Thursday, May 9

Brute Strength as Dog Training?


I have had it!  I don't know if this is just in Downtown right now or if there is a wave of this going around everywhere.  Since DTLA is where I live and work, this is where I am seeing a lot of big strong men (sorry, haven't seen women doing this) with Pit Bulls, German Shepherds, Rottweilers, and even some smaller breeds using their brute strength as a training technique. 

What I am seeing are these men with usually large, high drive (or in some cases small, high drive) dogs with prong collars, choke chains or just a flat collars jerking their dogs around the sidewalk, giving extremely harsh leash corrections, hitting and choking their dogs.  This is not the same person, these are multiple men doing this.  

I understand that there is such a thing as compulsion training, I studied it, know how to do it and choose not to.  But even if you are giving a "leash correction" it should be on a choke chain or flat collar and the dog should not have their front feet come up off the ground.  A leash correction should NEVER be given on a prong collar and as far as hitting goes, that is not training that is abuse!

I see one owner with his dog that is about the size of a mini poodle or beagle, he gives a leash correction to this dog on a training line so hard that the poor little dog's feet come off the ground for about 2-3 seconds at a time.  That is too hard!  NO NEED!

I see "alfa rolls" done all the time, I tolerate that since I know Mr. Millan is out there preaching it, but taking your hand and hitting your dog upside their head or "spanking" them is not acceptable.  That is nothing else other than abuse.  I do recognize that some people pat their dog's back side firmly as a good boy or playful way... this is not what I am referring to.

Today was the end for me.  A big muscly guy had a young Pit Bull that was amped up and going all over the side walk, but it looked to me like he just was never taught any leash manners.  The guy out of frustration hit the dog in the head, the dog crouched to the ground and didn't want to walk so the guy with all of his strength dragged the dog across the side walk.  The dog was clearly scared and confused, the guy then gave the dog a big yank and the dog was jerked forward becoming air borne for a moment.  Then he was given another much too hard leash correction.  This is abuse, not training!

I understand having a dog that pulls and how frustrating that is, but that is no excuse for this type of treatment.  If this sounds like you, call me, I would love to educate you about dogs and how to communicate with them.  When I decided to become a dog trainer and focus in DTLA, this is what I wanted to address.  I want to educate people and their dogs so they can have a better relationship and happier lives!

If you are treating your dog like this, STOP!  Take a breath.  Then move on.  Dogs are innocent, beautiful beings that do not deserve anything other than our love, trust and companionship.  That is exactly what they give us in return.

Need training, need help?  Give us a bark!