You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.
A dog can be trained at any age. Older dogs typically have ingrained behaviors that may take more time to overcome than if those behaviors had been addressed at an earlier age, but you can absolutely train an older dog.
My dog is just a puppy. He’ll grow out of it.
If your puppy is allowed to get away with a negative behavior they will not just grow out of it. If they are allowed to potty in the house, chew, jump, dig etc… they will continue these behaviors into adulthood.
If the dog doesn’t listen to commands, they must not be smart.
Not true at all! The smartest dogs are often time the most challenging to train. They are natural pack leaders therefore less likely to accept your authority and follow commands unless it suits them. These dogs need clear and consistent handling to gain respect towards their owner. Only then will this type of dog start to care about learning what you are trying to teach.
My dog jumps all over me because he loves me and wants to say hi.
When dogs greet each other they do not immediately jump all over each other. They posture and establish their hierarchy before they start playing. When you allow your dog to jump all over you (while you are standing up), you are submitting to their authority. While you are standing, your dog should respect your space until you invite them in by lowering your posture.
Dogs prefer to be in a yard all day rather than crated inside the house while you are away.
Dogs only enjoy being outside by themselves for a few minutes at a time. They prefer to be with their pack, which is you, or in a safe and comfortable spot until you return. Dogs will hole themselves up in a den while they are alone. When we crate a dog, we are just choosing that den for them in order to prevent negative behaviors. Proper introduction to the crate and crate training will make this spot one of your dog’s favorite places to be.
Dogs know when they did something bad in the past.
Dogs cannot be corrected for things they have done in the past. Dogs live in the now. When you walk in and find your dog has chewed up your couch you will become upset. Your dog is responding to the fact that you are upset, NOT to the chewed up couch. It is important to prevent your dog from getting away with these behaviors while you are gone until you have trained them to respect you and to not chew up the couch.
Tug of War can cause behavioral issues.
Tug of war is a fun way to play with your dog as long as your dog knows it is just a game. At the end of Tug of War, you should give your dog a command to drop the toy and they should release it. This will clarify to them that you are allowing the game to happen. During Tug you will often times hear your dog growl and snarl. This is perfectly normal and you do not need to be alarmed.
Another dog will help teach my dog to behave better.
Dogs rarely learn good behavior from each other. More often than not they learn bad behaviors from each other. Getting your dog a friend because he is destructive will just land you with two destructive dogs.
Dogs and cats don’t get along.
Dogs and cats can get along wonderfully in the same household as long as your dog is respectful to your cat. It is ideal for a dog to be introduced to cats at an early age so they see them as a pack member.