Did you know that your thoughts and expectations for your dog can shape who they become?
If you believe that they’re too reactive or too difficult to live with, they eventually morph into that. A huge part of being a brilliant partner is accepting your dog for who they are.
But that’s not to say they’ll remain reactive or difficult to live with. Acceptance, patience, and love eventually make your dog the partner you want them to be. In this episode of the Enlightened by Dogs Podcast, Kathy discusses how our subconscious reactions to the behaviors our dogs display can end up ‘setting them in their ways.’
She also highlights the importance of accepting our dogs for who they are while encouraging them to be the best versions of themselves.
In this episode:
- How your attitude and mindset influence your dog’s behavior
- What it looks like to accept your dog without judgement
- Why it’s vital to remember that behavior is communication
“Our dogs already accept us as perfect just the way we are, without judgement.”
“We don’t judge a seed just because it’s not a tree. We accept it as perfect, and it’s in that kind of acceptance that our dogs can blossom into their full potential.”
“So often our dog’s behavior triggers negative thoughts and emotions, and that’s because we’re judging that behavior as inappropriate.”
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I really believe this is spot on. I know my girl is a good dog and can’t be anything but a dog no matter how much they act like little humans.
Huge thanks – this amazing podcast popped up at just the right moment. After a year of huge upheaval and stress – moving to a new country to live and seeing how much it has affected my 6 year old dog I realised my negative thoughts about his territorial and fear aggression were making things worse. I moved him from his comfort zone friends the beach his own garden to a city flat. I’m sad to say my stress played out by being negative and impatient about his behaviour even though deep down Iunderstoid how he felt
Today I will start thinking and communicating more positively Iknow my dog is really trying to accept our new situation as well. Thank you so very much
Thanks Kathy. This has been true for myself and my super sensitive young (22 months) border collie. I have definitely thought about her as a difficult dog that is more than I can cope with in the past but that is changing. We are both coming along and getting to be more of a team but I notice that whenever she is great and responsive and does skid mark recalls etc . I feel so happy and relieved and say to myself “I love this and Sadie is the best dog ever”. I now laugh at myself when doing this as inevitably she will then brush me off completely and revert back to old behaviour!!! I don’t quite get it yet but it’s as if she is saying – “dont expect too much – I’m not there yet”, or “this is your idea of fun , not mine”. Any thoughts?
I have just recently come across your work and so appreciate the support of all your experience that speaks to my situation. Thank you
Hey Judith! I love where you’re going with your youngster! Next time, try saying to Sadie: “I love you and you ARE the best dog ever!” instead of disconnecting from her by switching to internal dialog. And follow the 95% Rule! You’ll get there — Sadie is already there waiting for you to catch up! 😉
All the best,