Choose Wisely When Considering Shock, Prong or Choke Collars

Dog Owner Responsibilities by William E Campbell I think many professional dog trainers will appreciate what William Campbell said about using "shock collars" in 1999.  I too have referred to these individuals as "predators" taking advantage of dog owners, who either lack understanding what their dog/s are communicating or as Campbell suggests prioritizes needs of the individual, not the pet.

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New Literature Review Recommends Reward-Based Training by Zazie Todd, Ph.D.

New Literature Review Recommends Reward-Based Training A review of 17 papers concludes that reward-based dog training has fewer risks and may even work better than aversive methods. The review, by Dr. Gal Ziv (The Zinman College of Physical Education and Sport Sciences) looks at the scientific literature on dog training methods. Seventeen studies were identified that include surveys of dog owners, intervention studies, and reports from veterinarians. The paper identifies some methodological issues with the literature, but the conclusion is that people should use reward-based methods to train their dogs.

An Open Letter to Pet Industry Representatives Regarding the Use of Shock in Animal Training

Shocking pet dogs remains a common, if controversial, training practice worldwide. In this open letter, Pet Professional Guild (PPG) combines decades of research, the opinions of certified animal behaviorists, and the question of ethics to explain why using electric shock in the name of training and care is both ineffective and harmful. PPG concludes that shocking constitutes a form of abuse towards pets, and, given that there are highly effective, positive training alternatives, should no longer be a part of the current pet industry culture of accepted practices, tools or philosophies.

Diversity and Breed Distinction of Canis familiaris

The domestic dog, Canis familiaris is said to be the most morphologically variable of the mammalian species. According to scientist, artificial selection contributed heavily to the rapid development and variation in color, shape and behavior we see in dogs today. The difference among dog species rivals that of any other species in the family Canidae.

Dog Aggression – Is it predictable? How do humans’ contribute to dog aggression? Are we responsible? Part Two

These forms of learned aggression may become more threatening, providing little warning in the “context of social code violations” e.g. disturbing a sleeping dog or taking a prized object away. The intensity of the dog’s response to these social code violations will directly depend on the negative stimulus. The dog described here has some control over their aggressive response and those responses are in direct correlation to the invoking stimulus.

Dominance – is it appropriate to explain social relationships between dogs and humans?

Science Daily reported, “Using dominance to explain dog behavior is old hat.” One of their references included an article from JVB (2009) “Dominance in domestic dogs –useful construct or bad habit?” The paper is much broader than implied by Science Daily; the following will make clear some of their conclusions. Associative Learning Theory The paper suggests stable relationships between …

Continue reading Dominance – is it appropriate to explain social relationships between dogs and humans?