Expectations?? Do We Expect Too Much??
It is so important for us to consider how we are living with our dogs if we truly want happy, healthy dogs.
We are seeing more and more dogs, more than ever before, suffering the effects of chronic stress. Why?
Could it be our expectations of them? Could it be that we don’t allow them to be dogs – to express behaviours that are natural to them?
Do we expect our dogs to sleep locked in a crate by themselves when naturally they prefer to sleep near other dogs and their family?
Do we expect our dogs to always walk perfectly by our side when out and about when naturally they prefer to leisurely sniff and explore their environment?
Do we expect our dogs to never bark or howl or growl when naturally these vocalisations are one of the only methods they have to communicate with the world around them?
Do we expect our dogs to behave perfectly when they see another dog when naturally they are social beings and will experience a range of emotions depending on their personality and experiences including excitement, anticipation and maybe even fear and anxiety?
Do we expect our dogs to always behave perfectly in public or do we get embarrassed when they sniff a person or another dog or wee where they shouldn’t – again natural behaviour for our dogs enabling them to leave information for others or gain information about others and their environment?
We should all consider our expectations of our dogs as it is our expectations that could be a contributing factor to their stress and thereby their health and behaviour issues.
Luckily, our expectations are something we can change once we better understand our dogs and their natural behaviour.
Food for thought….