Raising a happy and content canine takes work and effort, but it will be well-worth it in the long run. While there are quite a few people out there who love their dogs, if they are not taking the time to properly train them, they are not ever going to have a well-behaved dog.
Unfortunately, there are quite a few mistakes that are commonly made by unknowing dog owners. Understanding what these mistakes are will help you avoid them.
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Each interaction you have with your dog is sending a message and in some instances, owners are not sending the right ones. For example, if you give your dog affection or attention when they are performing a behavior that is undesirable, it can reinforce this bad behavior, which will increase the chances they are going to keep doing it.
It is important to remember that to your pet, any type of attention or affection is considered a reward. This means you should only offer them when the pet is performing some type of desired behavior.
Your dog is looking to you for leadership and guidance. They need to know what their boundaries are so that they feel secure when they are with you. This means when you take your dog for a walk, they should walk next to you, not out in front of you, pulling on the leash. When you are making their food, they should sit down and wait nicely, rather than jumping on you. When you get home they may be excited, but they should still listen to commands such as “sit” or “stay.”
In order to be happy and feel safe, your dog needs boundaries. It is your job to install these boundaries and manners. When you take the time to train them, they will become a balanced and self-confident canine.
Canis lupus is your dog – homo sapiens is you. This means that you and your canine are different species. This means, at the simplest level, your dog is not a human being. Treating them as if they are a human will deprive them of quite a few things that would otherwise make them happy and healthy.
They don’t need processed pet food, but rather carnivore appropriate and nutritious options. They also don’t need to have a stuffed toy, or cute sweater, but they should have at minimum, 20 minutes of some type of aerobic activity each day.
Just because you love your pet, they are extremely different than humans and therefore need to be treated in such a way. Instead of trying to make your dog more human, try to honor and nurture all the things that make your dog, uniquely a dog.
You bathe and brush your pet and have them groomed, but there are some hygiene items that some pet parents forget about – that are extremely important. Your pet’s nails and teeth have to be cared for. In fact, it is essential to brush your dog’s teeth – at the very least – several times a week.
If this is not done, then there is a good chance that by the time they reach the age of three, they will have developed gum disease. This is a situation that will only continue to get worse and the dog’s mount will begin to smell and feel bad and correcting the issue will result in a huge vet bill and the loss of a few teeth.
It is also important that you clip your dog’s nails on a regular basis. This is a process that has to be done carefully, but can be done once a week or more. If you are unsure of the proper way to clip your dog’s nails, then ask the groomer or vet to do it for you. They can teach you want to do and ensure that the nails stay at a manageable length.
There are far too many dog owners who believe that a dog crate is actually an invention of the devil. If you are one of these believers, then there are quite a few things that you are missing. The fact is, dogs are naturally den dwellers and the crate will provide you with the ability to provide your dog with their desire to have a small, safe and dark spot to be in.
Using a crate can also be a huge win as a pet parent, since you, and the dog, will be able to use it for a variety of purposes. You can use the crate for house training, as well as for traveling or overnight stays with family or friends.
Keep in mind, crate hate is just not a logical reaction to this. Unless the dog has been traumatized by others who made bad decisions with a crate, there is no reason not to use one. Chances are if you talk to a few friends who have used a crate, you will discover the benefits it offers.
If you want to raise a well-mannered and balanced dog, then you should use positive reinforcement in regard to behavior training, rather than training based on punishments. A number of new studies have proven that positive reinforcement is much more effective than any type of training method that involves punishment or dominance. There are a number of studies that also conclude that training based on punishment will create additional behavior issues, which is not an outcome that most dog guardians want.
Properly training your dog and avoiding the mistakes here will help you and your pet be happier. Keep this in mind to help make training as easy and painless as possible for both you, as well as your four legged companion. Doing this will help ensure that you don’t have a dog who does not listen.