Effective Positive Reinforcement Training Techniques for Lhasa Apsos with Dominance Issues

As a Lhasa Apso owner, dealing with dog behavior problems can be a frustrating experience. Dominance issues can be particularly problematic, but fortunately, positive reinforcement training methods provide effective solutions to such problems. In this guide, we will explore several positive reinforcement techniques that can be used to train Lhasa Apsos with dominance issues. By implementing these techniques in a consistent and patient manner, you can help your furry friend become a well-behaved and well-adjusted member of your family. Let’s dive in!

Understanding Lhasa Apso Behavior

Understanding Lhasa Apso Behavior
The behavior of Lhasa Apsos can sometimes be a head-scratcher for their owners. Understanding why your furry friend behaves the way they do can be crucial to training them effectively. Lhasa Apsos are a unique breed with specific temperament traits that can be both endearing and challenging. It’s important to recognize dominance issues in Lhasa Apsos and to know how to prevent them from manifesting. By doing so, you can avoid inadvertently reinforcing dominant behaviors and establish a healthy and happy relationship with your pup. Let’s dive deeper into the behavior of Lhasa Apsos and how to recognize dominance issues. To learn how to prevent dominance in Lhasa Apsos or recognize dominance behaviors in Lhasa Apsos, check out these helpful resources.

The Lhasa Apso Breed

When it comes to training a Lhasa Apso with dominance issues, it is important to understand the breed’s behavior. Lhasa Apsos are known for their independent and sometimes stubborn nature, which can make training a bit more challenging.

However, despite their sometimes difficult personalities, Lhasa Apsos are loving and loyal companions. They thrive in environments where they are given plenty of attention and positive reinforcement. Here are some key characteristics of Lhasa Apsos that are important to keep in mind when training:

IntelligentLhasa Apsos are a smart breed and can quickly learn new tricks and commands with the right training techniques.
ProtectiveThey can be very protective of their family and territorial, which can sometimes lead to aggressive behavior towards strangers or other animals if not properly socialized.
StubbornLhasa Apsos have a mind of their own and can be quite stubborn when it comes to training. They can become easily bored, so it’s important to keep training sessions fun and engaging.
IndependentThey were originally bred as watchdogs and have a strong independent streak. They can sometimes seem aloof or uninterested in training.

It’s important to note that Lhasa Apsos can also have dominance issues, which can make training even more difficult. Understanding and recognizing dominant behaviors in Lhasa Apsos is crucial for successful training. To learn more about dominance issues in Lhasa Apsos, check out our article on Lhasa Apso Dominance, which includes information on common triggers and how to prevent dominant behaviors from developing.

Dominance Issues in Lhasa Apsos

Lhasa Apsos are affectionate and loyal companions, but like any other breed, they can exhibit dominance issues that need to be addressed with proper training. Dominance issues in Lhasa Apsos can manifest in different behaviors such as growling, biting, snarling, and even chewing on furniture or digging in inappropriate places.

It is important for Lhasa Apso owners to recognize the triggers that cause these behaviors. Common triggers include lack of socialization, failure to establish clear boundaries, and inconsistency in training. By identifying these triggers, you can take the necessary steps to prevent or minimize the occurrence of these behaviors. You can find more information about Lhasa Apso dominance triggers here.

Recognizing dominance behaviors in Lhasa Apsos is equally as important as understanding their triggers. Some of the behaviors to observe for include growling, resource guarding, and refusal to obey commands. It is important to address such behaviors properly to prevent escalation. You can learn more about recognizing dominance behaviors in Lhasa Apsos here.

Preventing dominance behaviors in Lhasa Apsos is possible with consistent and positive training techniques. Owners should avoid the use of physical punishment or harsh treatment, as this can exacerbate the situation. Instead, positive reinforcement is a more effective way to discipline your pet. You can learn more about preventing dominance behaviors in Lhasa Apsos here.

By understanding the triggers, recognizing the behaviors, and implementing positive reinforcement training techniques, you can address dominance issues in Lhasa Apsos and create a happy and well-behaved pet.

Positive Reinforcement Training Techniques

Positive Reinforcement Training Techniques
Are you searching for effective and humane ways to train your Lhasa Apso with dominance issues? Positive reinforcement techniques are a popular and scientifically-proven approach to training that can help you nurture your dog’s obedience while also strengthening your relationship with them. By utilizing positive reinforcement, you can guide your dog’s behavior through rewarding desired actions, rather than punishing negative behaviors. In this section, we will explore various positive reinforcement training techniques that can help improve your Lhasa Apso’s behavior and enhance your bond with them.

Clicker Training

Clicker training is a popular and effective positive reinforcement training technique for Lhasa Apsos with dominance issues. This technique involves using a small handheld device that makes a clicking sound when pressed. The sound is then immediately followed by a reward, usually in the form of a treat. This creates a link between the click and the reward, allowing the dog to associate the click with good behavior.

How to do Clicker Training for Lhasa Apsos:

Step 1Introduce the clicker to your Lhasa Apso by making the clicking sound several times while giving your dog a treat.
Step 2Wait for your dog to exhibit a desirable behavior, such as sitting or staying, and immediately press the clicker followed by giving the reward.
Step 3Repeat this process several times, making sure to click and treat only when your Lhasa Apso displays the desired behavior.
Step 4Gradually increase the difficulty of the task, while rewarding your dog with a click and a treat only when he succeeds.
Step 5Consistently implement the clicker training technique for about 5-10 minutes per day, until your Lhasa Apso has mastered the new behavior.

Clicker training is especially beneficial for Lhasa Apsos with dominance issues as it teaches them to focus on positive reinforcement rather than negative discipline. Additionally, it helps to strengthen the bond between owner and pet while promoting good behavior, which in turn results in a happier and healthier pet. Remember to be consistent and patient, as it may take time for your Lhasa Apso to learn the desired behavior through clicker training.

Target Training

Target training is a technique that involves teaching your Lhasa Apso to touch a specific target, such as a stick or a plastic lid, with their nose or paw. This technique is particularly useful for dogs with dominance issues because it can redirect their attention and reinforce positive behavior.

To start target training, you will need a target stick or a lid. Hold the target out in front of your Lhasa Apso and wait for them to touch it with their nose or paw. When they do, immediately give them a treat and offer verbal praise. Repeat this process several times until they consistently touch the target.

Once your Lhasa Apso is comfortable with touching the target, you can begin using it to redirect their attention when they display dominant behavior. For example, if they start barking at another dog, you can hold the target out and encourage them to touch it instead. When they do, reward them with a treat and praise.

It’s important to remember that target training should always be done in a positive and stimulating environment. Use treats and toys to keep them motivated and engaged, and be patient with them if they don’t catch on right away. Consistency is key, so try to practice target training for a few minutes each day.

Here’s a table summarizing the steps for target training:

Step 1Introduce target stick or lid to your Lhasa Apso
Step 2Wait for them to touch target with their nose or paw
Step 3Reward with treat and verbal praise
Step 4Repeat until they consistently touch target
Step 5Use target to redirect attention from dominant behavior
Step 6Continue practicing in a positive and stimulating environment

By following these steps and being consistent with target training, you can help improve your Lhasa Apso’s behavior and strengthen your relationship with them.

Hand Feeding

One positive reinforcement training technique that can be highly effective for Lhasa Apsos with dominance issues is hand feeding. This technique involves giving your dog their meals by hand, rather than in a bowl.

Not only does hand feeding promote bonding and trust-building between you and your dog, but it also reinforces the idea that you are the source of their food and therefore the leader of the pack.

To implement hand feeding, start by putting your dog’s food in a bag or pouch that can be easily accessed. Then, hold out your open hand and allow your dog to take the food from your palm. Encourage them with positive verbal reinforcement like “Good job!” or “You’re doing great!”

As your dog becomes more comfortable with hand feeding, you can start challenging them by holding the food farther away or requiring them to perform a command before they receive the food. This helps reinforce positive behaviors like sitting or staying, while also providing mental stimulation for your dog.

To track progress with hand feeding, keep a log of how quickly your dog is able to take the food from your hand and any commands they perform in order to receive the food. Over time, you should see improvements in their behavior and training.

Hand feeding is a simple yet effective way to build trust and obedience with your Lhasa Apso. Incorporate it into your training routine consistently and watch your dog thrive.

You can see the summary of the method in the table below:

Hand FeedingGiving your dog their meals by hand, rather than in a bowl. This technique promotes bonding, reinforces trust and leadership, and can provide mental stimulation for your dog.

Positive Verbal Reinforcement

One of the most effective and easiest ways to positively reinforce good behavior in Lhasa Apsos is through positive verbal reinforcement. This means praising them with kind words and a soothing tone of voice every time they exhibit good behavior. Here are some ways to make verbal reinforcement work for your Lhasa Apso:

  • Speak sweetly and gently to your Lhasa Apso to reinforce good behavior. Use gentle words and consistently maintain a positive tone of voice when your pet does something good. This will create a positive association in their mind and encourage them to repeat desirable behaviors.
  • Give them treats as a form of positive verbal reinforcement. Whenever your Lhasa Apso displays positive behavior, reward them with a treat and praise them with soft and reassuring words. This will make them feel happy, appreciated, and loved, which will in turn motivate them to do more good deeds.
  • Be prompt and specific with your feedback. Dogs have short-term memory, so ensure that you reinforce positive behavior with your verbal cues as soon as it occurs. Additionally, be specific with your praise so that your Lhasa Apso understands what behavior they are being rewarded for. For instance, say “good boy” when your Lhasa Apso responds to your command or performs a trick correctly.
  • Avoid using negative words, such as “no” or “stop,” when your Lhasa Apso exhibits inappropriate behavior. Instead, redirect their attention towards something else, such as a toy or their favorite activity, and use positive words to reinforce good behavior when it occurs.

With consistent positive verbal reinforcement, you will be able to build a stronger bond with your Lhasa Apso, while effectively training them to have better behavior. Remember to be patient, kind, and loving, as these qualities will go a long way in helping your Lhasa Apso learn positive behaviors.

Distraction Training

Training a Lhasa Apso with dominance issues can be a challenging task, but distraction training can prove to be a useful technique in breaking negative behavior patterns. Distraction training involves redirecting the dog’s attention away from their problematic behavior and focusing it elsewhere. By doing so, we can train them to react differently in certain situations.

How to Implement Distraction Training:

Identify TriggerFigure out what triggers your Lhasa Apso’s negative behavior. This could be anything from a person, object, or noise.
Choose a Positive DistractionSelect a positive distraction that your dog enjoys, such as playing with a toy or receiving a treat.
Practice Redirecting AttentionStart practicing redirecting your dog’s attention from the trigger to the positive distraction. When they start to display negative behavior, distract them with the toy or treat, praising them when they respond positively.
Reinforce and RepeatConsistency is key in distraction training. Keep reinforcing positive behavior with the distraction and praise. Repeat the training until their behavior changes.

It is important to note that distracted training gives your dog an alternative to negative behavior and reinforces positive responses. By redirecting their attention to something else, we teach them that they have choices, which can help them gain control over their behavior. However, it is crucial to also address the root cause of the negative behavior in conjunction with distraction training.

Consistency and Patience

Consistency and patience are two essential qualities that any dog owner must possess to ensure effective positive reinforcement training. Without these qualities, it is very unlikely that you will be able to bring about significant changes in your Lhasa Apso’s behavior.

Consistency: When it comes to positive reinforcement training, consistency is the key to success. It is essential to be consistent in your training approach in terms of the techniques you use, the rewards you offer, and the commands you use. This helps your Lhasa Apso understand what is expected of them and helps establish a routine.

Consistency Tips
Use the same commands every time you train
Stick to a regular training schedule
Ensure all family members use the same approach
Monitor your Lhasa Apso’s behavior regularly

Patience: Positive reinforcement training requires a lot of patience. Unlike punishment-based training methods that can yield quick results, positive reinforcement training is a gradual process that requires time and effort. Your Lhasa Apso may take time to understand what is expected of them, and their progress may be slow. Patience is essential to ensure that you do not get frustrated and give up on the training.

Patience Tips
Set achievable training goals
Recognize and reward small steps of progress
Don’t rush the training process
Be patient with your Lhasa Apso’s mistakes

By being consistent and patient in your positive reinforcement training techniques, you can effectively tackle your Lhasa Apso’s dominance issues and create a healthy and happy relationship with your furry friend.

Implementing Positive Reinforcement Techniques

Now that we have explored the various positive reinforcement techniques that can be used for training Lhasa Apsos with dominance issues, it’s time to move on to the next step and talk about implementing these techniques. To achieve success in training, it’s essential to have a plan for how to use these techniques effectively. In this section, we will discuss tips for setting realistic training goals, creating a positive environment, establishing a training schedule, tracking progress, and adjusting techniques as needed. Let’s dive in and learn how to bring about positive changes in our furry friends using positive reinforcement methods!

Setting Realistic Training Goals

When implementing positive reinforcement training techniques for your Lhasa Apso with dominance issues, it’s important to set realistic training goals. Setting achievable goals will help keep you and your pet motivated throughout the training process.

Why is Goal Setting Important?

Without a clear idea of what you hope to achieve, it can be easy to become discouraged or frustrated during the training process. By defining specific goals, you can break down the training process into manageable steps and track your progress along the way.

How to Set Realistic Training Goals

To set realistic goals for your Lhasa Apso, it’s important to keep your pet’s individual strengths and weaknesses in mind. Consider what behaviors you would like to change or improve upon, and what steps will be necessary to achieve those changes.

GoalSteps to Achieve Goal
To Reduce Aggressive Behavior When Meeting Other Dogs1. Start with desensitization training by slowly introducing your dog to other dogs at a safe distance.
2. Once your dog is comfortable with this, gradually decrease the distance over several training sessions.
3. Reward your dog for good behavior and avoid punishing for negative behavior.
To Improve Walking on a Leash1. Start by using a front-clip harness to give you more control over your dog’s movements.
2. Use clicker training to teach your dog to walk on a loose leash, rewarding good behavior with treats or praise.
3. Practice for short periods of time, gradually increasing the duration of walks as your dog improves.
To Increase Time Spent Calmly in Crate1. Use desensitization training to help your dog feel more comfortable in the crate.
2. Start with short periods of time and gradually increase to longer durations.
3. Provide treats or toys as a positive reinforcement for spending time in the crate.

Remember to be patient, consistent, and flexible in your approach. By setting realistic training goals for your Lhasa Apso and breaking down the training process into manageable steps, you can help your pet overcome dominance issues and improve their behavior.

Creating a Positive Environment

Creating a positive environment is crucial when it comes to training Lhasa Apsos with dominance issues. A positive environment can make all the difference in your dog’s behavior and ability to learn. Here are some suggestions on how to create a positive environment for your Lhasa Apso:

  • Provide plenty of affection: Dogs crave love and attention. Make sure to give your Lhasa Apso plenty of affection and praise when they do something right.
  • Ensure comfort: Make sure your dog has a comfortable place to sleep and relax. This can be a comfortable bed or even a special blanket. This will help your Lhasa Apso feel secure and happy.
  • Keep a clean environment: A clean environment is important for your dog’s health and well-being. Keep your home clean and free of clutter to reduce stress and provide a space for your Lhasa Apso to play and relax.
  • Avoid negative reinforcement: Punishing your dog for bad behavior can create a negative environment. Instead, focus on positive reinforcement techniques to encourage good behavior.
  • Provide plenty of mental stimulation: Lhasa Apsos can become bored easily. Provide plenty of mental stimulation to keep your dog engaged and happy. This can include puzzle toys, games, and even training sessions.
  • Be patient: Creating a positive environment takes time and patience. Don’t rush the process and be sure to give your Lhasa Apso plenty of time to adjust to their new surroundings.

By creating a positive environment, you are setting your Lhasa Apso up for success. With patience, love, and consistency, your dog will be happier, healthier, and more well-behaved.

Training Schedule

Creating a consistent training schedule is crucial for successfully implementing positive reinforcement training techniques with your Lhasa Apso. A predictable routine will help your dog to feel secure and confident, making it easier for them to learn and retain new skills.

Weekly Schedule

One effective approach is to set aside several short training sessions each day, rather than trying to cram all of your training into one long session. Ideally, each session should last no more than 10-15 minutes, as dogs can become easily overwhelmed and lose focus much more quickly than humans.

You might divide your sessions up by time of day, training objectives, or both. For example, you could work on basic obedience commands like “sit,” “stay,” and “come” in the morning, and then focus on more advanced tricks and games in the afternoon.

Here’s a sample weekly schedule for training your Lhasa Apso:

Day of the weekMorning session (10-15 minutes)Afternoon session (10-15 minutes)
MondayPractice “sit,” “stay,” and “come”Play hide and seek with treats
TuesdayWork on loose leash walkingPractice “down” and “roll over”
WednesdayReview basic commands with treat rewardsPlay fetch and work on drop commands
ThursdayTrain “heel” and “watch me”Work on shake and high five
FridayPractice recall and emergency stopPlay with interactive toys and puzzles
SaturdayTrain “leave it” and “quiet”Teach “speak” and “play dead”
SundayReview all commands and behaviors to assess progressPlay fun games like tag and tug-of-war

Consistency is Key

Whatever schedule you decide to adopt, it’s essential that you stick to it as consistently as possible. Dogs thrive on routines and can quickly become confused or frustrated if the rules keep changing.

Be sure to take into account your own schedule and availability when planning your training sessions. If you can’t commit to daily training, consider a few longer sessions on the weekends. Remember that quality is more important than quantity when it comes to training your Lhasa Apso, so focus on making each session as positive and productive as possible.

Tracking Progress

In order to effectively train your Lhasa Apso using positive reinforcement techniques, it is important to track their progress. This will allow you to assess their improvements and make any necessary adjustments to your training approach.

One effective way to track progress is to keep a record of each training session. During each session, take note of what techniques were used, how your dog responded, and any areas where they struggled.

Create a table to keep track of your Lhasa Apso’s progress. The table should have columns for the date of the training session, the technique used, and a rating for how well your pet responded.

For example, you could include the following columns in your table:
– Date
– Training Technique Used (Clicker, Target, Hand Feeding, etc.)
– Response (1-5 Scale)

In the “Response” column, use a rating scale from 1 to 5, with 1 being poor and 5 being excellent. This will allow you to easily gauge your Lhasa Apso’s progress over time.

It’s important to remember that progress may not always be linear. Some training sessions may result in significant progress, while others may feel like setbacks. Don’t get discouraged! Keep track of all progress, big and small, in order to see the big picture.

Another way to track progress is to incorporate end goals into your training plan. These goals should be specific, measurable, and achievable. For example, if your Lhasa Apso has a dominance issue with jumping on people, a goal could be to reduce jumping behavior by 50% in the next month.

By tracking progress and setting specific goals, you’ll be able to see the progress your Lhasa Apso is making and continue to adjust your training techniques until you achieve desired outcomes.

Adjusting Techniques as Needed

As you begin to implement positive reinforcement techniques in training your Lhasa Apso, it’s important to remember that not all methods will work for every dog. Each Lhasa Apso is an individual with their own unique personality and set of behaviors that may require adjusting your training techniques.

Here are some ways to adjust your techniques:

  • Observe your Lhasa Apso’s behavior during training. Are they responding well to certain techniques? If not, try a different approach.
  • Consider the pace of your training. Is your Lhasa Apso feeling overwhelmed or frustrated with the training? Slow down and give them time to fully understand and process each step.
  • Take into account your Lhasa Apso’s mood and energy level before beginning a training session. If they seem fatigued or agitated, it may not be the best time to train.
  • Reinforce positive behaviors consistently, but don’t overdo it. If you reward every correct action, your Lhasa Apso may become dependent on treats or praise and lose motivation to try harder.
  • Remember to be patient with your Lhasa Apso during the training process. Some behaviors may take longer to change or eliminate than others.

By adjusting your training techniques as necessary and customizing your approach to your Lhasa Apso’s specific needs, you’ll be more successful in achieving your training goals. The key is to stay dedicated to the process and be willing to try new approaches as needed.


After implementing these positive reinforcement techniques for Lhasa Apsos with dominance issues, you should start to see improvement in their behavior. Remember that consistency and patience are key in the training process. By setting realistic training goals and creating a positive environment, you can help your Lhasa Apso become a well-behaved and happy companion.

Clicker training, target training, hand feeding, positive verbal reinforcement, distraction training, and consistent training schedules will all play a role in your success. By tracking progress and adjusting techniques as needed, you can continue to improve your Lhasa Apso’s behavior over time.

Dominance issues in Lhasa Apsos can be concerning, but positive reinforcement training techniques can be a powerful tool for helping your furry friend overcome these challenges. Remember to always approach training with kindness and patience, praising good behavior while redirecting negative behavior.

With these techniques and a little patience, you’ll be amazed at the results. Your Lhasa Apso will not only become better behaved, but also a happier and more confident companion. Say goodbye to dominance issues and hello to a more positive relationship with your furry friend!

Frequently Asked Questions

Can positive reinforcement training work for Lhasa Apsos with dominance issues?

Yes, positive reinforcement training can be an effective method for training Lhasa Apsos with dominance issues. By rewarding good behavior instead of punishing bad behavior, you can encourage your dog to learn desirable behaviors.

What is clicker training?

Clicker training is a positive reinforcement training technique that uses a click sound to signal to the dog that they have performed a desired behavior, followed by a treat or reward. This method allows for precise timing and clear communication with the dog.

What is target training?

Target training involves teaching the dog to touch a specific object, such as your hand or a target stick, with their nose or paw. This technique can be used to teach many behaviors, and can help your dog focus and learn more complex commands.

What is hand feeding and how can it benefit my dog?

Hand feeding involves feeding your dog one piece of kibble at a time from your hand, rather than from a bowl. This technique can help build a stronger bond with your dog, increase their focus and engagement during training, and also help prevent resource guarding behaviors.

What is positive verbal reinforcement?

Positive verbal reinforcement involves praising your dog with words, such as “good dog” or “well done,” when they perform a desired behavior. This can be used in combination with treats or other rewards to reinforce good behavior.

What is distraction training and how can it help?

Distraction training involves gradually increasing the level of distraction in the environment while training your dog, in order to help them learn to maintain focus and perform desired behaviors in real-world situations. This technique can be especially helpful for Lhasa Apsos with dominance issues.

How important is consistency in positive reinforcement training?

Consistency is key in positive reinforcement training. By consistently rewarding desired behaviors and ignoring or redirecting unwanted behaviors, you can help your Lhasa Apso learn what is expected of them and establish good habits.

How can I set realistic training goals for my Lhasa Apso?

When setting training goals for your Lhasa Apso, it is important to consider their individual personality and abilities. Start with achievable goals and gradually build up to more complex behaviors as your dog gains confidence and skills.

What can I do to create a positive training environment for my Lhasa Apso?

You can create a positive training environment for your Lhasa Apso by keeping training sessions short and fun, using high-value treats and rewards, minimizing distractions, and being patient and encouraging.

How often should I train my Lhasa Apso?

The frequency of training sessions will depend on your individual dog and their attention span. Aim for a few short training sessions per day, rather than one long session, and gradually increase the length and complexity of the training as your dog progresses.


Britta Thygesen

Britta Thygesen

A passionate dog owner and a full-time certified dog trainer. Aspires to make DogCareHacks a go-to place for all the doggo info. Shares personal experience and professional knowledge.

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