21 tips for a happy and well behaved dog

Justin Jordan shares his top 21 tips for happy and well behaved dogs. Follow these and you’ll be well on your way to a better relationship with your best friend…
Happy dog

  1. Be a leader for your dog, not a boss. Leaders guide, ask and then praise when their dog does as they ask.  Bosses shout and demand.
  2. Be clear and consistent with your commands and expectations.
  3. Don’t shout or yell at your dog.  It only confuses it.
  4. Try not to use the dogs name as a correction or as come command (not every time you say your dogs name will you want it to run towards you, a dogs name should be kept as something positive or to get the dogs attention)
  5. Ignore attention seeking behavior i.e. barking to get inside / outside, demanding pats etc.
  6. Preferably keep your dog off your bed
  7. Keep your doggy off the furniture both for safety and to help to establish leadership, leaders sit in the highest and most comfortable places.
  8. Talk to your vet about your dogs Diet, Diet effects behavior, health, energy levels of your dog and budget; a premium quality food is essential.
  9. Don’t leave food out for your dog; apart from the health and hygiene reasons this puts the dog in control of the most precious resource. Allow 15 minutes to eat, if not finished take away until next mealtime. Most dogs cannot self regulate their food intake very well, this also helps to promote you as the leader being in control of the most precious resource.
  10. Chewing and destructive behavior, may be Teething, may be boredom or it may be stress related; offer the dog things to chew on:-, Kong Toys or healthy chew treats from your veterinary clinic.
  11. Give your dog some basic training each and every day for about 10 minutes.  Dogs, like children, need education some helpful and easy commands to consider are Name Recognition, Sit, Drop, Come, Shake, Leave, Mat Training. A favorite saying of mine is “every interaction with your dog is an opportunity to train your dog, this can be good or bad behaviors”
  12. Talk to your dog trainer or Vet for ideas on environmental enrichment for your dog when you out, a tired dog is a happy dog.
  13. Take your dog for a walk each day.  Dogs, like all of us, need exercise to stimulate their minds and it also takes away the boredom of hanging around in the yard all day.
  14. Set Boundaries and be consistent, Love but don’t spoil, Discipline but don’t smack.
  15. Consider formal training with your dog, it’s a fun and rewarding way to interact with your dog while also teaching them some good manners, your dog will love you for it.
  16. Don’t play rough games or chase your dog, they are generally quicker than us, there are many other rewarding games like fetch that are much better for you and your dog .
  17. Have your dog regularly checked by your local Vet.  It pays, as prevention is better and less expensive than cure. Consider Pet insurance.
  18. No onions, Grapes, Sultanas, Chocolate, Garlic, No cooked bones.
  19. Consider pet insurance, pets can be expensive, Pet insurance helps to take away the nasty part of the equation if something does go wrong.
  20. Diet, Exercise, Interaction and love are the most important ingredient for a happy healthy dog creating a loving bond, be generous with your time and affection, the love you give them they will give you back 1000 times over.
  21. Having a dog as part of your family is a privilege. Not a right.

For further guidance and tips to suit you and your dog, why not come along to Group Obedience Classes, or find out about personalised dog training in your home.