“What gives you the right?”
If you train your dog in public, you’ll hear this at some point.
And as my mentor said “It’s not your right…… It’s your responsibility!”
See, we built this world up around them, that they have no possible chance of navigating without our help.
We domesticated them. The very word means that they need a home. They NEED our care.
And that means, that if we put them is this crazy world, it’s our job to help them navigate it. We have to be their guides. To guide someone, they have to follow us. And if we expect them to follow us we have to lead them.
That’s why we have to teach them obedience. Not for entertainment. Not to show off our superiority.
The leash helps them not get run over by a car. A recall gets them back to you and out of the road, or your neighbor’s yard. A down stay lets you take them to the coffee shop with you. Otherwise they get stuck at the house again. Do you know how many dogs live in a 1000 sq ft radius their entire life? They stay home because they’re just too much to deal with. Or maybe their owners join the 2 am dog walking club. Or just surrender them, cause it’s just too much.
My dogs have a pretty awesome life. They can go sit at my feet while I have coffee outside. They can walk in the park with me. When I go teach a seminar, they get to hang out on their bed while I teach. They go EVERYWHERE with me.
And that is ONLY because they have obedience.
Their obedience gives them their freedom. It’s like the rules we follow when driving gives us the freedom to take a road trip if we want to.
Their ability to understand human rules, and make good choices, gives them a life most dogs will never have.
That’s not my dominion over them.
That’s my greatest gift to them.
Freedom and autonomy are the greatest reward we can give our dogs.
Give them training, to give them freedom.
It’s not your “right” to teach them “commands”……It’s your responsibility!