If you have a dog that is particularly hyperactive and difficult to control, especially in the company of other dogs or unfamiliar people, then it can be an extremely stressful time – for both the dog and the owner. However, there are a number of methods in which you can make your dog calmer. I’ve listed eight tips to help train your hyperactive dog to make both of your lives a lot easier.
1. Learn to Be Calm Yourself
Learn to be calm with your 4-legged companion and watch your own moods. Dogs are extremely sensitive to violent behavior or stress on your part and this can destabilize your their behavior by making them more hyperactive and anxious. There have been many studies that show if the owner is stressed out or hyperactive then their dog will be too. Dogs often turn to their teachers to see how they react in situations, so if you stay calm at times when your dog is displaying symptoms of stress, it will often take your example be calmer.
Anxiety in dogs can cause them to have many disorders, so try and focus on methods that help to reduce your dog’s anxiety. If you can identify situations where they are more anxious then you can start to ease them into these scenarios slower and more gradually over time. This should help you to learn new behavior patterns from them and start to reduce anxiety whilst remaining calm.
3. Be the Alpha or Pack Leader
Make sure that your dog understands that you are the pack leader or alpha, as this can also help to reduce their anxiety. Being a pack leader does not mean you have to be rude or violent, instead you simply need to show your dog that you are the dominant figure. Show him that you are the alpha, alpha is always at a higher level, it is he who decides when, where and how. You are the decision maker, not them.
4. Give Your Dog Plenty of Activity
A hyperactive dog needs stimulation and activity, either by walking or via a vigorous play session at home. I personally do not think boredom is the cause of hyperactivity, but on the other hand, I know that many dogs are happy to walk for hours outside for fun, run, play, and share. If you tire them out then they will not have the energy to be hyperactive!
It is not always easy, but ignoring the behavior of your hyperactive dog can be an effective technique to calm him. Try to stay away from him if he starts to behave in an active way. If you leave the room or the garden so that you are no longer in his field of vision, you’ll be surprised how often your dog will stop following you and acting over the top.
6. Do Not React to Your Dog
Make sure that you do not reinforce his hyperactive behavior by paying attention to him. As an example, by talking to him, yelling at him, trying to pet or touch, or even by catching his gaze. If you do this and pay him attention then it will be seen as a reward for your dog and hyperactive behavior could very well get worse.
7. Use an Adaptil Collar to Reduce Stress
An Adaptil collar releases pheromones called apaisines which are very similar to those secreted by a bitch during lactation. These apaisines can calm a dog and make him less anxious. In addition to that, by reducing stress during the learning process, it has been shown that dogs and puppies are more likely to learn more effectively when you use the Adaptil products.
8. Spay Your Male Dog
If you have a male dog then castration can prevent wandering and fighting for sexual purposes. In addition, some dogs are difficult to control when out for walks due to their hyperactivity. The positive aspect from a medical standpoint is that castration destroys the risk of testicular tumors and benign prostate cancers too.
I hope that these tips will help you to start to control your dog’s behavior a lot better. As with any form of pet and dog training, patience is often the key. Don’t expect his behavior to change overnight as this is simply not possible. However, if you follow some of the tips in this guide then over time you should start to see market improvement in your dog’s behavior, and hopefully this will lead to him being a lot calmer.
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