We believe that having a dog (or multiple) in your life is one of the most wonderful things and like any relationship it must go both ways. Our dogs give us unconditional love, loyalty and companionship just to name a few things. They bring us joy and happiness and put a smile on our faces. We, as owners, need to make sure that we give our dogs in return what they need to be happy. Based on our own experience we firmly believe in what Dog Whisperer Cesar Millan calls the Fulfillment Formula as the path to doggy happiness:
- Exercise - Dogs are territorial animals. Every cell in their body is designed to be on the move. In nature dogs move for miles and miles, many hours a day. Dogs are not happy being couch potatoes. They need exercise. A minimum walk of 45 minutes a day is absolutely required for any dog to be happy. Some herding and working breeds need more. Take your dogs out for a daily walk. They will love you for it.
- Discipline - Dogs like to know what is expected of them. They truly want to do right by us but we need to set clear expectations in a way our companions can understand—they don't speak our language, they speak 'woof'. Dogs are pack animals and as such want to know where in the pack they stand and what their job is. Dogs love to have a job and know what you want them do to—they really like it! So let's give our buddies a job and teach them rules, boundaries and limitations. Your dogs will love you for clarifying what they are and aren't responsible for. It makes them so much calmer and if you need a hand with it, contact us here for a free on site consultation.
- Affection - We all love to cuddle our doggies and give them treats and our four-legged companions love it too. It is such a unique thing we as human pack leaders have to give—in a dog pack the leader doesn't do that. So giving affection (which includes food) is wonderful, just make sure your doggy always has to earn it first by going on a walk with you, sitting or lying down, doing a trick or just waiting for you. Affection is so much sweeter for dogs when it is a reward for something they did—a job. It also teaches them to do more of that good thing (i.e. waiting for their food instead of trying to rip it out of your hands). Affection is a very important part of dog training as well. However, it is important for us as owners to understand when giving affection is good and when it can create problems. If you reward your furry family members with being picked-up and held in your arms—they like that—when they charge and bark at other dogs, you will just get more of that behavior as you taught them that they get affection for barking and charging. Call us for a free on site consultation to set your doggy on the right path.