The Spoiled Dog

A spoiled dog is not a happy well adjusted, well mannered pet. Often a spoiled dog can be unruly, stressed, dominate and impossible to live with. We all love our pets and often will spoil them, but we first must remember that for a dog pack order and rank is what they live by. A dog needs respect and must respect the pack leader, this is more important than love in a dogs eyes. Continual spoiling of our dogs is not showing them love rather we are depriving them of their basic needs.

Dogs are social animals that live in packs, rank is necessary for pack survival. Imagine a company where everyone is the president each one telling the other what to do, nothing would get done. It is the same with a pack of dogs, one leader is required to lead the pack and make all the decisions. The pack needs a leader who decides when to hunt, play, find shelter etc.

Often spoiled dogs are allowed to do anything they want without boundaries and rules, chaos will surely follow. Spoiled dogs are the most difficult to train, often dominate and stressed as they are not equipped to be a leader but are predisposed to take on the role when no other leader is established. It can lead to many unwanted behaviors, aggression, anxiety, and dominance. I have seen people live with animals they are afraid of, dogs that won’t hesitate to use aggression to control their human and yet these people will still insist their dog is very loving most of the time. A dog that has been allowed to say “no” without consequence and ignore or control its owner is often a dangerous dog.

Being the leader of a dog does not mean you can’t love your dog, it just means your dog will follow and listen to you. Establishing leadership is not difficult, it means making the dog earn its privileges the same as humans work to earn money to buy things. Dogs earn privileges by making them sit before feeding, or stay before going outside, or doing a down before giving a treat. It is just simple commands, not done with anger but rather a calm relaxed tone. Leaders are not cruel they keep the pack safe, feed, find shelter and make all the decisions. When we are children our parents keep us safe, feed and provide us shelter this helps them to feel safe and loved. It is the same for our dogs they feel safe and cared for when we have consistent boundaries and rules. When you spoil your dog you are not giving your dog what it needs rather you are creating stress for the dog. Dogs thrive on consistency and knowing your expectations.

I have seen many times an unruly disobedient dog be put in the hands of a trainer or behaviorist and within a short period of time be relaxed, less stressed and obedient. As a trainer dealing with a spoiled dog can be both dangerous and difficult. Love your dogs by giving them what they need and you will be rewarded with a happy, well adjusted and obedient pet!