The following exercises, when followed correctly will establish your dominance over your dog in a non-physical way. Your dog should feel that he/she has no power over you and must rely on you for all their basic physical and psychological needs. Dogs that understand their place within the family unit display far less behavioral problems and live happier lives. These exercises will reduce anxiety, dominance and aggression problems while maintaining better obedience control in trained dogs. These simple techniques communicate to your dog that you are in charge.
Petting For a period of 24 hours no one should pet the dog or otherwise allow any unnecessary physical contact. After 24 hours petting can be used only a reward for following obedience commands. Petting should be brief and not overly physical. Additionally the dog should not be allowed to lean against, step on, or sit on you ever. Petting or getting physical with your dog while you are at eye level with your dog allows the dog to establish dominance over you and may lead to behavior problems.
Furniture Beds, couches and other furniture are off-limits to dogs.
Possessions Dogs do not have possessions. Toys are okay but it must be established that they belong to humans. Toys can be given as a reward for following an obedience command (tell the dog to sit or down before play time begins). All toys must be kept out of reach from the dog and must be played with only when a human initiates the game and ends it. The toy must then be put away.
Feeding Put your dog on a feeding schedule of 1,2,or 3 times daily depending on the dogs needs and your schedule. Have your dog sit before putting the food down to eat. If the dog fails to sit on the first command, withhold feeding till the next scheduled mealtime. When the dog successfully sits on command leave the food down no more than 20 minutes. Leaving the food down longer can lead to behavioral problems such as finicky eating habits. No treats or snacks between meals.
Going Out Put your self and your dog on a schedule of no less then 3 times daily. Make the dog sit before passing through any doors, you first and then allow your dog to follow by giving the release command. Resist rewarding your dog by taking him out if he barks at the door or otherwise tries to control your behavior.
The exercises above must be followed strictly until you see results and then continue for at least another 30 days. This will allow the dog to make lasting changes in understanding his/her place within the family unit. You may reintroduce some privileges to the dog gradually at this point but don’t over do it. Should you notice unwanted behavior arising simply reinforce the exercises above.