One of the most important and basic dog obedience training tips you need is for your dog to see you as the person they can rely on.
Get this one, essential tip right and everything else falls into place.
In fact, once you have this training sorted you can and should only move onto other forms of training, so in many ways, it is the first step on your dog training journey.
Be The Person Your Dog Thinks You Are
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Dogs are descended from wolves in both appearance and behavior. In order to comprehend the psychology of dog training and the pack hierarchical organization of dogs, we must first look at their ancestors, the wolves, and learn about their psychology.
Wolves are known to dwell in packs of at least two and as many as ten… It is a dictatorial system with clearly established hierarchies of males and females, and they live in that system.
Their system places a leader in command of the pack, who is usually a male and the biggest and toughest wolf, sometimes known as the alpha leader, and who has the authority to do whatever he wants with everything.
The remainder of the dogs in the pack would-be followers, and they would gladly follow their leader wherever he went.
This hierarchy system is not static and will alter if another dominating member successfully challenges the leader’s authority.
For your dog, your family is the pack, and every member of the family is a member of the pack’s hierarchy. From the moment a new puppy or dog is introduced to the family, the new dog will begin to pick up on signs and indicators that will allow him to determine his own position in the family and who is in command of the household.
If your dog perceives you as an “alpha leader,” he will readily obey your directions, allowing you to train him more effectively.
Your dog already loves you. Maybe not in the way that humans love each other, but for a dog, coming into your world, your home, etc, it’s a kind of love that they understand.
You are everything to them. You provide their food, their water, their comfort, and therefore, you are their world.
You need to be the person your dog thinks you are!
The Downside Of Poor Leadership
If you don’t provide this essential leadership your dog will decide that they have to be the dominant one. And we don’t want that. Not at all.
A dog that is dominant over its human owner is not in a good place, either physically or mentally.
When your dog becomes extremely dominant (as a result of your failure to prevent him from picking up on the wrong signals) and begins to challenge your “alpha leader” status, he may refuse to obey your commands and become hostile against you and others.
This can result in the willful destruction of property, other dogs, and YOU.
I’m really not joking here, a dog with no compass on how it has to behave is a real risk to anyone or everyone it comes in to contact with.
What Is The Alpha In A Dog Pack?
In a pack of dogs, the alpha male is responsible for protecting and leading the other members of the group. Although he will often leave occupied spots if he thinks someone is watching him, the alpha will also intimidate with his eyes.
His eyes are the windows of the soul. If you see a dog licking a person, don’t let it get the wrong idea.
The alpha pair has three positions in a pack: the alpha male leads the pack, the omega male is the rear lookout, and the beta male acts as the mediator between the alpha and the other members.
In large packs, two bitches give birth to pups at once, and they are subordinate to one another. The alpha pair always leads. There are no wolves in packs with more than one alpha pair, and the remaining members will generally follow the alpha.
A dog’s alpha role is akin to that of a wolf in the pack. Unlike humans, dogs are born with an innate sense of hierarchy, and they don’t “win” the role of the leader.
In a pack, the alpha dog will be the first one to greet newcomers, and the subordinate animals will naturally follow him. When a dog is new, the alpha will be the one to greet them.
This is a common occurrence with children, where dogs perceive their line of command to be higher than that of the children.
This also explains why youngsters are more likely than adults to be bitten by a dog.
Why You Must Be Seen As A Legitimate and Strong Leader
To have an obedient dog that pays attention to your commands, taking on the position of ‘alpha leader” and exercising control over your dog is critical!
Your dog must be taught that he is the lowest ranking member of the family, that he is subordinate to you and to the children, and that you are the family’s leader.
Kindness Is King
Now, that sounds awfully mean, doesn’t it? But, no one is saying you have to be mean to your dog.
In fact, great leaders are people who have strong ethics and empathy and care for the people they are leading and as a dog is for many of us a member of our family, you owe to them to be a good, honest and true leader for them.
Kindness is King. I am absolutely certain of that.
Showing your dog a good and true path for their behavior will build an unbreakable bond between the pair of you and this will also be carried on as long as the other members of your family are all equally consistent too.
If such a hierarchy is not correctly established, the dog will attempt to take command and assume the role of the dominant animal.
This will eventually cause the dog to become a ‘dominant dog,’ and he will begin to misbehave as a result. If this occurs, you will have an uphill battle in order to effectively train your dog.
Because we live in a democratic society, it will be difficult for the majority of us to comprehend the dog’s understanding of dictatorship.
Humans MUST adapt our thinking
Nonetheless, it is vital that humans adapt their thinking and behavior to better comprehend how dogs live and think.
You could believe that dictating to the dog is cruel or even barbaric, but this is not the case at all. If you believe that, you are completely incorrect!
When it comes to being a follower and following orders, dogs are more than ready to do so for their owners.
You must offer your dog directions and organize his space and activities for him in order for him to become more aware of his surroundings and understand his life boundaries, which includes understanding what is expected of him whether he is indoors or outdoors.
With reduced stress and happiness in his life, your dog will benefit, as will you.