Often the social needs of dogs are totally underestimated. Sometimes dogs are seen more like a machine which you teach commands and they should work. One very simple example, that this is not the case, is the following: When you have a very good educated dog who is suddenly alone with an unknown person, he will barely follow his commands without any further interaction (besides the dog is especially trained on this). So there needs to be something more, and this is a social relation.

Dogs are highly social livings which normally always life in a pack. They remember very well who treats them well and who not. You need to work towards that your dog trusts you and loves you. Then he wants to please you with behaving like you expect it. You get to a much higher understanding and training level by that which also works completely without treats. There are several points which help you towards this:

  • Spend as much time as possible with your dog. A dog is a pack animal and is used to be with the pack. Being alone is not normal for the dog.
  • Always be happy when your dog comes to you, never be angry.
  • Learn dog language. (There will be an own post on this in future)
  • Be angry as few as possible.
  • Let your dog always close to you. For a dog it is normal to sleep with the pack. Licking and jumping at one is not a bad thing.
  • Do activities with your dog, but also let him participate your everyday life. For example it is better to take your dog with to shopping, even if he is just hanging around in the car, instead of leaving him at home.
  • Spend dedicated time with your dog. It is not enough to just take him with you for a walk and only talk with other humans or only let him run next to the bicycle. The dog also needs your attention. This can be petting, activities and training. (There will be an own post on this in future)
  • Learn from your dog. Training is mainly that the human learns: the behavior, feelings and the needs of the dog. (There will be an own post on this in future)
  • Get your dog early and prepare to have him for a very long time. It is easier to build up a relation with a 8 week old puppy instead of a one year old dog.
  • Visit the puppy before you actual get it from the breeder. This makes it often much easier for the puppy to suddenly leave her family pack.
  • Always care for your dog!

Not all recommendations need to be fulfilled. For example also with a dog living in a kennel you can have a great relation.

By building up a strong relation you do not only get a much better trained dog which also listens on you in difficult situation (i.e. strong own instincts kicking in or coming to you even there is something close to you of which he has a strong fear). You will also get a dog who is eager to work with you together and will have a very close look on what you are doing and expecting.

Categories: K9