How Do You Get a Stubborn Dog to Listen?

How many times have you tried to give your dog a command, only to find them completely ignoring you? It’s frustrating and can lead to a poor relationship with your dog. Even worse, a dog that won’t listen can’t be trained which leads to all kinds of misbehaviors.

In this article, we’re going to give you 5 tips to use right away, and we’ll also cover what’s really at the root of your dog’s problem. Keep reading, and we’ll answer the question “how do you get a stubborn dog to listen?”

What Does It Mean When Your Dog Doesn’t Listen to You?

How Do You Get a Stubborn Dog to Listen?

When your dog doesn’t listen to you, they’re not trying to be difficult, you just haven’t trained them as well as you’d thought.

Every dog has it’s own personality, so even if you had lots of success with another dog using your training style, the results might not be quite the same or come at the same pace.

So while it seems that your dog is simply ignoring your commands, it could actually be your training style that needs to change because your dog is differently motivated than others.

How Do You Discipline a Dog That Won’t Listen?

To discipline a dog that won’t listen, use the following tips and changes:

  1. Use a firm but calm, positive voice. Never yell or get angry, and certainly do not strike your dog.
  2. Place the dog in a time-out (like their crate) for a short period of time (10 minutes or so).
  3. Use the right type of rewards for your dog and use them often. Training treats can be a big help with stubborn dogs, but will only be effective if they’re something your dog really loves and you give them frequently during training.
  4. Remove any distractions from the environment, like toys that aren’t necessary or other people that aren’t participating in the training. Go to another room or out to the backyard if necessary.
  5. Keep being consistent. Remember we mentioned earlier that not all dogs will learn at the same pace, so don’t switch things up to soon. This will only confuse your dog and set them back even further. If you’re unsure your teaching them correctly, we’ll cover how to train the proper way next.

How to Train a Stubborn Dog to Listen

To train a stubborn dog to listen, treats, controlling the environment, and consistency will go a long ways but will only be effective if you’re using them in conjunction with the proper teaching methods.

Stubborn dogs have an issue that needs to be addressed before you’ll make any real lasting progress with your training, which is their refusal to listen. But what exactly makes them not want to obey your commands? After all, your dog seems to love and respect you, so why won’t they do what you say?

Your dog is being stubborn and not listening to your commands because while they love you, they do not truly respect you. Remember that dogs are pack animals, and in every pack there is a a leader. When no one clearly assumes that role in their eyes, your dog will take it over themselves.

Part of being the pack leader is being in charge and deciding what they (and the pack) should be doing. And if they view themselves as being in charge and don’t want to play your silly little games, they’ll just ignore you. Establish yourself as pack leader and they’ll listen to your commands, allowing you to train them properly.

No longer will they ignore you when you tell them to stop barking or getting aggressive with another person or dog. No longer will they give you a quick glance when you tell them what to do, then ignore it and go back to whatever they feel like.

Sounds great, right? Of course! So how exactly do I do that, then?? I would check out a really phenomenally well-done free video series from a renowned dog trainer named Dan which will show you everything you need to do to become your dog’s pack leader.

Do that, and your stubborn dog will finally listen to your commands. Walks will be worry-free, you’ll end misbehaviors like aggression and barking, and you’ll even be able to teach them fun tricks! Both you and your dog’s lives will be much, much better off.

Start watching Dan’s free training series now by clicking here. Don’t worry if you don’t have a ton of time for training (who does?), because his videos get right to the point and are very easy to understand — so you’ll start seeing actual progress with your dog in no time!

The only thing standing between you and a well-behaved dog who listens and treats you as their pack leader is simply getting started, so I’ll let you get to Dan’s video series now.

I’m sure you’re looking forward to this wonderful new relationship with your dog. Remember to be patient and use the proper training methods consistently, and you’ll get there before you know it. Good luck, and be sure to share/pin this in case you want to check back later!

The Author



Hey there! I'm a dog behavior expert and lover of travel. Since 2016, I've been sharing my knowledge of dog training and behavior while exploring the Pacific Northwest with my two rescues.