Training a Dog to Behave in all Situations Starts at Home
Training a dog to behave in all situations may sound impossible, but it’s very attainable. Having a well-mannered dog starts at home. Waiting until you go on a walk, to the park or on vacation to expect your dog to act correctly really isn’t fair to them.
Puppies are often encouraged to jump or paw at legs and they get rewarded with praise and affection. After a few months pass, the puppy grows in size and the weather goes from dry to wet, that same pup jumps on us and instead of being delighted we get angry. We change the rules when training a dog and expect them to keep up. The same happens when location changes. If you feed your dog table scraps they will probably beg at the family picnic.
Clear communication is the key to training a dog to behave whether in or out of the home. It may sound easy, but sometimes this means putting aside what you want to do in order to do what’s best for your dog. After a long day of work most people want to come through the door, drop to their knees and be greeted with a “happy” dog, giving sloppy kisses and rolling around. Instead, you are teaching your dog that when someone comes through the door it is an exciting event and appropriate to jump, bark and adrenalize. As this behavior progresses dogs can get so worked up that they nip at people who come over.
Rather than getting frustrated with your dog’s behavior when you leave the home, focus on teaching good manners at home first. Maybe you need to instruct your guests on how to (or not to) approach your dog. Being a clear communicator sometimes means not letting people interact with your dog. Some people are afraid of dogs or simply do not like them, but if your dog is use to people gushing over them, then they will be more likely to expect this reaction from everyone.
Instead of ‘training a dog’ you should think about the lifestyle you have with your dog. How you want them to respond to outside stimulus and what the correct behavior is. By clearly communicating with your dog at home, going out into the world becomes a whole lot easier.