Top 10 things a dog owner should understand about dogs

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As much as we feel our dogs are our family, they react and think differently than we do.  Here are some things to think about if you own a dog.

By Laura Pakis, Certified Dog Trainer and Professional Blogger,

  1. Dogs see the world as black or white. You cannot reason with a dog
  2. Put words to actions with your dog. This is a better form of communication than always saying NO.
  3. Owners need to teach dogs what their boundaries are in the human world. If not, the dog will assume being a dog is the right way to be
  4. A dog’s instinct is usually based on pack mentality. If you are not seen as a leader by your dog, your dog will assume the role and you won’t be happy with the relationship.
  5. Consistency and follow through are the keys to having a well-mannered dog.
  6. Touch is the highest praise you can give a dog; over verbal, treats and toys. Use it!
  7. Dogs are constantly watching you for signals that is why obedience should be a way of life and commands should be used to communicate what you want from your dog.
  8. All dogs can be trained.  You just need the right training tools and training methods.
  9. Dog behavior can be changed by using commands and there are experienced dog trainers who can provide this service.
  10. Socialization of a puppy involves all 5 senses, not just interacting with other dogs. You have his first 18 weeks to show him the world is a safe and happy place.

I’ve heard people say, “that’s a bad dog”.  Too many people are giving up their dogs because they have been told there is nothing more they can do for the dog.  This statement is untrue.  We make dogs bad through our actions or inaction.  There are trainers who can change a dog’s behavior for the better.  It may require a different training method and tools you aren’t familiar with or have learned to disagree with.  Keep an open mind.  Isn’t it better to try to change your dog’s behavior than give it up or worse, put it down.

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