The human canine bond is incredibly special, and as canine lovers we bend all the rules to keep our own dog safe and out of trouble.  However, sometimes our dogs use their Hind Brain which controls their reactive, reflexive and poor impulse control which can get them into trouble.  If your dog is a thinking dog he is using his Front Brain more often and is more responsive, more conscious and has better impulse control.

Do you really know who your dog is?

 
Starting pups in classes creates a thinking dog.

If today, you opened your front door and are startled to see the mail carrier, will your dog bark, lunge, attack or wiggle?  Do you know why he behaves this way?  Are you comfortable helping him behave differently?

Helping your dog be a thinking dog can be a real lifestyle change.  You can start by washing your dogs bowl and putting it in storage.  Hand feeding your dog his meals as rewards for good behavior each day for behaviors both in and outside the home will help your dog be thinking more often.  Enroll your dog in private training lessons, basic obedience, rally, agility or tracking class to help him become a thinking dog rather than a reactive dog.  If you are not sure what your dog can handle, get a professional evaluation to set you and your dog up for success.  Helping your dog see a stimuli, including the mail carrier and think before he reacts is as rewarding for you as it is the dog.

Setting your dog up for success and helping him be a thinking dog instead of a reacting dog takes patience, good timing and daily practice.  When you see your dog go through a “switch over” and begin using his thinking skills when he sees certain stimuli, then you will know who your dog is becoming!