Your Alaskan Malamute always draws attention. Such large, strong dogs aren’t an everyday occurrence in the US. Then there are their ice cool eyes which pierce straight through you. All of this means that passers-by are desperate to say hello. However, they will proceed with caution as Atlas is not a dog you would want to mess with and it is exactly that quality that you want to use. You may have a family you love dearly and a house with possessions you’ve worked hard for. It’s perfectly natural, therefore, to want to keep them safe. That is where Atlas comes in.
Training your Alaskan Malamute to be a guard dog will be the perfect burglar deterrent. It means you’ll be able to sleep easy knowing you’ve got a guard dog pacing the perimeter downstairs. This type of strict training will also allow you to build a bond with your Malamute, ensuring that any training later on will be just as successful.
Training an Alaskan Malamute to be a guard dog requires hard work and persistence. The first thing to do is start boundary training, for Atlas will naturally want to guard anything that falls within his territory. You’ll also need to encourage and develop the defensive behaviours that will make him an effective guard dog. On top of that, you'll need to use obedience commands to train him to bark on command.
If your Alaskan Malamute is just a puppy, then training could take just a month or so. This is because Alaskan Malamutes are at their most receptive when they are in the puppy stages. However, if Atlas is older, stubborn, and his days of learning are behind him, then you may need several months before you see consistent results. If you can master training, you’ll have an effective way to keep both persons and property safe. This sort of training also makes for some great bonding time with your canine pal.
Before you set to work, you’ll need to make sure you have a few bits. Stock up on delicious treats or break his favorite food into small pieces. You will also need a toy and a clicker for one of the methods below.
A long leash or rope will be required. It may also be worth investing in a body harness. This will reduce strain on his neck while increasing your control. Then set aside around fifteen minutes each day for training. Note that the more often you train, the sooner you will see results.
Once you've collected the necessary tools, you can start to train!
Want to convert him into a watchdog
Hello Alerto, As a puppy, pursue socialization - so pup knows what's still normal human behavior vs. suspicious, a high level of obedience, and general manners. Also, work on some guard dog specific behavior though. You can either hire a professional protection trainer to train pup formally, or you can work on teaching pup to bark when someone comes onto the property and generally be more alert of surroundings, on your own. For any bite work, you will need to hire professional help though. To teach pup to bark and be more alert, first, teach pup the Speak command. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-german-shepherd-to-speak Once pup knows the speak command, recruit friends pup doesn't know to step onto the property while pup watches from a window or fence. Command speak and reward with a treat when they do. Practice with telling pup to speak each time the person is on the property, until pup barks on their own when the person enters without saying speak. At that point, have the person step onto the property, wait seven seconds to see if pup will bark on their own, reward if they do, and command speak if they don't - then reward but give a smaller reward when you tell pup opposed to when pup does it on their own. Practice until pup will bark each time someone enters the property. Practice with different people you can recruit, that pup doesn't know so that pup will learn to do this with anyone who enters the property and not just that one person. Draw pup's attention to people outside or people on your property, and reward pup when you see them watching someone in general - so that pup will begin watching people and staying more alert as a habit. Pup doesn't have to bark to reward this one - just reward when pup is watching someone and you notice that. I also recommend teaching the Quiet command, so that you can tell pup when to stop barking after they alert. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden
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