Gracie on General Craziness

GraceYoung dogs are like young people in many ways; one of those ways is that we need to learn the same type of social behavior and ‘life skills’ that people do. Problem is, that what comes naturally to people when teaching their own kids (they’re the same species, for kibble’s sake!), isn’t so obvious when it comes to teaching your dog how to behave.

Dogs need to learn “sit”, “stay”, “down” and all that, but we also need to learn about other stuff like how to behave calmly in very exciting situations and how to calm ourselves down once we do get a little carried away. I know you’ve all seen dogs that ‘go ballistic’ and can’t seem to pull it all together (and their people can’t pull it all together either!). This kind of unruly behavior can make it impossible to communicate with the dog, get him under control and teach him anything productive. It’s a real problem!

You see this stuff going on almost every where you go. Dogs pulling on leash, dogs lunging at other dogs. Dogs barking and racing up and down behind the fence (I bet you thought we were having fun, didn’t you?). Dogs going nuts when the doorbell or phone rings. Dogs jumping up and knocking your family and guests down. Dogs barging out the door and dashing down the street! Dogs running around the house disrupting everything! Dogs nipping and biting  at clothes and skin out of excitement! Unruliness is everywhere!

Most often, unruliness by dogs seems to make people think we need more exercise, which frequently just makes things worse (like fuel on the fire, as it were!). Unruly behavior creates more unruly behavior, and on it goes. Unruliness is a dog behavior problem that almost everyone has at some time in their lives!

“My husband and I were at our wits’ end when we got our 6-month old puppy. She jumped up on us, on the windows outside, and was nipping at our clothes and hair. She was wild and rambunctious indoors and outdoors, she chewed on everything in sight, and she wasn’t house-broken. Our normally quiet household was in complete chaos and we didn’t know what to do.

We found Barbara Davis by searching on the internet, and called her for two emergency in-home problem-solving sessions. It was amazing. At the first session, we learned how to control our puppy indoors, how to get her on a house-breaking routine, and what to do to keep her from chewing on everything.  At the second session, we learned techniques for managing our puppy’s behavior outdoors, and worked on further skills to prepare her for formal obedience classes.

Within three weeks, using Barbara’s positive reinforcement techniques, we had a calmer puppy that was house-broken and no longer jumped up on everything. We were more than thrilled. Thanks to Barbara, we felt like we were on our way to getting our lives back under control.”

Janet and Scott Hensley