Dogs can be wildly aggressive and overprotective creatures. A dog that loves you will attempt to deter any form of threat to you. Most dogs will lunge or rush at other dogs, bark and growl extremely aggressively, or just freeze and give that other dog “the look”. This is just a dog’s way of saying to their owners “hey bro, I got this stand back”.
It can be very frustrating at times when all you want to do is take your dog for a walk or maybe just put their leash on them to take them outside to go potty and the next thing you know you’re in an awkward conversation with the other dog owner trying to apologize for your dog’s bad manners. Don’t worry, most dog owners have been there, you’re not alone.
Here is a list of 5 tactics you can implement today in your dog’s training to get them to ignore other dogs completely.
Tip #1 – Get your dog comfortable with being around other dogs.
Dogs that spend a huge amount of time being cooped up in a house will have very little social skills. Your dog must be able to interact with other dogs in order to train them to ignore other dogs.
If you see a luxury car, or a fancy new watch, or anything extremely rare, chances are you are going to stop and stare because seeing those things will pique your curiosity.
Someone who is a multi-millionaire that owns a fleet of luxury cars and fancy watches and other nice things will show very little curiosity when they see other objects that are not particularly uncommon for them to see.
If you live near a dog park, then you should consider taking your dog there just to get them accustomed to being around other dogs. Most dogs that I encounter at the dog park are very friendly and your dog will learn some vital communication and social skills that canines share amongst each other.
After being around other dogs and getting used to seeing them and interacting with them regularly then it should become an easier task for your dog to learn to ignore other dogs when you guys are out and about.
This process should take anywhere from a few days to 2-3 weeks to break your dog’s bad habit.
Tip #2 – Use the Sharp Tug Method.
The “Sharp Tug Method” consists of giving a sharp, quick tug on your dog’s leash followed by a quick release whenever they begin to show any signs of aggressiveness or misbehavior. It is recommended that you refrain from using a collar on your dog if you plan on using the sharp tug method.
Using this method on a dog wearing a collar can seriously hurt their necks and over time can even cause bruising, throat pain, and a very harsh sounding cough. It is like being karate chopped in the neck when implementing the sharp tug method on a dog that wears a collar.
It is considered best practice to use a harness (link to Amazon) on your dog as opposed to using a collar as a harness will not injure your dog when implementing the sharp tug method.
The reason this method works so well is that it will immediately signal to your dog that whatever they just did was a displeasing action to you. Dogs are not perfect and will forget. You will need to repeat this process several times throughout the day for several weeks in order to get your dog to understand what they are doing is incorrect.
Do not try to get into a tug of war battle with your dog. This will only encourage their actions even further. Use a sharp tug and a quick release to signal bad behavior to your dog, not a long pull or a game of tug of war.
Tip #3 – Using Training Tools.
Another tool that I use on all my dogs is dog shock collars. Most people are ill-informed about dog shock collars and their benefits and consider them to be inhumane tools of torture, but this couldn’t have been further away from the truth.
Dog shock collars do have a bit of a nasty-sounding name, but most shock collars are considerably quite harmless to your dog.
Most dog shock collars have a wide range of settings and features that actually prevent your dog from being injured. Some collars even correct unpleasant dog behavior without shocking them at all. Through the use of vibration or tone features in the dog shock collars, dog owners can break a dog out of all their bad habits without a single shock.
Tip #4 – Implement hemp treats into your dog’s diet.
Hemp treats were specifically designed to act as a dog behavior normalizer. Hemp treats are being used to calm down dogs that possess an excitement factor, usually found in younger dogs. I have also found that, transversely, they also will put some pep in the steps of much older dogs.
The hemp treats (link to Amazon) can be a useful tool in training your dog to ignore other dogs by simply feeding it to them before you go on a walk or go somewhere where there are likely to be other dogs around. I have found that it works best to keep my younger dogs calm in intense situations by giving it to them maybe 30 – 45 minutes before even stepping foot out of the house.
Please note that this is not to be used as an alternative option to feeding your dog real dog food.
Note: I have since discontinued using the hemp treats on my dogs because their behaviors have improved phenomenally when it comes to being around other dogs.
My dogs were like a pack of wild coyotes whenever they saw another dog on the horizon but now, their attitudes towards other dogs are either nonchalant or they’re just sniffing each other’s butts all day until I usually end up just trying to manually separate them.
Tip #5 – Giving Verbal Commands.
Although this method, in my opinion, will likely be the least effective for an untrained dog is trying to calm them down or training your dog to ignore other dogs, I feel that it is appropriate to give an honorable mention to the practice of exercising given verbal commands.
It is essential to instill within your dog a vocabulary of necessary commands that he/ she must follow. Basic commands such as sit, speak, rollover as well as more intermediate and advanced commands should be taught. A well-trained dog will follow your command no matter what situation they might find themselves in.
You should always be able to demand your dog for his attention and not another dog’s attention at any given moment and at your command.
If you notice that your dog is becoming tense or uneasy because of another dog that is in close proximity, then using command language such as “heel” or “stop” in a stern and strong voice will quickly show your dog exactly who’s in charge and will ultimately correct their behavior.
If you lack the training necessary to train your dog or puppy then do not worry. Programs such as BrainTraining4Dogs have played a crucial role in helping to train many dog owners for many years. The program is easy to follow and fun for dogs as well. I highly recommend that you give it a try if you are serious in taking your dog’s training to the next level.
I find that 8 out of 10 dog owners hardly ever consider attempting to train their dog. This is why there are so many accidents caused by untrained and overly aggressive dogs in the United States. Congratulations to you for taking the necessary steps to properly train your dog to become a contributing member of society.
Why your dog pays attention to other dogs?
The reason for your dog giving so much attention to other dogs is because dogs are very intelligent, yet instinctual creatures. The moment you put your dog’s leash on he is then in “protection mode”. Their goal is to get you back home untouched.
Dogs are always on alert for any potential threats or hazards that may occur. Whenever they enter into a new environment they will scope out the area and ensure that everything is safe for them and for you as well.
Dog barking at strangers?
I have outlined several additional training techniques that may be useful if you find that your dog barks at unfamiliar faces and you wish to train your dog to stop barking at strangers.
The major key here is to just remember to keep your composure, to remain patient when training your dog to ignore other dogs, and to NEVER PANIC. A dog can sense when you are scared or frightened when in an uncomfortable situation.
Remain calm, this will help your dog to remain calm as well. If you begin to panic and your dog notices, you will find it incredibly nerve-racking trying to calm down yourself while simultaneously trying to calm your dog down as well.
I hope that this information has been insightful and acts as a fundamental building block in your dog’s training journey.
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