- Behavior Problems
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January 23rd, 2013
By Eric Letendre
Since I make my living on the internet you’d think I was a super computer nerd.
I’m not. In fact I know very little about computers, gigabites, html, whizzy wigs, gui’s, and all the other terms associated with understanding computers and the internet.
I just know those terms because I listen to my wife, Rachael, talk to our friend, Paul, but have no clue about what they are talking about.
One term I am familiar with is de-fragging.
Probably because I can think about it on dog training terms.
You see, the definition of “de-frag” is: To reorganize the way information is stored on a computer disk.
You brain and your dog’s brain is like one complex computer disk.
All the decisions you make are the result of past experiences stored in your melon.
The same holds true with your dog. A dog usually becomes aggressive because of the experiences they have had leading up to the moment the dog snarls, growls or bites.
A dog that does NOT come when called may have had some negative experiences that result in them going the other way when they hear, “Come.”
BUT – you can change your dog’s behavior even if you’ve made intentional or UN-intentional mistakes, and BELIEVE ME, I know because I have made MANY.
De-fragging your dog’s brain will require patience and time.
For every one negative experience it takes five or six positive experiences to overcome the one bad.
Let’s say your dog had a negative experience with the vet’s office. The best course of action is to bring your dog to the vet over the next couple of weeks when you have no appointment.
Walk in (please check with your vet first), give your pooch some treats, maybe a quick game of tug and then walk out and go home. Repeat five more times, maybe more, maybe less.
Before taking off, one more thing…
The best place for de-fragging is The Dog Training Inner Circle. That’s where the forum is for you to ask questions and let me help you with any sticky training situations you may be having.
January 9th, 2013
By Eric Letendre
Peaches was one of the sweetest dogs I ever met.
She came to my classes as a puppy and continued her training as she got older.
Around two years old, Peaches’ owners contacted me with some concerns. She was starting to show some signs of aggression.
I could not believe what I was hearing.
Peaches was a really sweet dog and I asked them to bring her to me immediately so I could evaluate her behavior.
When I saw her she seemed fine. The owners told me it was hard to pinpoint when she became aggressive.
They added that it seemed like a light switch. One second she was her sweet, normal self and the next she was aggressive.
As soon as I heard that I had a pretty good idea of what the problem was.
I informed them that they needed to set up an appointment right away.
I also made one point very clear to them.
I said, “You have to request, maybe even demand to have her thyroid checked.”
A dog with thyroid problems can display different behaviors and a thorough vet check is usually step one when I am dealing with aggressive behavior.
A dog with a screwed up thyroid is going to exhibit abnormal behavior.
Once the dog has been checked out and it has been determined that there is an abnormality, there are thyroid medications can do a lot to help.
In Peaches case, it completely changed her behavior. Once she was on medication she was fine. Never had a problem again.
If the thyroid is NOT the problem, then a behavior modification program has to be followed. The program I developed is The M.U.T.T. Method.
The M.U.T.T. Method uses a combination of Management, finding out what the Underlying problem is, Training a new behavior and then taking the Time for the new behavior to kick in.
If you’re tired of your dog jumping, stealing, barking, begging and more, then give The Good K9 Manners Program a look see.
It covers the M.U.T.T. Method in detail and you can get it with a discount.
Just use coupon code: 10-OFFK9MANNERS
Good K9 Manners
October 4th, 2012
By Eric Letendre
“A quick temper will make a fool of you soon enough.”
I don’t talk about aggression too much in my emails.
There is a very strong reason for this.
Aggression is a very difficult, sometimes dangerous behavior to deal with.
Temper and ego should NEVER enter the arena when you are dealing with an aggressive dog.
Recently, my good friend Jim Helems from Dog Pals showed me a video of a TV dog training guru dealing with an aggressive dog.
Watching this “expert” I was floored. He actually tried using force with the dog. He also lost his temper and once his ego kicked in, the dog nailed him leaving a big bite wound on his hand.
Bruce Lee’s quote was what I thought of as I watched this video.
This trainer literally thought he would overpower the dog using force to make the dog better. It reminds me of a place I used to work at where there was a big sign that said, “The beatings will continue until morale improves.”
Here’s the deal.
A dog with an aggression problem needs to be dealt with by a professional who has experience working with this behavior and knows how to DEFUSE the situation, NOT escalate it.
You see, whenever you use aggression to combat aggression, you are going to ESCALATE aggression.
Every dog that displays aggressive behavior has a trigger. A good trainer will find that trigger and condition the dog to behave differently.
It takes patience.
It takes experience.
The best course of action is to work at training your dog to never become aggressive.
This is done through proper socialization, positive training and interactions.
All of which are covered in detail in The Dog Training Inner Circle.
Easy, fun and positive.
Check it out here:
June 29th, 2012
By Eric Letendre
Yesterday was my fourth wedding anniversary.
Went by fast, and I have to say, it’s been a great four years and we are now expecting our first child.
Rach and I have a great relationship because a very wise man taught me the secret to a good marriage.
The secret is only one word.
Do you know what the word is?
I’m going to share that word toward the end of this email.
Anyway, being a dog trainer is an interesting profession. I have been in the middle of many husband/wife arguments more than once.
They have a disagreement about their dog and then turn to me and ask who is right. If I take his OR her side, I become the chump.
Dogs do a lot of things we don’t like, just like our wives and husbands sometimes do things we don’t like.
A dog comes into the house and chews your favorite pair of shoes, pees on your expensive carpet and digs a huge hole in your garden.
We get mad at the dog and hopefully put a training program in place to teach the dog how to live with us in the house. We teach the dog our rules for successfully living under the same roof.
Success all comes down to communication. Communication is the training you use use to teach your dog to pee outside and to chew on toys that you have given to him.
Good communication between husbands and wives also goes a long way to create a happy marriage.
…there is also one more step that you need to take.
You have to forgive your dog for chewing your favorite pair of shoes, for peeing on your expensive carpet and all the other bad behavior that he has done.
It does NOT mean that you let your dog continue to chew your shoes and pee on your rugs.
It means that you teach your dog the correct behaviors (according to you) and then forgive your dog.
I know, it sounds metaphysical and woo woo, but I have seen people that are just constantly angry with their dogs and it’s not a good situation.
So the choice is up to you. Continue being mad at your dog or, forgive, move on, follow a training program and watch your dog’s behavior change for the good.
So the secret to good relationships with humans or canines is simple (communication and forgiveness) and as Jimmy Buffett said:
“Relationships, we all want them, we all need them, what we do with them?”
What are you going to do?
All the best,
P.S. Please forgive but this is a LAST day to take advantage of the special discounted price on the Good K9 Manners Course. Use the coupon code 10-OFFK9MANNERS to learn how to STOP unwanted behavior using the correct communication:
June 28th, 2012
By Eric Letendre
The secret that I’m going to discuss in this email really is a secret that has never been revealed to the best of my knowledge.
It has nothing to do with crates, leashes, collars, treats, clickers or anything else associated with the normal dog training process.
After training dogs for the past 20 years, I have discovered a crucial step that you need to take before any training will be successful.
Most dog trainers will never admit this but I will. Being the brave guy that I am, I don’t hold anything back.
I give you the truth even when it hurts. Anyway, here it is:
A lot of the clients that dog trainers work with are NOT successful.
Yikes, why would I admit that?
All over the internet you’ll read “Train Your Dog In 36 Minutes or Less,” A Fully Trained Dog In 7 Days,” “Train Your Dog While You Sleep,” and on and on.
Here’s the truth – Dog trainers are really not dog trainers, we are people trainers.
Sure, most dog trainers can train dogs but they are not good at training people. To be a successful dog trainer you have to understand dog AND human psychology.
One of my favorite quotes is: “If you think you can, or if you think you can’t, you’re right.”
And that statement sums up dog training in a nutshell. Let me explain:
Many of the clients I have worked with who never had success always make the same statements:
“My dog will never learn this.” “My dog will never stop jumping.” “My dog will never stop chewing.” “My dog is always going to be a barker.”
Do you see the thread in those statements?
I always explain to this type of client that the statements we make, and say over and over again, become true.
If you are trying to housetrain your dog and thinking and saying that it’s impossible, that your dog will never learn, your statements will become fact.
If you’re the one training the dog, then you need to believe that you can train your dog.
So my favorite dog training quote is:
“If you think you can train your dog, or if you think you can’t train your dog, you’re right.”
If you ready to STOP dealing with unwanted behaviors you can get started with the Good K9 Manners course.
To help you out we are offering it at a discounted price for one more day. Just use the coupon code 10-OFFK9MANNERS
All the best,