Teach Your Dog How To Behave. Do You Think They Learn By Osmosis?

Posted by Maureen Lake at

Teach Your Dog How To Behave. Do You Think They Learn By Osmosis?

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You Need To Teach Your Dog How To Behave

Do you want the secret to a happy dog? It’s not rocket science; it’s plain, simple, good old training. Teach your dog how to behave! A happy dog is one that knows what’s expected of them, one that trusts their leader, takes pleasure in working, and knows that they’ll be rewarded. Often our dogs have us trained well - right? How quickly do you get up when they whine at the door? I bet your dog sends you a distinct signal when they’re hungry, and often you respond by feeding them. Mine sure does! I swear she can tell time. Dog’s are very smart and learn fast what they can get away with and what they can’t. Dogs take their cues from you- the primary person in their life. Being the top dog is one reason it’s important for you to train your friend and not farm the job out to a professional. It rarely works. “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks”. I bet you’ve heard that one before, but guess what? You can. It might be a bit harder the older your pet, but all you need to do is stop rewarding the old and teach the new. Be clear and precise in your mind what you want your dog to learn and consistently reward for that skill. STOP reinforcing your dog for the behavior you no longer want.

Teach Your Dog How To Behave. Do You Think They Learn By Osmosis?

If you want your dog to behave reward the correct behavior! 

Do you pay the most attention to your dog when they're naughty? No wonder Fido is misbehaving! Many times we reward behavior that we don’t like and ignore the behavior we do! Who's being naughty now? I understand this dilemma all too well. Keira, from the time she was a puppy, steals my reading glasses and runs around the house with them in her mouth. What do I do? I give her a treat, so she drops my glasses. She trained me well! Stealing glasses have been going on between Keira and me for 10 ½ glorious years!

Being inconsistent with rules is detrimental to our dogs because it makes life difficult not only for your dog but you too.

How can your furry friend trust you if they don’t know what’s what? Will they get punished this time for jumping on the couch or will they get rewarded with soft petting and hugs? You're confusing! Dogs are quick learners. They know who the ‘softie’ is and who will bend the rules. The easy mark in the family is teaching the dog persistence- if they keep asking long enough someone will give in eventually. This behavior is annoying and gets old real quick.

Teach Your Dog How To Behave. Do You Think They Learn By Osmosis?

So a BIG question to ask yourself Is there something out of whack in your household with your dog? Do the two of you need to go back to school to learn new behaviors? Did you select the wrong dog for your lifestyle? I highly recommend taking a class from an excellent instructor. Your dog is responding to you because of the signals and cues you're sending to him and what you chose to reward. Don’t expect someone else to do this hard work for you. You need to do this work with and for your dog. There are some great resources and books available online. I highly recommend using positive training such as this amazing book by Victoria Stilwell: Train Your Dog Positively: Understand Your Dog And Solve Commo Behavior Problems Including Separation Anxiety, Excessive Barking, Aggression, Housetraining, Leash Pulling And More!  Please leave a comment below and share what tips or resources you recommend. Sharing valuable information will benefit us all. Don’t forget to tweet this out or share with your friends. Stay tuned, tomorrow’s topic is: Your Environment: Healthy or Toxic? You just might be surprised to hear how the products you use or the food you eat might be affecting your furry friend.

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  • Thank you for a great series. i know my dog has me trained. Great advise

    Steve on
  • This is so important thank you for this. Many dog owners simply let their dogs continue with “naughty” behaviour like jumping on guest and barking through the night and affecting the quality of life for the neighbours.

    Dog on
  • Thanks, Devin. Training is key and you do an excellent job at it. I can’t wait to see what all your little girl learns. It’s amazing to watch the two of you!

    Maureen Lake on
  • Great blog!! Training is such an important part in building trust between you and your dog! I love training my dogs!

    Devin on

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