If you let your dog get away with too much, you may be losing authority in your dog’s eyes without even realizing it. In Raising Your Paws Podcast (number 12,) my guest Camilla Gray-Nelson explained that over accommodating your dog’s desires can negatively affect how your dog perceives you.
Here’s some questions to ask yourself to see if you are accommodating your dog.
Do you give in to your dog barking at you to give it a treat or the ball?
Do you let your dog have a treat after they jump up and practically tear it from your hand?
Do you let your dog determine how fast or slow you go on your walks?
Do you get out of your dog’s way, letting them lie in your spot on the couch?
Do you let your dog lead/pull you wherever they want when walking?
Do you let your dog get up after putting them in a down before you’ve released them?
Think about other things that you let your dog do, even if you don’t want it and know its probably not a good idea.
I know at times, you just want your dog to be happy and so don’t always enforce your rules, and it can be a hassle to train consistently, however a dog who feels that they are in control, may not respect you as its leader and this can lead to misbehavior.
In the book, Lipstick and the Leash, Dog Training a Woman’s Way, by Camilla Gray-Nelson, she writes, “Dogs live by two simple rules: Obey superiors and ignore subordinates.” “In the animal world, accommodation is akin to subordination.”
By giving in too much to what your dog wants, not setting limits, your dog may see you as being subordinate to them – no wonder they ignore your cues, (a word I like better than commands.)
For your dog to take you seriously, you’ll want to increase/take back your rank as its leader – this does not mean by yelling at them or hurting or punishing them, it means simply start following through with your cues, let your dog know what behaviors are not allowed and take back your control.
They will respect you more and you’ll be amazed at how life with your pooch improves.
So, ignore that bark, and only give the ball or treat when she is sitting quietly in front of you.
Have your dog work for the treat, give a sit, or down or shake paws cue, etc. and then, give the treat. Do this consistently to break any bad habits they’ve developed to make you give them food.
Teach your dog to walk by your side – not in front of you. Listen to segment two in episode 11 to learn how to do Camilla Gray-Nelson’s “Leadership Walk”.
Follow through with the “come” cue if your dog runs off and does not respond to you. Rather than yelling it over and over again, getting louder and madder, expecting them to come back to you when you sound like a raving lunatic, quietly, go get your dog. If they do come back on their own, even though a bit delayed, reward it with praise, a treat or toy whatever motivates your dog. If you punish them for coming back, it may backfire on you the next time. Your dog may associate coming to you as being a bad thing.
Listen to Podcast Episode 12.
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