What do you feed your dog? Packaged food or home cooked food? Answer this very honestly, when did you ask him what he wanted? Probably never. Almost all of our communication with our dogs is one-way. We train them, we teach them to listen to us. But do we ask them if they are okay with it or do we tell them why they should do it?
What is animal communication?
Animal communication is not just about putting your message across, but also listening to your pet’s messages. After all, everyone in this world likes to be heard! But how do you hear your dog? By learning their words, seeking some spiritual guidance, or telepathy may be?
Nope! Animal communication is as simple as asking your dog about his day, or what he wants for food. All you have to do is observe his actions and understand what he is trying to convey. For example, when your dog hits you with his paws for attention, or when he is wagging his tail in a particular direction- they all have a message.
How does animal communication help me?
When you are training your dog, you are telling them the dos and don’ts. Basically, you are also telling them to listen to you because you are the pack leader and you know things better. And this is where communication comes into play, making them trust you and guiding them for their best.
Will animal communication help me build a better bond with my dog?
Do you think your dog only listens to you when you give him a treat? If you are nodding a ‘yes’, just imagine your dog jumping on a guest, while you ask him to sit. And he doesn’t listen to you because you don’t have a treat! Here is what you need to do:
-You should be the one giving commands
So, the first thing you need to communicate to your dog is to listen to you not because he gets a treat but because it’s coming from ‘you’. That’s why it is recommended that during your dog’s training, you should be the one learning the commands and how to use them with your dog. This way he knows that it’s not a stranger who is the pack leader, but you.
-Use commands in daily life, and not as performance
If you are in an elevator, your dog will definitely want to pounce on a lot of people. This is one example of where you can ask him to sit till you reach your floor. To put it simply, teach them a command that you can use when you need it.
-Train them as dogs would train each other
A mommy-dog never gives a treat to the puppy and asks him to do something. She is just assertive (and not dominating) about what she wants him to do, and so he knows. That’s all you need to do as well- be assertive, and your dog will respect you.
-Don’t make them do something you yourself wouldn’t do
Would you like to get confined in a small area like a crate, even if you had all your favorite things in it? Absolutely not! Right? Similarly, if you tell your dog what is his territory and what isn’t, you need to trust him to obey it, and not use a crate to confine him. How can otherwise you expect him to trust you?
For another example, if you can’t eat the same packaged food everyday, or wear a muzzle, don’t expect him to do that either.
-Your dog will reciprocate your emotions
If you are stressed and you are asking your dog to stay, they will sense something is wrong and the pack leader cannot be trusted. So, they will not listen to you; but they will when you yourself are calm.
Now, if a dog is doing something because you are asking him to do it, and not because he is getting a treat, doesn’t that automatically improve your bond with him?
Can communicating with my dog help resolve his aggression?
Let us first of all understand that aggression is when the dog is attacking everyone in the family without any reason. 99 out of 100 times, this is not the case. What you will have to do here is to understand what causes your dog to be aggressive at times. Is it:
- The doorbell ringing
- A stranger entering the house
- Someone getting in his territory, or
- Food aggression?
Once you have identified these, try to understand what your dog is trying to tell you.
- Is he saying “I get scared when someone enters my territory?”
- “I am insecure that I’ll not be able to protect myself from this person”.
- “I can’t understand if someone wants to attack me”.
So, just by listening to them and letting them know that they are loved and protected, we can make a lot of difference. Because let us accept it, city life is not their natural territory. Understanding electronic devices, and new humans coming in their ‘safe space’ is not natural to them, and we need to explain and communicate everything to them.
But will he talk back to me?
Communication is not just words. So, no, you will not hear him talking. But what you can do is sit with them. Actually be there in the moment. Try to understand what your dog tells you throughout the day, his gesture, routine, tone, anything that will help you understand him better.
They deserve it. After all, dogs understand us the best, don’t they?