The Dog I've Always Wanted

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News From the Doggie Daycare 4

May 21st, 2008 · · News From the Doggie Daycare

The importance of preventing problem behaviours by taking a proactive approach to puppy training cannot be overestimated. It is so much easier to prevent things from developing than to eradicate a negative behaviour once it has become entrenched.

With young puppies one of the first issues to be sorted out is that of mouthing. A dog uses his mouth to explore the world the way we use our hands. A nippy puppy must be conditioned in order to learn to be gentle with his mouth.

The longer a behaviour is allowed to persist the more difficult it is to modify or eliminate. Door charging is an example of a behaviour that is not only bad manners but also potentially very dangerous even lethal to a dog. Consistency is key; the dog must be required to sit and if not stay at least wait every time a door opens. Initially the dog may be restrained and praised when he is not attempting to lunge at the door.

Each time that the behaviour that needs modifying presents itself is lesson time. Training for these issues should be incorporated into the daily routine of interactions with the dog. In this way there are plenty of opportunities to address a given issue, often in a variety of contexts. Repetition over time is key. Increasingly difficult situations should be attempted as the dog begins to “get it”.

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