Small infraction, big correction
One of the most powerful, and yet challenging concepts in training dogs, especially those with behavior issues, is creating large consequences for small infractions. Now while this might sound unfair, it’s actually one of the biggest gateways to creating a respectful, non-aroused, learning environment and healthy relationship.
For dogs who are highly reactive on walks, highly reactive in the house to guests, super bratty, pushy, or constantly challenging the owner, a well timed large correction, when the dog’s mind is in its more mild form of arousal, can be the game changer.
Trying to share bigger corrections once the dog is aroused, highly reactive, and already at level 100, is an absolutely losing proposition. Once the dog is exploding, your moment to impact them positively is gone. You have a small, brief moment to impact the dog and create the gateway to better behavior.
Although this might sound unfair, sharing an especially firm conversation at the very beginning of the escalation sequence (which can be staring, furrowed brow, ears up, pulling out the threshold, pulling on the leash etc.), can be the missing link in changing your dog’s problem behavior.