Just don’t let your dog do that.
Sounds simple right? Maybe too simple?
I am often met with a frustrated client who feels like they have tried everything in their power to stop their dog from doing certain unwanted behaviours. What they don’t realize is that often (not always), but often, we can change a dog’s behaviour simply by interrupting the pattern or the habit. In more simple terms, just don’t let the dog do it, and they will stop doing “it”. When I work with owners of puppies, I show them how to stop unwanted behaviours from starting in the first place. The goal is to never allow the puppy to rehearse unwanted, self-reinforcing behaviours (such as barking, chasing, counter surfing, etc). By never letting the puppy practice the behaviour, t
hey will never create bad habit or pattern. While, this is part of our training for preventing unwanted behaviours in puppies, we can use the same concept for adult dogs. By simply not letting your dog practice a behaviour any more (we will get to the how), they will eventually stop trying or stop practicing that behaviour.
So, how do you not let your dog do that? Management! Management will allow you to stop the cycle of the behaviour. For example, if your dog runs to the front window barking every time someone walks by, have a leash on and simply don’t let him run to the window. When you are not home, close the blinds or restrict access so the dog can’t practice while you are not there to manage. If your dog begs at the table (first, don’t feed him from the table), but put your dog
on place so they cannot beg. If your dog jumps on people, have him on leash and step on the leash just enough so that when he goes to jump he will not be able to. Once your dog is no longer practicing the
se behaviours daily (sometimes several times a day), most often they will simply just stop doing them.
As mentioned, often it is as simple as not letting them do that…but there are times where training will get more complicated. I will always suggest first that if your dog is displa
ying some unwanted behaviours, try not letting them practice the behaviour through management and communication and see where that takes you. I will bet that within 2-4 weeks your dog will most likely stop that behaviour completely.
If you need help with not letting your dog practice unwanted behaviours, please contact us today! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org