Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Your Dog is Your #1 Fan!

  A dog never judges, always forgives, and is attentive to our emotions; always willing to pop both ears up for exactly the conversation we are needing.  Your dog is a safe place to lean on that you know won't let you down. This cheerleader that follows you around all day chanting, "Yeah Cindy! Go Cindy! Your'e the best Cindy!" is what makes a dog your number one fan!

   Many people tell me their dog is their best friend, and explain how much they love their dog, sometimes so much that their unconditional love accepts naughty dog behavior that can jolt the entire household. They justify the naughtiness as "puppy behavior" or  being a "rescue".

   In Joel Olsteins book, "I Declare" he speaks how everyone of us should be someone else's number one fan. "We should be encouraging them, lifting them when they've fallen, celebrating when they succeed, praying when they're struggling, urging them forward." Joel calls this being a people builder, and I immediately related this to dogs (like I do with everything).

   In all my years of training I have been witness to the strength of a dog and their people building skills. There are many decorative signs that read, "be the person your dog thinks you are", and we should look deeper into meaning...

Perhaps we have different rules, boundaries, and expectations of who WE BECOME when we are with our dogs as opposed to who we become around humans. Fear of judgement can create a different attitude in you, and lack of boundaries can create an intrusive behavior in who you spend time with.

   Don't be too quick to cross off your human friends, but rather look closer at the relationship you are creating with your dog. Your number one fan wants to be a well disciplined cheerleader. In a human relationship, we easily apply boundaries in order to not be taken advantage of, avoid being hurt, or simply to establish our own self respect.

 If a person knocked at your door you would open it. But if they (without permission to enter) pushed the door open, wiped their dirty feet on your pants, and thrashed your home on it's journey to grab your breakfast off your table to settle down on your couch..........well, I am pretty certain you would throw them out of your house and not accept that behavior!  Creating boundaries with your dog is simple and will change your cheerleader into a people builder within your home.

To create a balanced dog in your home, just remember..... the best cheerleaders never cross the sidelines, never tackle, and never intercept the ball.

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