Q&A: My Dog Won’t Listen


My dog has suddenly become stubborn and will not listen to me. She seems to have forgotten her basic training!

Is there anything I can do?



Hi Farida.

Dogs, especially young dogs, consistently test and challenge their humans with this sort of thing. Typically we train our young dogs to be obedient, and then we just expect them to continue that behavior. In reality, if you don’t practice all the time, your dog thinks they don’t have to do it. It is likely that over time you stopped enforcing the commands, so she decided not to follow them.

I would go back to practicing with her ten minutes twice a day. Reinforce that you mean it when you tell her to do a command, and that you are not asking her if she feels like doing it.

Remember to ask only once, use a firm but fair tone, be consistent with her, and praise her. Once she realizes you mean it, she will again be obedient. Most dogs want to please their owners, and your praise for ‘a job well done’ means a lot to her.

Let us know how you go!


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Beth Jeffery

Beth Jeffery is a Dog Trainer and Behaviorist with over 15 years experience in the field. She spent years in the Service Dog field, training both Guide Dogs for the Blind and Assistance Dogs for the Disabled, as well as many years working with pet dogs. Beth current runs her Dog Training business in San Diego, working with dogs of all breeds, all ages, and with all issues, from puppy training through to aggressive dogs.

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