Keep It Simple

I was chatting with someone last week about their ambitious goals that they had for themselves and their dog.

They wanted their 8mos old puppy to feel comfortable meeting others, calm and quiet in the house, be engaging with their human when out and about in the world.

These are great goals to have and work towards.

You’re focusing on how your dog feels and wanting to prioritize their welfare and wellbeing.

Sometimes, taking the next step to move towards your goals, you get confused.

When your dog starts barking and lunging at strangers and other dogs, you become frustrated because this is the opposite of what you want.

What may be getting in the way is you’re not proactive in setting up your environment so your dog can be successful. Through your proactiveness, you’re also creating peace in your day. You remain present in each moment you and your dog are experiencing together.

How can you teach your dog what to do when they see a bicyclists or another dog out of the window and your attention is taken away when you’re busy on your computer, talking on the phone, doing other chores around the house?

Someone else shared with me that she struggled with her dog barking and going crazy at the front door when people walked by.

She was surprised when I asked her how does she feel when this happens and what does she do in response?

She shared she feels tightness in her chest and her response is yelling her dog’s name.

She also shared this didn’t work and asked what other strategies can she learn?

I asked her what does she want to feel?

She responded with calm and peace. She can feel this way when she takes space.

Take space is what I encouraged her to do.

Dogs will bark. When she can take a moment and reconnect with herself, she can then respond in a calmer and more peaceful manner.

She then can practice the strategies she already learned, but because of feeling overwhelmed and caught up in the swirling, the strategies she already learned aren’t accessible to her.

She’s emotionally flooded and unable to think clearly.

The mind is wonderful as it can plan and take action. When the mind is overwhelmed because the body and mind are disconnected, we feel lost.

When you reconnect with yourself, find presence in the moment, you can then make choices of how to respond with your end goal in mind.

Taking the next step towards your goal may be less about your dog, but more about how you are showing up and with what energy you’re bringing into that moment with your dog.

Curious how your presence and awareness of how you show up in your day to day can pave the way for a deeper connection with your dog?

Set up a time to chat!

Published by houndbiz

Katherine Porter is a force free, reward based dog behavior advisor and consultant serving clients and their companion dogs worldwide. Her calm and gentle approach in coaching clients in effectively communicating what they want to their dog blends her MSW background into her dog training and behavior practice. Katherine was a behavior consultant for Heeling Hounds after graduation. She opened Four Paws and You Dog Training LLC when the military relocated her family to Fort Sill, OK in 2015. During this time, she volunteered with Rainbow Bridge Can Wait where she provided post adoption consultations to new pet parents. She also developed and implemented tailored behavior modification plans for highly reactive dogs residing at the shelter. She also provided educational programs to military children through interactive workshops at the Fort Sill School Age Center. In 2017, Katherine relocated Four Paws and You Dog Training LLC to Germany. She served the Armed Forces communities in Bavaria. She continued coaching and advising her clients in addressing their companion dog’s fearful and reactive behavioral issues. Katherine takes a Do No Harm approach first and foremost in providing behavioral plans. She is committed in serving clients with gentle and modern science approaches in modifying behavioral concerns such as reactivity, aggression, separation anxiety and fear based responses. Katherine is a member of the Pet Professional Guild. She is focused on integrating a holistic and modern approach in addressing her client’s pet companion reactive behavior issues.

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