How to Train Your Dog to Respect You

Medium
3-8 Weeks
General

Introduction

You accidentally drop some food onto the floor and your dog bounds over. You instruct him to back off, but as usual, he ignores you. You’re out on a walk and he sees another dog across the road. You tell him to heel but he instantly tries to leap across the road to sniff the other dog's behind. The truth is, he just doesn’t respect you. If he doesn’t respect you, then training him to do any number of things can be an uphill battle.

Training him not to go to the toilet inside, training him not to jump on the furniture, and loads of other instructions will fall on deaf ears. If you can train him to respect you, however, you will reassert yourself as the pack leader and finally be able to enforce the rules.

Defining Tasks

Training your dog to respect you isn’t a walk in the park, but it isn’t overly complicated either. The first thing to do is hammer home some obedience commands. These will help show him who is in charge and get him dancing to your tune. You will also need to tackle bad behavior firmly. If he’s a puppy, then getting him to respect you should take just a few weeks, as he should be receptive. If he’s older, it may require a couple of months of reinforcing boundaries before you finally get the respect you deserve.

Get this training right though, and you may see a transformed dog. A dog that sits when you tell him to, goes to the toilet where you want him to, and stays off your furniture when you tell him to. It could also make him more friendly, gentle and sociable around other dogs and people. 

Getting Started

Before you can begin seizing back control, you’ll need to gather some things. His favorite food broken into small pieces or tempting treats will be used to motivate and reward him during training. 

You’ll also need a quiet place to train for 10 minutes each day. Use a location where you won’t be distracted by noisy children and other pets. For one of the methods, you will also need a spray bottle of water to knock bad behavior on the head.

The only other things you need is a proactive attitude and patience. Then you’re all set to get going!

The Pack Leader Method

Most Recommended
8 Votes
Step
1
Protect him
When you’re on walks, position yourself between other dogs and your own dog. If he’s in front of you then he’ll think he is pack leader and that it’s his job to protect you. If you’re always in-between he’ll respect you keeping him safe.
Step
2
Comfort him
If he’s afraid of fireworks, thunder, or other dogs, make sure you cheer him up. Just by gently playing with him or giving him the odd treat will perk him up. This is important because he’ll begin to see you in a protector/leader role and he’ll respect you for it.
Step
3
Always feed him
Dogs respect and remember those that feed them. If you’re always the one to give him his food, he’ll see you as the gateway to calories and want to keep you happy. Also make him wait a couple of minutes for his food, this will further cement your position as the pack leader.
Step
4
Be firm but never terrifying
Some owners make the mistake of thinking the more they shout the more their dog will respect them. This isn’t the case. In the wild, mothers simply pick pups up by the scruff of their neck and remove them calmly when they’ve misbehaved. You need to have the same calm but firm approach.
Step
5
Plenty of exercise
If he needs you for his food and exercise he’ll be keen to please you. Give him plenty of walks and he’ll be tired, grateful, and love his adventures with you. All of this will help to position yourself as the pack leader and earn your respect.
Recommend training method?

The Overall Package Method

Effective
1 Vote
Step
1
Be assertive
You need to be calm but firm when your dog misbehaves. Don’t shout or go off the handle, this may just terrify him. Instead, if he does something wrong, calmly remove him from the situation until he calms down. This will help show him who is pack leader.
Step
2
Be consistent with boundaries
The saying ‘give him an inch and he’ll take a mile’ can also be applied to dogs, so you have to be consistent. If you let him on the sofa once, he’ll jump on it again. Stick to every rule religiously.
Step
3
Make him wait
An easy way to demand respect is by making him wait for things. Make him wait a minute before you give him food. Make him wait for a couple of minutes before you take him for a walk. This will all show him you’re the boss and that he has to respect that.
Step
4
Make him work
Before he gets something nice like a treat or a meal, have him do something to earn it. It could be as simple as getting him to sit or lie down. This will help him to focus on pleasing you and trying to win your affection for tasty rewards.
Step
5
Give him his own space
Ensure he has a bed or corner of a room that’s all his. Let that be only his, don’t always go in there to play with him. This will soon become his own territory. By having his own territory that’s all his, he’ll begin to realize everywhere else in the house is your territory and that you’re the leader of it.
Recommend training method?

The Obedience Commands Method

Least Recommended
1 Vote
Step
1
‘Sit’
Hold a treat out in front of him and give him the ‘sit’ command. By teaching him obedience commands you are reinforcing your control and showing him that you control the tasty rewards.
Step
2
Encouragement
If he doesn’t get the hang of it straight away, lead his nose up with the treat or push his bottom down gently with your hand. As soon as he’s seated, give him a treat and lots of praise. Practice this each day until he’s a sit down pro.
Step
3
Incorporate other obedience commands
You could teach him to lie down, to roll over, even to do a back flip. Daily training like this will be fantastic for teaching him to respect you. It will change the way he perceives you and for the better!
Step
4
Water spray bottle
If he misbehaves, you can quickly give him a spray of water near his face. Don’t spray it into his eyes, just a short burst to let him know that was the wrong behavior. He will learn to respect you, otherwise you can cause this unpleasant experience.
Step
5
Encourage down time
Spending a few minutes each day quietly in each others company is important for building a healthy, respectful relationship. Don’t play with each other or be noisy, just have him lie next to you. This will help build a comfortable bond and that will in turn lead to him respecting you.
Recommend training method?

Success Stories and Training Questions

Training Questions and Answers

Question
Bailey
French Bulldog
3 Months
2 found helpful
Question
2 found helpful
Bailey
French Bulldog
3 Months

I feel as though my dog does not respect me. Barks. Constantly tries to chew on me. Disobeys when she knows she did something wrong.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Lauren, One of the best ways to build respect between you and your dog is to spend time teaching obedience throughout the week. You can have your dog work for you to earn it's kibble, one piece at a time, by practicing commands such as sitting, heeling, downing, staying, paying attention, leaving it, waiting, and more. Practicing these things can not only teach your dog to listen to you better, it can also have the added benefits of building a relationship of trust, respect, and fun, decreasing your dog's excess mental energy, developing useful commands to help your dog understand you better, and giving your dog a sense of purpose. You must be consistent and require follow through while training and in general. For example , when you practice teaching your dog to come, you can attach a long, light weight, twenty or thirty foot leash. Then you can excitedly call your dog to come while running away to encourage running after you, and then praise your dog when she arrives. If she does not come, you can reel her in with the leash, so that she learns that she is not able to ignore your command. You have then ensured that she followed your command while also giving her reason to want to come in the future. Working on training can also help with the mouthing and barking. You can teach her to stop mouthing you by teaching her a very strong leave it command. Once she knows the leave it command well around food and toys and household items, you can then place the items in your hand or on your person and practice having her leave the items alone when you have them. Once she will leave those known items alone when you have them, then you can practice having her leave your hands, feet, clothes, and whatever else on you she is mouthing alone. For the barking you can work on teaching a quiet command, then once she understands the quiet command, you can enforce the quiet command by blocking her vision with your body and getting her focus back on you using your body language, while giving her the command. She can then be rewarded with a toy or treat or with being allowed to be near or to view whatever she was barking at before. The barking trigger itself can be the reward. At three months old she is likely teething and a lot of mouthing can be normal. She is also likely beginning to show more independence and is testing boundaries as she matures into the equivalent of a dog preteen. This period requires a lot of consistency and training, and it can appear that the training is not working at this age, but it is important to stay consistent. Eventually she will grow out of this period and your training success will become more evident if you persevered during this period. If you feel like she is beginning to show any aggressive tendencies, it is best to consult a trainer early because the sooner you begin the more effective the training is likely to be. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Cooper
Golden Retriever
6 Months
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Cooper
Golden Retriever
6 Months

Cooper used to obey me till he was 4 months old by that time I taught him to sit on my command later he started to disobey me he only listened to me when I hold a piece of food and barks at me when I ask him to do stuff when he’s not in the mood in front of me when I take him for walks he tries to free himself from the leash and run away and eat garbage from the street jumps on me and starts biting when he sees me after a long time tries to eat food from my plate. Help!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Subham, Check out the article that I have linked below and work on a bit of all three methods. Also, Cooper likely needs to attend an Intermediate Obedience Class. In Basic Obedience dogs learn what different commands means, but in Intermediate they learn how to do those commands in every day life, even when they do not feel like it. A good Intermediate class should also work on phasing out treats, so that you do not always have to have food to get your dog to listen. Check out references and reviews for trainers in your area, ask if they phase out food, and explain your issues to them to get an idea whether or not they can address enforcing known commands, rather than simply bribing with treats. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Luca
Pit bull
1 Year
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Luca
Pit bull
1 Year

Luca is my boyfriend's dog. He wasn't trained well during his first year,and though my boyfriend is trying, I think he could try harder. How can I make him realize he should really be consistent and firm with training? He chews things up, runs off if he somehow gets off the leash (we have to chase), jumps on us, chews on us sometimes, steals toys and bones, etc.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Tanisha, There are a couple of things that can help motivate someone with training a dog. In the end they have to want it too though. 1. Train with others so that it is more fun and you can learn from them. A class or training club is a great way to do this. If you have other friends with dogs they are working to train, you could also meet up with them regularly to practice your training. 2. Watch training videos of the things you would like to teach. The more you learn about training, understand it, and see what's possible, the easier it is to do it yourself and enjoy it. If you don't feel like you know what you are doing, it can be more discouraging and overwhelming - which makes it harder to want to do it. 3. Work on achievable goals with your dog. Start with some of the easier things you want to teach and stay consistent with it. If you see that your dog is able to learn and improve, it can help motivate you to teach other things and encourage you to keep working at it. Looking for sources like www.wagwalking.com/training, quality youtube videos from trainers, dog training library books, websites like www.dogstardaily.com, www.petful.com, and www.lifedogtraining.com can also help you learn about training and give you ideas of what to try. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Rosie
Pit bull
3 Years
0 found helpful
Question
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Rosie
Pit bull
3 Years

I can't get Rosie to stop jumping on people when she's excited and running around the house. With other dogs it may not be as much of a problem, but she is a 60 pound, very strong pit bull. She leaves scratches on me and others when she gets excited. I don't want to discipline her for being happy or showing her excitement, but I want to teach her how to calmly and appropriately express that excitement. Any suggestions?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Natalie, Check out the article that I have linked below. All of the methods in that article are pretty gentle. You can even do a combination of all three methods. Whenever you are able to step toward her, do so because that will teach personal space and respect, and then when she sits to greet you instead of jumping, reward her. Do this to teach her to respect your personal space but also to teach her what she can do instead of jumping when excited. When she is greeting other people, if the person is not someone you can reasonably expect to be able to step toward her, then use the "Leash" method with other people and let her correct herself by keeping the leash tight enough that when she jumps it up and all the slack goes out of the leash the leash will pull her back toward the floor. When she sits to greet after being corrected with the leash, then either have your guest give her a treat or you can give her one instead. When she begins to sit without jumping first, then only give her a treat for sitting without any jumping. Here is a link to that article: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-australian-shepherds-to-not-jump Also, because she is jumping for attention, never pet her or talk happily to her when she jumps, instead give her affection, rewards, and praise for doing the correct behavior, which is sitting or at least keeping all four paws on the floor. Sitting is often clearer than just standing for a dog at first though. Sitting gives the dog something specific to do when he wants to ask for attention. When she gets super excited and starts jumping while playing, end the play sessions whenever she jumps up. It might be hard to do, but it is gentle and dogs need rules and boundaries too. Play with her and have a great time while she is playing nicely, but stop all play if she jumps. That should also help her to learn that jumping shouldn't be a part of play. Because she is heavy jumping on the wrong people, like kids or elderly or disabled people can be dangerous, so it needs to be taken seriously, but reward her for doing the correct behavior so that she is still able to have fun. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Appolo
Husky
4 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Appolo
Husky
4 Years

How to stop him from chasing and killing cats. he does not destroy them just shakes them i cannot keep him from chasing them if i could stop that it would help.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Lesley, Do the cats live inside or is this happening somewhere with more space, like a yard or large property? If this is happening in a larger space, then you can teach him to avoid the cats. Check out James Penrith from TaketheLeadDogTraining. He has a Youtube channel. He works with dogs that chase and sometimes will kill livestock. To stop the killing you would need to pursue training like that, creating a strong avoidance of all cats. Whether this is doable will depend on your level of dedication, willingness to learn, and how large the space he is in is. If the cats are outside and he has plenty of room to go somewhere that they are not located to avoid them, then the training is feasible. Day 1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lgNbWCK9lFc Day 2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kpf5Bn-MNko&t=14s Day 3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xj3nMvvHhwQ Day 4. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VxrGQ-AZylY Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Oscar
American Akita
7 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Oscar
American Akita
7 Weeks

Hi, my puppy knows basic obedience such as sit, come and lay-down but will choose to ignore me sometimes... i know this is part of their stubborn nature as akitas but i have done alot of research and my puppy seems to be way more energetic than other akitas his age. And he plays roughly with my older dog (english springer spaniel). im hoping things will calm down once hes able to go for walks but until then is there anything i can do? i am the only one who feeds him, plays with him or teaches him and he has set meal times. I dont want him thinking hes alpha and this leading down the wrong road when hes older.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Alicia, At 7 weeks of age honestly he probably just needs a ton more practice around distractions. He may very well have a strong temperament but disobedience at this age is probably more related to a lack of skills than a respect issue. Take the commands that he knows and have set training times each day where you practice those commands- as he improves, add distractions during the sessions, like jumping around, others being in the room, silly noises, ect...and practice those commands with consistency and patience in the presence of distractions, repeating until he can do the command consistently even with that distraction around, then adding another distraction the next time. Puppies have to learn impulse control and focus through practice - sort of like a little kid learning how to sit still and focus for longer periods of time. It's an actual skill many pups don't have at first that has to be taught. As far as respect goes, to get off on the right foot in general with that - especially if he has a stronger personality, when you give commands always enforce them. At this age that is going to look like gently showing him how to do what you want after giving a command you know he knows and is ignoring because he would rather do something else. Like luring him into a sit position if he seems confused about what you want, or applying gentle pressure with two fingers on ether side of his tail bone where his tail meets his back while carefully lifting up on his chin until he chooses to sit on his own to get more comfortable, if he just doesn't want to obey, or waiting until he sits - withholding what he wants to get to until he obeys first. All of this should be done extremely calmly and gently, knowing that he simply needs to be taught and needs consistency from you but not domineering. Be "Alpha" the way a human would be, through mentally stimulating him, training in a way that makes sense, being consistent, and providing structure and boundaries...People do need to provide leadership to dogs and earn their respect, but you are a person and not a dog and your dog knows that, so provide the type of leadership a person would provide by training his mind and following through on commands. Training is more about being a bit stubborn in your consistency, practicing a lot, being calm, and using your mind, than anything else...The best aggression trainers in the world are incredibly calm, confident and consistent, using methods that make since logically. You are doing great! I can tell you want to give him a great start and prevent future issues. Check out Sean O shea from the Good Dog and Ian Dunbar from sirius Pup training. Both are very different trainers, but they both excel in their own nitch. Ian Dunbar excels in preventative training and socialization with puppies - something that's super important for a powerful breed like an Akita, and Sean O Shea excels in providing structure and boundaries for adult dogs with major behavior issues if you run into issue later. A lot of Sean's structure work can be good as a preventative too, like structured heel, Place, crate manners, and focus work. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Callie
Border Collie
11 Months
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Callie
Border Collie
11 Months

Hi, I adopted a border collie/cattle dog mix almost 2 weeks ago. She's quite nervous of everything which I expected beings she came from a kennel environment. At first she clung to me as her source of comfort and listened to me without prevail. She learned sit, lay down, and shake all within the first few days. Recently she fights me on every obedience command. She also refuses to let me be in charge when we go on walks. I'm at a loss of what to do.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Ashton, Border Collies and Cattle Dogs are both highly intelligent, hard working, often strong willed breeds, but they are also sensitive, very alert, tuned into people and their environment, and need a lot of mental stimulation, especially Border Collies. Check out this Wag! Article and pay special attention to the obedience method and the consistency method. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Those breeds need their owners to earn their respect without being physically tough with them. The best way to do that with those breeds is to challenge them mentally with frequent training sessions that involve concentration, focus, self-control, and learning new things. You also need to be very consistent. When you ask your girl to do something that you know she has already learned, then make sure that she does it. For example, when you tell her to come, if she does not come, then go get her and bring her back to where you originally called her from and have her sit, then attach a fifty foot leash and release her again and call her again five times in a row until she is coming consistently. When you tell her to sit then do not let her leave until she sits. When you first teach her something new make it fun and rewarding, but once she knows the command have her work for everyday life rewards like walks and meals by having her do a command first. Your attitude with her should be patient and calm, but very firm when enforcing something. Believe that she can do it and expect it of her. Your girl will benefit from the structure and consistency if she has anxiety issues. Even though she is challenging your authority she will benefit from your leadership. For the walks, check out Jeff Gelhman from Solidk9training's videos on YouTube. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Milo
English Springer Spaniel
6 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Milo
English Springer Spaniel
6 Months

My Milo is scared of traffic and so he does not like walking up from our house. After a few minutes of walking he will start jumping on me to get me to turn back but I Ignore him and I've been doing this for around 2 months now but he still doesn't like it. Also, he tries to jump on our kitchen worktops which we tell him off for a he goes down but he then jumps again, any advice?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Louise, Spend time desensitizing him to traffic by playing games or working on fun training on a leash with the cars in the background. Stay further back from the road at first. As he gets comfortable and learns to ignore the cars more, gradually practice a bit closer to the road. Dropping large treats in the grass for him to find, practicing fun tricks with treats, or playing a game while he is on a ten-foot, secure leash can all help him relax around the road a bit more. Make sure he is leashed securely and can't slip out of his collar or harness by the road while you practice. A martingale collar or padded secure harness might be necessary to keep him from slipping out. For the counter jumping, you can purchase devices to set on the counter to surprise a dog when they jump up even when you are not right there. Google "counter surfing dog deterrent" for products that you can place on the counter. There are scatt mats, vibration or ultrasonic devices, mouse traps that don't actually close on anything but make a snapping noise, and other devices designed to deter jumping on counters. The goal is to associate the surprise with the counter and not only your presence. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Judah
miniature poodle
6 Months
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Judah
miniature poodle
6 Months

My puppy Judah is experiencing challenges with socialization, food and attention.

When we are on a walk he often barks at other dogs or refuses to continue walking until pedestrians pass by. In puppy class when it came time for socialization, he refused to interact with the other dogs. When visitors or even family are outside the door or he hears the doorbell ring, he begins to bark without relent -disregarding commands such as "quiet" or 'stop'. He also is quite timid and barks or runs away when being introduced to new people.

When we first brought Judah home, we were all really excited and made the mistake of consistently feeding him human food, resulting in him abandoning his kibble completely. We have tried putting warm water or chicken broth to stimulate his appetite but he is willing to go the full day without eating or to nibble on his food throughout the day. This creates accidents within the home.

Finally, Judah often barks and 'cries' when I or the family leaves the house for a duration of time, when left alone or when not played with it. I want to know how make him comfortable with being independent and playing by himself.

Judah is a sweet puppy but I need much advice so that I can help him become a friendly, obedient and independant dog.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Doryne, It sounds like he needs a few things: 1. Lots of socialization. If he only had one opportunity to socialize during the class (opposed to the socialization time being every week during part of the class), then his response was fairly common. It takes many puppies multiple times watching other puppies play before they get comfortable enough to join in on the fun themselves. Many people feel like giving up when they see such a bad first response, but more exposure is actually what's needed. It's important to do this in a controlled environment where the puppies' play can be interrupted and puppies separated when they get too riled up or start to overwhelm a shy puppy. Often, finding one calmer puppy to play with can help a shy puppy come out of his shell...opposed to playing with the whole group. At six-months of age, puppy-to-puppy socialization will be harder though, so I suggest trying to do group walking sessions with other puppy owners or adult-dog owners who have calm dogs. Check out the article that I have linked below and follow the "Walking Together" method to gradually decrease the distance between Judah and the new dog without overwhelming him. Start with one dog and practice with other dogs, one at a time, once Judah is used to the first dog (or add the dog to the group that Judah is familiar with). When he does well with several individuals, then you can look for groups also. You can often mind dog walking groups through meetup.com or obedience clubs. Only let your puppy meet calm, friendly dogs nose-to-nose though. You want to avoid dogs that are likely to initiate fights, and stick with friendly dogs so that he will view dogs as pleasant while learning about them. https://wagwalking.com/training/greet-other-dogs Also, spend a lot of time taking him to other new locations, have friends toss him friends from a distance when he is being calm (even if that means he only stops barking for one second to catch his breath- toss the treat during the second). Play his favorite games and use food as a reward for calmness, focus on you, and being brave (in a good way) during the outings. You can also practice obedience with rewards. Have friends practice with you at home, in public locations, and other places where he is currently reactive (and even places he does well as a preventative). Check out the article that I have linked below to desensitize him to the door: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bpzvqN9JNUA Also, anxious dogs tend to do well with a lot of structure and boundaries. Make him work for things he gets, like walks, throwing a toy, or being petted, by making him perform a command like Sit or Down first. When you give him a command, be sure to enforce that command with calmness and confidence. Don't baby him or convey that you feel sorry for him - try to be calm and confident to help him learn those responses from you. Also, work on his independence by teaching him distance commands. Teach him the Place command and work up to him being able to stay in his Place for an hour or two while you are present, or shorter amounts of time while you are in another room. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Also, work on teaching him to stay in his crate even with the door open when you are home (having to stay in there willingly with the door open has a very different effect than the door being closed). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mn5HTiryZN8 Practicing commands like Sit and Down Stay from a distance are also great. You can use a long leash, loop it around something behind him like a tree and then back away while holding the long leash (forty-to-fifty-feet)...Doing this lets you walk about 30 or more feet away and if he gets up, you can pull him backward with the long leash to correct him back into the Sit or Down position, while telling him "Ah-Ah" to let him know that he wasn't supposed to do that. Work up to the distance gradually. First, simply teach him what Down, Sit, and Stay mean, and work up to distance as he improves over time. Finally, if you feel like you are dealing with true separation anxiety, check out the Separation Anxiety protocol from the trainer below. It's a lot of structure and can seem intense. I have seen it work, but I only use that if real separation anxiety is going on, and not simply boredom barking or things that can be addressed just by adding more structure and boundaries to a dog's routine. This trainer can sound a bit harsh with people, so I apologize for that. He does a lot of great work with highly aggressive, reactive, and fearful dogs though. Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Article with additional info: https://www.solidk9training.com/sk9-blog/2013/02/21/separation-anxiety-im-not-seeing-it-at-my-place For the food, check out ZiwiPeak (You can buy it online) or Honest Kitchen. Both of these are freeze dried real-food based dog foods that dogs tend to like better. If you want to rotate off of these later, you can add in regular dry kibble (once he is eating the honest kitchen or ziwipeak alright). Add just a little dry kibble at first and put it in a ziplock bag with the freeze dried food overnight so that it will taste and smell like the freeze dried. You can very gradually increase the kibble and decrease the freeze dried overtime to transition to just a dry kibble. Nature's Variety makes a kibble with freeze dried pieces in it that might be a good food to eventually transition to because it will still be a bit similar to the freeze dried that was mixed with the normal kibble without all the work of mixing it yourself. You can also buy freeze dried kibble toppers. While you are transitioning to the freeze dried, avoid feeding people food. Instead, use the freeze dried dog food as treats. If he has to work for the food, he is actually more likely to eat the food and view it differently than his normal dog food. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Louis
Rottweiler
18 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Louis
Rottweiler
18 Months

Hi! My Rottweiler does not respect me...
He listend perfectly well to my boyfriend but when he is not around Louis completely changes his behaviour;
- He doesnt lay down in the house even when I tell him to so he is very restless and keeps asking for attention and biting my feet
- He pulls and bites the leash when walking
It’s very stressfull to go waln with him or even be home with him the whole day as he doesnt listen at all. How can I gain back his respect and make these bad behaviour stop?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Arzu, Check out the article that I have linked below. Follow both the "Consistency" method and the "Working" method. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Buddy
American Bulldog
3 Years
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Buddy
American Bulldog
3 Years

Buddy is a rescue. He is very very stubborn. He basically makes up his own mind on if he wants to listen or not. We have had 3 trainers the past 2 years. None have been successful. I am partly to blame because training a dog is not something I have any patience for. I do not enjoy working with him for training. When we had a trainer for him after 2 weeks of no results they all suggested that I wait until he is older. During that time I did work with him. My dog does not respect me. Any suggestions?

He is American Bulldog/Great Pyrenees
Thank you

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Resa, Some breeds are very independent, including Great Pyreneese and Bull Dogs. These breeds sometimes lack the motivation that treat training gives a lot of dogs for obeying. If motivation seems to be the issue, following methods for teaching commands in a more structured way might be better. For example, check out the article linked below and follow the "Reel In" method for teaching Come. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-whippet-to-recall Practice Stay by having your dog lay down while you watch TV and step on the leash so that it stops them from getting up if they try. Keep the leash loose enough that they do not feel it tug on them while laying down obediently. This method depends on consistency more than treats. You can still reward with a treat after they have stayed down without trying to get up for at least two minutes. The "Reel In" method for teaching Come rewards the dog for obeying but also teaches the dog to come regardless of whether they are motivated to. Following methods like that, that involve immediate follow through on your part is important, so that the dog learns that they have to obey even when they do not want to. This type of training should be very calm, but simply insistent, consistent, and a bit more stubborn that your dog is, to see results. Following through is one of the best ways to teach obedience. If you tell your dog to do something, make sure it is something they understand and can do from prior training practice, then help them do it and insist they do. A confident, calm and slightly stubborn attitude will gain you a lot more respect than high emotions and anger...even though that can definitely be hard at times when frustrated. Spending 30 minutes practicing training every day should decrease frustration at other times because respect and your dog's ability should be better. As well as your own skills naturally as a trainer. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Miles
Labrador Retriever
12 Months
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Miles
Labrador Retriever
12 Months

He bites me

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Dell, I suggest hiring a professional trainer who specializes in aggression and behavior issues to help you with this in person, one-on-one. Look for someone who comes well recommended by their previous clients whose dogs struggled with aggression also. Check out Thomas from the Canine Educator and Jeff Gellman from SolidK9Training. Both have Youtube channels with dozens of videos - to learn more about aggression. I don't suggest tackling this on your own because there is a very good chance you will be bitten. You may also want to desensitize pup to wearing a basket muzzle and have pup wear that during the day while the biting is still an issue. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Shiloh
Husky
2 Years
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Shiloh
Husky
2 Years

My dog has difficulty with other dogs.

She used to be fine with dogs as a puppy, but once she had her first cycle she has become somewhat aggressive with other dogs. She is now spayed, yet she still pulls heavily on the leash and jumps around whenever there is another dog across the street. She blanks out and I don't know if I continue walking or if I have her sit until she calms down.

She is a sweet dog and loves to play, but when it's time to walk and I come across another dog, I always face the same issue: lunging and jumping.

What steps can I take to train her to behave appropriately while walking and not lunge or jump at other dogs?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Adriana, If she has never actually harmed another dog and does get along with some dogs when off leash, then she probably has leash reactivity. Check out the video linked below on leash reactivity. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXLPwyKEjHI Dogs with leash reactivity typically lack respect and trust for their owner and other dogs and need a lot of structure and boundaries. Such dogs need to go into doggie boot calm for a while to create an overall attitude change. Walks need to start with heeling, with the dog's face behind your leg and not in front, so that she is in the following position. Walks are structured, with the dog expected to focus on you and not sniff, stop, or move ahead of you the entire time. This sets the tone for when you come across another dog. If you want her to go potty, give her a command for it like "Go Sniff" before you give you slack in the leash, then when she finishes going tell her "Heel" or "Let's Go" to let her know that she is supposed to be heeling again. Check out the article linked below and pay attention to the "Turns" method. I suggest doing this without other dogs around first, while yo also implement all of the training from the video linked above to establish trust and respect for you. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Be strict for a while, practice structured obedience commands very often, have her work for what she gets in life such as food and petting and walks by making her do commands first. Don't tolerate pushiness with you, rushing through crates or doorways or begging. Imagine yourself as a drill sergent right now and she is in boot calm. Gaining trust and respect is more about structure, consistency and obedience commands than it is about intimidation or being physically rough. You will notice in the video linked below that Jeff uses a Prong collar (which I recommend for most pushy dogs without fear issues), but notice the calm way he uses it and how he gives brief corrections and also praises the dog when he gets something right. Look up how to fit and correct with a Prong collar though because it is supposed to be worn high on the neck and tight enough that all the prongs gently touch the skin without digging into the skin at all. Corrections should be a quick tug and release - not a continuous pull or hanging the dog. When used right Prong collars give an even correction all the way around the neck that creates an uncomfortable squeeze and not a hard correction at the front of the throat only - which makes them safer than choke collars and even some buckle collars. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M3iczULPcdE If you have any doubt whether a prong is right for your dog though, consult a trainer who is very experienced and uses both positive reinforcement and fair corrections and focuses on teaching and communicating with the dog your expectations and how to perform them. Good structured commands to practice in addition Down, Sit, and Stay: Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo If you have reason to believe that Shiloh has fear issues or is truly aggressive, then I suggest hiring a professional trainer to help you implement the training because it will need to be adjusted to keep everyone safe with an aggressive dog and to counter condition a fearful dog to sources of fear and build confidence. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Entei
Shepsky
6 Months
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Entei
Shepsky
6 Months

My 6 month old shepsky has been pretty obedient but does not understand that it is not play time whenever he wants it. My 50 pound pup will jump, scratch and step all over my boyfriend and I when we’re laying down on the couch watching tv late at night and he decides he wants to play fetch or tug of war outside. I leave him outside when he acts this way with his toys but will start barking as soon as I turn around to walk back inside. I take him for walks, hikes, to the river for a swim to waste his energy but seems to nap for 15 minutes and he’s reenergized. How can I get him to understand we’re not gonna play with him whenever he wants us too and to stop jumping scratching and biting us for attention?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Monica, I suggest working on commands that build impulse control (similar to self-control), and his respect for you. First check out the article linked below and how to teach the Out command (which means leave the area). Use Out when he is being pushy. Check out the sections on "How to Teach the Out Command" and "How to Use Out for Pushiness" especially. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ I also suggest crate training, teaching Place and teaching Quiet. Having a structured heel when you walk him and anything else you can do to encourage manners can also help gently but firmly build respect and help him develop impulse control. When you do play with him, tell him something like "Okay!" or "Go!" first to let him know when it is and isn't time to play. The Surprise Method for crate training: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate How to teach manners surrounding the crate: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mn5HTiryZN8 Place command: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-place-command-the-good-dog-training-tips/ Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Other good things to teach in general: Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Murph
Beagle
3 Years
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Murph
Beagle
3 Years

He seems to respect me somewhat, but the only way I can get him to listen to most commands is by offering a treat. He will sit and lay down without one, but to speak I have to show a treat. How do I wean him off of this treat dependency?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Jack, First, practice giving the command while pretending to hold a treat. When he obeys give a treat from behind your back so that he sees that you weren't holding one but he still got it when he obeyed. Practice that until he isn't dependent on seeing a treat or thinking you have one. Next, start to give treats less frequent, such as every other command, every 3rd time, 5th time, ect...until it's a surprise when he will get a treat. Next, replace treats with life rewards. Give your dog a command before giving him something he wants, to incorporate the training into your day. For example, tell him Speak before taking him on a walk or handing him a toy. Tell him sit before feeding him his dinner. Tell him Down before throwing a frisbee. Change up which commands you do with which rewards so he doesn't just learn to bark whenever he wants a toy, but is actually listening to your instruction. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Lyla
Labrador Retriever
10 Weeks
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Lyla
Labrador Retriever
10 Weeks

A few times a day my puppy will get a burst of energy and she will start biting my hands, feet arms and clothing. I tell her no and remove myself from the room. But she’ll keep running around and going behind the couch where she knows she’s not supposed to because I’m not there to stop her. But she also doesn’t listen to anything when she’s in the state of mind, she just gets more excited and bites harder and jumps. How do I get her to calm down a bit so she doesn’t think of me as a toy and that I’m playing with her

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Nicole, What you just described is called the puppy zoomies. Almost all puppies get them, and even some adult dogs, but most grow out of it. It tends to happen when a puppy is overtired and needs some quiet time, or when they are ready to be stimulated physically or mentally. First, when she gets like that find a toy for her to hold in her mouth - she will need to chew on something so show her what's something good to bite instead of you. If you have a fenced in backyard, call her to the door and let her outside to run for a few minutes - most puppies will do zoomies for about ten minutes then wear themselves out. Its normal at this age. When you can't let her run around outside where there is space, give her a command to calm down, and when she gets still reward her with a food stuffed chew toy, like a Kong - stuffed with mushy dog food that was soaked in water and a bit of peanut butter, then frozen overnight - You can make several of these ahead of time and have them in the freezer to grab as needed. To teach her an 'off switch', when she is not feeling crazy, practice getting her really excited, then telling her "Stop" and freezing until she calms down. When she gets calm, give her a treat, then tell her "Okay" to let her know she can play again and go back to playing with her. Practice this over and over until she will stop right away while really excited when told to. Once she can freeze when told to during practice you can use the command when she is wild. This will need practice because self-control is a skill puppies have to learn with practice. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Tucker
Australian Shepherd
13 Weeks
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Tucker
Australian Shepherd
13 Weeks

How do I get my pup to listen to other members of the family, without losing my position of pack leader? I do all of his training, but when I need to go out without him, he doesn’t listen to anyone in the house and starts nipping.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Cassidy, Have other members of the family practice training with him too, even if it's just using his dinner kibble regularly to run through the commands you have already taught him (make him work for his dinner a few pieces at a time by doing commands for the food - measure the food into something besides him bowl - do not reach into his bowl for this). Since you are the one who is most a leader in your home in his world you are not likely to loose his utmost respect by having other members of the family work with him too, as long as you don't decrease what you are doing at the same time. You can also have family do things like take him on a walk and make him work during the walk by heeling and occasionally sitting or lying down when told. Tell family to enforce commands they give him, such as going to get him when they tell him to Come and he disobeys, instead of just yelling or leaving him alone then. For the biting, have them practice the Leave It command with him at calmer times, then use the Leave It command and Pressure method from the article linked below when he won't listen. Have them tell him Leave It, and if he keeps biting, then enforce him stopping with the Pressure method - he needs to Leave It first though so that he will understand and have the skills to stop biting when told - then it's just a matter of whether he chooses to obey something he understands. Teach him the Out command from the article linked below and show family how to enforce that command when he won't calm down - when you are home you can also step between him and the person he is biting and walk toward him instead of them walking toward him - this essentially tells him that he should respect that person because you have 'claimed' that person as yours in the doggie world. Leave It and Pressure methods for biting: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Listening and respect article - especially the sections on the obedience method and consistency method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Out command - which means leave the area - read the entire article: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Scooby
Cocker Spaniel
7 Years
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Scooby
Cocker Spaniel
7 Years

I adopted Scooby about 3 months ago and he was already well trained and adapted to me quickly. He was very dog reactive to start with (which I knew when I got him) and I’ve been working with him to develop more confidence with other dogs when out walking. At the moment, he will now say hi to most other dogs and seems interested in them when out for walks rather than afraid and reactive. However, alongside this new-found confidence he has become less obedient to me. He had great recall to start with and I reinforced this with treats, slowly changing treats to praise and pats over the last 6 weeks. But very recently (the last week or so) he’s started to ignore my recall commands. I thought to start with he might just not have heard me, but now I know he can and ignored it. This happens maybe only once on a walk but I want to stamp it out. I’ve tried using treats again today and this seemed to be working well but then towards the end he once again ignored me and I had to wait for him to choose to return to me which he did. He is usually allowed on the sofa with me in the evenings but I’ve made him go back to staying in his bed to reinforce that I’m top dog but I’d love some more tips.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Anna, Check out the article linked below and follow the Reel In method with a 40' leash and a harness. The Reel In method helps a dog learn that coming is not an option, but will be pleasant if they do. Treats are a great way to start but at a certain point a dog also needs to learn that coming is not optional because something can always trump your treat in the real world. Reel in method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-whippet-to-recall Use the Reel In method but also check out the article linked below for additional tips on the process of teaching come from beginning to off-leash around distractions - the step you are at is using a long leash right now, but past that you can read up about where to go from there if needed: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/train-dog-to-come-when-called/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Casey
Huskador
13 Weeks
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Casey
Huskador
13 Weeks

Casey is very young and very smart but as consistent as we are she doesn’t seem to realise what’s right and wrong. She has became a lot more vocal and constantly nibbles or climbs on us, and if she chews something she shouldn’t, she carries on even when we tell her off, it’s becoming very tiring and frustrating, she knows all her tricks but has no manners

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Hollie, You are in the height of puppy-hood and her combination of breeds tends to have a lot of energy, play rougher, and be very mouthy as a puppy so know that what you are experiencing is probably normal - even though I know its frustrating. She may need to be trained with slightly different methods then the ones you are using. A lot of the issue is probably just the need for more time and practice and continued consistency as she matures. New methods may help a lot though. I would recommend methods that use mild corrections for unwanted behavior in combination with teaching her what to do that's good instead and a lot of rewards for doing the good behavior. Positive reinforcement plus age appropriate corrections, instead of just correcting or only rewarding. For example, use the Step Toward method from the article linked below. Stepping toward her is mildly correcting and asks her to respect your space, then having her Sit once she is paying attention and rewarding her for sitting teaches her that instead of jumping she should sit (Don't jump - sit instead). https://wagwalking.com/training/train-australian-shepherds-to-not-jump For the mouthing, check out the article linked below and starting today follow the Bite Inhibition method, but also begin working on the Leave It command from the Leave It method. As soon as she understands Leave It well and can do it with clothes like the article mentions, then start using Leave It when she bites. If you tell her to Leave It (which she should understand well by that point) and she ignores your command, then use the Pressure method also found in that article as a mild correction for disobeying a known command - Leave It. In this scenario she should then understand how to leave something alone and that there is a consequence if she doesn't obey. If you go straight to the Pressure method she may not understand why she is being corrected and it won't be as effective without teaching leave it first though. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite I also suggest teaching the Out command - which means leave the area. When temptation seems to be too much for her, tell her Out so that she leaves the area completely. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Teach her Place command and crate train her. Have her go to Place (such as a dog bed, towel, or cot) or to her crate with a food stuffed chew toy when she gets too wound up - many young puppies actually need to rest when they get really crazy - they are actually overtired and overstimulated and need a break. You can additionally place treats on her "Place" randomly throughout the day and between her paws whenever you catch her lying on her Place bed on her own, to encourage her to spend more calm time there on her own. Place command: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo For the chewing, check out the articles linked below: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/train-dog-not-to-chew/ https://wagwalking.com/training/not-chew-on-furniture Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Quincy
Labrador Retriever
Two Years
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Quincy
Labrador Retriever
Two Years

Quincy is a rescue dog...the adopter has had him for 4-5 months..he has bonded with her but doesnt respect her...4 expensive trainers no one knows what to do..they say hes not aggressive but at times he will snap....growl..go to bite but doesnt or does a little..what can she do she has done everything

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Denise, Check out Jeff Gellman from solidK9Training on YouTube. Work on obedience that builds calmness and respect to start with: Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo Working method and Consistency method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you If she is likely to be bitten while training him, then get him used to wearing a basket muzzle. If he has learned that biting and aggression gets him what he wants his ability to use his mouth to control people needs to stop by implementing safety measures like a muzzle or back tie leash - which one depending on what you are working on training. To introduce the muzzle, first place it on the ground and sprinkle his meal kibble around it. Do this until he is comfortable eating around it. Next, when he is comfortable with it being on the floor with food, hold it up and reward him with a piece of kibble every time he touches or sniffs it in your hand. Feed him his whole meal this way. Practice this until he is comfortable touching it. Next, hold a treat inside of it through the muzzle's holes, so that he has to poke his face into it to get the treat. As he gets comfortable doing that, gradually hold the treat further down into the muzzle, so that he has to poke his face all the way into the muzzle to get the treat. Practice until he is comfortable having his face in it. Next, feed several treats in a row through the muzzle's holes while he holds his face in the muzzle for longer. Practice this until he can hold his face in it for at least ten seconds while being fed treats. Next, when he can hold his face in the muzzle for ten seconds while remaining calm, while his face is in the muzzle move the muzzle's buckles together briefly, then feed him a treat through the muzzle. Practice this until he is not bothered by the buckles moving back and forth. Next, while he is wearing the muzzle buckle it and unbuckle it briefly, then feed a treat. As he gets comfortable with this step, gradually keep the muzzle buckled for longer and longer while feeding treats through the muzzle occasionally. Next, gradually increase how long he wears the muzzle for and decrease how often you give him a treat, until he can calmly wear the muzzle for at least an hour without receiving treats more than two treats during that hour. Try to assess what type of aggression it is. Is he afraid of certain things and acting aggressively in response to too much pressure (still not okay but handled a little differently). Is he being pushy and using aggression to protest her doing things he just doesn't feel like doing (but isn't truly afraid of)? Is he resource guarding people, objects, or food? When is the aggression happening and what does his body language look like? Fearful usually looks like ears back, tense, tucked or stiff but low tail, trying to move away at times - even if growling. Pushiness looks more like tense, confident, puffed up, higher tail, higher ears, standing ground better. Rude can look happy but super rough and not attentive. These are generals and there are other types of aggression but with people these are the most common. For fear you need to also address the underlying fears, while building respect and trust - to help him overcome what he is afraid of in addition to teaching him how to express that fear in a better way - i.e. not through aggression. Both rude and pushy related aggression require more of a boot-camp, firmer approach, but for all three types of aggression the person training needs to be very calm, confident, and consistent. Notice how the trainers in the videos linked above handle themselves around the dogs - firm but calm. Watch further videos from SolidK9Training Jeff Gellman and Sean O'Shea The Good Dog Minute on YouTube for more specifics on dealing with things like fear, resource guarding, or bullying behavior. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Tober
Border Collie
6 Months
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Tober
Border Collie
6 Months

My puppy is kennel trained, but spent his first 4 months living at my parents house even though I took care of all the training, feeding and walking. He would bark in the middle of the night to go out, and has yet to figure out how to sleep through the night. I’ve trained him to “settle” which will stop the barks for about an hour, but he continues to wake up about 3am. His barks strike me as telling me he is lonely (he sleeps in another room), because it is a single bark followed by about 45 seconds of silence. I did call my vet and she told me to let him cry it out as it didn’t look like he has a UTI or anything. But he continues to do this after 3 weeks. Any advice? I don’t want to sedate him at night and he’s already walking 5 miles every day to tire him out (split into seceral walks) in addition to several training sessions and puzzle toys during throughout the day.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Erin, I agree with your vet that he needs to cry it out. After six months of being attended to during the night it will take him a while to break the habit of barking in the middle of the night. This is especially true for smart, stubborn, sensitive dogs like Border Collies. When he barks don't go into the room or you will simply prolong the barking. There are a few things you can do in addition to that however. First place him into the crate every day while you are at home for up to an hour. Stuff a large Kong toy with 'mush' and then freeze it. To make the mush, place his food into a bowl and cover it with water, then let it sit out until the food absorbs the water and turns into mush. Mix a bit or peanut butter or soft treat paste into the mush and then very loosely stuff and freeze the Kong. When you place him into the crate put the stuffed Kong inside with him. When he stays quiet for five minutes, or becomes quiet for at least thirty seconds after barking, then go over to the crate, drop several treats inside, and then walk away again without saying anything. Repeat this throughout the crate hour. As he improves, then only go over to the crate and drop in treats every ten minutes, then eventually every thirty minutes, then only once, then not at all. Continue to give him a Kong whenever you crate him though. The idea is to teach him to self-entertain, self-sooth, and accept the crate by giving him something to do in the crate besides barking and by rewarding his quietness. At night when you place him into the crate, wedge a couple of larger treats into the Kong, then give him the Kong when he goes to bed for comfort. Do not give him a completely stuffed Kong because you do not want him to have to go to the bathroom during the night, just do a couple of large treats. After spending time training him during the day, he should begin to associate the Kong with entertaining himself so that he will chew on that when he wakes up and needs to wind back down. Expect him to cry still, possibly for another month. Let him. Learning how to be independent from you and self-sooth and self-entertain can help prevent separation anxiety later on. He does need to be shown what to do during the day, be given something safe to do during the night that is not too stimulating, i.e. the Kong, and be given the opportunity to figure it out on his own. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Lyla
Labrador Retriever
4 Months
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Lyla
Labrador Retriever
4 Months

Hi,

I’ve started the process of loose leash walking with my pup, when we go out in public and are walking she will keep jumping up on me like she wants to be picked up. She also does this to friends who are walking with us. It’s almost as if she’s scared or too excited. She does it for the first 10 minutes or so. How do I stop this behaviour?

I was also looking for some tips on how to start teaching her to be calm in public and for her to learn that she doesn’t get to say hi to every human we pass. Also in stores, or just meeting someone who wants to pet her. I’d like her to stop jumping on everyone

Thank you

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Nicole, What you are describing at her age is completely normal - most puppies try to jump out of excitement or to try to get any treats you are carrying during the walk. If you are teaching heel with treats, keep them in your opposite pocket and don't hold the treat in your hand until you are ready to deliver it. Also, when she jumps take a side step into her, moving her out of that space. Don't step on her but moving toward her is asking her for a bit more space and making the jumping less fun. Try to be patient too. Most puppies simply don't understand yet what heeling looks like and so try all kinds of other behaviors to try to get a reward or express excitement (weaving between legs, taking off running, and jumping are all common at first). When you reward, reward when she is slightly behind you and all four paws on the ground - deliver any treats used at the back of your leg instead of in front of your leg because where you give the treat delivery area will tend to be where she hangs out while heeling. For the jumping, check out the article linked below. Try to recruit a bunch of friends to help you practice this with her, stepping toward her when she jumps and rewarding with a treat when she sits...this will take a lot of repetition, but jumping is an attention seeking behavior (which is good because she is friendly) but stepping toward her tells her she should give space (dogs understand body language well generally) and giving a treat when she sits teaches her another way to ask for attention that is more polite. It's important to both fairly correct for the wrong thing and reward for the right thing so she understands. It's like telling her not that, this instead. When she greets guests in public where you can't instruct people to step toward her and trust they will follow always, step on the middle part of her leash, so that if she tries to jump up her leash will automatically correct her, then tell her to sit and let guests give her a treat or pet while she is sitting...This will take practice. When you don't want every person under the sun coming up to you to greet her, you can have her wear a vest that says in training, or tell guests politely "Sorry, she's in training right now". Most people will accept that. At this age I would encourage greeting people politely though because socialization is generally more important than obedience for preventing aggression and fear while puppies are young, but there is a polite way to teach it. Correct attempts to go to people when not given permission (if she is supposed to be heeling and darts to people she has disobeyed heel so that can be corrected), then what you want her to meet someone have her tune into you by looking at you first, sitting, doing down, or generally showing you she is listening, when she complies with your command to focus on you, tell her to "Say Hi" and give slack in the leash to let her politely greet. Expect this to take practice - this can be hard for pups. Pet store workers, friends, family, and other puppy owners are often willing to play along with making her be polite before greeting. Others who want to meet her can be harder, so explain what to do simply before they get closer when they ask to greet, and be prepared to enforce her yourself instead of expecting them to. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Cosmo
Cavapoo
10 Weeks
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Cosmo
Cavapoo
10 Weeks

He will not stop biting my hands or my clothes regardless what I do. He doesn’t want any treats either. Do you think I haven’t found what he likes yet? When I’m trying to let him wait for his food he just starts to bark

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Linh, First, know that he is young and the biting is normal and it takes time to teach a pup to stop - they have to practice self-control and learn bite inhibition and that requires a lot of practice - so try not to get too discouraged that the biting is still an issue. With that said, check out the article linked below. Starting today, use the "Yelp" method. At the same time however, begin teaching "Leave It" from the "Leave It" method. As soon as pup is good as the Leave It game, start telling pup to "Leave It" when he attempts to bite or is tempted to bite. Reward pup if he makes a good choice. If he disobeys your leave it command, use the Pressure method to gently discipline pup for biting when you told him not to. The order or all of this is very important - the yelp method can be used for the next couple of weeks while pup is learning leave it, but leave it will teach pup to stop the biting entirely. The pressure method teaches pup that you mean what you say without being overly harsh - but because you have taught pup to leave it first, pup clearly understands that you are not just roughhousing (which is what pup probably thinks most of the time right now), so it is more effective. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite When pup gets especially wound up, he probably needs a nap too. At this age puppies will sometimes get really hyper when they are overtired or haven't had any mental stimulation through something like training. When you spot that and think pup could be tired, place pup in their crate or an exercise pen with a food stuffed Kong for a bit to help him calm down and rest. Another thing that would be good for pup would be if you can find a free puppy play date class attend one of those with him so that he can learn how to control the pressure of his bite by playing with other puppies. Petco and some other pet stores with training offer free puppy play classes if you call and ask for the schedule. If you have any friends with puppies under 6 months of age, set up play dates with those puppies too. Moderate the puppies' play and whenever one pup seems overwhelmed or they are all getting too excited, interrupt their play, let everyone calm down, then let the most timid pup go first to see if they still want to play - if they do, then you can let the other puppies go too when they are waiting for permission. When pup barks, hide the food out of sight, wait and then if he doesn't get quiet for a second on his own, make a small noise, like a foot tap to distract him for a second so that he will become quiet. As soon as he becomes quiet - even if you tricked him into it, give the food. You want pup to learn that barking means the food goes further away, and quietness and patience means he gets to eat. Right now he doesn't understand that so he is just barking hoping it will get him food - if you give him food when he barks he will learn to bark more. If you wait until he is quiet he will learn to be quiet and wait. It just takes time and practice. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Billy
Border Collie
1 Year
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Billy
Border Collie
1 Year

I rehomed billy 5 months ago. from what I can tell he’s had 4 owners in his life. He has finally settled in, showing no more signs of separation anxiety, doesn’t chew things, and is very clever! His obedience is perfect inside, he has a few tricks and is always bright and happy to execute them ... that’s until we go on walks. He’s a puller and I’ve tried many different ways to conquer this problem, the best one being the halti which he doesn’t particularly like. When and if I let him off lead I won’t see him for at least 20min and have lost him once. (Which is why I don’t let him off unless it’s a closed area) he’s obsessed with balls but if we meet some other dogs (he gets on fine with my mums dog and most when we are out walking), kids ( which is very worrying!) and cars he will lung and bark and whatever I say or do doesn’t get his attention ( I’ve tried a vibrating collar, water, sound...) I’ve had black eyes, split lip, broken a tooth, sprained my knee and now damaged my back, whether he barges, jumps on me or knocks me over. I just feel like I’m still not earning the respect that I should have so far. if you have any suggestions for me I would gladly test them out. I understand he will need a lot of time but if I keep injuring myself then he won’t get the walks he needs!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Nicola, I do suggest hiring a trainer who has the experience to try out different things with you and see which tools and methods work best for pup. You need someone who specializes in behavior issues though and who uses corrections as well as positive reinforcement. Check out Jeff Gellman from SolidK9Training on YouTube and look up and watch his videos on heeling, structured walks, and leash reactivity on his channel. Those videos should be very informative. You walk with pup needs to start out super structured. Pup needs to be sitting and calm before you clip on the leash (this may take a lot of insistence, patience and repetition to accomplish). Pup isn't allowed to rush out the doors - but must let you go first and wait until he is given permission to exit - keeping arousal levels low and him in the mindset of respecting you... Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M While walking, before you ever come across another distraction pup needs to have his face behind your leg so that he cannot be scanning the horizon the entire time. Fixating on other things and scanning the horizon looking for things to react toward should be corrected - before an explosion happens. When pup is focused on you, calm and heeling you can reward then but don't reward when his body language shows that he is looking for trouble, not focused on you, and tense - whatever you reward is what you teach him to do more often. I would make sure you have the right tools for him, a gentle leader or prong collar are who of the best devices for safely being able to handle a reactive dog - and you need safety. Prong collars are often fitted and used incorrectly - which makes them unsafe. Check out the video linked below to learn how to use one properly. Don't use a choke collar with pup because it could damage his trachea - a martingale is different though. How to Introduce the Prong collar – plus how to connect to buckle collar with carabiner: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=23zEy-e6Khg How to walk with a Prong collar https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nVvy6fztL2Q&t=6s An example of a structured walk with a reactive dog and a dog aggressive dog: Reactive dog - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XY8s_MlqDNE Aggressive dog - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo You will want to practice passing distractions from a far distance and working on pup not reacting poorly, focusing on you, and heeling, adding in lots of turns and changes of speed to your heel can help pup stay better focused on you while intentionally practicing in an open area where there are distractions in the distance. As pup improves, you will decrease the distance of the distractions. Be aware that highly aroused dogs who normally are not aggressive toward their owners can redirect a bite if you are not careful. If you see signs of that, definitely hire a trainer to work with you on this if you haven't already - pup's training will probably need to be done using a basket muzzle for safety in that case - a basket muzzle can be introduced ahead of time using lots of treats and pup's meal kibble to make it pleasant for him and not something he just associates with the training. Utilizing turns and speed changes - Heel article: The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Athena
pitbull
14 Months
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Athena
pitbull
14 Months

I have a pit that is close to an adult she doesn’t listen and it’s driving a wedge between me and my partner she gets on out bed jumps over her play pin barks at dogs she recognizes as dogs in her house she was a good puppy. she was found in the freeway at two months didn’t get any time with her puppy brothers and sisters.
I am really frustrated I love my dog so much and I love my partner i just cannot give her away nor would I ever. She dealt with a lot of little dogs biting her while they were playing. She was raised with cats. But I just don’t know she used to chew a lot now it’s been two things she doesn’t seem to learn. She still pulls when I walk I fixed that and it was fine for a while but now it’s even worse. It’s gets better, the great then stays like that then just goes back to bad. Aggression training is in the thousands.

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Thank you for the question. I think that Athena will benefit from obedience classes. She's young, so you still have time to halt the behaviors. Don't leave it too long though, or she will really become a handful. Obedience classes in a group are very reasonably priced and the socialization will be good for her. Training with your dog can be fun and helps to build a relationship of respect and trust. Sign Athena up as soon as possible so that she can benefit right away. Obedience will also help you teach her not to pull - it's great for that. See this guide for some excellent pointers (look at the obedience method as well as the other two): https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you. To start her on obedience until the classes begin: https://wagwalking.com/training/obedience-train-a-doberman. Good luck - I know she'll do great!

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Daisy
American Pit Bull Terrier
13 Weeks
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Daisy
American Pit Bull Terrier
13 Weeks

I live in an apartment and my pup has been being crate and pad trained. I currently use a grass pad for her to go to. My biggest problem is when taking her to the pad through the day or night she refuses to go but will dedicate in her crate and track it everywhere. On her own she will go to the pad but never when I take her. In the last 24hrs she has pooped in her crate 3 times. I wake up to poop every morning and I'm losing my willpower to push on. What do I do?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello, I suggest switching to the exercise pen method from the article linked below. Continue to use a real grass pad with that method. Set the exercise pen up somewhere without carpeting or rugs, and place a non-absorbent bed on the opposite end of the pen from the grass pad - such as a cot type bed or www.primopads.com. Exercise pen method: https://wagwalking.com/training/litter-box-train-a-chihuahua-puppy Once pup is potty trained via the exercise pen, you can try introducing the crate again so that you can use the crate for travel, ect...Be sure to clean the crate thoroughly with a cleaner that contains enzymes to remove potty smells now, to get it ready for future use later. Following the steps for catching her pottying on the pad in the pen (don't react until right when she finishes though), then quickly rewarding her for pottying correctly, is an important part of that method - she might not be pottying on the grass pad in front of you now because she has gotten in trouble for going potty inside before, and she thought she was in trouble for going in front of you, opposed to going on the floor inside. You want to show her through treats that going in front of you in the right location is a good thing. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Pip
Cavoodle
4 Years
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Pip
Cavoodle
4 Years

Hi there!
My family and I went on a 5 km run with some friends today and when we finished we sat down for a little bit. I was holding him when all of a sudden he cocked his leg and urinated on my leg. My mum is Pip’s favourite person in the family, but I work the hardest and would say I’m his second favourite. He had been to the toilet on the run multiple times so he didn’t need to go. Because of the current situation I have been staying at home but still going out to exercise. I have been walking and feeding Pip ever day. I hope you can find out why!
Thank you so much.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Jess, If there was another dog around or you stepped in another dog's urine or poop, pup may have been "claiming you" around the other dog. Otherwise, I suggest working on building pup's respect for you. Love and trust are important, but whether a dog respects you or not is what would effect them trying to "claim" you by marking you. Check out the article linked below for some ways to increase respect gently. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Practicing a structured heel, long Down-Stay, long Place command, and making pup leave the are if they are being pushy or demanding can also help to build respect. Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Out - which means leave the area: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Place command: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O75dyWITP1s Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ If pup begins marking regularly, have them wear a belly band to catch the urine. When they go to lift a leg, say "Ah Ah" calmly and clap three times loudly to interrupt. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Max
Rottweiler
5 Months
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Max
Rottweiler
5 Months

Why does my dog growl at me?

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Blue
Husky
2 Years
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Blue
Husky
2 Years

The dog park near our home has a lot of dog walkers and typically don't like it when I bring my husky in. They blame it on the fact that he's not snipped and that most dogs don't get along with the husky family. Usually when they're not there he gets along with others just fine. Why is it that their dogs don't like mine?

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, I think that my understanding is that Blue typically does fine but there is a certain group of dog walkers with dogs who show discomfort around Blue? Dogs can sense when another dog is not neutered and there can sometimes be clashes - that could be the issue and if the owners are tense, their dogs will sense it. This article gives good insight: https://moderndogmagazine.com/articles/ask-trainer-intact-aggression/26487. Make sure that you continue to socialize Blue and if he hasn't done any dog training classes yet, enroll him. When others see that Blue is well-behaved and obedient they'll feel more comfortable. As well, if you really want Blue to be welcomed by most dogs, I would consider neutering him (it can solve potential injuries and some canine health issues, too, like trouble with the prostrate). Good luck!

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Thor
Shih Tzu
8 Years
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Thor
Shih Tzu
8 Years

I've had Thor since I was an older teenager and he was a puppy. Whenever he did anything bad, like biting or peeing in the house, my mom always taught me to "show him who's boss" by yelling/lightly hitting his nose and even biting him back (I never bit him back but she would). Well fast forward to now, I'm 22, married and about to have a baby. We have a cat that he gets along well with. However, he's aggressive whenever he interacts with other dogs and children. He doesn't listen to me WHENEVER I tell him to do anything, from telling him to jump up next me on the couch, stop barking at the door, hold still for a hair cut, and especially whenever I call him over to me-he'll immediately go to someone else. For awhile I was convinced he just didn't like me. But whenever I leave the house he whines and cries and mopes till I get back. So now I'm thinking he just doesn't respect me. I really want him to start listening to me - especially before my baby is born so I can try to train him to behave well around her. I know now that positive reinforcement is the way to go and everything my mom taught me about disciplining a dog is wrong. But I'm worried that he'll never listen or respect me because of how we disciplined him for so many years before now. Will positive reinforcement work with him? Is he always going to respect others more than me? Is he afraid of me? Will he ever not be afraid of me?

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, it is never too late. Good for you for wanting to train Thor and for understanding that he was trained in a way that was not correct. I think the best thing to do, since you have a baby on the way and he is aggressive to children, is to consult a trainer who has experience in this area so that they can work with Thor one on one. It's worth the expense and time and sometimes only takes a lesson or two. Then you have follow up support afterward. Search for a trainer in your area, In the meantime, work with Thor on your own by reinforcing the obedience commands he has learned (and forgotten), Lots of positive reinforcement, praise, and treats. https://wagwalking.com/training/obedience-train-a-shih-tzu-puppy and https://wagwalking.com/training/obedience-train-small-dogs. Work on these, but consult a trainer, too. Good luck!

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Chase
American Staffordshire Terrier
1 Year
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Chase
American Staffordshire Terrier
1 Year

My rescue dog does not respect me. On a leash he pulls, and when we are out he goes off at other dogs. We have tried a halti and we have tried walking back in a circle so he knows he is losing ground. When he is home he chews the fence and tries to break out to get to the dogs next door. We have another puppy who is 9 months and we worked hard training him and he is a breeze. We took him to my mothers and he tried to attack the cat which is unacceptable. He also peed and pooped in the house which he has never done. We have had him for almost 6 months. He does not respond to treats, food, meat etc or play reward or attention. We tried negatively reinforcing with the water bottle but he just runs growls and tries to make it a "game".

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Allen, Check out the article linked below, and commands to work on with pup. A calm, confident attitude also tends to be the best way to gain respect as well - not feeling sorry for pup, being unsure of your commands, angry, or domineering - simply calm and confident in your instructions and teaching style. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Heeling, Down, Place, thresholds, Out, Off, and Leave It can be especially good commands for building respect. If pup is showing any signs of aggression toward you, I suggest hiring a professional trainer to help you with this - since respect issues sometimes involve aggression and need to be addressed with skill and certain safety measures in place. Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Out - which means leave the area: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Place command: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O75dyWITP1s Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Heel- Turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Come - Reel in method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-whippet-to-recall Off- section on The Off command: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-train-dog-stay-off-couch/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Akadia
Rottweiler
2 Years
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Akadia
Rottweiler
2 Years

My two-year-old Rottweiler, I believe doesn’t fully respect me she listens most of the time but if she’s upset with me about something; most of the time she will wait til her first chance (all she needs is 5 mins to destroy something if she really wants!) and chew something to get back at me and also I’ve tried to hold her food, wait to let her out/walk her and if she doesn’t want to wait that day she will bark extremely loud and run and jump all over until she gets her way. I took her to 2 private training classes....
#1. Very expensive
#2. I knew everything they taught us BOTH sessions
#3. They’re closed right now for Covid-19

So I’m begging someone please help!!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sammy, First, if pup is showing signs of aggression toward you, I don't recommend training yourself. If the behavior is simply ignoring you, chewing, and general rude behavior, check out the article linked below. I suggest working on all three methods simultaneously. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you For obedience, the following commands are ones I would suggest working on also. Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Leave It: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out - which means leave the room: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ As I said before, if you see any signs of aggression, I don't suggest trying to build pup's respect for you on your own, since respect issues can lead to bites if not handled with certain safety measures in place and awareness. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Kross
Shiba Inu
1 Year
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Kross
Shiba Inu
1 Year

Hi! so my shiba inu Kross is coming along great with commands. The problem is when we try to discipline him. For example he chews on shoes from time to time and I snap my fingers, point my pointer finger at him and tell him no. He responds by snarling and tries to nip at my finger. The nip is not like he is trying to bite my finger off it feels like he is giving me the correction. Another example is when he is playing too rough with my other shiba. I tell him no, snap my finger, point my pointer finger at him, and tell him no. he responds the same way. I would just like to know what steps do I take to get him to respond correctly to discipline. Thank you so much for your time.

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Jerry
Mix
5 Years
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Jerry
Mix
5 Years

My dog does not respect me at all. He does whatever he wants. For example he does not sit in the backseat of the car. He constantly goes to the front seat on my lap and when i say no, or try to carry him he just wants to bite. He gets on the couch. I say him to get off, but he doesn’t listen at all. He just growls and wants to bite.

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Alma
German Shepherd
3 Years
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Alma
German Shepherd
3 Years

She is my boyfriend's dog so I am in her territory so to speak. Since living here now she doesn't care to listen to me if he's home, but when he's not she listens so good and I've been trying my hardest to teach her some basic obedience on my time when it's her and I, but it seems to go right out the window once he's home again. He doesn't see a problem with any of her behavior like dashing past us anytime the door knob turns, not knowing basic commands, etc.

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, it is always a problem when both pet parents do not see eye to eye on the importance of training. I would keep training her anyway, and perhaps your boyfriend will see at some point that having a well trained dog is a pleasure. With Alma being a large dog, being able to control her is essential. Her loyalty to her boyfriend, with him being the first owner, is natural. Take her for walks, feed her often, and keep training her. Dogs will often bond well with the person that trains them in obedience. Be consistent, proud of your efforts, and proud of your accomplishments. There are excellent training tips here. I believe they will speed up your progress. https://wagwalking.com/training/obedience-train-a-whippet. Good luck and enjoy!

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Timber
German Shepherd
13 Months
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Timber
German Shepherd
13 Months

Barking and lunging at people, other dogs, Different noises. During walks and or in the house, in the back yard when neighbours are Out and about. I know I’m the problem. How can I correct my behaviour to better his urges. it’s to the point I avoid walking him on trails and street. He’s a big dog and it intimidates people.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
221 Dog owners recommended

Hello there. It sounds like you have your hands full. I am going to provide you with information on how to correct this behavior. You can apply these methods to anything your dog is reactive to. The example is for people, but it can be other dogs or anything else. You won’t be able to solve your dog’s overprotective behavior in one day. In the meantime, you don’t want to put your life on hold. You can still invite guests into your home as long as you prioritize managing your dog’s behavior. You’ll need a short-term strategy to start showing your overprotective dog what behavior is unacceptable while also keeping your guests safe. There are a few ways to do this. Leash: Keeping your dog on a leash while friends are visiting gives you control over your dog’s actions. Leash him up before the doorbell rings and keep him close as you greet your guests. During the visit, you can let the leash drag and only use it if you have to. Muzzle: If you feel his behavior warrants the use of a muzzle for the time being while you work on solving this problem, then it may be a wise choice. Separate Room: Your dog won’t get better without practice, but sometimes you have to weigh the risks versus rewards. If your overprotective dog is in the beginning stages of training, keeping her separated from guests might be best. You don’t want to put a friend’s safety at risk or needlessly stress out your dog. As long as you keep working toward stopping the behavior, separating an overprotective dog from company is a temporary management solution. Start Obedience Training Obedience training is a must for every dog, and it’s especially important for overprotective dogs. Working with your dog on things like “sit-stay,” “down-stay,” and “heel,” will help build her impulse control. He’ll start seeing you as a capable leader and will turn to you for guidance. A mistake many pup parents make is stopping obedience training once their dog masters the basics skills. Being well-trained is about more than knowing how to sit when a person holds a treat in front of their face. It’s a lifetime lesson, and even senior dogs need regular training. Commit to training your dog several times a day for short periods of time. Make Your Dog Work for Affection You can’t help but smother your dog with love every time he’s within petting distance, but that isn’t always what’s best for him. He will start to feel entitled to your attention, and that’s part of the problem. To remedy this, initiate a “work for it” program that allows you to show your dog affection as long as he earns your attention in appropriate ways. Make him sit, stay calm, and do whatever else you ask before doling out whatever it is he wants. If he’s excited for dinner, make him sit and leave it before digging in. If he wants in your lap, ask him to do a trick first. Never give your dog attention if he rudely nudges your hand or barks in your face. He needs to know polite behavior, and polite behavior only, is how he gets what he wants. You ignore everything else. Involve Other People in the Dog’s Life Most overprotective dogs choose to guard only the person they feel closest to. It’s usually the same person who fills their food bowls, takes them on walks, and handles training. They become obsessively attached, and a strong bond gradually mutates into overprotective behavior. Putting some space between you and your dog will help her learn to trust other people. Enlist the entire family’s help and take a step back in your role as primary caregiver. Have someone else feed the dog a few times a week, and encourage other people to engage his in playtime. This will help him be more comfortable with different people. Socialize Socialization is best done during the puppy stages, but even adult and senior dogs benefit from new experiences. Exposing your overprotective dog to new places, experiences, and people, will help him learn that not everyone is out to hurt you. Make sure each new experience is positive, and encourage your dog without forcing him to interact. If your dog is afraid, you don’t want to make things worse. Take socialization at the pace he’s comfortable with. If he seems overwhelmed, back up and try something a little smaller. These are some general ideas and they can be modified to fit your dynamic. These behaviors do take time, I am talking months, to correct. And sometimes the behaviors get worse before they get better. So just push through that time if that starts to happen. Please let me know if you have any additional questions. Thank you for writing in!

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Luna
Chihuahua
3 Months
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Luna
Chihuahua
3 Months

LShe is a good girl she's just super nippy. Some of her bites have even broke skin. She's typically a good girl and she's learning fast to potty train and to be obedient.Luna is a chihuahua feist mix.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
221 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Here is information on nipping/biting. Nipping: Puppies may nip for a number of reasons. Nipping can be a means of energy release, getting attention, interacting and exploring their environment or it could be a habit that helps with teething. Whatever the cause, nipping can still be painful for the receiver, and it’s an action that pet parents want to curb. Some ways to stop biting before it becomes a real problem include: Using teething toys. Distracting with and redirecting your dog’s biting to safe and durable chew toys is one way to keep them from focusing their mouthy energies to an approved location and teach them what biting habits are acceptable. Making sure your dog is getting the proper amount of exercise. Exercise is huge. Different dogs have different exercise needs based on their breed and size, so check with your veterinarian to make sure that yours is getting the exercise they need. Dogs—and especially puppies—use their playtime to get out extra energy. With too much pent-up energy, your pup may resort to play biting. Having them expel their energy in positive ways - including both physical and mental exercise - will help mitigate extra nips. Being consistent. Training your dog takes patience, practice and consistency. With the right training techniques and commitment, your dog will learn what is preferred behavior. While sometimes it may be easier to let a little nipping activity go, be sure to remain consistent in your cues and redirection. That way, boundaries are clear to your dog. Using positive reinforcement. To establish preferred behaviors, use positive reinforcement when your dog exhibits the correct behavior. For instance, praise and treat your puppy when they listen to your cue to stop unwanted biting as well as when they choose an appropriate teething toy on their own. Saying “Ouch!” The next time your puppy becomes too exuberant and nips you, say “OUCH!” in a very shocked tone and immediately stop playing with them. Your puppy should learn - just as they did with their littermates - that their form of play has become unwanted. When they stop, ensure that you follow up with positive reinforcement by offering praise, treat and/or resuming play. Letting every interaction with your puppy be a learning opportunity. While there are moments of dedicated training time, every interaction with your dog can be used as a potential teaching moment.

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Max
German Shepherd
6 Months
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Max
German Shepherd
6 Months

My dog bites me like he wants to attack me. Every time I try to get him off me, he gets more aggressive.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Aldaire, I recommend hiring a professional trainer to evaluate exactly what's going on here to make the most accurate training recommendation. Pup might be biting in play at this age, in which case I recommend the Leave It method below. Pup may be acting truly aggressive - any the reason for that needs to be determined. Pup might be reacting defensively due to a strong defense drive as a shepherd - in which case the way you are training and interacting with pup probably needs to be adjusted because your methods might be leading to the aggression by triggering that defense drive. Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Azu
Chihuahua
9 Months
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Azu
Chihuahua
9 Months

My dog is always barking around the house and doesn't listen to me when I tell her to stop. When I walk her around the block she doesn't stop pulling on the leash to get to the other dog. And when I try to get her away from a dog, she growls and nips at my hand.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Ashley, First, I would work on building a foundation of trust and respect between you and pup. Check out the commands and Working and Consistency methods linked below to help with respect and trust in your relationship with pup in general. Taking just 20 minutes a day to practice training with pup and having pup work for what they get in life by having to do a command like Sit first, can make a big difference. Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo Working and Consistency methods: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Out - which means leave the area: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O75dyWITP1s For the barking, you need a way to communicate with him so I suggest teaching the Quiet command from the Quiet method in the article I have linked below - don't expect this alone to work but it will be part of the puzzle for what I will suggest next. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Next, once pup understands what Quiet means you will choose an interrupter - neither too harsh nor ineffective. A Pet Convincer is one example of an interrupter. A pet convincer is a small canister of pressurized, unscented air that you can spray a quick puff of at the dog's side to surprise them enough to help them calm back down. (Don't use citronella and avoid spraying in the face!). In situations where you know pup will bark or is already barking (catch them before they bark if you can), command "Quiet". If they obey, reward with a treat and very calm praise. If they bark anyway or continue to bark, say "Ah Ah" firmly but calmly and give a brief correction. Repeat the correction each time they bark until you get a brief pause in the barking. When they pause, praise and reward then. The combination of communication, correction, and rewarding - with the "Ah Ah" and praise to mark their good and bad behavior with the right timing, is very important. Once pup is calmer in general after the initial training, practice exposing her a lot to the things that trigger the barking normally (make a list - even if it's long). Whenever she DOESN'T bark around something that she normally would have, calmly praise and reward her to continue the desensitization process. For the leash reactivity, start out the walk calmly by making calm down and do a command before leaving the front door (check out the video on thresholds linked above), practice the Turns method from the article linked above to help pup be in a more submissive, calm mindset to begin with. Interrupt pup as soon as pup starts to move past your leg, stare a dog down, or tense up - don't wait until pup is lunging and growling or this will be much harder. Bring treats in your pocket and when pup is calm, (not just not reacting but actually calm) you can reward with a treat. If pup may bite you, I recommend desensitizing pup to wearing a basket muzzle ahead of time - not just during the walk because you don't want pup to only associate it with other dogs. Done correctly, the muzzle shouldn't be a really stressful thing. Check out the video linked below for muzzle desensitization - for you this will likely be done gradually over the course of a week or two and not just 1 session like the demo video. To introduce the muzzle, first place it on the ground and sprinkle her meal kibble around it. Do this until she is comfortable eating around it. Next, when she is comfortable with it being on the floor with food, hold it up and reward her with a piece of kibble every time she touches or sniffs it in your hand. Feed her her whole meal this way. Practice this until she is comfortable touching it. Next, hold a treat inside of it through the muzzle's holes, so that she has to poke his face into it to get the kibble. As she gets comfortable doing that, gradually hold the treat further down into the muzzle, so that she has to poke his face all the way into the muzzle to get the treat. Practice until she is comfortable having her face in it. Next, feed several treats in a row through the muzzle's holes while she holds his face in the muzzle for longer. Practice this until she can hold his face in it for at least ten seconds while being fed treats. Next, when she can hold her face in the muzzle for ten seconds while remaining calm, while her face is in the muzzle move the muzzle's buckles together briefly, then feed her a treat through the muzzle. Practice this until she is not bothered by the buckles moving back and forth. Next, while she is wearing the muzzle buckle it and unbuckle it briefly, then feed a treat. As she gets comfortable with this step, gradually keep the muzzle buckled for longer and longer while feeding treats through the muzzle occasionally. Next, gradually increase how long she wears the muzzle for and decrease how often you give her a treat, until she can calmly wear the muzzle for at least an hour without receiving treats more than two treats during that hour. Muzzle introduction video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJTucFnmAbw&list=PLXtcKXk-QWojGYcl1NCg5UA5geEnmpx4a&index=6&t=0s Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Jack
Pug
6 Months
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Jack
Pug
6 Months

Jack sleeps with us. When he gets restless we take him outside. However, he has taken to peeing on the bed as I'm throwing on sweats to take him out. It doesn't seem to happen any other time, so I don't think there is a medical problem. How do we stop this behavior? We would like him to be able to sleep with us and I don't want him to think that if we put him back in a crate at night that it's punishment. (He started in a crate by our bed when we brought him home at 8 weeks.)

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Laura, It sounds like pup is probably getting overly excited in anticipation of the trip outside and simply doesn't have the bladder control to hold it while excited. Know that returning him to the crate doesn't have to seem like a punishment. Most puppies are simply not consistently able to hold it overnight without accidents without the motivation of the space of the crate. I generally recommend crating at night and when you are away until at least 1 year for most dogs. Returning pup to the crate would be the simplest solution until pup is older. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below. You could work on that method more during the day - even if pup isn't crying in the crate during the day, to make the crate seem more rewarding with treats for staying in the crate and a dog food stuffed chew toy, so that pup is more relaxed in the crate in general and minds less having to sleep there at night, even though I wouldn't give food in the crate at night. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate/ With pup in the crate, I would get ready to go outside before letting pup out, then calmly reach into the crate and clip a leash onto pup (if you are using a leash and not simply letting pup outside in a fenced yard), touching pup as little as possible and keeping your tone of voice and actions calm to avoid an excited accident from pup. Keep trips outside to go potty very boring and monotone until you are outside. I would also wash what pup has peed on with a cleaner that contains enzymes to fully remove the urine smell. Only enzymes will remove it enough for pup not to smell it anymore - and remaining urine smells can encourage dogs to go potty in that same spot again, so neutralizing the odor is important also. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Gus
Jack-A-Poo
11 Years
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Gus
Jack-A-Poo
11 Years

My dog doesn’t do as he’s told and always tries to bite me when I tell him to get in his bed or when I try and walk him back down the stairs when he goes upstairs where he isn’t aloud. He also doesn’t go and eat his food because he always thinks the door is going to be closed behind him in the back door. What should I do

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, is this new behavior for Gus? If so, the biting could be due to a medical issue like arthritis. I suggest a check up at the vet to rule out illness or pain. This may take care of the problem. To encourage Gus to like his bed, you can try a few things. Hide treats there throughout the day that he can find on his own. This will lead him to go there on occasion and be happy with what he sees. You can also buy him a new cushiony bed to comfort his senior bones. As for the biting when you try to lead him back downstairs, work on the "Leave It" command as described here: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite. This command comes in handy in many instances (such as picking up garbage when on a walk). Lastly, for the eating issue, why not try feeding him in a different location in the room since he does not have a good association with the door. If his appetite continues to be low, this may be another good reason for a vet visit. Good luck and all the best to Gus!

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Caoimhe
German Shepherd
10 Months
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Caoimhe
German Shepherd
10 Months

I've tried all of tips in the article "How to Train Your Dog to Respect You", and Caoimhe is still out of control. She jumps, she bites (thankfully, not out of malice), and absolutely will not obey a command. I've had many dogs, but none like this, and I don't know where to go from here. Multiple trainers have turned her away because she's so out of control. Can there be something bigger at play, i.e. a medical, developmental, mental issue? If that's a possibility, what might I ask the vet to look for (side note: I've brought up the behavior issue with the vet who brushes it off as "puppy stuff").

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
221 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Some dogs can be a bit spastic. And she looks like a character! But adorable at the same time. Without the ability to answer follow up questions, I hope I am not giving you advice that you already know. She is a working breed and depending on how she was bred, that instinct could be insanely high. No amount of physical exercise will do what mental stimulation can. We often forget that some dogs need to be kept mentally stimulated or they literally lose their minds. Continue with the methods discussed in the article you read. But in addition, let's add some time for her to work on puzzles. If you do a search on Amazon for dog puzzle games, you can find a few that you think will suit her. Also, it might be wise to start giving her her meals in what is called a Buster Cube. This will make her work for her food and tire both her mind and body out in the process. Another thing you can try is enrolling her in agility training where you can partake. This will help strengthen the bond between the two of you, as well as give her another mental outlet.

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Clover
American Bulldog
15 Months
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Clover
American Bulldog
15 Months

Hi, we took Clover at age 5 months . She was bottle fed from birth ( mom but her coming off anesthesia)- so the guy never put her back with the mom. Also she was a single puppy . Clover was crated 22/24 hours a day everyday because he said he had no time for her . When we took her at 5 months old I had to teach her everything, from housebreaking, to using steps , to eating/drinking from dog bowls . My big issue is her constant nipping ALL THE TIME . The photo with her sitting with my wife nicely lasted about 1 minute before the nips and piranha bites began . I have tried everything. She had a 1on 1 trainer for 12 sessions , and I also had her in a group class. She knows commands , and listens when she wants to. She is 4 weeks post spay and I was hoping she’d calm down some with the nipping, but it seems to have gotten worse . I want to pet her and get nipped , she wants to sit with us, but all she does is nip . The one trainer told me to roll her , this made her nuts . Then he told me to put my thumb as far back in her mouth as possible and press on her tongue ( like making her gag )- it didn’t work. Spray bottle with water was a game to her, redirection with a bone or toy lasted 2 seconds then she’s right back to our hands, legs, clothing . We’ve “yelped” and said OUCH - NO BITE , She just looks at you like why are you making that noise ? She is not like this with any of our family or friends , just my wife and I . I’m beyond frustrated and tired . I will also take her to her crate , leave her in 15 min or so and bring her back out - she walks out looking like she belongs on a Sara McLaughlin video . 😬 I’m at a loss , and she’s making it hard for us to bond with her . I’ve had dogs my whole life, including pitbulls and Boston’s and never had this issue . My wife wants to rehome her , but I still am hanging on to a bit of hope that one day she will just get it . Is it too late for her to learn that nipping is not acceptable ? Our vet said she thinks Clover looks at us like a littermate and not the pack leaders and is not sure if that can be remedied. We are looking into putting her in doggie daycare 2x a week so she can socialize and run off some energy . I really need advice on how to establish a better relationship with Clover and get her to stop with the shark attacks. Thank you

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
221 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Here is information on nipping/biting. Nipping: Puppies may nip for a number of reasons. Nipping can be a means of energy release, getting attention, interacting and exploring their environment or it could be a habit that helps with teething. Whatever the cause, nipping can still be painful for the receiver, and it’s an action that pet parents want to curb. Some ways to stop biting before it becomes a real problem include: Using teething toys. Distracting with and redirecting your dog’s biting to safe and durable chew toys is one way to keep them from focusing their mouthy energies to an approved location and teach them what biting habits are acceptable. Making sure your dog is getting the proper amount of exercise. Exercise is huge. Different dogs have different exercise needs based on their breed and size, so check with your veterinarian to make sure that yours is getting the exercise they need. Dogs—and especially puppies—use their playtime to get out extra energy. With too much pent-up energy, your pup may resort to play biting. Having them expel their energy in positive ways - including both physical and mental exercise - will help mitigate extra nips. Being consistent. Training your dog takes patience, practice and consistency. With the right training techniques and commitment, your dog will learn what is preferred behavior. While sometimes it may be easier to let a little nipping activity go, be sure to remain consistent in your cues and redirection. That way, boundaries are clear to your dog. Using positive reinforcement. To establish preferred behaviors, use positive reinforcement when your dog exhibits the correct behavior. For instance, praise and treat your puppy when they listen to your cue to stop unwanted biting as well as when they choose an appropriate teething toy on their own. Saying “Ouch!” The next time your puppy becomes too exuberant and nips you, say “OUCH!” in a very shocked tone and immediately stop playing with them. Your puppy should learn - just as they did with their littermates - that their form of play has become unwanted. When they stop, ensure that you follow up with positive reinforcement by offering praise, treat and/or resuming play. Letting every interaction with your puppy be a learning opportunity. While there are moments of dedicated training time, every interaction with your dog can be used as a potential teaching moment.

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Lottie
Springer Poodle
2 Months
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Lottie
Springer Poodle
2 Months

I play with her and give her treats etc but sits at my wife’s feet and wants to be with her, my wife has a devoted chiewawa 10 years old that is devoted to her, we had Lottie because I wanted a devoted dog for me, but can’t understand what happening ?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Christopher, I recommend you be the one to train pup with lure reward training. Feeding pup can help with a bond, so continue that also, but the person who trains the dog the most often becomes the preferred person. Pup preferring your wife may also be due to their age and them being more used to females in their previous home. If you are the one consistently training and feeding pup, that is also more likely to transfer to you as pup gets a bit older and more curious about the world around them and more interested in following someone out into it and exploring with the group, right now pup is a baby and looking to feel secure and find what's familiar. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Moose
Catahoula Leopard Dog
1 Year
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Moose
Catahoula Leopard Dog
1 Year

Hi, my 1 year old catahoula is reactive on leash. He enjoys playing with other dogs and is social towards dogs and people, but when we are on a walk and especially when we are hiking or out in the woods, he will react by barking and pulling on the leash when he sees a dog (and sometimes a person) approaching. If we try to create distance from the trigger his reaction gets stronger. I would like to train and correct this behavior before it continues, but so far counter conditioning and desensitizing have not helped. How can I work to reduce his reactivity and enjoy our outings together?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Ariana, I recommend hiring a professional trainer to help you in person with this. Look for someone who is very experienced with behavior issues like aggression and reactivity, and who has access to other well mannered dogs to set up training scenarios with. Because of the risk of a dog redirecting aggression toward whoever is closest, I recommend not doing this on your own and possibly desensitizing pup to wearing a basket muzzle ahead of time, so the muzzle can be worn when you know you will be working around other dogs, for your safety if pup tends to get highly aroused and ever has a tendency to redirect toward you or others nearby. What you are describing is often called leash reactivity or leash aggression - it's specific to the confined scenario where pup has learned to associate their frustrations and possibly anxiety with being on leash around the other dogs, opposed to up close and off leash. One option is to attend a G.R.O.W.L. class with pup. Another is to work on this with a private trainer. I suggest working on the structure of your walk first. You want pup to be working during the walk - having to stay behind you, focus on you, perform commands periodically, and not have his mind on scanning the area in search of other dogs. The walk should start with him having to exit your home very calmly, performing obedience commands at the door if he isn't calm. He should wait for permission ("Okay" or "Free" or "Let's Go") before going through the door instead of bolting through if that's an issue. When you walk he should be in the heel position - with his head behind your leg. That position decreases his arousal, reduces stress because he isn't the one in charge and the one encountering things first. It prevents him from scanning for other dogs, staring dogs down or being stared down, and ignoring you behind him. It also requires him to be in a more submissive, structured, focused, calmer mindset - which has a direct effect on how aroused, stressed, and aggressive he is - it makes him feel like the responsibility is on your shoulders not his around other dogs. Additionally, when you do pass other dogs, as soon as he starts staring them down, interrupt him. Don't tolerate challenging stares at other dogs. Remind him with a fair correction that you are leading the walk and he is not allowed to break his heel or stare another dog down. It is far easier to deal with reactivity when you interrupt a dog early in the process - before they are highly aroused and full of adrenaline and cortisol, and to keep the dog in a less aroused/calmer state to begin with. This also makes the walk more pleasant for him in the long-run. Leading the walk this way can actually boost a dog's confidence in the long run around other dogs because the dog feels like you will handle the situation so they can relax. Be picky about which dogs he greets. Avoid nose-to-nose greetings dogs who lack manners. A simple "He's in training" tends to work well. Be picky about who and how he meets other dogs. Avoid dogs that don't respect his space, pull their owners over to her, and generally are not listening well - those dogs are often friendly but they are rude and difficult for some to meet on leash. Also, avoid greeting dogs who look very tense around your dog, who stare him down, who give warning signs like a low growl or lip lift, who look very puffed up and proud - that type greeting with a dog is likely to end in a fight since your dog doesn't know how to diffuse that situation. A stiff wag is also a bad sign. A friendly wag looks relaxed and loose with relaxed body language overall. A tense dog with a very stiff wag, especially with a tail held high is a sign of arousal and not always a good thing. Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Reactive dog - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XY8s_MlqDNE Aggressive dog - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo Outside of the walk you can work on building pup's trust and respect for you in other ways too. The following commands and exercises are also good for that: If nervousness is ever an issue - Agility/obstacles for building confidence: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=elvtxiDW6g0 Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M A long down stay around distractions is a good thing to practice during walks periodically. A good way to do introductions with other dogs is to recruit friends with calm dogs and use the Passing Approach and the Walking together methods from the article linked below. After a few practice session of this, when the dogs can calmly walk side by side finally, take pups on walks together with both in a structured, focused heel. This gives both dogs something other than each other to focus on, keeps their energy calm, and helps them associate each other with the pleasant experience of a walk. Repeat this with lots of different dogs, one or two dogs at a time - you want other dogs to be associated with calmness, pleasant experiences, and boring things - not roughhousing, wrestling, nose-to-nose interactions always, or being rushed by them. https://wagwalking.com/training/greet-other-dogs Sometimes you can even find others to practice with through obedience clubs, meetup groups, or hiking groups. When he does greet another dog nose-to-nose, give slack in the leash, relax yourself, and keep the greeting to a max of 3 seconds, then happily tell him "Let's Go" or "Heel" and start walking away, giving him a treat when he follows so that she will learn to quickly respond to that command in the future. Keeping the greeting relaxed and short can diffuse tension and give the dogs enough time to say hi before competing starts. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Sakari
Husky
1 Year
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Sakari
Husky
1 Year

How do I get my dog to respect me she has gone past every boundary and even started pooping on my bed. how do I establish that I am alpha and need respect

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kaitlin, Check out the article I have linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you It's also important to make sure pup understands what the boundaries and commands are through proactively training ahead of time in a calm and consistent way. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Dallas
Lab mix
3 Years
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Question
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Dallas
Lab mix
3 Years

I have had Dallas since he was 6 wks
Lately he has changed with his behavior when I come home he jumps on me when i tell him tip get down
He has recently peed on me and my husband brand new mattress
This morning he peed on the rug I'm lost for words on what to do I'm over it this is all new behavior please help

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Question
Dallas
Lab mix
3 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Dallas
Lab mix
3 Years

I have had Dallas since he was 6 wks
Lately he has changed with his behavior when I come home he jumps on me when i tell him tip get down
He has recently peed on me and my husband brand new mattress
This morning he peed on the rug I'm lost for words on what to do I'm over it this is all new behavior please help

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
823 Dog owners recommended

Hello Serrena, For the jumping, check out this article: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-australian-shepherds-to-not-jump For the peeing, I recommend tethering pup to yourself with a hands free leash or crating more often right now, while you re-establish rules at home and work on listening. For listening, check out this article, especially the Working method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you If you see signs of aggression, I recommend hiring a professional trainer who specializes in behavior issues like aggression to help in person. Certain safety measures and adjustments will be needed to adjust aggression also. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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