The Quiet Teacher.

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Stop The Barking, Pretty Please?!

To teach a pet effectively, you must first learn to speak your pet’s language. It’s a whole different ballgame than teaching children. Once we figure that part out, the rest comes easily. Pets communicate more through body language than through talking. Your voice can actually be a big part of the problem. Example: your dog is looking out the front door and sees someone walk by the house. He starts barking and barking and won’t stop. So you tell him “no,” but you have to raise your voice to be heard over his barking. So why doesn’t he stop barking when you holler at him? Because, in a dog’s world, you’re just joining in the fun. You’re “barking” with him, and that’s pretty exciting for him. So what did you really teach him? That barking was good. Surprised?  Read on.

Teach With Body Language Versus The Spoken Word.

So how do you be a good teacher and stop the barking then? First, break his focus from the thing he’s barking at. Toss a sock, or a lightweight stuffed toy at him – something that won’t hurt him. You can be way across the room, but if you toss something at him, he’ll see that as an extension of your actual touch, and it will distract him from the barking. Then you can call him away from the door in a soft, happy voice, no hollering or scolding needed. If he’s a bit stubborn, tho, and goes back to the barking, then repeat the toss, and this is when you’ll use body language. Step fully between him and what he’s barking at. Don’t just lean over him, step fully in front of him. Use your body to block and redirect his focus onto you. If he tries to go around you and back to barking, you must continue using your body to block him.

Another very important tip–always keep your energy happy and calm. No anger, no tension. Continue blocking him until you see him “yield.” Yielding is when he gives up–turns and walks away, or just sits down. It’s a signal that he’s acknowledging you as the boss now. You have learned to teach him effectively, in his own language, and this is all accomplished using body language. Now you can praise him. You’ll realize quickly what a relief it is to be rid of the frustration and stress and chaotic hollering. Your home will become peaceful again, filled with happy, positive energy, and your dog will be more relaxed knowing that you’re in control. Now that’s something to look forward to.

genesis, pauly, and santana
Think Like Your Dog – Teach Her With Positive, Fun, Love.

Remember, pets aren’t as capable of logic and analytic thinking as people. So don’t expect them to reason and figure out what you want on their own. And they will respond much better to happy, positive encouragement than to negative correction. Scolding and trying to “guilt” your pet into good behavior will always fail, because he isn’t wired up to think like a human. That negative approach just ends up with an unhappy pet filled with stress and anxiety, continuing to act out, and an unhappy you as well. Try the simple tips above, become The Quiet Teacher, and be consistent. It may take a few times before he gets the message. But be patient – he will.

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God Bless and Happy Pet Parenting!

With love and good wishes,
jeannie.   ?

About jeannie:  I’ve been pro-actively involved in pet rescue all of my life. I founded Milagro Senior Pet Refuge© (Phoenix) in 1998, and BareFootPets (TM) in 2008.  Animal welfare has always been and will always be my heart’s work. If my only legacy is that I save a handful of precious souls that would not survive otherwise, I’m good with that.