Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Dog Owners versus Dog(Owner) Haters

Two households, both alike in dignity,
In fair NYC, where we lay our scene,
From ancient grudge break to new mutiny,
Where civil dog messes make civil hands unclean. 

From forth the fatal opinions of these two foes 
A pair of star-cross'd groups take their measure;

A sampling of graffiti in LIC demonstrates some of the feelings non dog-owners sometimes have for dogs and their owners. The first sentence was rebutted with a second sentence (I assume added by a dog-owner).

There are many people sharing our planet who don't particularly like dogs. 
I see plenty of examples as I walk my packs of dogs through our neighborhoods. Some people are outright unpleasant.
In the past, I was less tolerant of those I judged as intolerant. I would snarl back at them or argue with anyone who criticized dogs and their habit of relieving themselves outside.
("I tried to teach him to use the toilet, but he just didn't cooperate!" was one of my sarcastic replies.)

If we take some time to reflect, it's easy to see why some people don't like dogs. All it takes is one errant footfall or a past bad experience with an agressive dog, etc...
No one likes seeing excrement on the sidewalks, not even dog lovers.

That being said; all we dog-owners can do is pick up after our dogs and respectfully keep a distance from people obviously uncomfortable with canines. 
Also...if you spot someone not picking up after their dog...offer them a poop-bag.
If someone still complains to unsolicited advice is: smile at them and move on. No reason to be upset by people who don't seem to notice that dogs are a part of the American 'em or hate 'em. 

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Training Tips: Lowering Voice for Commands

How you pitch your voice when communicating with your dog is more important then what you actually say. A dog will instinctually listen to a low voice more readily than one which is higher pitched.
(Lower your voice for commands and raise it for praise.)

Why is this?
Pick up two glasses of different size from your kitchen and lightly strike a spoon against their sides. The bigger glass will give off a lower sound than the smaller glass. Bigger objects/animals give off lower/deeper sounds than smaller ones. Your dog doesn't know you are lowering your voice by choice; they only know you "seem" larger when your voice is lower...which makes it more likely they will listen.