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Let Pets Decide Whenever They Can

When waiting to cross the street with your dog, it’s nice to use the word, “Wait.”

I say, “Sally wait. Let’s watch.” I want her to understand that we should check before we cross just like you would with a small child.

HOWEVER, I don’t make her sit. The way she wants to wait is up to her. Sometimes she sits; sometimes she stands. If it seems like the wait is too long, she may even lay down. That is her choice.

Sally, the dog, in a harness and leash, standing, waiting at a crosswalk.
The way Sally wants to wait is up to her. Sometimes she sits; sometimes she stands. She may even lay down. ©Debbie Sheridan

Sometimes we feel like we have to micromanage every aspect of a dog’s life. Let your dog process and decide what feels most comfortable for them.

We control every aspect- when they eat, walk, visit, etc., but it’s healthy and good for them to be able to make even these little decisions.

It should make you happy as well to watch your dog do some free thinking and enjoy their life.

It’s the little things.

Kindness always for the win.

About the Author

Debbie Sheridan is a behavior consultant and Family Dog Mediator in West Hartford, CT.  You can find her at her Debbie’s 4 Dogs website or Facebook page where she promotes kindness always for the win. Debbie has completed Michael Shikashio’s Master in Aggression Course and is proud to be on both the Advocacy and Inclusivity committees for the Pet Professional Guild. Debbie hopes that one day soon all dogs will be treated in a humane and caring way. 


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