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Posts Tagged ‘dominant theory’

Dogs: The Word I Hate Most

May 12, 2011 27 comments

There is but one word that sets my teeth on edge when it comes to dogs and dog behavior.

It so gets my ire up that I often have to take a deep breath to calm myself before expressing my opinion on that word.

The word?

Alpha.

On second thought… there is one other word that drives me even crazier than Alpha and that is Dominance (or it’s variants: dominate, dominant, domination, etc.).

Just yesterday, while speaking with a friend about getting a dog, I heard her say “Well, I know I need to be the Alpha and show him that I am dominant.” Um no. You don’t. You only need to work with that dog in a positive way and build a bond and he/she will practically do anything for you. There is no need to be “Alpha” or “dominant” with your dog.

My fellow blogger, Kevin Myers, wrote a great piece on just this very topic “Why Did the Dog Run Out the Door?” I encourage you to check it out.

In the meantime, what words set your teeth on edge?

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Dogs: Sometimes the media gets it right.

August 1, 2010 4 comments

I don’t know about you, but I often find myself disgusted with the media today. Whether it be radio, TV or print, it seems like the “non-news” is leading the real news. Snookie? Don’t know and don’t care. Who’s Jennifer Aniston dating now? I can’t keep track and don’t want to either. I have no idea what the Housewives of NY is about – other than women being catty and screaming at one another. I choose not to watch it for fear my brain will rot.

Another one of my pet peeves is the way the media latches onto pitbulls as the “evil” breed or the “killer” breed. If there is a pitbull in a story, and it involves death or injury, then it leads. God forbid they do a positive story on the breed once in a while. Just check out this information and some of the data it provides to better understand how the media plays to stereotypes – whether they be human or animal. (Here’s a great blog post on the topic as well.)

I guess that’s why I was surprised to read a story (in a major news publication) that finally got it right. It’s all about the debate between “Dog Training and the Myth of Alpha-Male Dominance”, AND this reporter did her research. I’ll let you read the full story without giving it all away, but let me just say Kudos to Jennifer Lee-St John for actually digging deeper to find out the truth about the fallacy of the “Alpha-dog/dominance theory” but also for actually being willing to educate people on the dangers of using certain “dominating” type of behaviors with your dog.

This type of story (and ace reporting) was long overdue. Thank you Jennifer for being the one to do it.

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