Be the boss is a commonly used old fashioned term that we still hear far too often. Dog training is unregulated. To a point, Facebook is unregulated too and we often see things we wish we hadn’t on a Facebook post, or whilst exploring a newsfeed.
Dog training shouldn’t be one of the things we wish we could unsee, but it is.
Sadly, it is.
We live in a world of awareness, one where we can explore how dogs feel. We have access to encouraging studies that promote kindness. We know that dogs have emotional areas in the brain and that they show responses we can consider sentient. We know that the same learning terms are used by scientists for people and dogs. We even know that brute force training causes an aggressive response in the victim, the dog.
So why are there STILL self-supposed experts sharing videos of themselves abusing and assaulting dogs, in the name of dog training?
I was so genuinely stunned to see a video (on a professional trainers Facebook page) of a dog being taught to “relax” in a crate last night that I lost sleep, a lot of sleep. Every time the poor little thing headed towards the door, it slammed in (or more accurately ON) his face.
So, I wandered around the source page for a while. A short while because it’s all I could stand. It was a library of torture and cruel equipment use, based on misunderstanding. More unnerving still, there were people commenting how they couldn’t wait for their own dog’s training to start. Their sweet, willing young friends placed into the hands of this brutal, terrifying woman.
It was a wake-up call for me.
With wisdom and as educated people, we focus on the good. With self-respect, we take care of our sensitive empathy for dogs and the people that love them. It’s intelligent to do that, for our own sanity.
Yet in the background dogs are being abused, set up to fail, punished, pronged, shocked and even beaten in the name of training. People are still trusting abusive dog trainers and even looking up to them.
There’s access to a huge amount of modern canine education in the world and a lot of it is free. We have to encourage people to educate themselves, we must spread kindness in training, far and wide. We can’t allow people to do this to dogs, in the name of professional training.
Not any more!