(Great tips for the Holidays!)
When work with clients one of the first things we talk about is proper management. That is the use of management so dogs can’t practice behaviors we don’t want. What our dogs practice, they get better at! Until consistent training can occur management is very helpful.
An example of this would be:
My family is coming over for the holidays. Before their arrival I put my dogs in the bedroom behind a baby gate. This allows my family to enter without being jumped on or barked at. My dogs are instead practicing being quiet and relaxed behind a baby gate when they arrive.
Once my family is in and has settled in I would bring my dogs out (on leashes of course) to practice their training skills. This works best if I have practiced training them at times without distracting family present and if i have a handful of extra yummy treats. I might practice a walk by my side passing company, then a stop and ask for a sit. Also a down exercise on their dog beds with a stay command to help them learn to relax around the distractions. If my management skills are at work, I walk my dogs well away from company (so they can’t practice jumping) and I have placed the dog beds well away from them as well. This helps set my dogs up for success on their training practice.