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Monday, May 14, 2007

Labrador Retrievers: Why Training Your Lab Can Fail

Each dog is different and unique. He is an individual. He has a mind of his own too. And when he exhibits these streaks of independence just when you are trying to instill some discipline and manners in him, it can really try your patience.

Therefore it would be right to say that no one can with total certainty say that they can train any dog. Even a professional trainer cannot exude such pride and arrogance. And if you come across one who does brag about 100% results be very wary.

Reasons why a dog cannot be trained are many and widely varied. However, let us just go through some of the reasons that keep a Lab or any other dog, for that matter, from getting trained and becoming a well-adjusted member of society.

1 Time, your dog, and you

Time is so important. Your dog will never get his puppy days back no matter what your do. So you, as a responsible owner, must carve out some special quality time to spend with your pooch. It is your moral responsibility to do so. Do not be too lazy or too preoccupied to consider time with your dog important. You must build training time into your schedule for the day that you have a dog who is trained enough to get himself accepted into society.

2 Travel a lot - Busy are you?

If you say yes and you have no time to spend at home because your busy traveling schedule keeps you away from home, then why did you adopt a dog? Once you adopt a dog you are totally responsible for him and his welfare. Even if you get him trained by a professional trainer, you have to take him back home at some point of time and know how to deal with him within the precincts of your home and hearth.

3 Get the dog trained professionally and take him back

Your dog is an animal that lives and breaths. He has a heart and he has feelings too. He is not just some gadget that you can buy and chuck into a corner once you outgrow the fancy of owning an animal. So if you decide to keep a pet please do love him and care for him with warmth and a great deal of love.

4 Do you baby your dog?

Well if you love your dog as you would your baby, it is great. But you must remember that your dog is a creature that belongs to the canine species and has natural canine instincts that he must abide by. You have to let the dog know that you are the leader and he has to listen to you. Failure to do so will result in gross injustice.

5 Just pedigree is not enough

You might have the best pedigreed dog that money can buy, but is that enough? Definitely not! Even the best dog of pedigree must be well behaved and pleasant to have around. Even pedigreed dogs that pull, jump, bark, growl, or attack other people and dogs can be quite a nuisance. So a pedigree dog with bad manners is not going to be a crowd puller. Think about spending time on training him!

6 The size of the dog is unmanageable

You always yearned for a large dog. One that would be fun to take along for long jaunts or one that could provide you with a feeling of security. But with such ideologies in mind you need to consider the time, effort, and money that you will have to spend on such a large animal. If you happen to be elderly or stricken with some physical ailment, a large animal may not be the best choice to handle. So consider all the pros and cons before you decide.

7 Warning signs

Your dog will exhibit all typical doggie behavior such as snapping, growling, chasing, being aggressive, etc. Do not think of these sorts of behavior as just temporary passing phases. Work on eliminating or at least curtailing them. If you ignore them they will stay and probably get worse!

8 Leave it to the kids

Do not assume that now that your kid has the dog that he always wanted, then the kid will be able to suitably train the dog too. This is far from true. This is mainly because your kid does not know how to train the dog. Training is chiefly your responsibility and you must find the time to execute it with responsibility. Think about it, an untrained dog will be destructive. Lack of proper grooming and cleaning will also add to your vet bills!

9 A defective dog!

You might have owned a number of dogs before this particular Lab came into your life. Plenty of behavioral differences might exist between this Lab and your earlier dogs. But do not make comparisons. Each dog is so unique in his own way. What you consider to be defects may just be behavior that can easily be corrected with proper training. Give training its due importance.

10 Why blame it on the weather

If you love your dog and you want him to be a good canine citizen, you must find time to train him. Regardless of the dictates of weather you must devote time to the dog.

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