Dog Issues to be found in “Dogs Talk”
In my book “Dogs Talk”, dogs talk about how they managed to overcome many issues and so become happier dogs. These issues include:
Dog Anxiety: Dog anxiety is far more common than we think. Some dogs are just naturally anxious, some are not and some become anxious because of the way they are treated by humans. A well known type of anxiety is separation anxiety. This is where a dog becomes anxious when left alone. There are many reasons this can happen and there is plenty of information available on treatments. From my perspective, much separation anxiety is caused by human behaviour, essentially, the human need to say hello and goodbye. Often or leaving and returning rituals cause dog anxiety even though we humans mean well. This issue particularly affected Kika, one of the dogs featured in “Dogs Talk”
Weeing or Pooing indoors: Dogs are naturally clean animals and will seek to go outside to relieve themselves. Sometimes, indoor weeing or pooing can be related to medical issues so it’s worth talking to a vet. Sometimes, however, it can be a dog marking its territory. In the book, Kika sometimes wee’d indoors and this turned out to be a territorial behaviour.
Fear Anxiety: This is the fear of loud noises including thunder, fireworks and loud bangs. We can all get a fright if there is sudden loud noise but in dogs, this can lead to a reaction where they become frightened of any bangs. The fear can also be learned from humans. In the book, Haribo is a dog with a fear of bangs and Maxi had a fear of thunderstorms and very loud bangs. Both improved over time.
Dogs and Food: Dogs are, by nature, scavengers and will look to take food if its available. However, dogs in packs operate a strict hierarchy when it come to food. A low ranking dog will not attempt to take food from a high ranking dog. If your dog is stealing food, it’s possible your dog sees itself as higher ranking than you. That’s not always the case, sometimes it’s just down to opportunity. In the book, you can read about George and Haribo’s occasional inclination to steal food amd how Maxi learnt manners at the human dinner table.
Inappropriate Chewing: Chewing is a natural activity for dogs, especially puppies. There are plenty of good cewy bones and toys available. Inappropriate chewing often relates to anxiety. This is when dogs shew other items such as shoes, handbags, cushions and even furniture. Some inaproppriate chewing can also be attributed to dogs not respecting their human owners and their human owner’s property. In the book, you can read about George and his propensity to chew shoes. There’s also a case study about a dog that ate the house.
Pulling on the Lead: Sometimes it can feel like it’s the dog taking you for a walk rather than the other way round. It’s a sign that the dog is excited and happy. However, pulling on the lead is not a good thing as it can lead to accidents. In “Dogs Talk”, both George and Kika had a tendency to pull and you can read about how this was corrected.
Aggression including snapping or biting: All dogs have sharp teeth and the last thing you want is them biting anyone. Often, biting issues are caused by the dog being over indulged. This is particularly true of small dogs of which some owners are even proud of their dog’s feistiness. In “Dogs Talk”, Maxi was prone to biting and this caused problems when she was choking on a piece of food and when she needed grooming.
Jumping Up: Jumping up is a puppies way of getting food from an adult dog. They are trying to reach and lick your mouth. It’s not uncommon for people to complain about their dog jumping while at the same time encouraging it with attention. Jumping up is easy to stop but many owners secretly like it. George, Maxi and Kika all liked to jump up and you can read where that got them in “Dog’s Talk”.
Not Coming Back When Called: Of all the commands you need to teach your dog, for me recall is the most important. If you can get your dog to come back whatever is going on, then you have control. You also have respect from other people. George, Kika and Maxi all had problems with recall and all have improved with time.
Inappropriate barking: Some dogs bark more than others. Guard breeds particularly like to bark, it’s what they have been bred to do. With carefull handling you can train your dog when it is appropriate to bark. That said, sometimes it is down to separation anxiety, particularly when the dog feels it is pack leader and its humans have gone off somewhere without permission. George likes to bark and you can read about what he thought of our attempts to teach when it was OK to bark
Digging: Digging is a normal activity for a dog. Not all dogs dig, but those that do are either burying something for later or digging something up. The later can be anything from a small furry creature to bonemeal fertiliser. George likes to dig and he tells what happened when he tried to dig up molehills in “Dogs Talk”.
Chasing Other Creatures: Dogs may be a human’s best friend, but they are still hunters and predators at heart. They can switch from cuddly into ruthless killer in the blink of an eye. Anything running away is fair game to a dog. In “Dogs Talk”, it is George who likes to chase creatures. He knows what is out of bounds (livestock) but deer and rabbits remain fair game. read about George tries to hunt when the humans are not looking.