Want a Happy Well Balanced Dog? This is What You Need to Do.
When pet parents contact us for help,our initial purpose is to provide some basic information such as our costs, what we do, and then reassure them that it’s nothing we have not already seen. Pet parents can become very frustrated with their fur baby and we are here to help. Before we take on training we first need a commitment from the parents. People can cause a lot of the issues the dogs are experiencing. Humans are nurturing and the worst thing you can do with a nervous or aggressive dog is to nurture it. To nurture is to support and encourage. If you support and encourage a nervous or aggressive dog you are communicating to the dog that you want it to be nervous or aggressive. Nurturing creates a bigger problem in the long run. If you walk into our facility and are not willing to follow instructions and make changes, you will be wasting our time and your money. Changing dog behavior starts at home.
Depending on what the dog’s issues are we may tell the owners –
- Stop petting the dog – Some people pet the dog whenever it’s nervous Petting is a reward and the dog thinks you want it to be nervous. Petting rewards and encourages nervous behavior.
- Dog stays off the furniture and off your lap. Dogs that have aggression issues possess their owners and have more confidence when they are with their owner. Teach the dog a Place command on a dog bed or cot
- Don’t tell the dog “It’s Okay.” It is another form of praise and you are making manners worse.
- Dog does not sleep in bed with you. If your dog has aggression issues, no more sleeping in bed
- Stop talking to the dog. Some people talk constantly to their dog which I imagine can get annoying to the dog. If I talked non-stop to my wife she’d tell me enough! Dogs can learn a few key commands and then all you are making is noise. We have had dogs that come in for training that do not know their name. Could it be due to the non-stop talking the owner does so the dog just learned to tune them out? Silence is peace. Dogs naturally are quiet. They bark to get attention or alert you to a threat, but normal well-balanced dogs are quiet. I once had a seasonal campsite in a resort town and would take my 5 dogs with me to the camper for the week. People would walk by and be very surprised that I had so many dogs, and how quiet they were.
Once the fur parent is on board to make some changes at home, the next step is to start training. I am amazed how impatient people can be with their dogs. We have had our puppy three weeks and he still isn’t potty trained. I don’t expect my dog to be totally potty trained until they are 6 – 12 months of age. I mean, leave loose in the house and they are not going to go unless they are put outdoors. This also means the dpg should communicate to me that they need to go out. You need to be alert and to watch for clues, such as pacing, standing at the door, or sniffing. I have one dog that whines to go out and the other either paces or nose bumps me. If she’s pacing and I am not paying attention, she will eventually go in the house. They are not going to hold it forever.
Our training programs are basically two weeks long. Recently, after 5 days of training, the fur parent complained that their 8-month-old dog wasn’t off-leash reliable yet. Really? Another example of expecting too much too soon. Your dog is an animal, be patient and it will come. And, the final key to success is work. I come from a police dog and competition background. Guess which teams were the most successful? The successful team was the one that put in the most work. Period. With our training programs, we get the foundation work done for you in two weeks. After that, it is up to you to do the work and finish your dog up.
That is why we provide our clients with 6 months of group class for them to practice and train. Group class is where you can pick our trainer’s brains for help or even how to teach tricks, agility, or advanced behavior.
To fulfill your dog’s life, they need love and freedom. I believe all dogs should have the freedom to run in an open West Michigan field, use their noses, and even chase a rabbit. Chasing prey can be exhilarating for a dog, however, you better have control. You better have clear communication because if that prey is heading for the road, will you have the ability to stop that dog and recall them? I certainly hope so. You need control so your dog can experience the freedom I am talking about. Control = Freedom.
If your dog doesn’t have the freedom to be a dog, please come and see us at Adams K-9. Our evaluations are free and your dog will love the results or our training programs. Contact us today and love your dog, love your dog’s behavior.
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