Does Your Dog Really Know What He’s Done Wrong?

Paws For A Minute® … and think about this…

Some people give lengthy verbal dissertations trying to explain to their dog their extreme displeasure they feel after they’ve discovered their best shoes chewed. Other’s righteously feel their dog totally gets what he’s done wrong. Absolutely, 100 %.. slinking out of the room with their ears back and tail tucked. For sure they know! Right?

 Some people try to punish their dog by using spray bottles, crating or putting your dog outside in the yard to “think about” what he’s done. This may give the person time to cool off after being mad, but really? Does it get the right point across?

Well, the truth is that dogs do respond to voice inflection and body language. So yeah, they get that your mad, but not at what? Dogs associate to things with sense of smell, patterns and triggers. It’s best to explain to them what they’ve done wrong with a sensible process that has a beginning, middle and end to it. Whether your pup has chewed something or gone to the bathroom in the house, get the leash, put it on and guide them over to what they’ve done wrong. Isolating the item or area by guiding your dog to it helps them associate the scent and your voice inflection to the word NO.

Reprimanding your dog this way you’re actually associating the smell of their saliva on the chewed item or urine on the carpet and that identifies to your dog what you’re saying NO for and to what?  After saying no, take your dog “outside” ( in the case of a bathroom mistake) or (in the case of chewing the wrong thing) give them the right chew bone. Then say “okay” in a happy voice indicating that the reprimand is over! Over time he’ll learn the pattern of where to go to the bathroom and what to chew. The days of needing to catch your dog in the act of doing something wrong are over.

What’s The Deal With Crating Your Dog? Is it Cruel?

Paws For A Minute® dog training tip! Crating your dog is not a mean thing to do. However, using a the crate as a punishment,  time out or for too long a period of time is wrong. Dogs are den animals. They love to go into small spaces. You must take the time to teach your dog to learn to be crated, slowly. Leave the crate door open and allow your dog to naturally go in and out on his own for a few days. Best way to achieve a great result is to baby gate a room or area and put the crate within that space. Do a gating exercise while your home for 20 minutes a few times a day. Use a leash to guide your dog in and take him out of the crate, when ready to shut the door. This helps guide your dog instead of coax.

Dog owner tip: Properly crating your dog and doing so, slowly in stages, can teach your pup to self soothe. In time, your dog will LOVE to have bone chewing time with music while crated. It’s meant to help teach your dog a schedule! Crating can be used as a great housebreaking tool and help cure separation anxiety. It can create trust by teaching your dog how to be calm indoors. Yes, any age dog can learn to be happy while crated.

It’s up to you to teach your dog slowly with patience. Always begin small periods of crating, after a walk and while you are home, at first.