Even after our best efforts, our dogs can still decide to ignore all the training and behavioral exercises and start acting up, seemingly for no reason. However, even if you may wonder why your dog has suddenly got an attitude that can spoil a perfectly peaceful walk, there is always a good reason for their behavioral issues. Looking at the big picture will surely help you understand why your doggo is acting badly, and knowing the foundations will definitely be of assistance when coming up with a solution to the problem.
One of the main reasons for attitude issues is also the simplest one. When your dog is bored, they tend to act out in futile attempts to release the pent-up energy and frustration that comes with boredom. There is nothing worse than an idle mind, and as you get anxious, nervous, restless, and overall irritated when you have nothing to do, so does your dog. Mental stimulation is just as important as physical, so apart from going on long walks, you should include some brain games to keep your dog’s mind occupied and active.
Instability in your dog’s life may be the reason for their bad attitude. Now, the situation does not have to be exceptionally dire for your dog to become confused and start acting up, although providing them with love and shelter will definitely help. If you are inconsistent with what is allowed and what is not, your pup can get confused, which can result in behavioral issues, as they are not sure whether what they are doing is making you happy or not. As an example, if you sometimes let them jump on you because you are wearing an old pair of sweatpants, but when you are dressed to the nines you scold them and punish them for jumping, just think – what kind of message are you sending? Your dog cannot tell the difference between an old hoodie and a sparkly dress, so introducing some consistency will help them improve their behavior as well.
Finally, attitude issues may stem from a cause much more severe than simple boredom. Perhaps your dog has some unaddressed issues that are making them nervous, anxious, afraid, and overall cranky. Perhaps they were not treated right in the adoption center, or perhaps you were just not assertive enough in their critical period when they learned how to behave. However, nothing is lost as you can reverse some of the sass through positivity, interesting games, and some training that your dog lacks. Make them confident and keep them entertained, but don't forget to show them who the boss is, with love, care, and patience, of course.
If you suddenly change your dog’s diet, that can affect their stomach, which can result in poor behavior due to the sudden switch. If you are changing their food, make sure that it is of good quality and that it is similar to what they are used to.
Drastic changes in your dog’s routine can affect their behavior and make them nervous, anxious, and moody. Moving can often do this, so make sure to be there for your dog and make the transition as easy as possible for them.
Behavioral issues can be mild or severe, but it is important to know that they are never caused by your dog’s will to annoy you, but by something they cannot control and something they cannot be faulted for. Whatever the problem is, you have to make sure that you are there for them, that you support them, and that you try to help them as much as you can, of course, always with love and patience.