Calmness in Dogs is Not Just Genetic!

We can help dogs to be calmer generally, and it is super important to teach young dogs (adolescence anyone?) to be calm. Yes, exercise and mental stimulation helps, but we need to be careful not to overstimulate the dogs. If all we do is “Go! Go! Go!” the dogs never learn to relax–it’s like a Type “A” human personality–not good for you OR the pup.

Some ideas:

  1. Capture calmness–when your dog is calm, tell him how wonderful he is
  2. Make a special time to be calm every day–turn it into a ritual. Time to read a book, work on the computer or snuggle on the couch for your favorite show?
  3. Make certain places “calm areas”. Some folks choose a bedroom others the whole house. gently ask teh pup to be calm a couple of times. If he isn’t send him out to the yard.
  4. Practice just “hanging out” outside too–park bench, lazy Sundays on the porch, etc. It’s really good for your pup to enjoy a bit of sunshine and watching everyone else run around (from a comfortable distance). (Treats can be used but are not necessary).

Here are some of my favorite publicly available links on teaching calmness–enjoy!!

Teaching calmness (training positive )
Capturing calmness (note, I don’t use a clicker for this!):
Smart 50 (Kathy Sdao):
Kikopup Positive interrupter
Jazz up settle down

Teaching calmness is not just a one and done thing–it’s a skill we work on throughout the dogs lifetime.