It’s never been our style to punish our dogs. We believe that being firm and consistent, along with reward-based training is the way to go. There are plenty of folks out there who are much more qualified than I am to go into the details of dog training, so I’ll leave that to them. I only bring it up now because I recently found this excerpt from the book “The Culture Clash” by Jean Donaldson.
Even though I’ve never been a “yeller,” those few short paragraphs hit me right in the gut. I immediately thought of our young Cooper, and the only time we ever yelled at him.
Cooper is a sensitive soul. It was not too long after he joined us at Foster House, and I don’t even remeber what he did wrong – maybe he chewed up something he shouldn’t have? Who knows, that’s not the point of the story. Whatever it was, once we discovered his indiscretion we scolded him sternly – I wouldn’t even necessarily classify it as “yelling,” we just put on our “you’re in trouble” super-low voice and said something along the lines of “Cooper! What. Did. You. Do?” Poor little Cooper promptly rolled over on his back and peed on himself.
Foster Dad and I vowed then and there to never yell at him again. It’s not necessary, and it’s not effective. Cooper wants to please his People with every ounce of his being – sometimes he tries so hard to figure out what you want with him that he actually quivers. Coop is smart. He is loyal. And he will do anything his People ask him to do…as long as he can understand what it is he’s being asked to do.
And Cooper still chills out on his back sometimes, but now it’s more like this…
…and sometimes this…
Cooper is still looking for his furever family! If you’d like to add this sensitive soul to your family, please fill out an adoption application with Agape Animal Rescue. Gorns need not apply.
…and don’t forget to VOTE for COOPER!