Discussion in 'Dog Training Forum' started by milos_mommy, May 18, 2010.
how do you go about telling someone the way they're training their dog is totally wrong?
Well, personally I just tell it like it is
I don't go up to perfect strangers, but I cringe, wear my molars down and bite my tongue at some of the stuff I see. If someone is a friend and they complain about some behavior their dog does or asks "what do you do when....." then I will expound. LOL.
I overheard on guyh giving another guy terrible advice. The first guys dog follows commands briskly, but I know he trained him with a shock collar, not the way he was suggesting, which was by getting a choke on this ten week pup and yanking him into position. So I said so.
I also demonstrated my dogs' recall, and how they sit to hand signals and recommended liver treats. I have no idea what he will do.
I keep my mouth shut unless someone asks. My dogs don't have immaculate ob but they are way better than average and that is usually enough to have people ask me how I do things.
I'm talking about friends or family. She's got an 11 week aussie pup who is quite mouthy and wild. Every time the puppy gets too riled up and started biting and pulling on clothing or body parts, she grabs her and holds her against her will until she calms down. I don't know if I should tell her one of these days the dog is going to bite her or learn to run away to avoid the punishment, or how to say it.
Plus, the best thing to do is ignore the puppy until she stops and then reward her with attention and playing for not biting, but those teeth are **** sharp and she yanks on you. Plus, if you wait til she tops and then reward her with praise and pets, she just gets excited and bites again as soon as you start praising her.
Send them here.
A friend of mine on facebook recently posted about how much her lab puppy bites, and someone posted "Just squeeze his jaws tight when he does it, he'll eventually associate biting with pain and stop doing it." That one made me cringe enough that I just searched chaz for some articles about it and directed her there, and said something like, "This article is really good and will tell you how to teach your puppy not to bite without causing it discomfort. I think it's probably more effective too!"
I think the best way to get your point across is to make people not feel like idiots when you give them advice. Otherwise they might get defensive and think you're rude or something and completely discount your advice.
Thanks Beth. If she asked or posted about it, it would be easier. Maybe I'll just email her a few articles on it and that's that.
Do you have an opportunity to demonstrate for this particular person? Sometimes this can help and can be a bit of an ice breaker rather than just saying 'you are wrong, do it this way'. (Not saying that that is what you said or would say).
If they see how you would do it, they may go, 'right, ok... that's cool' and you have put someone on the right track.
I usually say something like:
"Our dog used to do that. We fixed it by doing X."
So the focus is on the specific behavior, not their dog, or their behavior, so they don't feel defensive about it. If they want more information they ask for details, if not then they go on their merry way without getting a long speech they didn't want to hear.
So I googled "tips to stop puppy biting"
There was not one single GOOD article that came up. More than half of them said you should grab the dog by the scruff of the neck and pin them down on their side. They all said puppies bite to try to be dominant. *sigh*
This. Even when it's not something Lucy's ever done, I'll say she did it, just to create some sort of common footing.
LOL, I do this too. If you added up everything Luna's "done," she'd be a nightmare dog! Though at least most of the time I say that, I HAVE worked with a dog with that problem... it's just not necessarily my dog.
Seriously, though, people will not listen to advice unless they are ready to hear it. SOOO often people will tell me something their dog does that they don't like, and although I KNOW how to fix the problem, they would not listen to me if I told them. I get so many "What do you do when your dog does _______" quesions that I'm pretty good at figuring out when people are really looking for an answer, and when they just want to complain about their dog. MOST of the time, they just want to complain.
I can so relate to that. LOL. It took a while for me to catch onto that fact....that people like to complain about their "drama" with their dog, but don't really want to bother to fix it. I find this phenomenon stronger in my relatives than with people I don't know well...or at all. LOL.
Oh yes, definately worse with relatives. I NEVER give relatives training advice, or at least I make it extremely simple if I do. I just say a lot of "Wow, that does sound annoying," and "Ha ha, your dog must be really smart to figure out how to do that [bad behavior]" and such.
I like the Ian Dunbar article on bite inhibition.
I had a crazy mouthy puppy who would also get even more excited when he bit me, lol. Not all that fun at the time, but fortunately he is super gentle now.
I have to deal with this so often at my job. The trainer at my store is obsessed with alpha theory and delivers harsh verbal (like, screaming "AHHH-AH!") and physical (jerking gentle leaders all over the place) corrections, and she works in one of playrooms of the hotel, so she's always around. I have to try to compete with that, and suggest that clients stop giving their reactive dogs harsh corrections and move at the snail's pace of cc.
My favorite thing to do is recommend books or better yet buy some one a book. REALLY. If this person is close to you and they/their dog is part of your life shell out $20 for a good book as a "new puppy gift", maybe along with a toy to disguise it. "After You Get Your Puppy" is my fave! I bought it for my completely clueless friend who got a puppy on a whim, and he actually read it. And he actually applied it, and bought more books by Dr. Dunbar. I find it so hard to express everything that I want to say about training to people in conversation, whereas books are full of information and if some one buys you a book you have to be pretty rude to not read even a little bit of it.