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Name a word that most people yell at their dogs, and you might hear "no" or "bad dog." They'd probably be surprised to learn that there's more to your dog's behavior than "just don't listen."
If you want your dog to listen when you call, there are ways to make this happen. You'll need to learn about why your dog might not listen to you and, for instance, to understand the differences between "just don't listen" and "I'm going to punish you!"
How to Get Your Dog to Listen
Your dog may not listen to you in a variety of ways, but it's up to you to figure out what it is your dog doesn't like and then put your foot down. Here are some of the ways your dog might not listen:
He doesn't care if you yell at him. If your dog simply won't listen to you, this could be a sign that your dog thinks he is in charge. If you yell at him and he doesn't respond, then you may need to take a step back.
There are reasons why dogs may not like to hear commands or get reprimanded. They may feel as if you're trying to boss them around or if you're making the command or reprimand too loud.
Your dog may be afrd of getting his head scratched, or of having an ear or eye rubbed.
He's in heat and, so, he's trying to mate.
Although this last reason seems a little odd, it can happen. Dogs usually don't understand the urge to mate, so a young dog may only be interested in sniffing another dog or may try to mount someone. If you find your dog trying to do something that doesn't seem right, make sure you tell him no.
If your dog is going in a specific direction and you call him to you, he may ignore you — he could be trying to get somewhere else.
If your dog is deaf, you may find that you need to use other ways of communicating. Some dogs, including Labradors and collies, can learn to talk to us, so if you're dealing with this situation, be aware that you may need to use some words, as in "What are you doing?" and "Go away."
If your dog doesn't listen to you, try using your trning techniques. Just as if your dog hears your voice but you don't speak right, you have to try to get his attention with your voice. If your dog doesn't respond to voice commands, use some of the techniques you read in Chapter 8 to get his attention.
## Checking Out How to Be a Good Leader
When you think about leadership, most people automatically think about a leader that's top dog, not the kind of leadership that's about sharing power. Sometimes, you may even think that some leadership only applies to groups of dogs (as in packs) or to other animals, such as in packs of wolves, not to individuals.
The reason for this misconception is simple: Leadership is about the power of one person over another. Whether that's a one-on-one encounter between a mother dog and her baby, a one-on-one encounter between a mate and a mate or a one-on-one encounter between a man and a woman. Even if it's one-on-one or one-on-many, you need someone who can lead a group of people. Whether you're talking about family, your group of friends, your work team, your team at work, your team on the Internet — whatever team you're in, your leadership comes from you.
Although you may not believe it, dogs don't have to be with another dog to have a team leader. When you lead a group, whether it's your family, your friends, your work team, your work team on the Internet, your team at work — leadership is still about the power of one person over another.
We know that some of you are probably thinking, "Sure, the mother dog has leadership over the rest of the pack, but I don't need to lead my own pack because my wife is such a great leader." Sorry, but this doesn't cut it. The idea of a woman as the leader of the household is still in our heads (even if many other cultures don't believe that's important). If you want a partner in life and in your relationship, you need someone to follow — not just lead.
When a mate first begins to talk to her mate, she may be more aggressive than she realizes. If she goes for the mate, rather than talk to him with her eyes, she may come off as bossy or in charge. On the other hand, a mate may actually go into attack mode because he's afrd of rejection. This can make him feel anxious or even desperate, and he may start a fight, which may cause the woman to take charge to avoid the conflict.
So here's a quick way to tell if your mate may be feeling a little bossy:
Ask, "What am I doing that's driving you crazy?" If she says, "You're criticizing everything I do," she may be feeling pressured and insecure.
Ask, "What's driving you nuts?" If she says, "I just don't understand you," you may be too harsh, and she may not feel like she can give you much because she feels your criticism.
Ask, "Do you feel like I'm bossing you around?" This can be a great way to find out how she feels about you being in charge.
Ask, "What do you wish I would do that I'm not doing right now?" If she says she wants you to give her more emotional support, or that she wants you to be more affectionate or romantic, you know you're pushing the right buttons.
If you're the first to become emotionally invested or if you start taking charge when your partner is going to have a problem and wants to avoid conflict or solve it with you, you may be setting the stage for a fight.
If you're afrd that you're being too bossy or too domineering, just stop being so controlling. In the next chapter, I tell you how to stop trying to control everything, so it can be her turn.
## Being Patient with All Those
Mental Sluts Who Are Bossy
When you're involved with someone who has a big-time bossy side, all it takes is one little infraction, such as forgetting to buy a present, to cause a meltdown. If she's not very open to you expressing emotions and likes to run the show, then she may become defensive and say, "It's not like you ever miss a deadline or forget to do something." That's the ultimate "You're a fucking idiot!"
I'm not sure why it happens, but it doesn't just _happen_ , you know what I mean? It's actually almost like a mental illness to some women. (Okay, it's _more_ than that — it's a whole set of disorders and disorders of thinking, you know?) Women who are bossy really do believe that if they set the rules and say what has to be done, others will automatically do it or feel obligated to do it — whether they like it or not.
The bossy woman has a mental program set in place to make sure things always work out for her. Her way is the only way, and everyone who disagrees is stupid and/or crazy. A woman who is a bit off in this way is going to be difficult.
For example, if you start to have a little bit of a cold, you ask her to make