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How to tackle Behavioral Issues in Pets?

Updated: Aug 27, 2023

What to do when your Fluffball is being a menace


A little Recap


In the previous blog, we threw some light on what exactly a behavioral issue is, we also discussed some basic signs of an issue. A behavioral issue is an extreme or undesirable reaction to daily activities.



Cute Akita dog looking over the ocean


Now I know what behavioral issues are, but how do I resolve them?


There are 3 reasons why your pooch faces a behavioral problem:

  1. They suffer an underlying health problem which causes them to behave differently

  2. They may have gone through a traumatic event in their past which caused them to change the way they behave

  3. They were brought up in a toxic environment which changed the way they react to different situations.


Before resolving them, pet parents need to realize that dogs; just like humans, behave differently in different circumstances. They need to treat pets just as they would treat humans.



Big eyed german shepherd sitting on a brown couch

With that being said, here is a step-by-step approach to tackle behavioral issues:


1) Observe and write down the issues your boy/girl faces.


2) Try and diagnose whether the problem is a health related issue or a behavioral issue.


3) If it is a health related issue visit a vet and get treatment.


4) If it's a behavioral issue, there are 2 main ways in which you can tackle them.





Namely:


  1. Behavioral Management

  2. Behavioral Modification


What is Behavioral Management?

Behavioral Management: Teaching a dog to be unresponsive to the trigger. It's great for owners who don’t have the time or resources to modify behaviors. So basically, work with the dog and find ways for the dog to coexist with the trigger. Eg: If you are walking down a busy street and notice a dog and owner coming towards you. You cannot avoid passing this dog closely, ask your dog to leave it and focus on you. What you will find is your dog will start to automatically look at you when they see another dog. This is proof you are correctly performing a counter conditioning routine. This is great as you won’t have a dog lunging, growling or making a scene. You can choose if you want to take it further (Behaviour modification) or if you are just happy with a dog who can be around other dogs but not too close to them (management).


This is the first step to tackle a behavioral issue. When your dog has adapted to the management techniques you can go ahead and try to modify their behavior.

What is Behavioral Modification?


happy small labrador running in an open field on a sunny evening


Conclusion


Pet parents should try to spend and enjoy as much time as they can with their pets instead of agonizing over the little details. If you are still unsure or confused about how to tackle this or are mulling over how to start, when to start and in what way to start. We recommend you sign up to companion’s personalized and self-paced courses to manage and modify your pet’s behavior. With certified professional behaviorists here to help in every step of the way and a customized tracker to see the progress you and your fluffball has made. You can rest assured and focus completely on quality time with your pet.


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