Earlier this week, I was the guest on Ask the Expert, a live program on AKC TV where people submit questions in real time for me to answer. Our topic was "why does my dog do that?" The questions ranged from serious ("Why is my dog growling at me?") to silly ("Why does my dog roll in goose poop?"). Check out the full episode below!
Some dogs won’t take “no” for an answer. When you stop playing fetch, Fido responds with jumps and barks. When you try to stop petting Pattie, she crawls into your lap and demands more, more, more. Or when a training session has come to an end, Rover silently protests by staring at you for five minutes. If any of these sound familiar, it’s time to teach your pup to have an “off” switch.
Can You Blame Them?
We can’t fault our dogs for demanding things. After all, when they beg for food, attention, or play, it tends to work! When your pup nudges your hand for one more scratch, there is a pretty good chance that you’ll give in and start petting her again. And thus a habit of demanding behavior is born. Even if you only give in some of the time, it can teach your dog to be bossy. In fact, if you tell your dog “no” for her first few demands but then give in eventually, you are actually teaching her to be more persistent than if you give in every time. Dogs who are intermittently rewarded for demanding behavior are the ones who develop the most stamina, and they’re often the ones whose habits are hardest to break.
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Kate is a certified dog behavior consultant, certified dog trainer, and award-winning author in Brooklyn, NY with Doggie Academy and in Southbury, CT.