Agree to Disagree – Whole Dog Journal

There’s an outdated joke about canine trainers: What’s the one factor you will get two canine trainers to agree about? That the third one is doing it incorrect!

I’d submit that it’s not simply canine trainers who typically have sturdy opinions about the fitting and incorrect methods to do issues with canine. And I feel you would need to agree, particularly when you have ever entered right into a dialogue about, say, grain-free canine meals, uncooked diets, Flexi leashes, electrical shock collars, fats canine, canine with lengthy toenails, canine who bark, ear- and tail-cropping . . . I may preserve going however you get the thought. There are so many hot-button points within the canine world that it’s virtually unimaginable to speak about something to do with canine (apart from how cute they’re) with out getting right into a heated argument.

As I write this – the very last thing that should get completed with a view to ship this challenge to the printer – a web based hurricane has damaged out concerning an essay revealed within the New York Times by Alexandra Horowitz, PhD., famend ebook creator and head of the Horowitz Dog Cognition Lab at Barnard College at Columbia University, in New York City. Horowitz posits that the follow of widespread, reflexive spay/neuter practices on this nation shouldn’t be customary coverage, as they irretrievably alter our canine’ well being, habits, and personalities. She makes some good factors! Even I, a long-time shelter volunteer who’s strongly in favor of the usual follow of de-sexing all shelter animals earlier than they’re adopted, respect and agree with most of the anti-spay/neuter proposals she makes within the article. And but, already, by noon on the West Coast, I’ve seen waves of sizzling phrases and “unfriending” sprees in on-line boards and social media as Horowitz’s piece is being shared, mentioned, and argued about.

Here’s an thought: Let’s agree that a couple of factor may be “right” on the identical time. Let’s freely acknowledge that canine may be skilled “properly” with totally different strategies and that they will eat plenty of totally different diets (even actually dangerous ones!) with out shortening their lives. Let’s go as far as to suggest that what’s “best” for shelter canine in my rural county – one finest identified for its excessive poverty and low training ranges – shouldn’t be thought-about finest for canine bought from good breeders and raised in prosperous suburbs and concrete areas.

Blanket judgments and one-size-fits-all suggestions don’t serve canine (or their homeowners) very nicely. There are simply too many various kinds of canine and extensively divergent attitudes in regards to the place of the canine in society. I suggest that we attempt to study from each other, educate those that ask for training, make unbiased choices concerning our personal canine’ welfare, and attempt to get together with buddies and strangers in addition to we count on our canine to.

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