I don’t know if you speak dog, but I know that I can’t. Because of this, I need to use my actions to communicate with him. These are 6 situations or phrases that we need to essentially communicate to them and ideas of how to do so.
- “I Love You”/ “You’re A Good Dog”
These phrases should be communicated everyday and deserve the right chosen actions, whether a loving cuddle, a yummy treat, a sweet “kootchy kootchy koo”, or just spending time with them (or all of the above). Your pup needs to know that they are loved, appreciated, and are invaluable members of your family. As an awesome dog owner, you have researched to find the best commercial dog food brand or to choose a natural vegetarian, vegan, or raw meat diet. You take your dog for daily walks, expend their energy with indoor exercises, make routine playtime just the two of you, or give them socialization time with other dogs or with kids.
- “I Am Proud Of What You Just Did”
This applies to when your dog accomplished or did a specific behavior of which you are proud. For example, your dog just lived through a 1 to 15-hour plane flight in the cargo hold. Or he just brought you your favorite book. Or she just treated someone kindly. Or they didn’t bark at everything that went by the house. You are proud and you need to communicate this pride so that they will continue the behavior.
- Training Your Dog
You will find out that your dog, or every pet, requires some kind of training, and so you start this process – “Sit”, “Stand”, “Down”, “Speak”. First of all, they will see that you are spending time with them, even though they are doing something that they might consider uncomfortable. You might realize that your dog needs daily routine training, and, most importantly, an incentive to train with you so often. This incentive will usually come in the shape of a little treat that you use during training. After a training session, a new toy or a delicious, quality meal can be this incentive. Choose a meal like Turducken Grain-Free Canned Dog Food that is not only a classic bayou delicacy, but is also locally sourced and considers a dog’s food-sensitivities. The best incentive is when we communicate that we are proud of what training they have accomplished.
- Potty Training Your Dog
This is also a part of the dog training program and can communicate “I am proud of what you just did” once they accomplish it. The process can take a long time. Are your pets in touch with their bodily needs, like when they are hungry, thirsty, or need to go? Household pets that are in ‘captivity’ can just go to the bathroom in their cage or aquarium. Cats have an indoor litter box. Dogs need to rush outside, and hopefully, the doggy door is easy to access.
This might happen a lot when your dog exhibits bad or dangerous behavior. You might tell them to stop or you might need to ignore them. You might hide toys that they like or not give them routine treats. DO NOT EVER STOP FEEDING THEM! That is abuse, and an absolute no-no when you try to communicate a message!
- “Tell me what’s wrong” / “I am here for you”
There may be times when your dog might exhibit depression or anxiety, behavioral changes after taking a new medication, or needs to acclimate to a new transition (e.g. a new home or a new puppy). “I am here for you”. A newly adopted dog might experience emotional issues, such as PTSD, from their past owners or negative experiences. They might be physically ill, emotionally lethargic, or confronting trauma. “Tell me what’s wrong”; you probably need to communicate this more to a newer dog, because you will know the signs or behavior of a dog that you’ve had much longer. Our dogs might not be able to speak human, but we want them to communicate how they can. In response, we must show them that we love them by demonstrating physical affection, exhibiting kind and soft speech, and by spending personal time with them.
In conclusion, “ruff, ruff” doesn’t mean anything to your dog, but actions speak louder than words. There are necessary phrases that you will need to communicate with your dog, and trial and error will help you discover the right actions.