Some might feel that the most important thing to do with their new dog is to give it lots of food, love and safety. These needs absolutely need to be fulfilled. Beyond meeting these needs, the most important thing that a dog owner could do for their dog is to train it. Some dog owners have a hard time with the idea of having to train their dog. This will be especially hard for new puppy owner, because their new puppy is so cute and precious to train, many feel. However, in order to create the best home for the dog, it’s crucial for dog owners to understand the nature of their dog in order to train the dog.
People are tempted to treat their dogs like human babies or like human children. However, the dog first and foremost is a canine. Canines operate from a different psyche than humans. This should be obvious, but humans need reminding sometimes, because their dogs are so cute and humans are reticent to train cute dogs. Canines are pack animals. They are born and bred to desire and to need leadership. Canine packs can’t survive in the wild without leadership. Furthermore, canine leaders, otherwise known as alphas, need to be in absolute control. The canine pack members obey the absolute power of the alpha dog.
The key to the alpha dog maintaining respect is by asserting its leadership. This might sound brutal to humans, but this is the way that canines operate. While one’s domesticated dog doesn’t have to live in the wild with a pack of other wild dogs, it is still innately programed to be part of a canine pack. This means that the dog is innately programmed to follow and to respect a leader. Humans have the task to establish themselves as the pack leader when they train their dog.
If the dog doesn’t train the dog to understand that their human master is the pack leader, they will start to develop aggressive tendencies. These aggressive tendencies include excessive barking, marking its territory in the home with its urine, biting, snarling, and other acts of rebellion and disobedience. Dogs will turn on their masters if the master doesn’t train the dog that the human is the leader. The dog can’t help it. It’s in the dog’s nature to behave in this manner.
So, having said all of this, the human master must train the dog to obey their leadership. The dog master must work with the dog in order to socialize it. One of the largest reasons why dogs find their way into shelters is because their previous master didn’t want to train it. When the dog became too problematic, the dog owner simply gave it away.
When a master takes steps to train their dog, they are showing the dog love. The dog craves training and leadership. The dog desires direction. When the animal receives loving yet firm training, then the dog has the best chances of staying in a loving home, and away from the shelters.