If you have a dog who is forceful, then you know finding activities that you can do with your pup can be tricky. You don't want your dog to sit at home bored (that certainly won't help their forceful behavior) and you also don’t want to start an activity where they will have the dominant role and therefore encourage their strong nature. These activities have been carefully crafted to be suited for a forceful dog and you to happily and safely do together.
A lot of the time, people who own forceful dogs spend a good deal of time trying to tame their pup's behavior. You try to make your dog lie down, stay or heel when all they want to do is run, jump and bark. So why not let your dog do all of those things freely? Agility courses can be set up in any manner of ways to suit your dog's specific needs. Aggression in dogs has also been tied directly to dogs being fearful. When a dog learns to jump over a hurdle or run through a tunnel, they will also gain confidence. A confident dog is a less scared dog. Sounds like agility training is something you and your forceful dog should try now!
A dog who is forceful may think that they are always in charge. In fact, they may simply dismiss you and ignore any of your commands. A great way to establish your dominance in a gentle manner is by teaching your dog to look you in the eye and recognize that you are in charge. The eye contact game will teach your dog self-control, how to ignore distractions in the area and also how to focus their attention on you. And, the game is fun! Your pup will love all the treats they get (if they do a great job) and you will enjoy training and bonding with your forceful dog in a positive manner.
Dogs are inherently members of a pack. In the wild, dogs use to travel in groups and you would always find the group leader, the dog in charge of the pack, running in front of the rest. If you only have one dog, then you and that pup make up the entire pack. If you have a very forceful dog, then chances are that your dog believes they are the pack leader. This is something you should change! It is actually easy to make yourself the pack leader and one way is to go for a run as a dog pack - that's right, just you and your pup running down the road like two wild dogs!
Forceful dogs love to tug and pull as it uses a lot of energy and is challenging for them Some trainers have suggested that you always make sure to win the game of tug when playing with a dominant dog. If you win, then you are the lead dog, not them!
Get your pup a harness and jump on a sled once the winter snow rolls in. Have your dog pull you and take you for a sled ride! Sled dogs use an exorbitant amount of energy to pull and this is sure to wear out your forceful pup.
The main key to having a forceful dog is to find a way to help them release some energy in a positive way. You want to bond with your dog as well but always keep in mind that you, the human, are in charge. Help your dog learn this in gentle yet assertive ways and you will be happier and your pup will be happier in your relationship. Try to keep your dog's determined personality while making them a little bit softer around the edges!