Your dog, man’s best friend…most of the time. If you are being driven crazy by bad dog behavior and are at the point of giving your dog away – stop. You don’t have to go that far. There really is hope and help.
Remember your dog is smart and really does want to please you. It is an extremely rare thing to have a genuinely mean dog, unless they were trained to be that way.
Usually bad behavior just stems from a lack of of training and mixed messages. I’ve done it myself. I have a big dog and he loves to get in my lap. Sometimes I get mad and tell him to get down, but other times I laugh and hug him.
I know I’m guilty of sending him mixed messages. That’s easy to do but we all have to make sure it doesn’t happen. It’s not fair to your dog.
They don’t understand why one time a behavior is rewarded and the next they get scolded for doing the exact same thing.
There are many common behaviors that are unacceptable from your dog, aggression, biting, jumping, excessive barking, bad toilet habits, and chewing.
Here are a few simple steps you can take to alleviate bad habits:
1) Control to prevent further damage. This could mean investing in a crate to prevent damage while you are actively teaching your dog better behaviors.
2) Find triggers to bad behavior. For example, destructive chewing behavior often stems from the dog being bored. Something as simple as providing your dog with more exercise can often solve a chewing problem. Getting your dog neutered (or spayed) might be all you need to do to stop bad toilet habits.
3) Help your dog find more appropriate ways to do things. For example, if your dog is a jumper you can teach him to stop jumping by firmly saying “no”, pushing him down and then bending down to his level and petting him. Let him know that if he wants your attention he will get it and he doesn’t need to jump.
4) Your dog is smart and can be re-trained in more appropriate behavior. Just be patient and loving. Be firm when correcting bad behavior but don’t yell and get angry. Give your dog time to learn how to act properly.
Bad dog behavior can really put a strain on the relationship you have with your pet. But by following a few simple steps, consistently, you will let your dog know what you expect of him. He loves you and will try to please you, just show him how.