Well-behaved, polite dogs aren’t born that way. For every disciplined dog, there is a disciplined (consistant!) handler.
Some concepts you need to understand:
- No excuses (oh there are so many people watching me or oh well, he already misbehaved)
- No exceptions – for example letting him go to other dogs while on the leash. You either let him or you never let him greet other dogs on the leash. No exceptions.
- Be consistent. Correct your dog every time he does the things he isn’t supposed to be doing – whether it be barking, trying to get into the trash, etc.
- Also be very regular with your rewards and encouragement.
- EXERCISE. A dog without adequate exercise for his breed (a border collie will need much more exercise than others) can’t be calm and balanced.
- Structure and routine to some extent
- A healthy and balanced diet
- General health (make sure he is not in pain and as healthy as possible).
- Don’t let other people influence you. Every dog owner and even people who have never had a dog in their life, think they know best. If you know your dog and know that you need to do to correct or not correct him in a certain situation to avoid a behaviour — do it! You know your dog best.
The list goes on. But these were some food for thought. Are you doing these things or are you just expecting your dog to be well-behaved?
A fit, healthy dog usually has a fit and healthy human.
An obese dog is usually accompanied by an overweight human.
A dog who barks usually has a human on the other end of the leash who yells and won’t stop yelling.
A scared dog usually has a worried owner.
An aggressive dog usually has a very masculine and aggressive human.
… and a balanced, disciplined and polite dog usually has a human who mirrors just that! Do you see the pattern? What are some things you’ve observed when comparing animals to their humans? I’d love to hear all about it in the comments!