Dogs, and puppies in particular, come hardwired for a variety of activities. These include eating, sleeping, pooping, peeing, jumping, play biting, chasing, and chewing. Some of these behaviors can be quite annoying and don’t fit in well in the human world.
I’m often asked by me clients “how do I get my dog or puppy to stop (insert annoying behavior here)”?? What I find is that we, as humans, are really good at telling our dogs what they are doing wrong; “Stop that”, “get off of that”, “don’t chew on that”, “don’t pee on that”. What we’re not so good at is giving them an alternate behavior.
You see, it’s not enough just to tell your dog to stop doing something; you’ve got to give them a “Plan B”, something to do to replace the unwanted behavior. Without a plan B, your dog will stop what he’s doing temporarily, but will likely return to the same behavior again because he doesn’t know what else to do.
Interrupt and redirect unwanted behaviors. When you see your puppy or dog engaging in any unwanted behavior, interrupt it with a sharp noise such as a hand clap or an “AH-AH”, and redirect him to an appropriate behavior. Eventually the dog will learn what is correct and will choose to engage in that behavior and Viola! Plan B becomes Plan A!