I think there is a common misconception in the dog world that having expectations and holding your dog accountable to rules and boundaries makes for an unhappy dog. It almost seems that some people consider themselves or others as “good dog owners” by allowing their dogs to be free from all rules, boundaries, and expectations and they feel their dogs are happiest doing whatever they want at all times.
Examples of this type of thinking would be leaving a dog unattended in the yard, allowing fence fighting and window barking, allowing them to pull and lunge toward other dogs on walks, roam freely in the neighborhood, letting them travel freely between the house and the yard with a forever opened dog door, and jumping like crazy when someone comes into your home.
A dog running loose with wild abandonment while in a constant state of mental chaos is not the sign of a happy dog. Instead, a happy dog is one who knows his place in the family, knows what is expected of him/her, and is surrounded by a strong leader who will handle all of the major decisions.
Naturally, and for thousands of years, there has been a lot of structure, accountability, expectations, and leadership in a wolf pack or group of dogs. I realize that your family pet is far removed from that primitive structure of a wild pack of wolves, but that doesn’t mean that your dog will still not benefit greatly from the same structure. Here are some basic steps to take that can improve your relationship with your dog.
If you are looking for more tips and skills that can help your dog flourish in their environment, contact an Austin Dog Trainer and we would be happy to help out!
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