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Helping Your Dog Overcome Behavior Issues

June 11, 2022

If your dog has any behavior issues, you’re not alone. A recent study published by Scientific Reports found that three-quarters of dogs exhibit at least one negative behavior, including aggression, fearfulness, barking, destructive chewing, food guarding, howling, mounting, separation anxiety, or whining. While these issues can impact a dog’s quality of life and the chance of being abandoned, there are specialists who can help make a difference. Tera Dschaak-James, co-owner of Training Spot ( and a certified professional dog trainer has some advice to help identify bad behavior and help your canine live a happier life.

What to Look For

Behavior problems can grow gradually over time or appear suddenly. The issue can be something as simple as a new home, new pet, or new family member. These can often be overcome with the help of a certified dog behaviorist.

“It’s time for behavior training when you notice your dog is not behaving in a way that is safe to other dogs or humans,” Tera stated about the importance of reducing behavior issues. “If all of a sudden, a dog that was potty trained decides to go to the bathroom in the house every day, or if a dog cannot stay home alone without crying, barking, or destroying things, that’s when it’s time to talk to a certified dog behaviorist. We have one at Training Spot.”

What is a Certified Dog Behaviorist

When looking for someone to help with a behavior issue, a certified dog behaviorist is the right place to start. These professionals work with you and your dog to pinpoint where the aggressive or negative behaviors originate. If the issue is medical, they can refer you to a veterinarian.

“It’s often a case-by-case situation,” Tera said when talking about the process of diagnosing and eliminating issues. “Maybe the dog is in pain or there is just a change they cannot deal with. The right professional can get to the root of it. But it takes time. It’s never a quick fix.”

Tera explains that patience is often the best medicine. Instead of abandoning a dog with severe issues, working with that dog, giving it time, and finding the right experts could help improve a pet’s quality of life.

Some issues, especially those that come on suddenly, may stem from a medical condition. When this happens, it could be time to talk with a certified or licensed veterinarian behaviorist. They can prescribe medication to help Fido feel normal again.

What is a Certified Veterinary Behaviorist

These professionals are veterinarians who have earned a diploma from the American College of Veterinary Behaviorists. They can quickly spot medical and physical issues that cause bad behavior. To help your pooch, they can prescribe life-changing medications. These can include antibiotics or thyroid supplements, as well as antidepressants and anti-anxiety medications. They can also help with behavior modification techniques.

Coastal Loves Pets

You’ll find aisles of food, beds, toys, treats, medications, and more for your pet at Coastal. Stop by today and go home with everything the country needs, including workwear, clothing for the whole family, tools, truck boxes and so much more. And if your pet is well behaved, bring them along. They’re always welcome at Coastal.