We haven’t posted one of these informational posts in a little while now, mainly because we’ve been busy working through the training sessions booked post-lockdown. But, we’ve also just not had anything that we’ve really wanted to talk about outside of the client write-ups we try to do.
We only write posts that we feel will bring value to people and be worth sharing, rather than send out rubbish for the sake of staying relevant.
It doesn’t matter who you are, or what you’re doing; life is complex and often unforgiving. Whether you’re chasing your career goal, have personal debts, are building or maintaining relationships, experience failures, have aspirations, or anything else that’s important or challenging in your life. One thing is for certain – life will find ways to challenge you and often when you’re at your weakest.
Those who’ve never experienced what it’s like to have a dog with serious behavioural problems may find it difficult to understand the struggle of those who have, but we’d like to try and explain it to help build a better support network for those who really need it.
For most people, coming home from work and taking their dog out for a walk is the stress relief they look forward to after a busy day. Imagine DREADING having to do it when they get home, knowing their dog is going to go crackers, they’re going to feel embarrassed and ashamed, take the passing comments of others to heart, and have no clue how to begin fixing it. Now do this twice a day, every single day, and compound it with the other typical stresses of life we mentioned earlier.
To those who have never had a dog with serious issues and assume it’s the owners fault or think that dog doesn’t belong in the local park – try to understand that very often it’s nothing the owners have done wrong, the dog may have neurological issues or be in pain, they may even be improving week-by-week and you’re just seeing a bad moment. They may even be close to tears and on the verge of a breakdown (more common than you think) and your reaction to their dogs behaviour may either make or break their day.
To the owners of the ‘problem’ dogs – more people than you probably realise will be having exactly the same issue as you. Your dog’s issue is not unique, it is not unfixable and it will improve if you work on it. The negative reactions of others who simply don’t understand aren’t as important as they feel, and the only thing you need to focus on is what is right by you and your dog.
Having a positive mindset is absolutely crucial when working with a problem behaviour. If you’re not in the right mental state I can guarantee you that your dog will respond negatively, you’ll become embarrassed and frustrated, and your training progress will take a huge hit.
If you can’t bare going for a walk, don’t go for a walk mate. Chase your dog around the back garden instead and roll around like a pair of morons. Stop doing the things that are making you miserable just because you think you should be doing them. Replace it with the things you ENJOY while you figure out what you need to be doing to sort the issue moving forwards.
Stop being your own worst enemy and making things unnecessarily difficult for you and your dog. Life is too short and most of the things people believe are must-do’s when it comes to dogs are generally wrong anyway. You and your dog deserve some enjoyment and you’ll not get that by repeating the same negative routine over and over again.
Every single issue can be either fixed or improved, so stop stressing and getting yourself down. Remember that it’s a journey towards the success you want and not a fix. It will take time, but those who put the work in will be rewarded for their hard work and commitment.