Today’s doggy parents not only learn how to train their dogs, but also learn how dogs learn, how they think and what makes them happy. Today I interviewed Shadow the rescue German Shepherd, where she told me about the 5 pet hates dogs can experience.
Tugging at my collar or lead – This can be one of the most annoying things for us dogs. We think you humans do this to get our attention or try to correct us.
The trouble is, it’s annoying, uncomfortable and painful. Tugging at our collar, or checking our lead will make us angry and scared and we won’t want to be with you. Instead call our name and show us a food reward or train us in an alternative behaviour. We really want to do our best for you. Please don’t pull the lead and hurt our necks. I wear a nice comfortable harness and I think other dogs would like this too.
Telling me off - We think you don’t like us when you shout. We find shouting scary and want to go and hide.
When you shout, we don’t know what we have done wrong and more importantly we don’t know what you want us to do. Why not show us what you would like us to do instead. That way you can tell us how good we are.
Not rewarding for good behaviour – We always want to impress you, because we love you so very much. This is an easy one. If you like something we are doing please tell us. We love positive feedback, and guess what we are more likely to repeat this good behaviour if we know you like it!
Other dogs in my face – Most of us dogs like other dogs, but it can be quite scary and worrying if you make us meet each other face to face. Some dogs don’t like other dogs at all, so you humans must remember that as the world is a worrying place for some of us.
Instead of making us dogs meet face to face, train a nice social greeting involving playful interaction and butt sniffing!! Mmmmmmmm, there’s nothing nicer than a butt sniff, it’s how us dogs shake hands!
Being bored – So here’s a fact that will shock you! We love walks, but we also love things that keep our minds occupied. You humans think that if we behave badly we need longer walks. NEWSFLASH!! When you walk us for hours a day you just make us more athletic, and then we have more stamina to behave badly!! I bet that shocked you?
Instead give us a balanced mix of walking, and mental stimulation. We love problem solving, training, scent work and fun things that occupy our mind as well as our body.