Meeting dog owners struggling with severe behavioural issues who remain closed-minded about new tools, techniques, or strategies is disheartening. They often believe using any form of negative consequence is cruel, mean, outdated, and abusive. They’ve been convinced that positive reinforcement is the only way to train. The same mindset is applied to children as well.
The Dangers of Following the Crowd
If you stay closed-minded and follow popular opinion rather than what’s best for your dog, here’s what may happen:
- Unsolved behaviour problems: Unable to address the issue, you might decide to rehome your dog.
- Rehoming and shelters: The dog is given to a shelter, becoming someone else’s responsibility. This can be both irresponsible and dangerous.
- The shelter’s struggle: Overworked shelter staff may not have the time or resources to significantly impact the dog’s behaviour, making adoption less likely.
- The tragic outcome: The dog may suffer in the kennel, its behaviour may worsen, and eventually, euthanasia might be considered the most humane option. In Australia, one dog is put down for behavioural issues every 20 minutes.
In the end, closed-mindedness can be fatal for dogs, and similarly, children with this mindset may grow up to face issues like imprisonment.