Read the signs and find help for dogs

Macclesfield Express - - DOGFATHER -

SHOULD you be out walk­ing and en­counter an owner with a bark­ing dog pulling fran­ti­cally to­wards your dog, the last words you want to hear are ‘he just wants to play’.

In my long and var­ied ex­pe­ri­ence, that is the call of an owner who is look­ing at a com­pletely dif­fer­ent dog than you are

hen his dog even­tu­ally at­tacks (as it will), the owner will blame you, your dog, or both.

If you have your dog on a lead, this owner will claim all would have been fine had you had it run­ning loose.

If your dog is loose, he will in­sist his dog would have been un­per­turbed had your dog been on a lead.

Dogs are by na­ture so­cia­ble an­i­mals (they have to be to be part of a pack).

Lung­ing and threat­en­ing oth­ers is not the behaviour of a calm bal­anced dog.

It’s the mark of a ner­vous, in­se­cure dog that needs help.

Dogs know that an­ti­so­cial behaviour is wrong, it’s against their nat­u­ral in­stinct.

They just don’t know how to cor­rect it.

That’s our job as own­ers and lead­ers.

It’s not dif­fi­cult, it just re­quires de­ter­mi­na­tion and com­mit­ment.

I re­ceived a won­der­ful pho­to­graph to­day of a dog play­ing in the sea with his owner.

Twelve months ago Toby was to­tally un­man­age­able.

His own­ers didn’t make ex­cuses though – they sought help and worked through his is­sues.

Had they gone into de­nial and ex­cused his anti so­cial behaviour as ‘play’, I doubt Toby would be alive to­day.

No calm bal­anced dog wakes up one morn­ing and de­cides to at­tack an­other.

He’ll have flagged up his prob­lem for some time.

He will cer­tainly pull or lunge to­wards other dogs, chas­ing and bark­ing.

He may even be nip­ping or mouthing.

Th­ese are the early signs of ag­gres­sion and de­mand ur­gent at­ten­tion.

It’s a call for help all own­ers should heed.

You can get that help on my web­site.

Al­ter­na­tively, join one of my train­ing classes by vis­it­ingvicbar­low.com or tex­ting me on 07590 560012.

●● Toby over­came his prob­lems through proper train­ing

W

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