By Sean O’Shea
When you start working on dog training or changing behavior issues with your dog, you gotta remember it’s a process…for both of you.
You’ve both got bad habits that are likely deeply ingrained – they need time to be addressed and replaced.
You’re both learning new skills/mechanics – they need time to develop and be mastered.
You both have emotional associations/triggers that cause you to feel a certain way in certain situations – these need time to be addressed and desensitized.
You’re both learning new ways of thinking and feeling about each other – you both need time for this process to crystallize.
You’re both unsure about the changes to your normal lifestyle/world – you both need time to adjust and become comfortable.
Change is hard for all of us. Attempting to reverse negative habits, learn new techniques/commands/behaviors, think differently, address and desensitize fear and anxiety (in both species!), and create new thoughts and feelings about each other takes much practice, care, and time.
It will likely be bumpy. It will likely be hard. You will likely go backwards. You will likely feel hopeless. You will likely feel silly. You will likely feel overwhelmed. You will likely lose your cool. You will have great victories and challenging defeats. But if you keep on trying, keep on pushing, you will get there!
So please remember to give you and your dog the time and space to develop, to learn, to become the new and better versions of yourselves. This especially applies in the beginning, when all of the habits, fear, worry, lack of coordination, and uncertainty are at their strongest.
You’re both learning and growing and becoming better – enjoy the process. 🙂
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