Many behavior problems we deal with stem from dogs not getting enough exercise. Sometimes, just getting into a good walking routine solves problems such as anxiety, destructive behavior, digging and barking.
Here’s why your dog needs to be out in the world every day, being led by you:
Adult animals migrate each day to get food and water. There is no delivery service for them! Cows go to pasture, deer forage for food, wolves hunt, and birds fly in formation to their destinations. By walking your dog with purpose every day, you are recreating this primal urge to find food and water as well as giving them an important job. A walk done correctly allows a dog to look to you for leadership and direction and keeps him focused on the task at hand.
This is his time to work, just as soccer practice and karate lessons are times for kids to exercise both their minds and bodies. Backyards and dog parks are great, but they aren’t enough. You don’t expect a child to get his entire social and exercise needs met by playing in his backyard. And dog parks are like Chuck e Cheese for kids…. just time for wild running around and acting silly with their friends. It’s fun, but there isn’t discipline, connection with you, or learning being accomplished.
So please make time every day to take your dog for a minimum 30-45 minute walk. Or, hire a professional walker to help you if you’re short on time. But don’t skip this important step for keeping your dog mentally and physically healthy.
2. Give your dog some space
Does your dog have a favorite place to go when he needs to just chill out?
If so, that’s great. Make sure it’s always comfortable and safe for him.
If not, create a place for him. All creatures need to decompress at times and want to have a place where they feel safe and at peace. This is especially true if you have a busy household like one with lots of roommates or small children running around.
I make lots of suggestions for my clients, like putting a dog bed under an end table, or having a crate in another room. There are many options.
Be creative and help your dog find a place where they can tap into their inner peace!
The Pooch Coach in the News
In case you missed it, the Pooch Coach was recently on TV News again standing up for dogs. The story was about a dog sitter (“trainer”?) in Burlingame CA who was caught on film beating a little white dog. Her lawyer claimed it was training technique. Beverly spoke up and said “no way!”. No one should EVER hit, let alone, beat, a dog for ANY reason. There is no scientific training methodology that allows for brutality.
See her clip here: