Myths & Truths
Has anyone ever told you that if your dog goes through an open door ahead of you it’s a sign that he’s asserting his dominance? Or that if a dog walks in front of you or pulls on a leash he is doing so because he wants to be pack leader? What about lying on a sofa, sleeping in your bed, or growling at you as you take his bone away? Are these really all signs of an intense struggle between man and dog over status in the household? Is everything dogs think, feel, and do the result of an unmitigated desire to dominate us and everything else in their quest to become top dog?
The simple answer... NO!
Thanks to the celebration of much popular media, a collective weakness for the allure of 'quick fixes' in dog training, and the misapplication of outdated and since-disproven scientific claims about wolves, dominance and pack leadership, there are seemingly countless myths and misunderstandings about how our dogs think, learn and relate to those around them.
From the common and fundamental misunderstandings about the concept of dominance to the erroneous assumption that dogs are just like wolves, there is much misinformation to unwind in our popular consciousness about dogs and dog training. The choice to train positively is not indicative of weakness, and science has now proven that positive training is the preferred method for so-called 'red-zone' dogs just as much as it is for basic puppy training.
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Articles from Victoria Stilwell
- 2021 Dog Behavior Conference Announced
- Why I’m Not a Purely Positive Dog Trainer
- Becoming a Dog Trainer
- Social Bullying
- Does Your Dog Respect You?