Dogs need to learn to get along with other dogs—and humans—in order to have a good life. As an owner, it’s up to you to train your dog to be a good canine citizen. Unfortunately, bad behaviour is the top reason that dogs are given up and dumped in shelters. The best way to train a dog is to use the reward system. In this system, a dog is rewarded for complying with its owner’s request through use of a small treat and a ton of praise.
- Dogs are loyal and love to get in the good graces of their people. The reward system is an excellent method of training a dog quickly.
- Inappropriate behaviour or bad behaviour is ignored for the most part, unless it poses a danger to the dog or others.
Introduce your dog to normal household activity.
Dog socialisation means learning to be a part of human and dog society in a healthy manner. Begin socialisation early in your puppy’s life by introducing them to normal household noises and activity in a non-threatening manner.
- Don’t chase your dog with the vacuum cleaner or swat him with a broom.
- Take him for car rides to get him used to riding in vehicles and to introduce him to the sights through the windows.
Take your dog to a dog park.
Dog parks are another good way to interact with other dogs and humans. Keep your dog on a leash, especially for the first few times you visit the park. DO NOT let your dog off leash unless you are certain that he gets along with other dogs and humans.
Try a puppy socialisation class.
One of the most productive ways to introduce your puppy to other puppies, humans, and normal sights and sounds is to take him to puppy socialisation class. These classes are held by community education, 4-H clubs, or pet shops and give the dogs and owners a safe place to learn together. Look through your local newspaper or on-line to find classes near you.
- If you need to work on socialisation for your older dog, try enrolling him in an obedience class.