As often parodied in cartoons, dogs and cats are remarkably different. They like different things, have their own ways of playing, and will act very differently when you give them an order. One reason for this is dogs and cats learn in very different ways. They rely on a range of different mechanisms to give them the skills they need in life. This post will explore their learning styles and help you train your dog or cat effective
In the wild, dogs are pack animals and spend most of their time with other dogs. They learn from one another, the older ones training the younger ones. A dog’s learning is largely based on observation.
In your home you are the pack leader. Treats and rewards help humans train their dogs and help build positive associations with the command you are teaching. It assures your dog’s cooperation when you give him or her the same command in the future.
Thanks to the way that a dog learns, you can take a very active approach when training them. Puppy training resources can be found all over the internet. Dogs are fairly easy to train, and help is readily available on the web.
While cats are social animals, they maintain a lot more independence than dogs. Instead of working as a pack to get their food they will usually work alone, sometimes in pairs. They don’t learn by watching. A cat develops an understanding of the world largely through trial and error. When they do something that gets a bad result, they don’t do it a second time.
This makes it much harder to train a cat. Activities such as training a cat to use a litter box or cat tree to sharpen their claws can be made into habits. If you try train a cat as you would your dog, you will usually find yourself met with nothing but contempt.
The differences in the way dogs and cats learn is fundamental to their survival in the wild. Relying on opposing survival strategies, it’s no wonder that they are so different. You won’t have much luck training a dog like you’d train a cat, and the same can be said the other way around, making it important to use methods which will work with their particular species.
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