It takes a lot of patience and consistency to be a good dog parent. Simone, of “Oh My Dog!” training has shared a few tips on how to be a good leader and disciplinarian.
Using the principles below will help you earn your canine companion’s respect and also help your dog feel more secure.
Naomi Tsai and Cory
Put Your Dog on a Learn to Earn Program. That means he must do something for you in order to earn anything that is valuable to him. If your dog wants to be petted, ask him to sit first. If he’s already sitting, ask him to lie down. Then pet.
Training. Practice obedience exercises and incorporate them into your everyday life. Down-stays are especially good for establishing leadership. Keep practice sessions short and frequent
Handling. Teach your dog to accept handling. Do daily massage, including paws, ears and mouth. This practice also makes for easier groomer/veterinary visits and alerts you to any physical abnormalities. If your dog has issues about being handled, address them with a trainer’s help.
Good leaders are not bullies! Reprimand verbally when necessary, then forgive and move on. Never use scruff-shakes, jerking, hitting or other harsh physical corrections. Use praise and rewards to let your dog know when he is doing the right thing. Above all, be a kind and patient leader.
Oh My Dog! Behaviour Training | t. 604.537.6855 | e. firstname.lastname@example.org w. www.ohmydog-training.com
I recently had a chance to sit down with Simone of “Oh My Dog!” training to discuss the importance of obedience classes for puppies. Below are some of the reasons a basic obedience class is a great idea to help a puppy become a good dog:
Safe, controlled and appropriate socialization keeps the puppy safe, well adjusted, and helps him or her become a good companion. Unfortunately, dogs who aren’t well socialized do not adapt well to new situations and often become fearful.
Puppies rapid learning begins at about 7 weeks and what they learn will have a lasting impact. Not only will they learn new skills, but they will learn whether they are being taught or not.
Though their attention span is short, the things they learn are learned permanently and are resistant to change. Therefore, owners need to be careful about what their puppies are learning at this time. Showing them what is expected and establishing the rules while still a puppy is far easier than trying to train your dog later in life.
How your dog interacts with you is determined during puppyhood. What puppy does now is what he or she will likely do later. So, don’t allow your puppy to do things (because he is cute) which will be unacceptable when he or she becomes a dog.
Simone’s Upcoming Puppy Obedience Class:
Wednesday, April 25th
Adventure Den, 33 East 3rd Avenue, Vancouver BC
Halfway through Nicky’s morning walk I noticed he was madly sniffing and foraging in the grass near the sidewalk. As I walked over to check out what was going on, I heard a loud crunching sound coming from my little dog. Nickster was furiously trying to eat a found bone before I could snatch it away. As I put my hand down to take this treasure away from him he transformed, in front of my eyes, from my sweet, little Nicky into a wild dingo! He had crazy eyes, let out a couple of shrieking barks and growls and then bit my hand as hard as he could. Oouuchhh!
I walked him home with two fang marks in my hand, thinking “This has got to stop”! Luckily I have worked with an awesome trainer, Simone of “Oh my Dog!” training and I gave her a call to help me with Nickster’s food aggression.
Simone’s advice for dealing with food aggression:
No more free feeding (leaving a bowl of food out for a dog to eat as he pleases). Feed your dog from your hand only. This will re-inforce your position as a leader and remind your dog that food comes from you.
Re-instate your alpha role. Remind your dog that you are the leader and the leader decides who eats first, who walks through a door first, etc.
After practicing leadership consistently for a few weeks your dog will start to see you as the alpha/leader and no longer defy you when he doesn’t get his own way.
Look out Nickster, you little outlaw. Things are about to change!