Monday, April 4, 2011

Accidents in the house

Occasionally a dog that has been properly house trained will have an accident inside. This could be the result of a medical condition, a sudden fear, a change in routine or food, overexcitement or a reaction to something going on in your house. Have you been away more than usual? Have you recently moved furniture?  Has another person moved in or out? Are you expecting a new addition to your family?

Changes in your life, whether positive or negative can be very confusing for your dog. They don't understand that you may be getting a nursery ready for a new baby, but they do pick up on your anxious and excited emotions. So staying calm will help your dog to better cope with the changes going on around her.

Confidence does help

The more confident your dog, the easier it will be for her to handle the inevitable changes in your life. Dogs love routine but variety is just as important. Walking many different routes can help condition your dog to accept change and respect your leadership. If you walk the same route every single time, your dog doesn't really have to follow you since she has long since memorized it. So change it up, keep your pooch on her toes.

When accidents happen

If it’s already happened, you can show her and use a disappointing tone when addressing it. There is absolutely no reason to hit your dog or rub her nose in it. It’s just plain cruel and won’t solve anything. You want to show your disapproval, that’s all.

If you catch her in the act, interrupt her and lead her outside. When she goes to finish, praise her.

It's very important to never put your dog in her crate as a punishment if you find a mess. Or when you are feeling stressed, anxious or frustrated. Her crate should represent rest, relaxation and safety at all times.

If you have been extra busy, tired or stressed and your walks have turned into quick outings in the backyard, you shouldn't be surprised by your dog's reaction. Listen to what she is telling you.

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