Become The Alpha Dog

Dealing With An Excitable Dog

Most dogs have a zest for life that puts even the most active human in the shade. However, if your dog is an uncontrollable ball of energy, there are three probable reasons – lack of exercise, anxiety and lack of leadership.

All of these have one common denominator. They are all within your control.

Curing Your Dog’s Boredom

In many cases where dogs become overexcited the cause is down to boredom – pure and simple. The dog receives little or no exercise and even less mental stimulation. He waits around all day in a state of anxiety, and when you return, releases like a wound up spring.

Tackling the problem is easy – exercise your dog. All dogs need it, and unfortunately too few get enough of it.

How much exercise is enough? That depends on a number of things – mainly breed, age and state of health. A casual 30 minute walk around the neighborhood may be sufficient for a Bulldog, but if you own a Dalmatian you can expect to spend two hours a day exercising your dog, at a minimum.

Dealing with Separation Anxiety

Many dogs that suffer from separation anxiety are prone to over-excitement. This is a condition that afflicts many “home-alone” dogs. It can be a difficult issue to overcome, but there are changes you can make right away to start addressing the problem.

*Don’t Reward Bad Behavior – While your dog is in a hyped-up state – running, jumping and barking, you should withhold all attention. Wait for the dog to settle down, and then re-enforce the calm behavior by giving her the attention she craves.

*Mix-up Your Routine – Dogs pay a lot of attention to your habits. Your dog will know in great detail, the drill you go through each time you leave the house. You may not even be aware of it, but your dog is, and every time he notices it, his separation anxiety is triggered.

*Restrict him to a small area – A dog that is left alone in a large empty house will always become anxious. Restricting him to a smaller area and providing a secure “den”, like a dog crate, will calm him down.*Give him something to keep him occupied – A dog gets pretty bored hanging around for 10 to 12 hours with nothing to do. Keep him occupied with some chew toys, and a hidden treat or two to find.

Be the Leader

A dog that lacks leadership will always be on edge because he is uncertain of his role in the pack. Best way to address this? You could start by teaching him some basic obedience commands, like “sit” and “stay”.

Training provides discipline and mental stimulation. It also establishes your leadership. Once your dog accepts this, he’ll naturally calm down.

Try these three suggestions and you’ll see a noticeable change in your dog’s over-excited behavior. Bear in mind though that not all dogs will calm down completely. Some dogs are just naturally more excitable than others.

To learn more about dog obedience training, dogs 101, dog health and other helpful dog advice visit

Posted under Potty training puppies

This post was written by TKB_Editor on January 28, 2012

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