When it comes to dogs, raising them is a lot similar to raising children. How we provide dog parenting effects how our pet pups and how well they listen, behave, interact with other people and pets, and grow up.
While different people use different strategies for raising their canine companions, there is no “right way” to do it. However, there are certainly a few wrong practices that you need to avoid.
In this post, we share eight common parenting mistakes to prevent raising a dog with compromised behavior, health, and safety.
One of the most common mistakes most dog parents make is failing to socialize their pets, especially when they are young. Most pet parents believe that young puppies do not need to socialize. That’s a misconception. Pets, like dogs, need socialization from a very young age. Failure to give them enough opportunities for socializing leads to a lack of confidence and trust. Moreover, your canine companion might also have trouble adjusting around strangers and may also turn out to be dangerous in social settings.
To avoid this problem, you need to ensure that there are enough opportunities for your pet to socialize from a young age. A few hours of playtime every day (or on most days of the week) will help your dog develop a stronger bond with you. Moreover, it will help your pet develop a sense of safety around people.
Imagine what would happen if you let your kids jump on the bed? Or on the table? They are likely to exhibit inappropriate behavior, which will soon become a habit.
That’s precisely how things are when you don’t set boundaries for your pets. Without boundaries, your pet may get used to exhibiting undesirable behaviors, such as jumping, scratching the wooden floor or furniture, peeing inside the house. And in the long run, these are some undesirable habits that you would not want your pet to have. Fortunately, this is something you can avoid by setting up boundaries.
If you have kids and pets at home, accidents are inevitable. But how you react to accidents is essential when it comes to dog parenting. In case there was an accident in the house, but you caught it a few minutes later, there is no point in using punishment as a means of disciplining your pet. If you get angry and yell at your pet, they would have no idea why they are being yelled at because they cannot process information and form connections.
A better approach is to wait until you find an accident right at the moment. Moreover, instead of using punishment, use praise and other incentives to discipline your dog. When you reward your pet with incentives, there is a lower chance that your pet will make a mistake in the first place.
Exercise and playtime are essentials for pets. However, pet parents often find it challenging to accommodate time for exercise in their already busy schedule. But let’s not forget that dogs, regardless of their breed, need physical activity, and when they don’t get enough of it, they tend to be inactive and obese. Again this is a prevalent dog parenting mistake that you can easily avoid by incorporating exercise and playtime into your dog’s schedule.
For many dog parents, this does not appear to be a big deal, but as a rule, you should never let your dog walk you. When dogs pull their leash too hard, they may end up causing injuries to other people around them. Therefore, as a pet parent, you should stay in control of your dog and never let your dogs walk you.
Training is indeed essential, but when it comes to training pets, consistency in training is as essential as the training itself. Most homeowners try to train their pets but are seldom consistent. As a result, the dog remains confused and does not oblige to commands.
A better approach is to be consistent in training. Whether you are teaching commands such as “sit down, stay, and roll” or teach appropriate behaviors, it is best to be consistent, so your pet eventually learns what is expected of them.
Dogs tend to put many things in their mouth, but that does not mean they can eat everything. Their stomachs are not designed to process food that humans eat. Unfortunately, most dog parents do not realize that it is a potential problem. And they let their dog eat everything they want. In turn, it can cause health problems for your pet.
Therefore, it is best to keep a check on what your canine is eating. Ensure you keep bones and leftover foods away from your dogs and let them eat only food that is specifically developed for them.
Dogs have an inherent social need. After all, they are pack animals. But most homeowners do not realize this, and they end up leaving their canine alone for too long. When your pet doesn’t get to see anyone around them during most of their waking hours, it can be frustrating for them, reflecting in their behavior and actions.
If you have a busy schedule, where you get to spend limited time with your pet, try coming up with an alternate arrangement. Ask someone from your friends or family to check up on them while you are away. Even small checks can help break up the boredom for your canine.
Dog parenting comes with its unique set of challenges, and the learning curve is steep. While there is still no definite right way to train your dogs, you can surely be in a better position to raise a decent pup by avoiding the eight common mistakes highlighted above.
by Bobby J Davidson || You can’t buy love, but you can rescue it™ .
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