Handy Training Tips for Dog Owners
One of the first areas I wanted to have a regular contributor was in the Pet training area, as who doesn't want to know more on how to train their pets right?
So I am super excited to announce that I (well we) all have a new best buddy and her name is Zavannah Elliott.
Zavannah is a dog trainer and a behaviourist who will be sharing her tips and tricks as a regular contributor and in house expert on all things training and behaviour.
For Hooman Magazine, we thought the best way to utilise Zavannah is in a Q&A type scenario, so if you have a question you would like answered, drop us a line to firstname.lastname@example.org and I will send them through for her input.
For this issue however, since I just announced it and we have no questions to answer, I asked Zavannah to give me a couple answers to the most popular questions she gets. Hopefully they pre answer your questions but if not, drop me an email and we will get you what you need in a future issue … Ladies and Gentlemen, Zavannah Elliot.
Q - My Dog Appears to Have “Selective Hearing” what can I do?
A - I meet a lot of owners with dogs that have ‘selective hearing’ or “I will do it when they feel like it” attitudes. By this I mean when they tell their dog to do a command, for example, sit, come, drop it etc, sometimes their dog does it, sometimes it doesn’t.
One of the biggest mistakes a dog owner makes when training is that they don’t follow through with what they’ve asked their dog to do. Don’t give commands unless you are willing to follow them through! - I’m looking at you people yelling from their living rooms “stop barking max” while they’re still sitting on their couch.
Soon, you’ll find that your dog only does the command when they want to... why?
Because that is what YOU’VE taught them.
- Put a lead on that dog. I don’t care if it’s a flimsy, slip lead, let them wear it around the house, keep it on them when you’re doing any kind of training. This is so that whenever you ask your dog to do anything, you can follow through with it!
Your dog is required to do what you say, the first time you say it, don’t say it more then once, because all your doing is telling your dog, they don’t have to do it, until the 2nd/3rd/4th time you say it... is that what you want?
Q - What do I do if I’m walking my dog on a leash and an off leash dog comes running aggressively towards my dog?
A - This is the most controversial question I get asked, but here is my honest answer. For starters, you’re going to pull your dog behind you and stand in front of your dog. You’re going to usually yell at the other owner to recall their dog, however and it pains me to say … the ending is usually bad.
It is your job to protect your dog and have them under control. It is the other owners job to protect theirs and keep theirs under control.
If the other owner isn’t doing that, and you and your dog are at risk, you need to do WHATEVER is necessary to keep yourself and your dog safe.
I have absolutely no problem with using my lead as a whip to stop a dog. I have no issue with kicking a dog that is AGGRESSIVELY approaching me and my dogs and I believe there is imminent danger.
If the owner has an issue with that, they should have trained their dog off leash with reliable recall or kept it on a leash. Period.
My dog - and any dog in my care - is my responsibility, in that situation the other dog is not.
And let’s be completely clear, the damage from a leash whip or my foot is going to be 20Xs less than a dog fight which is the usual outcome.