Are Dogs Creatures of Habit?

By Karen Laker

I did a small amount of googling and found that generally they are:

Dogs are creatures of habit and need the security and reliability of a structured life.

Having a confident and contented dog will allow you to make changes in the routine if it is necessary, without causing your pet to suffer additional stress and anxiety as a result of any unexpected changes.

Humans and dogs are similar in that we are all creatures of habit. We like to do things in our own particular ways. When we deviate from one course of familiarity into the unknown, it can create anxiety. What makes humans slightly different is that we can often find spontaneity quite exciting.

Dogs are creatures of habit, and the way they feel about the world around them depends on how happy they are in their environment. Therefore it is important to establish an orderly routine to give yourdog structure and confidence.Dogs thrive on routines and a routine will let yourdog to know what to expect each day and when to expect it.

Ours have recently been through a lot of upheaval. We moved out of our house where Moog, Pikachu and Chic have always lived. We spent a week in temporary accommodation. Then we went on holiday to Australia and now we are in another temporary house before moving into our new home.

Throughout that we have ensured that they have kept to their routine as much as possible.

We have fed them the same food and taken them for walks at the same time as before. We have their same bedding, plus the same furniture rules too… or so I thought. I’ve been told that dogs don’t generalise well which is why it is important to take your training on the road and practice it in different environments. Furniture definitely seems to acquire a bit of extra understanding as I discovered when Moog was happily led on my sister’s lovely leather sofa. To add further to this it was apparent he has never had any rules explained about fish ponds a few minutes earlier. Luckily I have a very understanding sister!

Something I enjoy within my dogs training is teaching them to pose for a photo. They totally understand the drill and will be positioned where I ask and wait for me to take the photo/s. The habit I created with them surrounding this means they find it easier to stay in lots of different surroundings and with various distractions. Being in a completely different place I hope this habit has helped them feel relaxed and take stock of their new area. Meanwhile I have taken loads of lovely photos.

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