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Can You Teach and Old Dog New Tricks?

You can teach an old dog new tricks - it just takes longer. Learning is most rapid in youngsters but it doesn't slow to a halt unless a dog develops canine Alzheimer's disease. The general rule for changing behavior is to ignore behavior that you don't want and reward acceptable alternative behavior. If you decide that enough is enough with regard to your elderly dog's mealtime begging or door-side jumping up, ignore begging or jumping and reward good manners and four-on-the-floor greeting and that's what you will get. Most unwanted behaviors are conditioned by owners who fail understand the impact of their behavior on their dog's behavior. It's never too late for either you or your dog - to analyze the impact your behavior has on your dog's behavior and take a new tack.

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