear and consistent with the gestures you use when reprimanding the dog and the ones you use when complimenting it.
The more distinctly different the tone of voice and gestures you use when the dog is doing well and the ones you use when the dog is doing the wrong thing are, the less confused the dog will be about whether its behavior is good or bad.
6 – Work With The Dog Daily
Continue to work with the dog on a daily basis to ensure that it remembers what you have taught it. Once it has learned a command then try to incorporate the command casually into your play sessions too.
Yorkies have a fairly short memory so keeping to a regular daily training routine will ensure that they don’t lose the progress gained during previous training sessions.
7 – Give Your Yorkie Time To Play Too
Make sure your Yorkie has plenty of play time between training sessions. Yorkies are a dog with a lot of energy and enthusiasm, so they need to be able to frolic around and enjoy themselves when not being trained.
If you keep the pressure on constantly without the dog being able to relax and enjoy itself in your company then it will begin to resent the training and will begin to act out.
Consistency is the key to quickly training your Yorkie to obey your commands and behave itself correctly. Be consistent in the wording you use for commands, and also in the tone of voice and gestures you use when reinforcing good behavior and punishing bad behavior.
Make sure your Yorkie has a clear idea of what you want it to do and when it is doing it correctly or incorrectly. The less confusion your Yorkie has when being given commands, the more likely it is to obey those commands.
By Michelle L.