Are you rewarding your dog’s bad behaviour?
My Mum keeps complaining about how her dog keeps running around the joint with her phone, TV remote and even her glasses and then destroys those things in the process.
I laughed it off telling her that the dog is still a Puppy and probably needs more exercise. That was until her dog, Panther, decided to playfully take my phone and run around the house. The next thing I saw was my mum running ahead of Panther with some treats and bribing him to give her my phone back. It worked!.
I was shocked to see that my mother unknowingly rewarded her dog for misbehaving. My mother admitted that this always worked and Panther always gave whatever he took when she gave treats.
So basically the dog thinks whenever I steal something I get a treat. Well this is a good deal and keeps repeating it. I gotta admit that dog did a great job training Mum rather than Mum training him. He’s a smart boy!
Do you reward your dog for behaving badly?
Do you hate it when your dog jumps on you? But you continue to pet them or encourage them to continue?
Got a ball crazy dog that always drops a ball on your lap and barks on your face till you throw it? And you end up throwing it to shut him up?
There’s no such thing as a bad dog – just bad owners. So what can you do?
Chewing/stealing unsuitable items?
Chewing is a natural thing for dogs, they tend to explore their surround with their mouth, and they may also chew out of boredom or stress.
So next time you catch your pup with something they shouldn’t be chewing, refocus their attention to one of their toys. And then reward them for selecting that.
Slowly but surely your dog will learn to stay away from your valuables.
Begging at the table?
Be strong and don’t let those cute puppy dog eyes make you feed them off your plate. You need to be consistent to make sure the begging stops. Make sure that no other family member feeds the dog from the table as well.
Instead provide your pup with a dinner time activity – dog food puzzles or their toys.
Dogs love big welcomes. Most times when they jump up to greet you they get the attention they need. Well, if you need your pup to stop jumping up, no matter how hard it is you need to make sure that they are not getting any attention (positive / negative), just keep your cool and turn away and ignore.
When they have settled you can go ahead and reward them.
Dogs are amazing learners, if you are consistent and patient you will be able to help your pup with improving their bad habits.