I have a 2-year-old Doberman who is usually well-behaved, but recently she has been chewing on things that she shouldn't be. I've tried redirecting her attention, but it doesn't seem to be working. I'm at my wit's end and I'm considering punishment as a last resort.
I don't want to physically harm my dog or do anything that could be considered cruel, but I do want her to understand that her behavior is unacceptable. Can anyone give me suggestions on how to punish a Doberman in a humane and effective way?
Thanks in advance.
I have a 4-year-old Doberman and I have found that punishment doesn't always work for this breed. In my experience, Dobermans are very sensitive dogs and harsh punishment can result in them becoming anxious or skittish.
What has worked for me is positive reinforcement training. Make sure to reward your Doberman when she is exhibiting good behavior, as this reinforces the positive behavior and encourages her to continue. Conversely, you should never reward your dog for bad behavior, as this sends the wrong message.
Another thing to consider is stimulation. Dobermans are very intelligent and require plenty of mental and physical stimulation, otherwise they may become bored and destructive. Make sure your dog has access to plenty of toys and playtime, as well as daily walks or runs.
When redirecting your dog from chewing on something she shouldn't, make sure to use a firm but calm voice. Yelling or physical punishment is unlikely to have any effect and will only serve to frighten your dog.
Overall, it's important to remember that Dobermans are a sensitive breed and require a gentle but firm approach to training. Positive reinforcement and stimulation have helped me train my Doberman and I'm sure they will work for yours as well.