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Is it Time to Stop Micromanaging Your Dog?

We all want to micromanage every aspect of our pets' lives but ease up! 

   

Sometimes we want to control every situation but that can do more harm than good. We need to stop micromanaging our dogs for them to thrive. When we do micromanage, it doesn’t teach the dog what we’d like them to do.  

 

We feel the pressure to micromanage dogs so that they fit in with our society. We are even told that if we don’t micromanage them, they will think they have to be the ‘pack leader’ and it’s too stressful for them.  


Dogs, much like humans, thrive on a balanced mix of freedom and guidance. But when we start controlling every step, bark, or sniff, it might be time to take a step back and reconsider our approach.   


Let’s start with walks  

Yes, we all want our dogs to walk politely on a lead, but constantly tugging and correcting their every move is not beneficial. Loosen the lead - literally and figuratively - and let your pup explore their surroundings (while keeping safety in mind).   

Most dogs will naturally keep an eye on you, but if you have trained them that you will always chase after them, they will know you are always keeping an eye on them. 


Here’s an idea: let your dog choose the route for your next walk - providing they are not pulling on the lead - and just follow them. We don’t want to encourage impolite behaviour such as pulling you to where they want to go, but by keeping to your loose lead rules, you can just follow them and have an adventure. Dogs love to discover, and you would be discovering together.  

  

Then there's mealtime 

Have you ever found yourself obsessing over the exact quantity and timing of your dog's meals?   

While a routine is essential, stressing over every gram of kibble might not be necessary. Trust your dog's appetite and adjust portions sensibly.  

 

Always remember, food is like magic for them but not a bribe!  

  

Training is crucial 

However, bombarding your furry friend with endless commands can be overwhelming for them. Remember, it's not just about obedience; it's about building trust and communication.   

Learn to listen to the silence.  Our dogs are capable of learning that situations have meaning.  Our training must come up to their abilities. Watch for those moments when dogs offer their smarts. They might be fleeting at first but with reinforcement, they can blossom into so much more. 


Have you ever considered their playtime? Dogs need mental stimulation and play to stay happy and healthy. Yet, sometimes, we can become overly concerned with what they're doing or how they're doing it.  

 

Allow them the joy of being a dog.   


When we micromanage, we not only stress ourselves out but also hinder our dogs’ natural behaviours and instincts. Instead, let’s strive for a more balanced approach, offering guidance and setting boundaries while also allowing room for them to be themselves.   


It's time to trust our dogs more and worry a little less. After all, a happy dog often means a happy owner, too! 

  

So, take a breather, relax, and enjoy the journey with your furry companion without overbearing micromanagement. 

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