It’s typical to ignore the true effect of our own actions. Whether we unintentionally offend a friend, buy the high-fat yummy choice at the market, or accept the offer to have one more beverage at the party, sometimes it’s tough to see what’s in our own best interest. We treasure the flexibility of our mind and body, appreciating how we consciously bounce back after actions that are not too mindful. Life can be pretty forgiving of our choices.
Contrast this very human situation with a dog’s life, with behavior which is set and locked by what you allow him to do. Obviously, dogs are unlike humans in that they cannot consciously decide to improve how they act. Dogs only learn the behavior we teach and model for them. We always get the behavior in our dogs that we reinforce with our actions, both good and bad
Dogs Can Change and Adapt
Dogs actually have the capacity to change and adapt to our instruction faster than most owners expect, with a surprising aptitude for learning to improve the way they act. What’s required to get your dog up to their potential begins with leading your dog toward the positive image you have in your mind of their best behavior. Once you can begin to envision your dog behaving better you’re taking action to build a better relationship.
But the little things you allow your dog to get away with have a direct parallel to actions you give yourself permission to keep doing even though you know those actions need to change. So the not-so-simple part to seeing change in your dog is to envision taking action to change the choices in your personal life that work against what you want to achieve with your dog
The Basics of Good Dog Behavior
One thing is for certain, we are all in relationship with one another on this big blue planet. Playing well with others is always the result of a socialization process that teaches us to act and live in appropriate ways with family and community. For your dog, it’s the same deal. Taking action to teach your dog the basics of good behaviour must be consistent with an awareness of how your personal actions are supporting the new relationship you’re working to build.
Your dog is always ready and willing to learn to be the best dog in the neighborhood. Are you ready to lead him in that direction?