I believe that a great way to train your best friend is for them to learn nothing in life is free. This NILF school of obedience works so well in establishing pack behavior as well as creating a general relationship with the animal that you live with. Before I feed Ranger his dinner he must wait until I give him permission to commence eating. Ranger will wait for up to five minutes before he will start to chow down. He will gaze into my eyes awaiting those words 'okay boy go for it.' I can walk around him or even go inside and he generally will not eat until I give him the green light.
I think that Ranger has benefitted in this training because he knows that I am paying attention to him not just haphazardly dropping the food in the dish. Ranger knows that he is special to me and that I am taking the time to be with him paying close attention.
Another way that NILF has been effective is that he will not go through a door until I either go first or he has gotten permission. This prevents him from bolting outside possibly creating a unpredictable situation.
This dog has matured well in the four years he has been with me since a pup and we have reached a wonderful level of understanding. He no longer tests the limits and I know that I have a reliable, loyal pal at my side. Ranger knows that I will be there for him and never put him in a dangerous situation.