Correcting Problematic Behavior in Dogs
I’m Ed Smith, a Dixon dog bite lawyer. Dog owners know that their pets can be energetic and, at times, difficult to handle. However, there is a difference between a dog simply getting excited and dangerous behaviors that may lead to injuries. Most dog owners will try to train their dogs from a young age to quit problematic behaviors, but this isn’t always a possibility. Those who have adopted an older dog or inherited one from a family member often find that their new pet has some bad habits. The following tips may be helpful for people looking to keep their dogs from nipping, mouthing, play-biting, and other dangerous behaviors.
Most adult dogs naturally have strong jaws and are able to cause serious injuries when they bite. Problematic behavior can be difficult to correct, especially in adult dogs who have become less sensitive to the reactions of their owners. However, making sure that you inhibit your dog from mouthy behavior is very important, as dog owners are almost always liable for the injuries their pets cause. The first lesson a pet dog should learn is that humans are sensitive and have delicate skin. When your dog understands that humans can easily be hurt by biting, they will usually be gentler when interacting with people. This simple step can go a long way in avoiding dog bite injuries.
Most often, dogs are able to learn how to control the force of their bites by playing with other dogs. Many experts say that if dogs are able to learn this lesson from interaction with each other, then they are able to do the same with humans. In order to teach your dog about mouth control through play, you should use extreme caution and let your pet mouth at your hand. Wearing a protective glove or some type of protective covering is a good idea. Once the dog bites harder than they should, let it know that you are in pain by letting out a high-pitched squeal. You should also let your hand go limp as if you have been injured.
If your dog stops mouthing or begins to nurse your wound by licking, you should reward this behavior with a treat or some positive attention. After a successful lesson, you can continue playing and repeat the cycle until your dog understands what amount of force can hurt a human. It should be noted again that this method is dangerous and that those attempting to train their dog this way should practice extreme caution.
In some cases, simply showing your dog that you are hurt may not be enough to have a lasting effect on its behavior. If this is the case for you, putting your dog in time-out may be a good idea. While training, if your dog bites you playfully, let out a yell and remove your hand. Ignore your dog for around 15 seconds afterward. If he or she keeps nipping, stand up and walk away. Stay away from the dog for another 15 seconds. If this approach isn’t working, try leaving the room for a short time, effectively putting your pet in a time-out. After this, return and keep playing. The important thing is for your dog to learn that gentle play is acceptable, but being aggressive is not.
If you have worries that your pet is too aggressive to train, you should speak with a professional. A Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist or veterinary behaviorist may be able to help you. Additionally, it might be a good idea to consult with a Certified Professional Dog Trainer who has been able to successfully deal with problem behavior in aggressive dogs.
More by Ed Smith, Dog Bite Lawyer in Dixon
Dixon Dog Bite Lawyers
I’m Ed Smith, a Dixon dog bite lawyer. Frequently, dog bites leave people with serious injuries. If you have suffered injuries due to a dog attack, reach me at (707) 564-1900 for free, friendly legal advice. You can reach me at (800) 404-5400 and my website.
I’m one of Million Dollar Advocates Forum’s members. Trial attorneys in this group have either won or settled a case that was worth over one million dollars.
See my Verdicts and Settlements.
See my client reviews here:
:ms [cs 774] cv