When should you start obedience training with your dog?

As soon as possible. The sooner you get them started on responding to sounds, commands, communication, the better. The same thing holds true for shelter dogs. Puppy classes, even for an adult dog, are an excellent first step.

Andy W.
Hoof & Paw Animal Clinic

What are the most common behavior problems in dogs and how can they be addressed?

The big problem is aggressive behaviors, which is usually just a matter of territorial problems. There are many cases where you are walking down the street and a dog behind a fence is going crazy. This is not necessarily aggressive behavior, but it is a pain in the butt. Improper urination and defecation can be solved by letting them go outside as often as possible.

Can behavior issues in my dog ever indicate that they are sick?

Sometimes. You'll see some dogs that'll lash out in pain or appear depressed. If that happens, give us a call and let us hear the history, and we can offer you our best solutions to those problems.

What other dog behavior management options are available?

In my personal opinion, going for a walk with the whole family is the best thing you can do for a dog. It establishes a pack mentality and hierarchy. I have solved a lot of behavioral problems by recommending a walk of about 15 minutes two or three times a day.

Are certain breeds predisposed to behavior problems?

I don't put a tremendous amount of stock into that. More ancient breeds may have a more feral nature, as they are more closely related to wolves, but it's not something you can set your watch to.

Can my dog's behavior problems resolve on their own?

I wouldn't count on it, because dogs in the house are outside of their element, as they’re meant to run. Ignoring doggy behavioral problems will most likely result in them getting worse.

When should I seek professional help for these dog behavior problems?

Anytime you're having a problem with it. PetSmart offers affordable puppy classes, or you can call us for advice. If you’re struggling, call someone. There are many opportunities available, and you don’t have to break the bank to do it.

Can getting my dog spayed or neutered help with their behavior problems?

Of course. Removing the organs causing hormones can level the playing field and may help with behavior problems.

If you still have other questions and you'd like to reach out to us, you can call us directly at (618) 233-2800, or you can email us at [email protected]. But please do reach out, and we'll get back to you as fast as we can. Don't forget to follow us on social media Facebook, Instagram