Home    Subscribe    Write for Us    FAQ    Contact    HubGarden    Login

You Can Teach an Old Dog New Tricks

by Colleen P Moyne (Colmo) (follow)
I'm a freelance writer living in the beautiful river town of Mannum in SA, dreaming of the day I can retire from the 9-5 to write full time.
Pet Ownership (74)      Training (30)      Pet Stories (22)     
We’ve all heard the saying ’You can’t teach an old dog new tricks’ but there is plenty of evidence to refute this. The quote is intended to make a comparison with people who get themselves stuck in a rut and can’t keep up with the changing world.

Dog and child
Charlie learning to shake hands

We know that’s not true. I have friends who are in their seventies and eighties who are studying at university, learning to speak Spanish and play the ukulele.

But what about dogs? How did the quote originate? Is there a general belief that older dogs can’t continue to learn? Well, let me use my own dog, Charlie as an example. She is aged at least thirteen (she was a rescue dog and the vet had to guess her age) and in the last year she has learned four new commands – up, drop, shake and wait. It took a lot of time and gentle coaxing (and treats!) but she soon picked it up.

Dog and child
Charlie - on the right - poses with a friend

When Charlie first came to me, she was in a pretty bad way. She had come from a background of abuse and neglect. It was all I could do to keep her from peeing every time I paid her any attention. She was sweet and loving but afraid of everything and everyone. Over time she began to trust me and learned that giving her commands did not equate to ‘telling her off.’ Fast forward eight years and she is now a happy, well-adjusted girl - although still very clingy - and now responds to commands not only from me but from others without the cowering and peeing that inevitably used to be her response. It is only in the last year that I’ve begun to include ‘tricks’ as part of her command repertoire.

Dog and child
Charlie the adorable pirate dog

Although rescue dogs bring their own unique set of challenges, if you’re prepared to be endlessly patient you will be well-rewarded. Not only can you teach them new tricks but you can change old, negative habits and introduce new, positive ones.

#Pet Ownership
#Pet Stories
I like this Article - 5
Do you have a pet story or helpful tips and tricks to share with other pet owners? You can get paid for submitting your original articles, product reviews or pet tips! Apply here.
More Articles by Colleen P Moyne (Colmo)
We know how to take care of our own teeth, right? We also know when something is not right with ou...
In we talked about considering chickens as family pets
Making the decision to take your dog to obedience training is usually based on one of three things...
The earlier we expose puppies to water the easier it will become an accepted part of their world
We all lead busy lives and sometimes our schedule makes it difficult to spend as much quality time w...
If you are considering what breed of dog you might like to purchase, let me tell you about Alfie
view all articles by Colleen P Moyne (Colmo)
Articles by Colleen P Moyne (Colmo) on Other Hubs
We all have possessions, some more important to us than others
Most of us enjoy a bit of cheese in our diets
No matter where you are in life or what your role is within the family, you need someplace that ...
Workaholism can be a serious issue – an addiction much like any other
ID: 39088
[ Submit a Comment ]
This is a lovely story, and could bring new life experiences to old dogs! They're all different, but when someone puts in the time in training them carefully, wonderful things can occur!
Trending Articles
I love cats and usually find gifs of cats amusing or cute
Cats are fascinating creatures
Dogs are being used as companion animals for people with an increasing number of special needs
Taking your dog for a walk sounds pretty easy
Most people are aware of the close relationship between cats and the people of Ancient Egypt some ...
There is a saying that you learn something new every day and this certainly is the case if you use...
April is Stress Awareness Month in many countries
These signs seem to becoming more and more popular
4 answers
It is important to research well before committing to a new pet
3 answers
Playing dress up with your pets can yield some hilarious results
6 answers
Dogs (161)
Cats (71)
Birds (13)
Horses (3)
Health (39)
Pets (30)
Feeding (27)
Safety (10)
Dog (5)
Llamas (4)
Summer (4)
Dental (3)
Diet (3)
Toxic (3)
Stress (3)
Grief (3)
Fleas (3)
Cat (3)
Fowl (3)
Featured on Other Hubs
Copyright 2012-2018 On Topic Media PTY LTD. ABN 18113479226. mobile version