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  • Writer's pictureMecca Curtice, CCDT, CTDI

Dog Behavior Modification

Behavior Modification also known as behavior rehabilitation. Is first started by setting up a behavior consultation. You can schedule this on finding this in my services. Every case will be different because every dog and situation is different.

Behavior modification is often used for behavior problems. Aggression toward people, dogs and other animals. If you are aware of these behavior problems, its best to seek help as soon as possible before the dog is more upset and behaviors are out of hand. Your dog is struggling.

Resource guarding of toys, food, spaces and people. I can teach you and set up a plan to help you. Resource guarding is natural for both dogs and people. Dogs learn as we guide and teach them how to give and take. When two dogs are living together in a home. Dog (A) might be chewing on a toy and enjoying his time, minding his own business. Then dog (B) starts to approach dog (A) then dog (A) growls as dog (B) approaches. You never want to discipline a growl. That is a warning sign. In this situation dog (B) should be directed away and find something for that dog to do.

To avoid resource guarding first stop chasing the dog and pulling items from the mouth. Your dog has learned this to be of high value and now it's a fun game too. If you want to learn more about this set up at consultation in my list of services at

Other behavior problems you might be having problems with are fear of noises and storms. Separation anxiety when left alone. It's terrible for a dog to feel unsafe. Separation anxiety is very real and often I will set up a camera to observe on timing, when the dog starts to become anxious. Dogs generally start to pace, pant, drool and look around the door and then windows.

As a professional I will first identify what the concern or issue is on the specific case. It's important to understand the circumstances of the behavior and to question what happens before, during and after an undesirable behavior. I will guide you to better understanding of canine behavior and body language.

When is the time to seek help? The moment you notice the undesirable behavior. When a dog repeatedly practices a behavior, it strengthens. They become very good at it because they have rehearsed. When you think about people that repeat weightlifting or running, they practice, and they become stronger and better.

A dog that jumps from window to window. This is always concerning to me. The dog is strengthening and stressing out. It's like a dog on a job all day and every day. I've walked by homes and the window is moving.

The barking dog, of course they bark. It's normal canine communication. There is help for dogs and they can learn.

I do not recommend bark collars, choke chain, shock collar (e collar) or prong (pinch collar). It's a good way to cause more stress and fear in your dog. Even a spray bottle can be aversive. I've observed this and noticed to some dogs it's not a big deal, they may like water. But I have also observed the other dogs that did not like the spray bottle. The look on their faces, the curling of the mouth and then a bark or possibly an air snap. What association did those dogs have with a spray bottle and the person that just sprayed them? Very negative!

Behavior modification takes time and following a plan. Every dog and case will be different.

Dogs are very intelligent, and they can learn.

When you are with your dog take a good look and ask yourself these questions. What has my dogs learning been like in the past and the present? What is the environment like? What about my dogs' genetics? What about (self) is the dog healthy, what about the age of the dog?

Mecca's All Breed Dog Training, LLC. is located in Sheboygan, WI.

Mecca Curtice, CDBC, CCDT, FDM

© 2023 Mecca Curtice, Mecca's All Breed Dog Training, LLC.

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