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Friday, March 15, 2013

Life with Dogs: Building in Balance

by Carrie Boyko, CEB
The Napping House!
 As a dog lover, I sometimes catch myself taking it too far. Well, not too far for me, but for the comfort of others. Everyone, even the dog owners who are not as nuts about their passion as I may be, has their limits on things. I'd like to explore that a bit in the spotlight of bonding with your dog.

Rules don't have to be punishments. If you prefer your dog remain off the furniture or out of the living room, simply teach it. Make it a positive experience when he complies and give him plenty of reason to continue to follow the rules: praise, treats, affectionate rewards. You'll be surprised at how quickly your Fido will be eager to please you and remain on the bed you provide for him, beside your furniture or just outside the entrance to that off-limits living room.

Even rules that have variances can be taught and understood. A perfect example is where Tanner sleeps. At 70 lbs. he's not a logical addition to my bed when hubby is home. Besides space, Tanner prefers a quiet bed that doesn't include inhabitants who pitch and roll a lot, while hubby prefers to be able to roll without coming in contact with a furface. :)  That made for an easy decision that Tanner sleeps in his own, very large, dog bed. It's right beside our bed, so he's always with us and keeping watch. We all seem to like it this way.

Fast forward to those nights when hubby is traveling and you'll find that Tanner enjoys sleeping in dad's spot. I'm fairly still in my sleep, so he appears to find me a compatible bedmate, and I rather enjoy the company and security he brings to the mix. With our alert dog, Oliver, snugly warming my feet, I get my pups both snuggling in while hubby is away.

Tanner takes no issue with this rule change from day to day. He understands that when I tell him to go to his own bed, that's that. I mean business, yet it is all said with the affectionate bond that we share. 
Weekly Wag Button
Join me next week when I explore the balance in our activities. Do you have any problems with balancing your own time management with that of your dog responsibilities and activities? I look forward to hearing your thoughts and sharing mine next week. I hope you join me again for the Weekly Wag each Saturday, and don't forget to leave your comments.

Happy tails,

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Join us each week for the Weekly Wag bonding series, held during the Saturday Pet Blogger Hop. The hop is hosted by Life with DogsTwo Little Cavaliers, and Confessions of the Plume. You are welcome to link up here, or check any of their sites for their rules of participation. Happy hopping! 


Jackie Bouchard said...

Sounds like you guys have the sleeping 'sitch worked out well. We have a king sized bed and a med-sized dog, so we are okay with her being in the bed with us. Sometimes she likes to sleep in her own bed, and we beg her to come up with us. (We're so pathetic!)

Dawn said...

So sweet! Maya sleeps on the bed when my husband is out of town too. But it is not the fact that he is out of town that gives the signal. It is the blue sheet that I get out of the closet and lay over the top of the covers. We use the same sheet on the couch in the living room for special cuddle time too.

katsrus said...

Love the picture. So sweet. Those sound like some great rules to follow. My kitties are not good at following rules. Think they have their own. LOL.
Sue B

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