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Dominance Myths and Dog Training Realities

January 30, 2012

Invariably when people talk about dogs and dog behavior  the false concept of dominance comes up.

The Association of Pet Dog Trainers has a good web page on “Dominance Myths and Dog Training Realities

From the article: “As dog trainers and behavior counselors, we are often told by our dog owner clients that their dog is “dominant” because he or she did a particular behavior. In order to provide more insight into why dogs do the things they do, and why it is not “dominance” that leads to these behaviors, we’ve included a sampling of some of the most common ones below.”

Some myths they bust:

  1. Your dog barks at you  to tell you he’s in charge.
  2. Your dog urinates in the house to show you that she owns the “territory” and not you.
  3. Your dog believes he is in control of the kitchen and is trying to eat before you.
  4. Dogs jump up on people to assert their height and rank over you.
  5. Dogs pull on leash so they can get out in front of you and be in charge of you and the walk.
  6. Dogs push you out of the way and run through a doorway ahead of you to show you they’re in charge.
  7. Dogs who think they are boss will ignore you when you call them because they know they don’t have to obey.
  8. Dogs mount other dogs or people to show that they are dominant.
  9. Dogs get on the furniture and/or beds to show that they rule the household.

Again these are all myths and are not true.

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