You know what you want from a dog – it’s simple! You want a dog to lie down when you tell it to, play with you when you’re ready to play, and walk besides you when you want to go for a walk! You want a dog that will choose to stay with you when he’s off leash and return to you when you call him. Like I said, simple!
But anyone who’s ever owned a dog knows that getting your dog to behave like that isn’t that simple or easy! So where do you start? You teach Impulse Control!
What Is Impulse Control and Why Is It So Important?
Impulse control means that your dog can – and will – chose to do what you want rather than what his impulses dictate. It means your dog will allow you to put his collar & leash on & off, clean his feet and trim his nails, clean his ears and teeth, keep his feet on the floor, and keep quiet – when he’d rather not. It means your dog will leave garbage, food, and all other temptations alone – when he’d rather not. It means your dog will calmly wait while you answer the door, eat, or visit – when he’d rather not, and to tolerate being confined in a crate or ex-pen without freaking out.
A dog that has good impulse control will be able to lie down when you want him to, stop playing when you’re done, wait while your do other things, and choose to stay with you while you walk – on or off leash, and come back when you call.
How Do You Teach Your Dog Impulse Control?
You begin by teaching 5 Foundational Behaviours, and you teach them so well that you’d be willing to bet $100 cold, hard cash that your dog will do them the first time you ask – and every time you ask, wherever you and your dog find yourselves.
Once your dog can do these 5 Foundational Behaviours your dog will have learned how to curtail his impulses and turn to you for guidance, support, companionship and friendship.
What Are the 5 Foundational Behaviours For Achieving Impulse Control?
- Eye Contact: you dog will stop whatever he’s doing and make eye contact with you the instant you say his name.
- Touch: your dogs will run up to you and bonk your hand with his nose the instant you present your hand and ask for, “”
- Wait: your dog will pause and wait when you ask, and stay until you release him with a word like, “release” or “”
- Lie down (or Sit): your dog will drop to the ground wherever he is when you ask him to, “lie down” (or “”)
- Zen Dog: your dog will step back from anything you ask him to: food, garbage, toys, other dogs, etc.
The funny thing is that everything a good pet owner needs to know to train these behaviours can be summed up by the same two words – impulse control.
Call Joyful Hound for more detailed instruction on how to improve your impulse control to get better control over your dog.
Hint: you need to become the God of All Good Things!