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What Dogs Don’t Know

Wendy’s two dogs might have had some obedience training at one time, but you would never know it if you visited her house.

There are pee pads all over the floors. The dogs jump on people and furniture. They don’t sit if requested to do so. They bark at every sound and movement. They don’t come when called.

So, I was a bit surprised that I was not called to help with any of these behavior issues.

No, Wendy tolerates her dogs’ unruly indoor habits.

What she wanted was help with the dogs OUTSIDE.

Specifically, she was embarrassed to walk them on the sidewalks or in the park because they we

nt bonkers when they saw another dog. Wendy would try to hold the dogs back, to shush them, to pick them up, to make an abrupt U-turn, yet all of her attempts to control her dogs were fruitless.

From the dogs’ point of view, their behavior made perfect sense. “Hey! I do whatever I want all the time, and you want me to walk like a friggin’ Eukenuba Best of Chump dog? What are you smoking, lady? You’re not even on my radar screen.”

There’s an old adage “Charity begins at home.” Well, so does good behavior.

Wendy cannot expect to have her dogs suddenly begin to listen to her and respect her requests without doing the work at home first.

So, Wendy, in honor of this month’s National Train Your Dog Month, let’s get those dogs trained!

The Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT) has designated January as National Train Your Dog Month to bring awareness to the importance of socialization and training.

We know that hundreds of thousands of dogs are turned into animal shelters because their owners didn’t know how to deal with behavior problems.

You know that training your dog can be simple and fun!

January was selected as the perfect month because so many dogs and puppies are adopted and brought home during the winter holidays. So start out the new year with your newest family member in the best way possible.

Remember, puppies and dogs are not born knowing how to act in your house or on a leash – they must be trained to be good citizens and polite companions.

For more information, visit the APDT’s  Train Your Dog Month web site, and find a certified professional dog trainer (the APDT’s site has a Trainer Search option, or ask your veterinarian, veterinary clinic staff, or a friend with a well-trained dog to recommend one to you) to help you train your dog.

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