Not all dog owners have puppies. Pets from shelters very often find a home already as adults. And, unfortunately, these are not always animals with excellent character. It often happens that a frequent change of owners injures a dog, and no one can guarantee that the previous owner strictly observed the rules of training and socialized the pet in time. Still, there is no need to despair. There are many ways to re-educate a dog. You need to start with the basics – obedience, socialization and correction of destructive behavior.
If the dog does not obey, does not know commands and does not have endurance, the first thing that needs to be instilled in it is obedience. The process should adhere to several basic principles:
Do not hurry Raising a dog takes time, it will take about a year for an adult pet to correct its behavior and learn to listen to the owner. Do not rush, but all free time must be devoted to the dog.
Be consistent Workouts should be daily and last at least 20 minutes. At the same time, try to divide this time into two full-fledged lessons of 10 minutes each and train your pet a little during the day.
From home to street An adult dog can be distracted and not very attentive. Therefore, it is better to start training at home, without distractions. After the dog has learned the command well, you can move on to training on the street: first away from the city noise, and then with distractions (for example, in the yard).
Make your lessons varied This does not mean that every day you need to train different teams. No, the pace, time, sequence of actions should be different.
Repeat the command once It is very important not to repeat the command several times in the expectation that the dog will complete it on the fifth try. Get it done right the first time. Otherwise, the dog will continue to carry out the command from the fifth order.
Socialization is the training of a pet to communicate with relatives and family members. In the case of an adult dog, we will talk about resocialization, that is, about retraining.
If the pet reacts inappropriately to relatives and other animals, for example, starts barking, pulling on the leash or behaving aggressively, he needs resocialization. It can take from several months to several years, so you have to be patient.
One of the best methods dog handlers recommend is parallel walking. The method consists in finding a company for the pet – another dog to walk them at some distance from each other. Gradually, the pet should get used to this society. Once this happens, the animals should be introduced closer.
I must say that it is not recommended to carry out resocialization on your own, especially if the owner does not have experience with dogs.
If the pet reacts too aggressively to relatives, it is better to contact a professional dog handler and work with him on the behavior of the animal.
Adjusting destructive behavior
Dog owners very often face destructive behavior of pets: torn shoes, sofa upholstery, gnawed corners of the table and chair legs, as well as wallpaper and doors – all this can be an unpleasant surprise not only for puppy owners. Sometimes adult dogs can behave destructively.
The reason may be the neurosis and stress that pets experience in the absence of the owner from boredom, longing and loneliness. In addition, the reasons may lie in health problems.
And if a puppy can be successfully weaned from addictions, then this cannot be said with certainty about an adult dog, especially a dog from a shelter. Here are a few basic principles that will help you achieve results:
Remove objects of interest to the pet First, train yourself and family members to always put shoes in the closet. To protect furniture and wallpaper, you can try using a special spray, the smell and taste of which repel the dog, but it is better not to use citrus fruits and red pepper – this can harm the pet.
Scold in time Do not punish your dog if you find tattered shoes after coming home. But if a pet commits a “crime” in front of your eyes, then you can and even need to gently reprimand him. But immediately after that, be sure to show that he has his own toys that you can gnaw and bite.
Walk your dog more The main rule is that before leaving for work, you should take a good walk and tire the dog with all kinds of games and activities. This will require a lot of effort, but the result in the form of a tired and happy dog will please you. She simply will not have the strength and desire to destroy the house.
So, is it possible to re-educate a dog? Yes. Is it always possible to do it yourself? No. In some cases, you may need the help of a professional: a cynologist or a zoopsychologist. From the owner, patience, perseverance, love and affection are required.