Why can’t you beat a dog?
Unfortunately, many owners are still convinced that without a whip, raising and training a dog is simply unthinkable. This is one of the most enduring and dangerous myths, and we will completely get rid of its influence very soon. Nevertheless, more and more people (and this cannot but rejoice) are inclined to believe that dogs should not be beaten. Why can’t you beat a dog, and how, then, to get the right behavior from her?
Why can’t you beat a dog, not even “hurt”?
You cannot beat a dog for many reasons.
Firstly, it’s cruel to beat a living being whose life and well-being depends entirely on a person.
Secondly, the dog behaves “badly” because either it was taught such behavior, even if it was not aware of it (and most often it was the person who hits it), or it was created by nature for this behavior (that is, it behaves - what a surprise! - like a dog) or was introduced by a person (if we are talking about pedigree features that the owner did not take into account when acquiring a puppy), or her basic needs are not satisfied (which is also a “merit” of a person). So, to beat her for this is simply dishonest.
Thirdly, beating a dog is completely ineffective. And I would like to dwell on this in more detail.
Why do people beat dogs and does this bring the desired result?
There are four reasons why people beat dogs:
- Man beating a dog gets emotional discharge. He came home after a hard day's work, and he received a reprimand from his superiors, and at home he got another puddle or gnawed shoes. He beat the dog - it seemed easier.The problem is that such a scenario is reinforcement for a person, which means that he will beat the dog again and again. Will this teach the dog how to behave? Very doubtful. But to fear the owner and not trust him will teach.
- Man using a whipping trying to stop the unwanted behavior of the dog. For example, the dog tried to steal a piece of sausage from the table - a man hit it, the dog dropped the sausage and ran away. The dog barks - a man beat her, she fell silent. Is the effect achieved? It seems to be yes, the behavior has stopped. But really, no. The fact is that beating does not affect dog motivation, and her need remains unmet. So, the dog will look for other ways - and not the fact that you will like them more. Perhaps the dog will no longer steal from the table in the presence of the owner - but what will prevent her from doing this when he turns away or is in another room? If the dog barks from overexcitation, it will not become calmer from beating, which means it will either bark again and again, or the overexcitation will result in other problems of behavior. Also, by beating, a person does not teach a dog alternative behavior, that the need can be satisfied in an acceptable way.
- The owner does not know that it is possible to interact with the dog in a different way.To be honest, in our age of information opportunities, this is perceived as a mocking "excuse", nothing more. Here is the time to recall the proverb “Whoever wants, seeks opportunities, whoever does not want reasons.” And now there are more than enough opportunities.
- The owner just likes to beat the dog. Alas, this is not so rare - an attempt to be convinced of one's own significance and omnipotence, causing harm to another living being, or to satisfy sadistic inclinations. But there is nothing to comment on. The only acceptable way to deal with this is through normal, working laws aimed at protecting animals, identifying such individuals, and prohibiting keeping dogs. In the post-Soviet space at the moment this is, unfortunately, utopia.
Finally, beating dogs is simply dangerous. According to the results of the study, at least 25% of dogs immediately respond to host aggression with aggression. Other dogs initially show submission signals that most owners simply don’t notice, which means that the dog has no choice but to defend itself, and as a result we get a dog that is dangerous for the owner and others. In some dogs, similar methods form learned helplessness, which sometimes suits owners, but in this case the dog constantly experiences distress, which affects its health and well-being.
Is there an alternative? What to do if you can’t beat a dog?
Dog beating is a legacy of cruel parenting methods that were common (and declared to be the only ones possible) at the beginning and middle of the last century. These methods were a direct result of treating dogs as war machines, which should demonstrate unquestioning obedience and a complete lack of initiative from the category of “Step to the left, step to the right - shooting on the spot”. And also a consequence of the extremely low level of understanding of the dog’s psychology and its behavior.
However, now the behavior of dogs is studied from all sides, and over the past couple of decades we have learned more about “best friends” than in previous millennia. So there are more and more alternatives to cruel training methods, and it’s not necessary to beat the dog. It is simply stupid and dishonest to pet them.
No one argues that it is important to teach a dog the rules. But to do it is wisely. Consistency and consistency, predictability and diversity in the right proportions, as well as providing the basic needs of a four-legged friend are extremely important.
There is a huge variety of methods for training dogs as well as behavioral correction free of cruelty and based on positive reinforcement.
Learn yourself and teach the dog, and in this case, communication with her for many years will bring you joy, not overshadowed by senseless cruelty.