Why is it that law enforcement and military are revered for the standard of training they achieve by these extremist groups, a standard of training that cannot be replicated or achieved by the positive-only and force-free methods, and yet they go out of their way to demonise civilian and companion dog trainers for following exactly the same principles? Doesn’t this double standard tell you that there is a definite agenda being pushed by these groups that are totally illogical and have absolutely no foundation in truth or reality? A person, method or tool can’t be claimed to be abusive or not, based solely on their position or standing within the community or society.
The sad part about all of this emotive agenda pushing is that these extremists are pushing to ban so many types of dog training equipment, and even working on outlawing any form of aversive in training. Yet, they leave professionals such as police and military alone, allowing them to go on their merry way, training dogs to the highest of standards, and praising their standard of training and the bond the handlers share with their dogs. The poor companion dog owner is however left using half a science, that is indeed compromising their ability to help and train their dog. If we only allowed the police forces and military to use half a science, there would be no law enforcement or military dogs helping to protect our communities and way of life.
I receive negative feedback because of my outspoken views, however, I personally feel that if balanced dog trainers don’t speak up about all the lies and misinformation being spread by these extremist groups, the future of dog ownership will be in jeopardy. You may laugh, and say nobody is going to take our dogs away from us. Really? Just look at BSL, many of the breeds now on the banned list, lived happily with families not 10 years ago, but are now considered dangerous. Look at all the restrictions we now have placed on us on where we can legally take our dogs, because many lack the ability to control their dogs in public. There is now an epidemic of dogs being prescribed psychotropic drugs, because the current science-based training has no answers. And now slowly but surely we are being told that we must abide by a so-called ‘science-based’ training ideology, that is indeed very much a lie that only acknowledges half the real science of learning. These radical views that have slowly gained momentum over the past 10 years will not help sustain our dogs into the future, as more and more dogs are left out of control, suffering anxieties, and all based on a lie by an extremist group, that deny a science because it doesn’t fit in with or support their emotive agenda.
We can’t look at half a science theory and leave the other half hidden away, and name our new theory, ‘science-based’. That would be like stating the moon orbits the earth due to its momentum around the earth and not acknowledging the fact that the force of gravity had anything to do with it, because gravity didn’t conform to our emotive belief that force was not to be used.
This is not about denying that +R and -P are valid and very important learning principles, its about acknowledging that all of the 4 quadrants are just as valid and important as each other, and that too totally understand learning in animals, and to better help them live in our human-dominated environment we need to acknowledge and work with all of these quadrants, and not falsely claim that only half the science is valid.