|Written by Martin Lieberman|
|Monday, 06 August 2012|
The trend over the last 20 years
has been to acquire aggressive breeds as pets. The pursuit of dangerous dogs, especially in the male gender can be double trouble. Frequently the male specimen requires more of everything, with one exception. As the essay advances I will expose this all important exception.
A dominant breed, in a family setting is a tricky proposition. A female dog would generally be more affectionate, eager to please & more malleable. Today, however, this is rarely the trend. Most macho puppy buyers crave the big male head, the heavy Carpal Joints with high arches & the increased body weight.
I have chosen to avoid breed specific issues or the profiling of dog owners. After all, we know the breeds & we know the instant gratification issues of many animal owners. Many of us, it seems don't realize the consequences for choosing the wrong breed & gender in the new dog. Here is a good rule of thumb, If you buy a a pup from a quality breeder for $2,500,00 expect to invest a similar dollar amount for training. It is important to note, after the dog is well trained you & your family should rehearse what you & the dog have learned.If you do not you have wasted a large part of your investment !
Now to return to my one exception. Generally, inexperienced dog people want that big male macho dog to share the couch, after all, he is a member of the family. The crate seems cruel as does the prong collar & E Collar. Why not give him the run of the house? Eventually, your puppy charms his way into your bedroom & gradually your bed.Why not, its a large bed ?
A year has passed, your cute puppy is over 100 pounds. Your house is in disarray & so is your life. Your precious puppy frequently growls at you & your wife. This occurring while sleeping with you on your king size bed, on your designer sheets & under your once nice comforter. Your wife no longer wants the dog. After all, he destroyed the designer sheets the comforters etc. The kids love the dog but no longer have time for the dog, with computer games & such, its understandable!Your Home Owners insurance is being cancelled because your100 # puppy jumped on an elderly lady & you are being sued. It seems as if your neighbors don't visit as much. In fact they avoid saying hello.
What went wrong ? Simply everything! The puppy became a teenager, with out the proper boundaries & limitations.(Cesar Milan, frequently talks about this situation & his advice is quite accurate) If you have never seen his show; I think you will enjoy it !
I will add an axiom of my own. Most dogs, but especially assertive working dogs must live in a sub egalitarian environment. Most large powerful dogs must be cautiously dominated first & loved second.The dog must earn the masters love. That is precisely why a dogs owner is called the master. When dealing with dangerous dogs the animal must never loose sight of his subservience.
This is natures dictum and it applies to several other earth born species. They are referred to as herds, prides, schools, pods & packs etc. Most of these formations have a single dominant ruler.
I believe the average dog is capable of turning feral in 6 to 8 weeks. In theory, perhaps we need to reconsider the term domestic dog.
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