The quick fix answer to all your dogs behaviour problems has just arrived!
There is a brand new quick fix solution to all your dog's behavioural problems! Great! I have your attention. No doubt you were drawn to this post due to the title. "finally a product which eradicates my dog's behaviour problems, just like that". Well, this is where I have to disappoint you I'm afraid. I am not about to inform you of a new quick fix product which promises either of the following: Stop barking NOW, Stop pulling NOW, Stop jumping up NOW, Stop running off NOW, stop aggression NOW. (please continue reading). The reason I am not offering this to you is that they simply do not exist. You see their are many products which are on the pet market claiming to fix many of the behaviour problems mentioned above, quickly, "ethically" and easily, with little to no effort on the owners part. In the new age, we live in with hectic lives and tight purse strings you cannot blame owners for reaching for these "quick" fix products when they are at the end of their tether. So why the hell then is their need for canine behaviourists? And why is the need for them becoming more urgent? Well, let me tell you a secret, a lot of the products promising quick fixes actually make your dogs behaviour problem worse. Yes; many of them work in the beginning, maybe for a couple of months. After which your dog becomes used to the product and in some cases the pain or unpleasantries associated with the product. The dog continues to perfume the behaviour, in some cases to a more intense degree than they previously did. Along with this they now have psychological damage and in some cases where pressure, shock or sprays are used physical damage. Now I have to stop here and hold my hands up high, I myself when less educated on this subject reached for some quick fix products. Our dog used to bark persistently when he was let outside, I tried the citronella spray collar (with consent from a vet telling me it was an acceptable training tool), which worked on the first two bark attempts from my dog, but then he just barked over it. I then discovered the damaging effects of citronella on the dog's nose receptors and also then realised that actually, it did not address the underlying cause of my dogs barking, which was territorial behaviour, and which required a more complex training plan. All the citronella spray done was to give my dog an even bigger reason to bark, the sound of human walking past gate equals nasty spray, equals negative experience, equals more intense barking. Obviously now I would never reach for such a thing, and would never advise. Please don't think I am blaming, shaming, or trying to make any dog owner feel guilty. I am simply hoping this post will draw attention and make owners pause and think before reaching for a quick fix.
What is a quick fix product?
Prong collars-stop pulling by prongs entering into the dogs neck tissue, this obviously hurts and in some cases pierces the skin, so dog obviously stops pulling. Choke chains - stop pulling, as it says, chokes your dog, causes damage to its neck. Electric shock collar - stop barking by emitting an electric shock through your dog when he barks.
Remote control shock collar - can be triggered to give a shock to the dog when it is behaving inappropriately, i.e. barking at the gate, pulling, not responding to re-call, aggressing etc. Citronella spray collar - shoots horrible citrus spray up dogs nose when it barks.
Pet corrector - stops barking
The mess left behind by quick fix products
As mentioned many of the quick fix products can cause considerable amounts of physical and psychological damage. People reach for these products believing all the write-ups and promises the manufacturer makes. and because the product does work initially owner is happy. However not long after product stops having an effect on the dog, the dog is now damaged psychologically and the behaviour has become worse. For example. Dog aggresses at the postman, to stop behaviour owner started to use a pet corrector. This worked initially, to the point where the dog ran off once pet corrector was used. The owner has not had to use pet corrector since. Great right! However, another problem has occurred. The dog is now petrified of its owner, the owner now fails to be able to get close to their dog, the dog won't allow the owner to put lead on, so it is now not walked. The dog has also become destructive due to anxiety and stress. so you see owner now has an even bigger problem on their hands, which is going to cost lots more time, patience and money to fix. now owner needs the help of a qualified behaviourist and trainer for a much longer period than they would of initially, Also the behaviour is going to take twice as long to fix.
So you see quick fixes are actually problem creators not fixers.
what about aversion therapy?
Aversion therapy is the use of a product such as bitter apple spray to avert the dog from the behaviour. Dog tastes horrible bitter apple on furniture, he stops chewing. another example is squirting water into a dogs face stopping it barking. There are high risks with this type of training, and that is the negative association it places with the owner. If the dog sees the spray of water coming from you, he then associates you with a negative experience. Most behaviours can be fixed by redirecting the dog's focus as opposed to punishing the dog, so please avoid this type of "therapy". Many of the quick fix products above work on the basis of aversion therapy.
What about training aids? Training aids are such things as a gentle leader, head haltie, training harness. Many people make the mistake of seeing these as quick fixes also, And although if used correctly they can help with problems such as pulling, these will not work purely on their own. It is not a case of putting them on the dog and problem solved. They are to be used in conjunction with training and under the guidance of a trainer. Many need to be introduced slowly over a period of time to the dog, so as the dog has a positive association with the product and is comfy wearing it before training can start.
So what to do? If your dog does have a behaviour issue. Please contact a qualified canine behaviourist, who can not only advise you on the best method of treatment for your dog but also explain to you the reason and causes of your dog's behaviour. They can also provide you with much-needed support and guidance, which none of the quick fixes can do.
Save time and money now by NOT buying a "quick fix".