Common Mistakes Dog Owners Make

6 Common Mistakes Dog Owners Make When Training Their Dogs

All dog owners dream of having an obedient dog, but it’s something that will take some patience. Below you will find 6 common mistakes dog owners make when training their dogs.

Have you ever been so frustrated by your dog when he won’t do as you tell him to that you end up yelling at him? Don’t worry – you’re not the only one.

These are the 6 most common mistakes dog owners make with their dogs.

Common Mistakes Dog Owners Make When Training Their Dogs

1. Encouraging Bad Behavior And Habits

This is something that you’re probably not even aware that you’re doing, but there’s actually quite a large risk that you’re unintentionally acknowledging whatever bad habits your dog might have. It can be something like jumping onto you, unnecessary howling, and begging for food at the dinner table.

If you start petting a dog that’s jumping up and down, this is seen as a reward by the dog, and the dog will believe this is a good way to get your attention.

This is the same when the dog is barking or howling to get some attention.

Don’t feed your dog while you’re sitting at the table. This will only encourage the dog to beg every time you’re sitting and eating. This is a really bad habit that a lot of people can’t stop encouraging.

What You Should Do

If your dog is barking, begging, or jumping to get your attention, you should ignore it. When the dog has been ignored repeatedly, it will usually stop doing those things all by itself.

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2. Not Recognizing The Dogs’ Fears

A lot of behavioral issues with dogs occur due to fear in the dog, and in most cases, the owner doesn’t recognize the signals from the dog.

When a dog is scared it will:

  1. Raise the hairs on the middle of the back
  2. Hide
  3. Put its’ tail between the legs
  4. Jumps to be carried by the owner (mostly with smaller dogs)
  5. Lay the ears back over the head

If your dog is constantly afraid, it will often end up aggressive.

That’s why you will have to help your dog overcome those fears because he can’t do it alone. You will have to help rebuild its’ confidence and gait. Something that’s best done in new surroundings.

What You Should Do

Remember to praise the dog when he’s trying to overcome his fear, and make sure you dispense a treat in the shape of something delicious that you know he loves, so the dog will always see it as a positive experience.

Don’t expect that the dog will be able to overcome their fears right away. Recognize any small step he takes. Praise and try to motivate him to continue if he gets to a roadblock of any kind.

What You Shouldn’t Do

Don’t lift your dog and carry it around nor should you allow it to hide behind you. This will only enhance any fears it might have.

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3. Postpone Using A Leash

Everybody has seen those dogs that are almost towing their owners behind them during walks, just because the dog is so eager and happy, but also because they simply haven’t learned how to properly walk while on a leash.

If you start practicing using a leash when the dog is long past its’ puppy stage, the dog can easily end up jumping and pulling on the leash. This is why you should always start leash training as soon as possible, so your dog can get better acquainted with using a leash.

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4. Punishing For Obeying Orders

This error might surprise a lot of people, but it is actually a common mistake.

As an example, let’s take a look at the “come” command.

Your dog is running around the dog park having the time of its’ life, and you call for it to come, put the leash on it, and leave the park straight away.

To a dog, this is the same as being called to the principal’s office for a 10-year-old kid. The dog will think it’s being punished, and it might result in the dog not coming when called for.

What You Should Do

Train your dog to come when called, give it a treat, and a lot of praise when it returns. Try doing this inside your home in the beginning.

Don’t wait with the praise until it’s already right beside you, but start encouraging it when he’s only halfway, this will allow the dog to easier understand exactly what it is you want it to do more. And it will also learn that a fun and rewarding thing is about to happen when being called to you.

What You Shouldn’t Do

Don’t train the dog to return to you while outside, until it’s completely obedient while inside. The reason is that when you’re outside, you can’t really expect the dog to return the first few times you’re calling. It’s something that requires a lot of training, praise, and numerous treats before the dog will nail this every single time.

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5. Leaving Food Within Reach Of Your Dog

You’ve probably experienced this at least once or twice, you get distracted by something, and leave behind a half-finished plate of food on the counter, and your dog will inevitably jump up and grab what you hadn’t finished without your permission.

Leaving food or snacks of any kind can potentially be life-threatening to a dog, as foods such as raisins, chocolate, and avocados can be lethal if a dog digests them.

This is why it’s important that you train your dog not to eat anything left within its’ reach. It’s for your dogs’ own good.

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6. Encouraging To Bite Stuff

Do you have a tendency to leave shoes all around the floor, even though you know you have a dog that loves to bite and chew everything it can get its’ paws on? If you have a dog that bites everything, including things that aren’t toys, it might be a sign the dog isn’t being stimulated enough.

What You Should Do

Take extra walks with the dog, or give it some more toys for it to chew on instead of your costly shoes. Both the dog and your shoes will appreciate this a lot.

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If you’re looking for the most up-to-date recommendations, check out my recommended products section that I’ve created to help every dog owner!