Many of us humans think that all we need to give to our dogs to make them happy is lots of love, and although love is certainly a big part of the healthy dog equation, love alone is simply not enough.
In fact, when the relationship you have with your dog involves love, love and more love, without addressing all their other needs, most dogs will become confused and nervous which then begins to manifest itself in behavioral problems that drive the humans crazy and makes the dog stressed, unbalanced and difficult to live with.
As much as we humans often try to turn our dogs into small fur people, and as much as our dogs try their best to be what we want them to be, there is no denying that what they are best at being, is dogs. When we expect them to mold themselves into what they can never be, we are doing our dogs a great injustice and oftentimes unknowingly causing them great stress and unhappiness.
So many of us humans really need to honor our dogs for the wonderful canines they are, instead of attempting to pile the burden of fulfilling all our humans needs upon the shoulders of our canine companions.
When we decide it’s time to share our lives with a dog, we need to be very certain that we are thinking along these lines for the right reasons, and not just because we want to use them to fulfill the role of surrogate children, a broken marriage or a lost loved one.
For instance, far too many humans allow their dogs to literally take over the home and run their lives by allowing them to sleep in their bed, eat their food, lie about on their furniture, bark like fury whenever another human dares to come knocking at the door, and literally boss the humans around.
Before we overwhelm our dogs with oodles of love and affection that can really confuse them and create unwanted behaviors, we first need to establish a appropriate hierarchy which involves an exercise routine that meets their needs, as well as a set of rules and boundaries that will help them to know their position in the family which will go a long way toward preventing any unwanted behaviors from surfacing.
All dogs need exercise every single day, not just when you feel like it, or when you might have time for it. Our dogs are super athletes, no matter their size or breed, and this means that they need to get out there every day and move about.
As well, our fur friends live for traveling their neighborhood or local territory because it’s a natural canine instinct. If we don’t help them to fulfill this natural instinct, they become unhappy which can then lead to all sorts of unbalanced behavior from chewing your favorite slippers to busting through windows or climbing walls to get out and about.
Rules and Boundaries
Without a solid base of rules and boundaries for your fur friend, there will be much confusion about who is the boss and where their position lies within the family. Dogs absolutely crave rules and boundaries because it relieves them from making decisions that they are literally not equipped to make.
Every dog must have a leader, and when you bring a dog into your home, this leader must be you. When you don’t provide the leadership role for your dog, by giving them firm rules and boundaries, they can become nervous and anxious until they finally are forced into accepting that THEY must be the leader of the new human/dog family.
Most dogs would simply prefer that the human is the leader and leave it at that. First of all, it’s very rare to find a domesticated dog that is truly a pack leader, and secondly, when you allow your dog to run your home and your life, you can almost be guaranteed that permitting this will create behavioral problems somewhere down the road that you may or may not be willing to live with.
Sadly, many of our fur friends end up in the pound, the SPCA or a rescue facility simply because the human part of the equation had no idea how to create an environment that included necessary rules and boundaries for their dog.
Many times, once the dog/human relationship becomes unbalanced, the situation becomes too difficult for the humans to handle, and instead of hiring a professional to help solve the problems, the once loved dog is removed from the picture. These abandoned dogs, if they’re lucky, get re-cycled into another family that hopefully will do better for them.
Please take the time to invest in your dog’s wellbeing by hiring a professional to help you. There is nothing more tragic than making a commitment to care for a dog, that ends long before it’s time, in the shame and guilt of having to find them another home.
Love and Affection
After you’ve established an exercise routine and have your rules and boundaries in place, then it’s time for love and affection as this is the reward you will both share for a job well done.
There are many times throughout your day that you can share moments of love and affection with your dog that won’t make them totally confused or unbalanced.
For instance, sharing love with your dog can be many things, including:
• feeding your dog
• giving them treats
• allowing your dog to sit by your feet
• taking them for a walk
• going for a car ride
• giving them a scratch behind their ears
• playing a game
• sitting beside each other enjoying the day
We all want our dogs to be happy, well balanced members of our family, and the only way to help them live happy lives with us, means giving our dogs the rules and boundaries they crave.
There is no deeper bond of love and affection shared between human and dog, than one that includes a balanced routine of exercise, rules and boundaries.
The helpful staff at www.PeachyKleenPets.com hope that you now realize that our dogs need much more than just love from us.
Asia Moore — Ask a Dog Whisperer © 2013 All Rights Reserved
“With the proper training, Man can be dog’s best friend.”