I often see people say ‘let dogs be dogs’. In actual fact dogs instinctively want to work, so to truly ‘let dogs be dogs’ you need to be helping them to fulfil this need to work. Dogs don't wish for an ‘easy’ life living on your sofa having one walk a week. That's not the life they want. Dogs who don't have this need fulfilled generally exhibit some type of behavioural problem whether that be guarding your home, becoming lethargic or hyperactive, or maybe becoming destructive within your home. All of these behaviours (and many more) ultimately stem from an anxious/stress state. Dogs are dogs. They arenot furry people, nor do they want to be. We have brought them into our homes as pets instead of as the working animals they were originally bred to be. So, without rules, boundaries and help to fulfil their natural needs and drives in a controlled way, they will become very stressed. You may not even be aware your dog is living in this constant stress state. You may have a dog that follows you round the house or constantly demands attention. You may have a dog that you can't leave home alone, or you may find it funny how your dog chases it's tail or barks at the postman. Many people think these are just "quirks" or personality traits when in actual fact that's not the case at all. These behaviours are all signs thst your dog is not happy and contented but stressed, unbalanced and unfulfilled.
So in short, don't feel sorry for that police dog, guide dog, sheepdog or gundog. They are ‘being a dog’ and doing what they are born to do.**Please note, by 'work' I mean a form of mental stimulation. Frequently training your dog and challenging their mind is a great way to do this. Please don't feel I'm asking you to send your chihuahua to herd sheep all day!