Pestering the Dogs, what's the missing skill there?

When Charlie was torturing the dogs for fun -- it was getting a little bit rough. Me constantly getting after him. The dogs constantly running/hiding. And him LOVING every second. 

Why? Why was he doing this behavior? Because he enjoys torturing animals??? NO. Because he likes to hurt dogs? No. It's because he was CURIOUS, and their reaction was new, different and exciting. 

So, no matter how many times I said no. Or put the dogs outside. Or moved him to a different room, the next time he had the opportunity, he took it.

What did he need support with -- to get the same function met without being inappropriate with the dogs?.

My answer: find a way to get a POSITIVE reaction from the dogs with POSITIVE behaviors. So we made a chart, he could pet them, let them lick him, give them a treat. Every time he went to chase them or run around them... I'd direct him to the chart and he would choose something he COULD do with the dog. He got very excited to give them treats/take them on walks! 

When Charlie was torturing the dogs for fun -- it was getting a little bit rough. Me constantly getting after him. The dogs constantly running/hiding. And him LOVING every second.  . Why? Why was he doing this behavior? Because he enjoys torturing animals??? NO. Because he likes to hurt dogs? No. It's because he was CURIOUS, and their reaction was new, different and exciting.  . So, no matter how many times I said no. Or put the dogs outside. Or moved him to a different room, the next time he had the opportunity, he took it. . What did he need support with -- to get the same function met without being inappropriate with the dogs? . My answer: find a way to get a POSITIVE reaction from the dogs with POSITIVE behaviors. So we made a chart, he could pet them, let them lick him, give them a treat. Every time he went to chase them or run around them... I'd direct him to the chart and he would choose something he COULD do with the dog. He got very excited to give them treats/take them on walks!  . This is the missing skill teaching in ACTION. And, it worked. He's GREAT with all the dogs now. He didn't need punishment, he needed support learning a new way.

This is the missing skill teaching in ACTION. And, it worked. He's GREAT with all the dogs now. He didn't need punishment, he needed support learning a new way.

"It's ok dukey, you a tough boy. You a tough boy dukey, you tough" (I look over he's laying by Duke stroking him)

The missing skills might not always be obvious, but when we can identify what they are, we can effectively stop the behavior and replace it with an appropriate way to get their need met!

On Wendy Bertegnole’s Podcast, the Exceptional Parenting Podcast, she wrote the following about our interview:

“After seeing the same behaviors over and over again, it’s hard to know what to do about them. We know timeouts don’t work, punishments don’t work, and even lecturing (er talking) to them about it doesn’t really make the behavior change. 

Today on the podcast Lauren Pace is showing us how to teach our kids the skills they are lacking that causes these behaviors. So instead of feeling like we’re repeating ourselves all the time, we can get to the root of it so much quicker.

Lauren is as real as a person gets and because of that, she talked candidly about what to do when we mess up as parents, how to handle it when kids are hitting, and how to deal with a meltdown after turning off the TV. 

If you’ve ever struggled with any of those, this episode is for you!”

If you’re looking for more support identifying the missing skills or figuring out what they are communicating with the behavior, consider a coaching call xolaurenpace.com/coaching or classes that look into specific concern areas such as, sibling rivalry and tantrums/meltdowns. xolaurenpace.com/classes


Instagram/ xolaurenpace

Lauren Pace, MS | Parenting Coach | Child Behavior Specialist | Positive Behavior Support | Utah | WA