Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: SE West Virginia
Differences with training techniques
I have been researching online and on this forum for advice in regards to training and generally, just how to be in regards to handling a rescue who has a history of abuse and displays aggression.
Teaching a dog is a lot like raising a kid. Meaning..there are so many baby (human) books out there, but so many differing opinions on the care, feeding, punishments (time outs vs spanking) etc.
I remember growing up being told by my parents and others that a puppy's nose should be pushed into its "accident" on the floor to housebreak him. I remember as a child having a VERY hard time with that concept. I became equally confused at the age of 7 when my little baby brother had pooped in the bathtub and my Mom not "correcting" him for it. When I questioned her (another thing that wasn't allowed by my parents) on why she didn't spank my brother, her reply was because "He's a baby and can't control it." When I replied with "Yeah, but so is Blackie" I was sent to my room for being mouthy.
When I had children, I took pretty much everything my parents had done to us as children and went the opposite way in how I raised mine. Same with when we bought Duchess our labrador.
I went through 3 different training places before I found one that I was truly happy with. I endured belittling from so called experts thatsaid I had no idea as an amateur how to train a dog for if I did, I wouldn't be in their class, etc. Those 3 were VERY rough with puppies. The 6 month old classes most of the dogs looked like they were doing what their owner wanted because they HAD to, not that they really wanted to. I do not want my dog afraid of me. So, we raised Duchess as well the total opposite way my parents and some snobby know-it-all trainers and she was happy and overall a fantastic dog. I can't and WON'T expect a dog to behave perfectly all the time. Dogs including humans, all have moments.
I do feel a bit overwhelmed in regards to the thousands of posts with different ways of training a dog. So here is my question.
Shouldn't we train a dog in the same way as we would children? Meaning, what works for some may not for another? I know with our children, praising them (realistically) just made them want to excel more in anything they did whether it be school sports, etc. Our children were also raised not in the same way on everything because of personality differences. Please do not mistake what I am saying here. I know dogs and humans are not the same. However, don't we all respond the same when given a compliment or even rewards?
Some things on how to be with an aggressive dog is pretty simple. Do not force yourself on them, give them time to know you and build trust, etc. However, is there a fine line on how much one should allow with a dog so they do not get to the point of taking over everything? How do you handle a dog that may start getting aggressive with a stranger or family member? Also, no, I am NOT going to take him where people are. Originally I was going to take him for walks on my block but have since changed my mind on that. We are fortunate to own another piece of property that has no animals or people near by that I can take him to for our leisure strolls.
I would appreciate FB and advice on how to help an abused neglected dog transition into his new life in the best ways possible.