Old dog, new tricks: How to know if your dog needs obedience training

Dealing with a disobedient dog is always difficult, especially one you’ve spent time and effort raising. There’s always this dilemma between the bond we form with the animal and the prospect of possibly having to let them go. But is there another option? Fortunately, yes. There’s always a chance that their behavior can be corrected with the help of the right professional(s). But how can you tell if a dog is simply overactive or if they are indeed in need of obedience training?

Taking your Dog for a Walk is War and a Work Out – All at Once
If you have the feeling that your dog is actually the one walking you and not the other way around, you may have a problem. Going for a walk should be a relaxing and pleasant time for you and your dog, not one where you have to spend half the time to fight for your life every time you step out. One of the primary objectives when it comes to dog training is leash obedience. With proper training, your walk should be much easier, and you’ll have less of a hard time protecting passers-by and other dogs as well.

Your Dog Suffers from Separation Anxiety
Some dogs get attached to their owners more than others. If your dog whines incessantly or suddenly becomes destructive when you go away, then it may be dealing with separation anxiety. Severely anxious dogs may start urinating, defecating, or even try to chew their way out through doors in extreme cases. A certified dog trainer can identify the signs of separation anxiety in a dog and take the proper steps to correct it.

For example, Peter Hargreaves from Dog Harmony, (a Liverpool, UK-based dog trainer), believes that “every dog is different and so deserves a tailor-made approach”. Professional dog trainers will take the time to understand your dog’s personality and psychology to achieve positive results. So, if you think your dog may be suffering from separation anxiety, you may want to get in touch with a certified, professional dog trainer to get your dog the training it needs.

Your Dog Tends to Jump on People
Some people may love overly affectionate dogs that get excited every time somebody new is around. While this behavior may have been cute when they were younger, the habit absolutely has to be curbed as they grow older. Not only is that a major inconvenience for people who have to deal with the behavior, it can also be potentially dangerous. So, if your dog is older and can’t help but jump on everyone they see, maybe it’s time for them to get trained by a professional trainer.

Your Dog is Destructive
It’s normal for dogs to chew on furniture and shoes, all dogs do it. Right? Wrong. It’s not normal for dogs to have that sort of behavior, especially dogs with a naturally gentler disposition. Yes, a new puppy will need to chew as it’s a part of growing their teeth, but they shouldn’t have the compulsion to gnaw on everything they see if they already have toyed around. They should know what they can and cannot chew around the house and you should start by setting clear boundaries yourself. Good dog training experts will give you a few pointers on how to keep their destructive habits under control.

You’ve Adopted
Not all dogs that are recovered from shelters have been mistreated and traumatized, but a large portion of them have. Rescued dogs often had to deal with extreme neglect or abuse, and many still bear the scars of this maltreatment. They might become withdrawn and timid due to the repeated aggression. Others start developing strange behavioral patterns due to trauma. Others become extremely aggressive and lash out at anyone close. If your dog was adopted and exhibits any of these symptoms, then you should start seeking the help of a trainer today.

Fido Does Not Stop Barking
It’s perfectly normal for dogs to talk, that’s how they communicate. However, incessant barking isn’t normal and should definitely be corrected as soon as possible. This is especially true if your dog starts barking at any and everything like cars, passers-by, or birds in your backyard, for instance. This is a clear sign of an overreactive dog. Fortunately, your average dog trainer will be used to this type of behavior and know how to cure it.

They Simply Don’t Obey you
Maybe you tell them to sit and they wander off to another room as if nothing happened. Or you call them to go inside and instead they go wild and go in a completely different direction. This is a more serious issue than many may imagine and should be corrected immediately so that it doesn’t deteriorate. If you want to ensure their safety and health, you have to make sure that they obey your commands at all times. Dog trainers are masters at teaching simple commands any dog will be able to integrate, which will help them stay in control and allow you to protect them from hazards.

If you happen to identify any of these behaviors in your dog, you should talk with a certified professional dog trainer right away. It’s never too late to correct bad habits; you just have to find a good trainer that is dedicated and with a solid track record and background to help you.

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