Thursday, 23 April 2009

But I dont want to be a dog trainer!!

Often when people ask for advice about their dogs behaviour problems I hear

'but I dont want to be a dog trainer I just want a well behavied dog'

sorry to be blunt but


Dogs are always learning from us - whether we want them to or not

for example

Sitting at the computer Ben comes over and puts his head in my lap

I reach down a stroke his head

Ben has learnt that putting his head in my lap means I stroke his head

Next time he tries that I dont pat his head

Hmmm thinks Ben, mibby she wants me to hold my head here longer??

He does and after a while I stroke his head.

Next time he holds his head for a longer time but still I dont stroke it

Hmmm, mibby she wants me to poke her with my paw?? yelp??

So you can see by me not paying attention at all I am free shaping Ben to bug me for attention

Is he being bad - no of course not

But if I want to stop this behaviour it is gonna get worse before it gets better as he tries to figure out what I want him to do

If you are a dog owner you are a dog trainer, get used to it

and as they are learning anyway isnt it better to teach them how you actually want them to behaive??


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