Take Five: 5 Steps to Encouraging Good Behavior in Your Dog

Studies have shown over and over again that people who have dogs live healthier lives. They have lower blood pressure, aren’t as lonely, are less likely to be depressed, and receive other health benefits. Almost nothing can surpass the bond you can form with a dog. However, dogs, like people, exhibit behaviors that can be obnoxious. Whether your dog barks incessantly or chews your running shoes, there are ways to encourage good behavior from your dog.

If your dog engages in behavior that is undesirable there may be several reasons. Pent-up aggression or anxiety, lack of training, nervousness, and boredom are all common reasons for poor behavior in dogs. However, committed training, lifestyle adjustments, and patience from you, the dog owner, you can correct certain behaviors and make sure you and your dog have a happy, healthy life together.

Spay or Neuter

Spay or neuter your dog. Not only can this help to prolong the life of your dog, but according to the Humane Society of the United States spaying and neutering your dog can also diminish behavior problems.

Pamper Your Pet

Make sure you allow your dog time to relax, and help him do so. Dogs are similar to people in many ways, including their tendency to get stressed, anxious, agitated, and nervous from time to time. Veterinarians often recommend products like Pluto Pet’s Pet Calming Spray, which can help your dog relax and relieve hyperactivity. This all-natural spray can alleviate fear, nervousness, antsy behavior, and so on and can also help your dog sleep better through the night. It acts quickly, as well. You can also help your pet relax by relaxing with them, though. Dogs pick up on your emotions, so if you’re stressed out, your dog might be, too.

Work Out

Having a workout regimen isn’t just important for you, it’s also very important for your dog. Walk your dog twice a day for the best results. Dogs who aren’t exercised consistently can often have pent-up energy that they release by chewing items, showing aggression, or exhibiting other undesirable behaviors. To limit destructive behavior, get your dog outside and have a workout together.

Doggy School

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty for Animals (ASPCA) recommends that all dogs be enrolled in an obedience class of some kind. These classes are run by dog training professionals who can help your dog learn appropriate behaviors both humanely and safely. Educate yourself as well, however, and stay up to date on information regarding how to safely train your pet at home in conjunction with any professional training you obtain.

Practice Patience

Patience is perhaps the most essential component to helping your dog learn appropriate behaviors. If you take a class to learn a skill, like painting, nobody expects you to be Picasso by the next day – and with good reason. The same goes for your pup. It will take some time for your dog to learn and understand what you want him to do, but if you do it with patience, kindness, and using positive reinforcement he will learn, obey, and the two of you will grow closer in the process.

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