Friday, November 15, 2013

"Fighting fire with fire" and why it's no way to train a dog - or any animal!

One of the blessings of not having subscription television is I don't have access to programming that would just make my blood pressure rise. So when I read a blog post by Victoria Stilwell discussing a recent "Real Housewives" episode, I had no idea what happened. Based on Ms. Stilwell's post, I probably don't want to watch.

One paragraph continues to stick with me. To read it in its entirety, go to But this is the gist and, to me, it pretty much sums up what I want my relationship with my own dogs - and those of the families I am fortunate enough to work with - to be: "When you fight fire with fire ... When trainers use ... intimidation, you are not only asking for a bite, but you're completely bypassing the root of the problem." Stilwell sums it up by stating the only way to truly change behavior is knowing and understanding the cause, the underlying stress or anxiety that manifests in the problem at hand.

What a powerful statement.

By the way, if you disagree with the way "training" was portrayed in this series, let Bravo know. Their official contact page is

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