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Dog Rehoming - Rules


Right from the first moment your dog steps foot into your home, he or she will be taking in everything that goes on. This means that he'll be working out who's who, what happens when, what is allowed and what's not! It is essential that you and your family are consistent with your dog's behaviour from the start. Think about how you want your dog to behave in months and years to come, and lay the foundations for good manners before it's too late!

1 Choose your rules!

Think about the rules that you would like your dog to follow. If you won't want your dog getting on the furniture when he's wet and muddy, don't allow him to do it now! If you don't want your dog to lie on the beds, don't encourage him up for a cuddle just because you are feeling sorry that he had a rough start in life. 2 Resist feeding your dog from the table Dogs slobber. They put their mouths and noses where we choose not to! They eat unimaginable things! Not all people can overlook these delightful canine habits at the dinner table. Bear in mind that dogs learn exactly what you teach them. Feed them from the table, and that's where they will think good things come from - so don't be surprised if they 'steal' food later - no matter how much you were looking forward to eating it!

2 Who's training who?
Right from day one, your dog is working out what gets attention and what does not. In the first 24 hours of being in your home, he will already have worked out that barking gets eye contact and physical attention. Walking towards the back door gets a play in the garden. Picking up the kids' toys gets chase games. Ragging on the doormat gets laughter. Mouthing or chasing people gets them excited. Playing quietly with your own toys gets nothing. It doesn't take a genius to work out which behaviours he will repeat and which he won't bother with again. Life is simple if you think like a dog. What gets rewarded, gets repeated. Rewards come in the form of attention from humans - any attention will do if nothing else is going on. Humans act funny when they get excited - it's even worth being punished just to see them jump up and down! This means that the rules are simple too - give rewards for behaviours that you like (playing quietly with a dog toy, waiting calmly to have his lead put on) and ignore or interrupt those that you don't.

3 Don't allow your puppy to practise behaviours now which will be annoying later on!
Owners of naughty dogs often say “Oh, he's a rescue' as an excuse for their behaviour - despite the fact that they have sometimes owned them for months or even years! Bad manners like jumping up, nudging people in intimate areas, mouthing, and climbing all over people may be endearing at the outset, but are simply annoying and embarrassing later on. Don't allow your dog to practise these behaviours, and start training straight away. Consistency is the key!


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