2.3.1 Redirecting bad behaviors

Even with efforts to prevent bad behaviors and proper socialization, a dog may still show bad behaviors like barking, chewing, mouthing, pulling on leash, chasing things, jumping on people. Some of these behaviors are genetically wired in dogs, so we still need strategies on how to manage these issues.
Bad behaviors are generally self-reinforcing behaviors. They may do it simply because they enjoy it, or it may be a natural response. Some people think that dog training is to just say “No” to make them stop. But they often have nothing better to do if they stop, and continue after a while.
We solve this by Re-directing the bad behavior to an incompatible but acceptable behavior.
Redirection is most effective before a bad behavior escalates from zero to intense. It is difficult to snap a dog out of an excited state of barking as adrenaline is fueling an emotional state of mind.
Hence, we must be preemptive and aware of environment to redirect the dog before it happens. Once they start, the bad behavior intensifies quickly and becomes harder to redirect.
Fortunately, a few simple re-direction strategies can help to solve these problem.
  • Give a chew toy if your dog is bored and chewing your furniture/mouthing your hand
  • “Go to bed” command
  • Name Recalls