How can you effectively discipline your dog?
Perhaps you have adopted a new pup who was a bit more energetic than you’ve anticipated. You would be relieved to know that the puppy stage isn’t going to last for eternity, and it is actually the best time to train and teach your pup to be obedient, act smart, and be attentive. Here are some of the things you can do to make sure that you have a disciplined dog that’s the dream of all pet owners:
Practice Positive Reinforcement
Positive reinforcement is actually among the most effective mode of discipline. Rather than giving your pup a punishment for something that they do not understand, give them treats and praise them for the good acts they do. To start off, if you are potty training your pup, give them a treat or praises each time they go potty outdoors or use the puppy pad to relieve themselves.
Dog trainers suggest rewarding or discipline your dog for an action or behavior in less than five seconds after the behavior or action happened. For example, if you found your pup chewing on the couch, don’t wait until 12 minutes later to give them the consequence. Odds are, they would forget what they did if you didn’t discipline their behavior or action immediately.
You can tell your dog “No bite” in a firm voice and hold off giving them affection or treats. For the initial weeks or even months, this could mean watching your dog closely to make sure they are not naughty when you are not looking.
Avoid Being Too Harsh when you Discipline your dog
A harsh consequence or punishment is not going to be effective in lessening your pup’s negative behavior. Harsh discipline could actually start other issues like fear, mistrust, and other behavioral problems. For example, if your pup had an accident on the couch, do not yell at them, hit them, or lock them up in a cage for too long.
Alternatively, say a command or phrase that clearly makes them understand that they did something wrong. Withhold any affectionate belly rubs or treats. Likewise, always give the same repercussion for the same action. It would help them establish a connection between negative behavior or action and undesirable consequence.
Don’t Scream at Your Pup
Your pup knows the difference between your shouting voice and your normal voice, just as you know the distinction between his play sounds and a bark. Nonetheless, if all the correcting you do just sounds like noise to your pup, he would eventually start to tune you out. More so, screaming could excite or agitate your puppy, which could even encourage bad behaviors. Use clear commands and keep a calm voice.
Redirect from Negative Behavior
Just like quieting down a toddler who’s throwing a tantrum, some pups just need a bit of redirection. Every time you see them involved in bad behavior, redirect their attention from that particular behavior and present something positive. For instance, your pup might be manifesting some kind of aggression or be overly excited when you are at the dog park.
Whenever you sense that they are going to jump on another person or dog, a clicker could help. The clicking noise will distract them; when they are distracted, order them to come to you or sit and give them a treat. You could likewise use this clicker to discipline him for other behaviors such as reducing barking or chewing on furniture and other non-toy objects.
Don’t Inadvertently Praise Negative Behavior
We know that your dog is adorable and irresistibly cure, but do not cave in! When your pup does something negative, and they appear to get sad when you start to discipline them, do not be affectionate or offer them a reward or treat.
For example, if one day you are correcting them for jumping on another dog at the doggy park but don’t discipline them when they jump on your buddy who does not mind it, your pup might get confused with the mixed signals. Try to always be consistent.
Another “bad” behavior you could actually be enabling is leash pulling. You have probably heard a thousand times that you should not be letting your dog take the lead, but there it is again.
Each time they get too excited and try to pull their leash forward, but you just keep following them; they would expect that it’s the only way to walk. What you can do is stop whenever they pull their leash and command them to heel next to you. Believe us; your walks would be more leisurely.
Don’t Rub Your Pup’s Nose in an Accident
Oftentimes, it takes a pup some time to understand where it is okay to relieve himself. Because dogs usually mark their territory by peeing in a lot of areas outdoors, it could be difficult for pups to learn that they should not do the same thing inside the house.
Even if they know that they shouldn’t pee inside the house, they might not know the severity of their behavior and actions. Do not discipline your dog by rubbing their nose in the accident. This could trigger an anxiety problem or ruin the bond between you and your dog. Clean up the accident and redirect your pup outside.
Reinforce Positive Behaviors
In a good relationship with your pup, you do not have to worry about discipline any longer and you could just praise him. There are a lot of ways to positively strengthen good behaviors, and your pup would like to receive healthy treats and rewards when he has done something positive.
The more you support your pup, the better he will work to ensure that he obeys and keeps you happy.
Disciplining a pup could be difficult, but keep in mind that you are helping him be the best version of himself. The time you would spend training and disciplining him appropriately would improve his actions and behavior and the bond you have. Always be patient with your pup’s training so you can worry less about discipline your dog and spend a lot more time appreciating his company instead.