Dog Behavior Problems
Dog behavior problems refer to the unwanted manifestations or reactions in dogs in certain situations. They are not necessarily related to the completion of a training program.
Behavior problems is dogs can have multiple causes: genetic, medical or psychological causes, traumas, educational or training mistakes (the owners’ excessive indulgence can lead dogs to not acknowledge their authority). Dogs have a simple social system, based on a hierarchical pyramid in which there can be only one leader at the top. For mere hedonistic reasons, dogs climb as high as you allow them to. Testing puppies before acquiring them, creating a balanced life style for the dogs and enrolling them in a training program are essential means of preventing behavior problems.
The following recommendations focus on: diminishing the risks of troublesome manifestations in dogs or manifestations that don’t meet your expectations and diminishing the time it takes to complete an efficient training program.
Basic rules for preventing dog behavior problems: feed your dog at pre-established hours only and don’t leave food at his discretion throughout the day; don’t let your dog sleep in bed, on the couch or armchairs. Don’t make a habit of petting your dog unconditionally. Petting is a powerful reward and it is best to use it upon the correct execution of a command. Limit your dog’s access to the apartment and don’t allow him to exit the door first when you let him out or take him for a walk. In case your dog has been in a training program, you can use the sit-wait command. Don’t let the dog decide the direction in which you are going when you walk him. If he pulls on the leash or walks in front of you, correct him and quickly change the direction in which you are going. When he finds something on the ground or steals something from the table, don’t run after him to catch him. You won’t be able to do that easily and the dog will interpret the situation as an entertaining game. Try to grab his attention and to get him to come to you. Don’t allow the dog to permanently follow you around the house. Get him used to being at home alone, starting from a period or several minutes. Upon leaving the house and returning, ignore the dog for 5-10 minutes. Don’t call the dog from the dog playground to immediately leave for home. Call him to you, reward him, put on his lead and let him move around using the entire length of the lead for a couple of minutes before leaving. You wouldn’t like to stop doing something entertaining just because the boss has called on a meeting.