All dogs behaviour is a combination of nature and nurture. At the Pet Hotel we often discover they have learned behaviour they reserve solely for their pet parents, and often not desirable behavior. It is very easy for a dog to “accidentally” learn techniques that they think their parent have encouraged, or is expecting to see.
An example is a fear or a dislike of other dogs when walking on a leash. Often parents will tell us at the Dog Hotel that their dog becomes aggressive to other dogs when on a leash. It sometimes can be very difficult to determine which came first. The leash aggression or Mom and Dad’s efforts to avoid conflict. When walking their dog, many parents will spot an oncoming dog up ahead and to avoid the issue will pre-emptively cross the street. Inadvertently they have taught their dog that you need to avoid other dogs when walking. Our canine’s are very clever and if you have a fear of a particular breed or size of dog and constantly avoid them, then your dog has learned that we should avoid those dogs too. On those occasions when you are unable to avoid the meeting, your dog will act aggressive because they know this meeting shouldn’t be happening. Their reaction is learned and part of a fear they have been taught and a desire to protect you from a situation you and they don’t want. That is why so often at the Dog Hotel we don’t have the same experience. It is a different situation and not their parent at the end of the lead who they need to protect.
It is very easy to understand this and very difficult to fix on your own, once the behaviour has been learned. Most often the behaviour has become ingrained after a single incident that went poorly. In an effort to either protect your own pet, or even the other dogs you meet, a pet parent compensates and takes a single incident and makes it an ingrained behaviour. At the Pet Hotel we can offer behavioural modification and dog training in a safe environment. Whilst not every dog can be rehabilitated, most can move beyond the bad experiences, and dog and parent can learn to enjoy walking in their neighborhood again.
Through first working with a dog without their pet parent, we build positive memory upon positive memory of meetings and interactions. Once your dog has learned new ways to react on a leash and had a lot of positive experiences to remind them it doesn’t have to always be negative, we can begin reintroducing their pet parent. It is a lot easier for Mom and dad to trust a situation when they see that their dog can and does react positively.
For more information on how Dog Training at The Royal Pet Hotel can help you and your pet please contact us at 705-726-5034.
Jenn Dahinten has been involved in health and pet care for over 20 years and is currently a part of the caring team at The Royal Pets Hotel & Spa, a 5 star Pet Hotel just north of Toronto in Barrie, Ontario.