Adding a New Puppy to Your Family

Does Your Dog Own You? 3 Ways To Turn Things Around

by Arttu Kari

When a dog comes into a home, they may establish themselves as the pack leader if you do not show them who is in charge. If your dog has done this, they are likely jumping on your furniture, barking at you when they want something, and overall not minding you at all. Fortunately, there are things you can do to turn things around so you are the owner—instead of the dog owning you.

Do Not Give Into It

A dog that is dominant will likely bark at you when they want something. For example, if they want you to throw a toy, they will bring you the toy and bark until you throw it. They may nudge at you and bark if they want you to pet them. In these situations, the dog is telling you what to do, like they are your boss. Instead of giving in, tell the dog "no," but be calm about it. If you continue doing this, they will start to understand that you are not going to give in. You should not yell at them, as they will become overly excited and will act even worse.

Once your dog quits barking, pet them and praise them. You can then throw the toy for them. If you continue doing this, they will get the point.

If your dog jumps on the furniture, gently pull them off and stand up over them and tell them "no." Do this every time they jump on any type of furniture, and over time they will understand that this behavior is not accepted.

Take Your Dog for Walks

To show that you are the pack leader, take your dog for a walk. Make your dog walk next to you, instead of in front of you, pulling on the leash. They should heel next to you when you tell them to. This helps your dog because it shows that you are leading them, instead of them leading you. If they start to pull on the leash, stop and pull back on the leash slightly, and then start walking again.

Walking is also beneficial because it gives your dog exercise. If they do not get enough exercise each day, they will have a lot of energy inside the home and be more apt to act up

Eat First

At dinnertime, you should eat before your dog, and never feed it from the table. In a dog pack, the top dog always eats before the others. When you are finished eating, feed your dog like you normally would. If you have other pets in your home, you have one that is likely the head of the pack. If so, let the pack leader eat first, and then feed your dog. This is beneficial if they are also trying to be dominant over your other dog who has already established that they are the leader when it comes to the dog hierarchy.

Take your dog to the veterinarian for regular checkups. If you continue to have problems with your dog, there may be a medical reason for their unwanted behavior. You should also take your dog to a trainer to help you through this process. Click here to investigate more.