Corrections does not equal brutality - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 63 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 11:41 AM Thread Starter
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Corrections does not equal brutality

I noticed that a lot of people have a misconception about corrections and that we all speak about something different. Some people think of a prong, electric collar or even hitting a dog. Others think of scruffing the neck, while I usually think of voice corrections when the word correction comes up.


How do you utilize correction? When do you correct your dog and what do people usually think?

I am a strong advocate for positive reinforcement yet I am open to correction but when the word correction falls, some people think I am brutal with my dogs.

Correction is not equal to brutality. Brutality is abuse, plain and simple and corrections can lead to abuse.

It's important to know where the line is drawn and that you know exactly what you are doing so we are not unfair to the dog.
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post #2 of 63 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 11:47 AM
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Correction does not always equal brutality but it can. I think a lot of people on this site are good about advocating fair and appropriate corrections.

The problem is that a correction can mean anything from a simple "eh-eh" to hanging the dog. When someone says "correction" without explaining what they mean by it, then we are left to assume things. And you know what they say about when you assume.
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post #3 of 63 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 11:51 AM
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I do not think of anything specific when I hear a correction was used. A correction could be anything from a coming to jesus moment, a physical correction, a collar correction, a verbal correction, or anything in between. I automatically assume the correction used was fair and appropriate due to the specific situation.

With this in mind, NEVER correct the dog out of anger. If you are seeing red, or frustrated you have no business in dealing with the dog at that moment in time. If you are not willing to dish out a proportionate correction and keep level headed put the dog away and chill out. Don't bring the matter up later. If you do not correct in the necessary time frame(immediately) and with the appropriate level of correction, thats your fault and the matter is done.

I am a firm believer in positive training-with proofing. A tool is a tool is a tool. The way it is used either makes it a fair communication between the dog and handler or a form of force, unfair. No tool is useful without training.

Just rambling...referencing no one in particular.

EDIT:

I correct my dog for doing anything I do not want to see in the future. This may be a 'I'll show to the proper way' correction, or an actual correction depending on the scenario. People think I'm mean because I use a prong collar. The way I look at it is their dogs are poorly trained wild animals. They wouldn't know how to train 'sit' let alone anything else. So if I'm a little mean because I NEED my dog to be wellbehaved so their off leash poosykins can be an annoying ditz and not dinner, so be it.

Last edited by ShenzisMom; 06-02-2011 at 11:56 AM.
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post #4 of 63 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 11:59 AM
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SWounds logical. Unlike what a lot of folks believe (like too many people in my local obedience club), a proper "correction" is NOT "Punishment".

A good correction is also given in proportion to the dog, and it's temperament and of course also what it is doing that needs to be changed. I.e. "correcting" a crooked sit is totally different than correcting a dog who is aggresively rushing innocent people when you are out walking.

And naturally before any correction we need to be sure that the dog actually understands what is requested of him/her.
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post #5 of 63 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 11:59 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by gsdraven View Post
Correction does not always equal brutality but it can. I think a lot of people on this site are good about advocating fair and appropriate corrections.

The problem is that a correction can mean anything from a simple "eh-eh" to hanging the dog. When someone says "correction" without explaining what they mean by it, then we are left to assume things. And you know what they say about when you assume.
That is exactly what I am thinking too. Whenever we talk about correction, it's not the worst idea to actually specify so we know what exactly we are talking about.
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post #6 of 63 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 12:06 PM
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I believe that Mrs.K's last statement about "fairness" is most important. If a correction is fair to the dog then it is not abusive.

Quote by Mrs.K:
"Correction is not equal to brutality. Brutality is abuse, plain and simple and corrections can lead to abuse."
I do not really understand your use of the word "brutality". Could you please explain what you mean by this?


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post #7 of 63 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 12:08 PM
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I agree that corrections can go either way and to NEVER correct when you are angry. I have to admit that there are times I have been guilty of being "inconsistent" with Jinx but it is because I try to be fair leader first. While it does not happen often there are times she just hits a nerve and I would rather not punish/correct her at all then to unfairly correct her or do too harsh or one given while angry. I have posted on this before where if people feel they are correcting their dog a few times throughout the day and getting frustrated to think outside the dogs behavior and it's probably the owners fault. Like the wonderful time Jinx woke up and came running full speed out of the bedroom and LEAPED onto my coffee table throwing my breakfast laptop and a few other things across the room and sat there wagging her tail with the happiest look on her face like "TA-DA here I am!!" I didn't even say a word to her just grabbed her backpack and off to the woods for a hike we went. When I got home I cleaned up the mess and she was great but the day before she didn't get a walk and it was pent up energy. Was it good to let her think the behavior was ok by not saying anything? Probably not however she has never jumped on the table again it was not a normal behavior just one from my lack of giving her everything she needs which at this age is a ton of exercise.

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post #8 of 63 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 12:20 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Zahnburg View Post
I believe that Mrs.K's last statement about "fairness" is most important. If a correction is fair to the dog then it is not abusive.

Quote by Mrs.K:
"Correction is not equal to brutality. Brutality is abuse, plain and simple and corrections can lead to abuse."
I do not really understand your use of the word "brutality". Could you please explain what you mean by this?

Brutality to me is hitting a dog so hard that he would shy away from his handler, or putting the e-collar on the highest level just to pay the dog back. To hang a dog on a prong collar, picking him up on his ears, kicking him in his stomach.

People may call that correction but that is brutal and abusive.

While correction, for most of us, is not anywhere near brutal it can lead down the abusive road if we don't watch what we are doing.

I am pretty sure that we all had our moments where we've been unfair to the dog (if we are true to ourselves) and most of the time it's because we don't know it any better. At least that is what I've typically seen with a lot of people. They didn't know how to respond so they responded with the only thing they knew and that was to hit the dog, yang the prong or kick them in the butt.
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post #9 of 63 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 12:39 PM
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Is this really a major concern? Some owners may use extreme tactics out of ignorance, but they will never get good training results if they do.

If you are talking about defending your own "corrections", just know what you are doing and why.
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post #10 of 63 (permalink) Old 06-02-2011, 12:42 PM
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So it is brutal if a dog shies away from the handler from a hit, but is it brutal if the dog shies away because of a firm verbal "No!"? Doing anything "just to pay a dog back" is unfair to a dog. For instance if the dog peed on your carpet and you did not pet him the rest of the day this is not fair, but is it still brutal? When you say "hang a dog on the prong" what does that mean? For instance if the dog is trying to bite you and you lift him off the ground to regain control is this brutal? I have never seen anyone lift a dog by the ears except president LBJ and he wasn't correcting the dog. So a kick to the stomach is brutal and abusive, how about a kick elsewhere on the dog? Or is using your foot in itself brutal?
I take exception to your idea that corrections lead to abuse; that whole notion is simply absurd.


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