So these days everybody has an opinion on dog training and behaviour, using new equipment to solve issues, or really mask them so they blast out in different ways.
“I had a dog that pulled, I bought a (Insert brand here…..) headcollar and it helped no end” – Translation, you didn’t stop the problem in most cases only made the dog pull less it’s fighting to get it off. As it was never introduced right, or is hte wrong size and rides up into the dogs eyes making them unable to see.
“Buy (Insert harness)…. it stopped him choking when walking” – Translation, he now uses all his front chest muscles to lunge when he see’s other dogs and cause long term damage to the front leg joints from ill fitting and bad design.
There are loads of ways to teach dogs things, but quite often their is another issue unseen that is causing other problems. Your dog pulls on a walk and “You’ve tried everything”, yes you might have but for a few minutes at a time. The underlying issue is not the pulling, but the face the dog is bored stiff at home and sees the 20 min walk a day, as it’s only outlet. The dog wants to do something, teach it a new trick, give it an activity toy. Let it be a dog and use it’s brain. Instead of using gadgets, teach the dog not to pull. TEACH!
Their are quick fixes for every behaviour, but it doesn’t mean it sorts the issue. You as the owner, have to teach the dogs. You don’t just stick a new jumper on a child if it’s not learning right? You find another way to teach them and help them learn. You have to do the same with dogs. What works for one dog, might not for another.
As a dog trainer I spend hours working on training techniques with my dogs, learning about them, testing them and perfecting them. All to solve the problem in one dog, a problem that was avoidable.
Teach your dog not to pull, using one of a billion methods. We taught dog’s to walk to heel long before they invented these gadgets. If it’s not working look at your and your dog’s life style. Are they getting enough exercise? Do you understand the breed needs? What could you change to benefit you both?
Simple things to change to help reduce for behaviour issues right off the bat:
Food! -Quality! Think about what you eat, then look at what your dog eats. I’ll give you a hint! NO BAKERS! I don’t bash many companies but this is one. Just NO. Here’s why (http://www.doglistener.co.uk/bakers-pedigree-dogfood) E Numbers are not for people or dogs! Think.
Neutering – Think about it, research into it. Do you need to do it? Why are you doing it? ASk vets questions, ask trainers questions! Don’t do things blindly.
Entertainment – Kong… heard of it if not… have a look (http://www.kongcompany.com/en-uk/). You don’t even have to fork out for toys! Use your rubbish. Old bottles plastic and cartons. Stick some treats in and your away, let them fight to get them, chewing and throwing about (Use your common sense, supervise please).
Train the dogs something new? Your imagination is the limit! Open the washing machine to help, pull doors closed, pick up your clothes, or play dead. The possibilities are endless. And it’s so easy!
Home life – Is your dog getting the attention is deserves and needs? I understand you have lives and dogs aren’t always the top of the priority list, but they still need love and attention. Do you spend time with them alone? Do you let them spend time with you when your doing other thing’s, giving them attention. OR are they shut away in a room, while your busy as “they get under your feet”. Dogs are animals not ornaments.
Dogs require hard work…. their are no quick fixes.