I had new clients today. Really really nice people. They have a Golden Retriever who is one and a Labrador Retriever who is two. Here's the rub the man is just recovering from a broken leg and the woman has had four strokes and back surgery...and they chose those two particular breeds of dogs, hmmmm. Okay, maybe a smaller dog would have been a better choice for those in not such robust health but understand, most of us have our particular "breeds". That dog you have always wanted or had and just have to have another.
So I go over there to find out why they have called me. I find the reason is because the dogs have a couple of behavioral issues. The first happens shortly after I get there. I am molested when I get in the door. Not just sort of, I am violated in such a way that only a dog can do :) Of course the pet parents try to stop them but I like to see it as it really is, so I tell them to stop. I am nearly knocked down (I am a big girl , that's not easy to do), the Golden has my entire arm in his mouth, the Lab is all up in my stuff and they both are jumping all over me. Ahhh, I see.
"So what would you like to accomplish" I say. Well they want that to stop. "Okay. Do they have any commands?" No. Okay. They are one and two, Why not? Well we don't really need them to do all that stuff, we just don't want them to do this. "Okay, well that isn't going to work" Why not?
Let me explain...
We invite dogs into our houses and expect them to know what to do. We expect them to know the rules and follow them without telling them what they are in a language they understand. If they pee on the rug, we shriek at them. If they chew on a chair, we spank them. If you don't explain the rules and give a dog something to do he will revert back to being a dog. He will chew, he will pee, he will bark, he will hump, he will jump and yes he might even bite. No other animal that I can think of is expected to act in a way other than the way nature intended except for dogs. Have you ever heard of animal control being called on a biting cat?
So if you invite a dog into your home, train it. I don't care if it's all tricks, if he walks around on his back legs like a circus dog or rolls across the room. Give him something acceptable to you to do. If you don't give him something to do, trust me he will still entertain himself and you may not like what he chooses to do.