Problem Solving For Running Out Of Doorways | Escaping | Boundary Training
An important part of pet ownership is teaching your puppy or dog proper pet manners. It is your responsibility to have control over your dog and to correct bad behavior. Your pet should never be allowed to run through doorways or passages. Obedience training is an important factor in this process. Knowing a simple command, such as to sit or down stay, could save your pet’s life. Some corrections should begin when your dog is a puppy, even before he is leash trained, while other corrections require a leash and collar. Remember, your dog or puppy is like a small child. He might misbehave due to curiosity or boredom, not because he knows what he’s doing is unacceptable. Remember, with any unacceptable canine behavior, prevention is easier than treatment.
To correct common behavior problems, follow these basic steps:
- Get your puppy or dog’s attention using a low-pitched, stern voice saying “No!” or “Ahh!” to stop the behavior.
- Provide an acceptable alternative behavior or distraction.
- Praise correct behavior in a happy voice (“Good dog!”) and pet him or give treats.
RUNNING OUT DOORWAYS | ESCAPING
You must teach your dog that running out an open door or unlatched gate is not acceptable. Put the leash on your dog, give the “Sit” and then “Stay” commands. Open the door. If the dog gets up, give a leash correction, say “No” and take him back to the original position. Repeat the commands until the dog stays, and then give lots of praise and a treat. Once you have good reliability on leash, remove the leash and practice until the dog sits and stays every time the door is open. Eventually, the dog should sit and stay near the open door instead of bolting out as people come or go, or while you are getting ready to take him out for a walk.
In our formal training program, we never want to use a high intensity punishment to ruin the dog's mood, so we train where applying a high degree of force will have the greatest impact in the dog's mind. This will solve another problem we all have-- the dog that runs into the street without us, which can lead to a more severe punishment than we can instill.
- We program "No" by playing with our dog on the sidewalk with their favorite toy, tossing it to and fro, playing tug of war, running and having a merry time.
- Then with yourself positioned so that your dog is between you and the street, throw their toy into the street and wait until your dog steps off the curb, immediately and abruptly say "No" and tug on the leash as hard as you can (as if you were really tugging your dog away from a fast moving approaching car).
- Place the dog on the sidewalk saying "Good" and bend over and show the dog, by pointing to the street, saying "No" sharply.
- Then point to the sidewalk saying "Good", then point to the street saying "No" sharply, then point to the side walk saying "Good".
- Then begin playing with your dog on the sidewalk again and repeat the exercise.
If you follow this format, your dog will refrain from running into the street after a fast moving object or toy no matter how much they want to. They also develop a new respect for the command "No". Now you should never have to tug on your dog in that manner again. When we start our formal training, whenever we tug on the leash, we say "No" at the same time; this reminds the dog of the street punishment.