It’s normal for you to want your dogs to listen better and behave more appropriately. Many people become frustrated with their dog, for not responding the way they want them to. However I think we should look in the mirror and turn that frustration toward ourselves.
Your dog is just a reflection of you. They only respond to what you put out. You say you want your dog to “Come” when you call, but how many repetitions of practice are you doing every day? You say you’re tired of your dog stealing food off the kitchen counter, but what are you doing to correct this? You are frustrated when your dog drags you down the road on walks, but are you using the right tools and technique to make things better?
It’s unfair to your dog if you expect more effort from them, then you do from yourself. When your dog does not do what you ask or want them to do, you need to ask evaluate yourself. Are you consistently practicing everyday with your dog? Are you always following through on what you ask of your dog?
I tell all my clients to do 50 repetitions every day, for the obedience command they are looking to strengthen. If you want to improve your dog’s recall, go outside with your dog on a long leash and do 50 reps of “Come”. Make sure to reward with treats every time. You don’t have to do all 50 repetitions at once, you can do short frequent training sessions. If you do 50 reps each day, at the end of one week you will have done 350 repetitions. That is often more repetitions than most owners have done with their dog in their entire life. Now compound that practice over several weeks, how can your dog not listen better? Here are Important Considerations for a Solid Recall.
So next time you get frustrated with your dog, walk into the bathroom and look in the mirror. Ask yourself what are you doing (or not doing), that is causing this. Once you have that answer, get to work to make both you and your dog happier!