If your Golden Retriever is dumb you might be wondering why and what you can do about it.
This post will show you some reasons why it might be behaving that way and what you can do to get it to be smarter.
So, why is my Golden Retriever dumb? Possible reasons are that it needs more training, it didn’t socialize much as a puppy, training it the wrong way, needing more exercise or you might have inadvertently rewarded the behavior.
There are actually many reasons why it might be behaving in a dumb way and it could be the result of a combination of multiple reasons. However, there are some things you can consider when trying to figure out the exact reason. There are also a number of things you can do to get it to be smarter.
Why your Golden Retriever is dumb
Each of the different reasons why your Golden Retriever has been acting stupid will likely come with some clues.
Below are a number of possible causes and what would make them more likely.
There are some things that dogs will naturally do that seem stupid to us such as to eat dirt. However, there are often reasons that they do it.
For example, many experts think that dogs sometimes eat dirt since it can contain nutrients that they need or so that they make themselves throw up.
If there is a particular thing your Golden Retriever does that seems dumb then it is likely that other dogs have done it in the past. It would help to see if there is an explanation for it online or if it seems unhealthy it would help to consult with a vet.
If your Golden Retriever didn’t socialize much with other people and dogs as a puppy it might not have learned how it is supposed to act. This would be more likely to be the reason if the way that it acts dumb is by acting in a strange way around other pets and people.
You haven’t trained it
If you have not given your Golden Retriever much training then it will not know how it is meant to behave and it will behave the way it feels like behaving. The way it feels like behaving is unlikely to be the way you want it to. This is why it is important to give it lots of training.
It would help to start out by training it to do basic things such as to sit, stay and come and then to build up to training it to do more challenging things.
You trained it the wrong way
It could also be the case that you didn’t train it the correct way and it has caused it to struggle to learn to do what you have been trying to train it to do. It might be the case that you gave it confusing commands, didn’t use the right rewards or that you inadvertently rewarded it for not doing what you wanted as well.
It would help to start over by training it with the use of positive reinforcement training.
You haven’t trained it in multiple locations
When training your Golden Retriever, it would help to train it in multiple locations. The reason for this is that the extra distractions in different environments can make it difficult for them to concentrate. If you have only trained it in easy environments but it doesn’t listen in distracting ones, it would be likely to be because it needs more training in distracting environments.
It needs more exercise
Golden Retrievers are a breed that is meant to get a lot of exercise daily. If yours has not been getting much exercise then it could be the case that it has been struggling to keep its focus on you as a result.
You have been negatively reinforcing the behavior
It could also be the case that you have inadvertently encouraged it to not listen to you by giving it things it wants when it doesn’t. If you tend to give it things such as toys, treats or extra attention when it does dumb things then it will likely do them more in order to get more rewards.
Things to consider
Below are some things you can consider when trying to figure out exactly why your Golden Retriever has been doing it.
Consider how it is dumb
It would help to consider the way in which your Golden Retriever is dumb.
For example, it is normal for dogs to bark at things that don’t move. Whereas, if it is dumb in that it doesn’t follow your command then it would be more likely that you need to train it more.
If it became dumb suddenly
If it started doing it suddenly, it would help to consider what else happened when it first started doing it since it could be the case that there was an event that caused it to start being dumb.
If it did start doing it suddenly, it would be more likely to be due to things such as a sudden change in its environment or its daily routine. However, in this case, if you are unsure of the cause, it would help to take it to the vet for a checkup.
How old your Golden Retriever is
It would also help to consider the age of your Golden Retriever. If it is still a puppy then it will naturally do more dumb things since it won’t have learned how to behave yet and due to curiosity.
How to get your Golden Retriever to be less dumb
Below are a number of options you have when getting your Golden Retriever to be less dumb.
Train it using positive reinforcement training
Positive reinforcement training is where you train your Golden Retriever to do things that you want it to by rewarding it when it shows signs of doing it or when it does it.
You can watch the video below to see more on positive reinforcement training.
Avoid reinforcing bad behaviors
As mentioned above, it could be the case that you have encouraged it to do dumb things by giving it things it wants when it does them. Instead, it would help to reward it for behaving the way you want it to but to avoid rewarding it when it does not.
Ensure that you are feeding it correctly
It would also help to make sure that there are no issues with its diet. You can look here to see what you should and should not be feeding it and it would help to consult on its diet with your vet.
Ensure that it is getting enough exercise
It would also help to make sure that it is able to get daily exercise. You could give it exercise yourself or you could get a dog walker to do it for you when you are unable to.
Take it to a vet
If you’re unsure of why your Golden Retriever has been doing it and it has started doing it suddenly then it would help to take it to a vet. By doing so you will be able to get expert advice tailored towards your particular Golden Retriever and to rule out the possibility of medical causes.