Dog owners are sometimes faced with a behavior problem and don’t know how to deal with it. In my book, “The Amazing Dog Training Man,” I came up with an acronym that anyone can use as a tool to understand and deal with any behavior problem.

Here is how you can use The M.U.T.T. Method to deal with any behavior problem.

M – Manage. The first step in dealing with any behavior problem is to properly manage the behavior. Management of behavior will not fix the problem, it will just help contain the problem. For instance, house training will not be fixed by using a crate but it will definitely help manage the behavior. A muzzle can help manage a dog that is being aggressive towards other dogs. So the first step is to think about managing the behavior.

U – Underlying. Every behavior problem has an underlying reason. You need to figure out what the underlying reason is. Say your dog has a digging problem. Why is the dog digging? Is it frustration, boredom, breed specific, etc. Let’s say you are having a house training problem. Is your dog stressed for some reason, is there a health problem, and so on. Once you figure out the underlying problem you can move on to the next part of the M.U.T.T. Method…

T – Train. Now that we have the behavior managed and we have figured out the underlying problem, we can start to train the dog. Let’s go back to the digging for a moment. If the dog is digging because of frustration we can remove the frustration and give the dog some other activities. If the dog is digging because it’s breed specific (terriers live to dog) then we can teach the dog to dig in a designated area and so on.

T – Time. Once we have started to train a new behavior we need to be patient and give it some time. The behavior experts say that it takes at least 21 days to learn a new behavior. So as your going through the process be patient and stick to the plan.

Behavior problems can be difficult do deal with sometimes. When you understand why the behavior is happening and what you can do about it, the problem is much easier to deal with.