Feeling guilty about not doing the right thing by your dog can affect your every day life and have negative effects on your dog too.
There are many things that can make you feel guilty. Like not being able to walk your dog every day, or starting training too late, or having to go out and leave them alone, or feeling that you have picked the wrong breed for you.
You can feel that you can’t live up to all the demands. Even the ‘experts’ can be wrong!
You have probably read countless articles, asked many questions and gotten advice that can quite frankly, make your head spin. It makes it seem all too hard and very overwhelming!
You try things and they don’t work and then you try something else. Progress if any, can be painfully slow and doubts start to creep in.
If you are confused about what to do and how to do it – imagine how your dog feels! They are simple thinking and you are complicated. Therein lies the problem.
You might overthink everything and get obsessed about doing the right thing, and all that amounts to is worry and doubt. Don’t think your dog can’t feel it too! It is certainly going to rub off on him.
There is one piece of valuable advice I want to give to you…..BREATHE!
Just stop and take a breath and dissect what you are feeling guilty about and learn how to deal with it in a positive way that will make you both happy.
Your dog is joining YOU, not the other way around, and he must learn to fit in with your particular lifestyle.
For example, it might be not being able to walk them every day. Take heart! Most people can’t walk their dogs every day so you are not alone. Your dog is not reminiscing about the park and wondering who is there and what they are doing at the river. Yes, it’s fun while they are there but they are not thinking about it.
What to do if you just can’t walk them? Spend 10 minutes doing some basic but meaningful obedience type exercise to work his brain. If you do it properly he will be exhausted and this will also benefit your relationship. It gives him a job to do and with the right approach you will be able to communicate much more effectively.
If it’s guilt about leaving him alone, enrich the environment by leaving a proper food orientated toy like our GameChanger®, leave on music and practice separation while you are there sometimes so it’s an easier transition for when you really go out.
If a dog trainer tells you something you are not comfortable with, question it. If you can’t do what they suggest, question it. If they are telling you things that make you feel uncomfortable with, question it. This is a ‘no guilt zone’.
If you don’t get the right answers, keep asking until you find the right person to assist you.
Dog training should be free of difficulty, free of unachievable exercises, and it should always sit with you in a way that makes it enjoyable and easy, and most of all, free of guilt.
We can show you how to be free of guilt, and teach you what dogs really need in a fun and loving way!