Puzzled on Pets?

How can I stop my Jack Russell from being aggressive?

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by STEVE DALE

Q: How can I stop my male Jack Russell from being aggressive towards me and my husband when we discipline him. He does not like the word no, and he he shows his teeth and actually goes to bite us at times.

A: What is your dog doing that you feel compelled to discipline him? And what do you mean by discipline? If you’re physically reprimanding, I’m on your dog’s side. My solution: Take a rolled up newspaper and hit yourself over the head. I’m hard pressed to be convinced that there is ever an excuse to physically punish a pet. The pet doesn’t learn what he should be doing. At best he may learn, people can be ‘crazy,’ and he may also learn to never again trust the person responsible for reprimanding. Instead, encourage the pet to do what you want.

Even if you’re not physically reprimanding, and repeating “no, no,” raising your voice or not – it’s simply not working. And if your dog is snarling back, that line about aggression begetting aggression is exactly what’s happening.

You didn’t mention what your disciplining the dog for, so I can’t comment on whatever issues are causing you concern. No matter, clicker training is a terrific, effective and humane tool. Clicker training instantly communicates to the dog what he or she has achieved. You don’t have to worry about teaching the dog what not to do, if the dog is busy doing what you want.

There are lots of websites which offer clicker training resources, my favorite is www.clickertraining.com. © 2009 Gadzoo.com

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