How to Get an Independent Dog to Respect You

Building respect takes time.
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Building a solid obedience foundation with your dog depends entirely on the two of you showing each other mutual respect. When there's no respect between dog and owner, training becomes an incredibly difficult feat. Creating a respectful relationship between your pup and you isn’t the work of intimidation, but of understanding how dogs think and being confident in your training methods.

Treat your dog with respect. Powerful training relationships are only forged through mutual esteem. This means no yelling, no hitting and no coercive training methods.

Act consistently in enforcing your rules and boundaries. If your dog isn’t allowed on the couch, he is never allowed on the couch. Do not make exceptions for cute faces or whining pleas and your pup will learn that your rules are always in place.

Give your dog challenges and help him accomplish them. Training a dog in obedience or agility requires teamwork; the more the two of you work together to accomplish goals, the greater the respect.

Provide your dog with a safe and supportive home free of abuse and unhealthy habits. Respect from dogs is earned, just as it is from humans.

Find things your pup loves to do and help him earn his keep by completing training tasks as a chore. For example, if your dog loves fetch, walk him through some basic commands before throwing the ball. Dogs love jobs.