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Thread: Question About Punishment

  1. #1

    Default Question About Punishment

    YouTube - Dog Training - How to choose dog obedience classes. Part 5

    In this video the dog trainer says that if you use punishment eg if the dog growls at another dog and u punish the dog by giving him a check on the check-chain he suppresses the behaviour and associates pain with seeing another dog so he stops growling and goes into attack mode.

    So my question is: How do i get my dog to not growl at another dog and it being safe rather then checking him and him supressing the growl and turning it into a bite. how do i punish the behaviour without damaging what is still needed

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2009


    There's usually a signal before the growl that indicates the dog is not happy with the situation in some way.

    So if you're trying to stop your dog from growling at other dogs, you need to address why the dog is growling.

    I don't have this problem. But my dog growls at other things she thinks are "wrong" eg the first time she saw an beach umbrella on the beach. There was a lot of growling and barking.

    I didn't punish her. I distracted her. I rewarded her with food for doing what I wanted. I blocked her view of the umbrella with my body and gave her treats and praise when she paid attention to me.

    You can do this with your dog and other dogs. You need to get your dog to feel good about being around other dogs. And the best way to do this is pair the view of the other dogs with something your dog really likes eg roast chicken in tiny pieces.

    So you see some other dogs. As soon as you notice your dog has seen the other dogs but before he can get anxious or hackles or growl, you go between him and the other dogs and say "watch me" and give him a treat if he does. Wave the treat in his face if he doesn't.

    If he won't take the treat, walk him further away and try again.

    Then you can start the approach and retreat, ie approach until your dog shows signs of discomfort then retreat, until he seems comfortable, then approach again.

    The video was talking about a fairly extreme form of correction eg choking a dog until it can't breathe and it fears for its life. The normal way to use a slip collar is to first - have it the right way round so it releases instantly when you release pressure. And then when you want to correct or regain the dog's focus, you go "pop pop pop" ie three very short quick jerks. If you're worried about choking the dog, try a limited slip collar like a "martingale" instead. Ie it combines a flat collar and a short chain that can't close up the dog's airway. Ie it gets tighter but there is a limit to how tight.

    So the refocus should not be like strangling the dog. It should be like tapping your friend on the shoulder to get their attention.

    If your dog is ignoring the collar and your attempts to get focus, you might want to consider a front attach harness as well or instead to give you more power, but these don't work all that well for corrections. Well they do a bit. Like tapping on the shoulder...

    I find calling the dog back more effective than "pop pop pop" on the front attach harness though.

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