Starting Off on the Right Paws: How to Teach Your Dog to Talk With Buttons
Oct 19, 2022
Have you ever tried teaching your dog to talk? If so, have you been successful? Many dog owners have tried training their canines to bark on command, or even how to howl like a wolf. However, one of the most popular ways to teach your dog to talk involves using buttons and cheese. This method of training your dog isn’t hard once you get the hang of it, but it does take patience and dedication on both parts to make sure it works right. If you’re interested in teaching your pup to talk, then read on!
What is dog talking?
Teaching your dog how to talk is pretty simple. One of the best ways is through using something called a clicker. The clicker allows your dog to communicate with you at a new level. In order for it to work, you’ll need to start by identifying what different noises mean, and how they relate back to behaviors you want repeated.
Benefits of learning dog talking
While speaking to your dog may seem like a superfluous skill, there are benefits that make it worthwhile. For instance, learning how to talk with buttons helps you communicate your needs and desires directly, which in turn helps you build trust and loyalty between one another. Furthermore, teaching your dog how speak out loud is a surefire way of entertaining friends and family.
The right dog breed to learn dog talking
Some dogs are better suited for dog talking than others. When choosing a dog, select one that is patient and curious. The most common breeds used by professional dog talkers include Labrador retrievers, German shepherds, golden retrievers and border collies. Some experts also recommend training mutts because they’re more trainable than purebreds (because of their varied genetic background).
Before starting training, take into consideration...
Before starting off with training your dog, make sure you have all necessary supplies such as clickers and treats. Before starting, make sure you’re dog is in a calm state. If he is not calmer than usual, it will be difficult for him to learn his new tricks. After ensuring that your pup has calmed down, begin by getting them excited about their new toy (i.e., clicker). Make sure your furry friend knows exactly what is expected of them so they can meet all expectations.
1. Choose your words
To choose your words, pay attention to the things that motivate your learner. These may already be words they recognize (e.g., outside, play, cuddle). Once you select a word, use it repeatedly, in context without adding different conjugations. For example, to model ‘play’, when you’re about to play with your learner, say ‘Do you want to play? Ok let’s play! Play play play!’
2. Model how to use buttons
After you’ve recorded your first button, ‘model’ the new word/phrase for your learner by (a) saying the word/phrase, then (b) pressing the corresponding button, and (c) either directing your learner’s attention to an object (‘ball!’) or engaging in the action you’ve just described.
3. Stick with it and be patient
When learning any new language, the first stage is observing and absorbing. This will be the first stage of learning for your dog or cat and it can take some time. Don’t get discouraged, be consistent with your button teaching and check out our Guide for steps and trouble-shooting tips.
Showing off your new skills at home and out in public
Teach your dog something easy like speak or paw. Then, once he’s mastered a few commands, get him used to speaking in front of other people by having him do his tricks for a small group of friends and family members. As he gets more comfortable talking with others around, you can start teaching him how to respond when you have conversations with others. For example, if someone asks How are you? tell your pup to respond I’m fine thanks! And yourself? Soon enough, it will seem as though there is no limit to what your pet can say! If things don't go as planned: If all goes well, then congratulations—you now have an excellent way of entertaining guests at home and impressing them out in public!
A few additional tips
Don't worry about being perfect. The only thing that matters is getting your dog comfortable speaking into a microphone and telling you what he/she wants. While these suggestions may help, remember that practice makes perfect! So don't hesitate to try a variety of strategies and see what works best for your pup. It's always better if you use positive reinforcement rather than punishment in training (at least for dogs). For example, instead of telling your dog off when he does something wrong (like barking), reward him when he does something right!