Category Archives: Human and dog misunderstandings

Is That “Smiling” Dog Happy?

Maybe, but maybe not! We humans tend to get warm and fuzzy feelings when we see dogs “smile.” It’s true that some dogs’ mouths open in a cute smile when they are relaxed and happy. But a dog with his mouth … Continue reading

Posted in Dog body language, Human and dog misunderstandings, Stress Signals | Tagged , , , , | 10 Comments

It’s Not Painful. It’s Not Scary. It Just Gets the Dog’s Attention!

Some dog trainers who use tools such as shock, prong, or slip collars, or startle the dog with thrown objects or loud noises, claim that these things are done only to “get the dog’s attention.” They may further insist that the dog … Continue reading

Posted in Cues, Human and dog misunderstandings, Operant conditioning, Punishment culture, Reinforcement, Terminology | Tagged , , , , | 25 Comments

“Respect” Is SO Last Year

Shhh, don’t tell anyone!! I don’t know for sure, but I kind of think my dogs don’t “respect” me. But that’s OK.  Dogs probably don’t do “respect” anyway. It’s a human concept, and it depends on human cognition and social mores. When … Continue reading

Posted in Dog training hints, Human and dog misunderstandings, Multiple dogs, Positive Reinforcement, Toys and Play, Treats | Tagged , , | 47 Comments

Bark Busters: Promoting Facts or Myths?

A friend recently shared a flyer from Bark Busters, a dog training franchise business. It is called “Barking: The Facts” and can be seen at this link. (This is a special link to avoid raising their incoming click stats and you … Continue reading

Posted in Human and dog misunderstandings, Punishment, Punishment culture, Reactivity, Stress Signals | Tagged , , , , , , | 89 Comments

7 Common Dog Training Errors: More Cautionary Tales

I have to admit that I likely have a fair number of readers who look forward to reading about my mistakes. But hey, I asked for it, from the very first day of the blog. My previous post on common … Continue reading

Posted in Dog body language, Dog training hints, Dogs' perceptions, Generalization, Human and dog misunderstandings, Multiple dogs, Stress Signals | 23 Comments

Is My Dog a Drama Queen?

“My dog is such a drama queen!” “My dog is so manipulative, she overreacts to everything!” “That dog is not really afraid, she’s just being a diva.” Have you heard any of these? A few months back, I posted the … Continue reading

Posted in Dog body language, Human and dog misunderstandings, Stress Signals | Tagged , , , | 24 Comments

The False Hypothesis of the Pack

Hey! “Pack theory” is not a theory at all! Theories vs Hypotheses One of the biggest misunderstandings between science folk and lay folk is the definition of the word, “theory,” and here we are adding to that misunderstanding. In science, … Continue reading

Posted in Dog behavior, Human and dog misunderstandings, Terminology, Training philosophy | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments