No matter what type of dog behavior problems you have, these tips will help! Most of these solutions revolve around dog training, because that’s often the root of dog behavior problems.
Some of these tips are from 101 Dog Tricks: Step by Step Activities to Engage, Challenge, and Bond with Your Dog by Kyra Sundance and Chalcy (the dog). Teaching your dog tricks is one of the most popular ways to deal with dog behavior problems.
If your dog has severe behavior problems – such as biting or chasing humans – then it’s probably best to call a dog obedience trainer. My neighbor’s dog chases runners and is starting to bite them, and my neighbor has hired a trainer to work with them. It’s far better to spend the money and hire a trainer before the problem becomes more than you can handle. The last thing you want to read is my article on deciding if you should give your dog away!
How to Deal With Dog Behavior Problems
Know that solving dog behavior problems takes time
I regretted my decision to get a dog for almost a full month after we brought her home form the humane society. Our dog Jazz is a one-year old black lab/German Shepherd – she’s 75 pounds of puppy energy and eagerness (and dog behavior problems, too)! I’ve always been a cat lover, and never owned a dog as an adult. My first tip on how to deal with dog problems is to accept that it takes time to adjust and bond with your dog. Give your dog time to learn how to adjust his behavior, to learn what you expect and require.
Deal with your dog consistently
It’s physically and emotionally exhausting to constantly train your dog – especially for new dog owners! But, training and obedience is a crucial element to creating a strong bond with your dog (which will help solve behavior problems). Firm, consistent training solidifies your position as “pack leader”, and helps your dog respect you.
I learned a lot about the best ways to train a puppy from 101 Dog Tricks: Step by Step Activities to Engage, Challenge, and Bond with Your Dog, the Dog Whisperer, and the dog trainer who did our home assessment. And, we’re taking dog obedience classes (not online, but in person) next month.
Keep trying different dog obedience toys
Part of knowing how to deal with dog behavior problems is giving the dog “work” to do. Our dog trainer recommended cow or buffalo thigh bones; dogs like to chew and lick the marrow inside. Plus, bone marrow is healthy! I’ve learned that our dog gets bored with the marrow bone everyday, so I kept experimenting with a Kong Wobbler Dog Toy until I found what works. That took time – I was making it too easy for her. And, I found a Rumble Ring, which she loves.
Combine training and play with your dog
From books like 101 Dog Tricks, I learned how important it is combine play with training your dog and dealing with dog behavior problems. We’re in the early stages of dog obedience training, so we’re still working on “sit”, “lay down”, “shake a paw”, and “fetch.” But our dog trainer encouraged us to have high expectations for Jazz. For instance, her husband hides her dog’s toys all over the house. The dog’s job in the evenings is to retrieve all her toys, one at a time. This is playful training, and it’s a fantastic way to bond with your dog – which will help you cope with the frustration of dog behavior problems.
Get a home assessment with a dog obedience trainer
It can be expensive – it cost us $160 for two hours – but a home assessment with a professional dog obedience trainer can make the difference between success and failure. Our trainer helped us with everything from our tone of voice when giving commands to what type of “work” to have our dog do. Plus, she’s now “on call” for us – her service includes unlimited phone calls if we have questions or concerns.
I also watched all the Cesar Millan Dog Whisperer DVDs, which helped me learn about pack mentality and consistent, firm leadership. For more tips on how to deal with dogs, watch The Dog Whisperer: Beginning and Intermediate Dog Training.
And finally, a quip from a dog lover: “I talk to him when I’m lonesome; and I’m sure he understands,” said W. Dayton Wedgefarth. “When he looks at me so attentively, and gently licks my hands; then he rubs his nose on my tailored clothes…the good Lord knows I can buy more clothes, but never a friend like that.”
That was one of my issues with owning a dog – her wet nose and slobber all over my clothes, furniture, truck, and everything! But once I accepted it as part of dog ownership, I bonded with her much faster.
Do you have any thoughts on these tips on how to deal with dog behavior problems? Please comment below…