6 “Petiquette” Basics Every Dog Owner Should Know

6 “Petiquette” Basics Every Dog Owner Should Know

Petiquette, which is a portmanteau of the words "pet" and "etiquette," refers to the manners and behaviors that pets should exhibit both when they’re indoors and when they’re outdoors. When taught to a dog, it’s meant to improve their well-being and safety and ensure the same of other people and other pets, thus increasing the dog’s likelihood of being welcomed in public spaces.

There are several other advantages to training your dog to observe proper petiquette. Teaching them basic petiquette can reduce their stress when facing unfamiliar situations and make you more confident about taking them out of the (dog) house more regularly.

In this article, PrideBites will explore six essential petiquette rules that every dog owner should know and observe with their pooch. Mastering these basics will help you shape your dog into a well-mannered and polite canine companion and allow you to practice being a more considerate pet parent.

 Sit and Stay

“Sit” and “stay” are fundamental petiquette commands that will teach your dog basic obedience and how to control their impulses. When your dog understands these commands, it will be easier for them to remain calm and well-behaved in settings outside your home, even in the face of something that excites or scares them. 

First-time pet parents may initially have a hard time keeping their pooch in one place or maintaining a seated position. To teach this technique to your dog, it’s good to start with short practice sessions and use positive reinforcement such as treats or praise. Once you see your dog getting a good grasp of the commands, you can gradually increase the difficulty of their training by introducing distractions and increasing the distance between you and them when you call out either command.

Loose Leash Walking

Walking your dog on a loose leash is essential for enjoyable and relaxed outings. It prevents pulling and other leash-related issues while promoting good manners. Nonetheless, remember that many dogs instinctively tend to pull, lunge, or get overly excited during their walks. If you can’t handle your dog while they’re on a leash, your pup can get loose from your hold and increase their risk of getting injured or injuring someone else.

To make it easier to walk your dog on a loose leash, it’s in your best interest to invest in high-quality dog collars and dog leashes that offer ample comfort. This way, you won’t accidentally injure your dog when you’re pulling the leash.

It’s also a good idea to employ proper leash-handling techniques to keep your dog safely by your side during your walks.  Make sure to reward desired behavior and use positive reinforcement to encourage your fur baby not to stray too far away from you.

Recall (Come When Called)

The recall command, or teaching your dog to come when called, is vital for their safety whenever they’re off leash. When your dog learns this lesson, they’ll likely have developed respect and trust in you as their owner.

Teaching this command can also be tricky, as a dog may be easily distracted or may not perceive the recall command as particularly rewarding. To make training easier for you and your dog, use high-value rewards like jerky treats or bone broth biscuits to entice your fur baby to come to you. It’s also recommended that you practice in controlled environments so that your dog won’t get instantly distracted during your training sessions.

No Jumping

Although jumping on people might be your dog’s way of expressing excitement or seeking attention from someone, it isn’t a behavior that should be encouraged. Not only do some people find this behavior aggravating, but it can be potentially dangerous as well.

That’s why it’s important to teach your dog not to jump on people if you want to establish proper greetings and prevent unwanted incidents from someone getting scared or caught off-guard by your dog’s behavior. Redirect the behavior instead by teaching your dog to sit or keep all four paws on the floor when greeting others. Reinforce calm greetings, ignore jumping behavior, and stay consistent with your training.

No Begging

If you want to maintain a peaceful meal environment and keep your dog’s weight at a healthy range, you must establish boundaries and teach your dog not to beg at the table. It can be difficult to say no to your dog, especially if they’re pleading persistently, but remember that it’s the responsible thing to do.

Don’t give in to your dog’s puppy eyes or whining, no matter how cute they look. Set clear expectations and consistently ignore your dog when they’re begging for food. Reward them only if they’re displaying calm and patient behavior away from the dining area.

Proper Socialization

Proper socialization is key to making your dog to feel comfortable and confident around other dogs, animals, and people. It also helps prevent fear or aggression issues and promotes positive interactions among living beings of all species.

Dogs may initially display fear, anxiety, or aggression in new social situations, which is normal. To socialize your dog effectively, gradually expose them to different environments and reinforce positive interactions. Take it at your dog's pace and reassure them throughout the process to strengthen their self-esteem.

Teaching your dog petiquette basics is a valuable investment in their well-being, in your relationship, and in their experience of a world outside your home. Although challenges may arise during the training process, there’s nothing that consistency and patience won’t fix. Take your petiquette training seriously, and watch as your dog blossoms into a polite and well-adjusted member of your family.