We all love our dogs, but sometimes they are just flat-out frustrating. In times like this, your first reaction may be to raise your voice to stop any immediate actions or lunge at them to get them to focus on you. Neither one of these reactions help your dog or you, since they begin to think you are supporting their actions. They cannot tell the difference between a halt yell or a security yell. So, they assume that you are with them in their alert barking. Alternatively, if they feel threatened by you, it can foster fear and nervousness in your canine.
Depending on how old your dog is, their discipline should be adjusted and changed to fit their ‘bad’ action. For example, if you have a puppy, one of the best ways to discipline them is by shooting them with water from a squirt bottle or distracting them with something. Many times, puppies become infatuated with water because of these disciplining choices. Then, they end up becoming distracted anyway, instead of being afraid or nervous.
As adults, the discipline options become broader since they can go off by themselves and get into new and different trouble. Squirt bottles and distractions will only work for so long on a fully-grown dog. So, instead, focus on physical options. This does not mean hitting them. This actually means removing them from whatever is exciting them into bad behavior, like a time-out. You can also command them into a position that forces them to stop whatever they are doing, like ‘come’, ‘sit’, or ‘lay down.
You also have options in those instances that they have something in their mouth that they shouldn’t. Many trainers combat this by grabbing them by the scruff of the neck and giving them a quick, but firm, shake to signal them into dropping whatever they have. Remember though, that whatever discipline you choose shouldn’t hurt them. It should tell them that they were doing something they shouldn’t.
If you live in the Charleston area, Dog Training Now Charleston is your one-stop answer for everything dog training. Give us a call today to sign us for one of our training classes for you and your dog. You can also speak to us about how we achieve the strongest bonds between owners and their best friends.