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Old 06-28-2012, 07:41 PM
j0equ1nn j0equ1nn is offline
Sean Smith
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Brooklyn
Posts: 34
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Well the problem started with not getting solid advice on what to do when he was growling. If you recall, or if not if you skim this thread's history, you'll find multiple cases of me asking what am I supposed to do when my dog growls at me, and received 2 answers:
1. Back away from him because this will show him his growl worked so he knows he doesn't need to escalate to something more serious, and
2. Whatever you do don't back away because it will show him his growl worked and that he can intimidate you.

Deeming this insufficiently consistent to replace my prior training at guiding eyes, I continued to follow my instincts based on that. Apparently it was the wrong way to go because the dog started snapping. In hindsight I think I should have listened to Maxi24 and gone with option 1. His advice was effective in almost entirely curing my dog of guarding toys. Also what Emily said this last round is making sense to me too. What stardogs said also rings true. We have been exploring the possibility of hiring a trainer. We have a friend involved in animal rescue who hooked us up with a trainer in the area named Rex willing to work with us for free and he turned out to be a lunatic. If you think I am an abusive maniac for physically restraining my dog and trying to correct him for biting me, you should talk to this nut, but I posted about him already. And he calls himself a professional dog trainer too. I know it's easy to blame me for any problems going on but the information I get on this end is pretty confusing and hard to sort through. Also, 99% of the time or more, I get along with my dog like an old friend. Perhaps I am overstating my problem and welcoming these personal critiques, but there's no point talking about the stuff that isn't a problem. I resent being accused of wanting to dominate my dog or enjoying these encounters, to me these comments come across as nothing other than an inability of posters to prioritize the point of all this over their own egos, and feeling a need to hurt the feelings of people saying they didn't give good advice. I hate seeing my dog get nervous. I hate when he acts guilty, I hate having to discipline, but I know that sometimes it's necessary, I just don't know exactly how all the time. I like when my dog is hanging out and having fun. The idea I have to explain this is ridiculous.

Anyway yes, the internet is the internet, and anything I hear is filtered first by my ability to describe the situation, then by the ability of the reader to understand me, then by their ability to communicate their ideas to me, then my ability to understand them. I often feel I'm making this sound worse than it is. I also get a lot of conflicting information. I suppose you could accuse me of being here just to take, in fact it's true, I joined the dog forum because I wanted advice on how to help this dog. If I wanted to, I could instead list my chosen kill date for my "food-agressive pitbill with mysterious past" then have a little count-down and it would be everyone's fault but mine. But instead I am taking personal responsibility and I still think I can help this dog. And I am honestly listening to you. I agree after considering what was said that trying to punish him for biting was a mistake and I will not make that mistake again. Additionally, the times when he snapped I did not honestly feel like I was in danger or out of control, I just honestly thought I was doing the right thing. I do not think it's too late to alter my approach before it gets to that point.

Obviously I am more interested in averting the need to deal with my dog trying to bite me, but it also seems obvious to me that one should be prepared with the knowledge of how to behave if it does happen. Just like one should be prepared with how to act in the event a dog growls while working on preventing that. If I had been prepped with how to react to the growling, I would not have to think on my feet and rely on dated and possibly damaging dog training techniques, which lead to the biting.

It is easy to start pointing fingers in this situation. I see a lot pointed at me and it's tempting to turn it around and say I've been asking questions about anything related to what's happening well in advance, anticipated any possible situation, and have gotten more holier than thou criticism about what I should NOT be doing than I have received encouragement and help with what I SHOULD be doing instead. If you find what I'm saying nothing but an affront on your ego then yeah do me a favor and stop bothering with the thread because I don't care about your ego.

You can choose to be offended by my suggestion that most dogs like this may be too quickly put to sleep, or you can just appreciate that someone has the honesty to share that this is what's going through their head. I'm not saying anyone in this conversation is guilty of this, or of anything, but if you can't accept that this is a natural thing to go through the head of someone like me and take it in stride you might want to double-check your credentials.
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