Taming your pooch
DOGS behaving badly often result in red-faced owners scurrying for the closest exit point or place to hide – but there is help at hand.
Dog trainer Luana Osmani, from Pets Training & Boarding, says there is no magic wand to improve your dog’s manners but understanding the triggers is important.
“Bad manners can be described as any annoying or unpleasant behaviour,” she says.
“This can be anything from jumping on guests, barking at strange dogs and pulling on the lead.
“Commonly it will be certain triggers that will cause a dog to behave badly, coupled with a lack of knowledge on how to prevent the problem.”
For owners dealing with excessive barking, she recommends enriching your dog’s environment with boredom busters like treat balls, or giving your dog a daily challenge and exercising them adequately.
To curb jumping she says it’s best not to make a fuss when you arrive home – just ignore your dog until they are quiet.
“When guests come over, pop a leash on your dog and ask them to ‘sit’ and ‘stay’ and reward good, calm behaviour. Ask your guests to only praise your dog when they are calm,” she says.
Bad behaviour is stressful for both owners and their dogs: “When you understand why your dog is behaving the way they are, you … begin to improve the bond you both share,” Osmani says. “Once you start working alongside your dog you will both reap the rewards of a loving relationship, without the stress.”
She says a well-behaved dog is a happy dog and that is good for their brains and general wellbeing.
Luana Osmani with miniature schnauzers Bobo and Puipui.