How to Keep Your Dog Calm
Dogs may often become agitated or aggressive and cause problems both for you and your neighbors. Keeping your dog calm is possible by following a few calm down techniques.
Give a Voice Command or Make Noise
When your dog needs to calm down you need to have a code that both you and your dog know. If you use a voice command such as “Calm Down” or “Down” and your dog should follow your command. Show your dog what he needs to do: sit or lie down.
You may need a bit of training, but in the end, the dog will learn. Use the same pitch of voice because dogs don’t understand words, they perceive the noise that you are making.
You may use a squeaky toy or a whistle and make a noise to make your dog calm. Your dog will be distracted by the noise and may forget about his reasons of being agitated.
You may also use a water pistol and spray water on your dog whenever you see he needs to calm down. The single disadvantage is that you may not always have the water pistol with you, so the voice command is more recommended.
When your dog becomes too agitated or aggressive, just use the leash to control him. Tie him to a door knob or a fence and ignore him for 5 minutes. This should calm him down.
Establish a space that is meant for penalty time; this may be a crate or a room in your home, just make sure there is nothing to do for your dog in this space. Send your dog to his space when he needs to calm down. Send him for 5 to 10 minutes, according to his age. If your dog is a puppy, keep him in this area for 3 to 5 minutes.
Apply the penalty time immediately after your dog displays the unwanted behavior, so that he knows what the penalty is for.
Creating a Reflex
Dogs may get agitated due to different factors. If you notice what these are and observe your dog’s behavior prior to starting to jump or bark, give your dog a treat when he is about to display the unwanted behavior. This is how you create a reflex in your dog. The factors that trigger the unwanted behavior will be associated with a tasty treat and your dog will no longer feel the need to jump or bark.
Getting Used to Situations
If you notice that there are certain situations, pets or people that make your dog agitated, increase your dog’s exposure to these factors. Start with a few minutes and gradually increase the time, so that your dog gets used to these intimidating or agitating situations.
Your dog needs to be trained to listen to you and with a bit of training and effort, these calm down techniques should work.
Make sure your dog gets exercise; dogs that get enough exercise will have less behavioral problems, as their energy is focused towards workout activities.
Never use violence to calm your dog down.