....Only one Wrong!
If you cannot train a dog without hitting or kicking it, than don't train dogs!
That doesn't mean we are saying you should baby the dog, or only ask for the dog to do something if you have food in your hand, it just means you shouldn't physically punish/correct i.e. hit/kick a dog to teach it something that a lot of people can teach without those physical and abusive treatments.
I hear people say, 'but I only do it every now and again' or 'I only do it 5% of the time'. I wonder if that is what men who hit their wives say (or vice versa) as an excuse, "I only hit her a few times, and that's only because she makes me, she doesn't listen to anything else!" So they hit their wife and then go straight on the charm defence to prove to the wife that he loves her, and that she just needs to stop pushing his buttons and making him hit her, and from what we have learnt about women (or men) who fall into a relationship with these mentally psychologically damaged people is that the woman will try her hardest to stop the man (or woman) from hitting her by doing exactly what he tells her to do, we also know that while the woman will try and be happy and keep it altogether eventually it all falls apart.
Now that is a human, we are training dogs and they have less mental understanding than the battered half of an abusive relationship, so the dog will be unable to work out what is going on but will still try to appease the abuser to stop the beating, hitting and/or kicking, and dogs are so forgiving therefore the abuser uses this to his/her advantage.
Does the woman or dogs eagerness to stop the hitting's make it right for the person to use physical punishment on them?
No of course it doesn't!
Should we once again go back to the old days were everyone took no notice of the ladies Black eye, I mean after all he only hits her now and again?
No, of course we shouldn't!
Usually once found out and warned, then warned again, and then eventually charged by either the police or RSPCA depending on whether it be human or animal abuse they have been charged with, these people are often found to have antisocial (sociopathic, psychopathic) or narcissistic personality disorder, and they may have impulse control issues and substance abuse issues on top of that! Such people may abuse because of the benefits they receive from doing so, for instance, sexual or financial gratification, or the simple allure of power over other people's lives.
This is sadly why some people train in such an abusive way, they get a kick out of it, a rush of power that they cannot get from humans as they lack the mental skills to do so, and see the defenceless animal as a easy target, especially if they can convince people (as the husband does the wife) that it is all for the animals good, and that they have to do it and only do it to improve that animals life!
Dogs have and will always be trained in many different ways as the dogs are individuals and we humans are individuals and therefore one way does not suit all, BUT, that does not give anyone the right to hit an animal.
Apparently, people say of me, that
To know people think that of me makes me proud, and thankful to the teachers who have taught me, each teacher taught slightly different from each other, but all (except the first one I went to for gundog lessons) respected and/or shared my belief that you do not need to hit an animal to train it to a high standard, you especially do not need to hit a dog to train it to a good shoot standard. I also respected each individual one of those trainers for not forcing any unwanted training methods onto me, and for not being upset if I chose not to resolve something the same way they would do. They especially excepted it when I would come back the next lesson and show that I had managed to work through the problem while sticking to my belief.
If we all got the reputation that I apparently have ('She has good dogs, but you can't hit your dogs in front of her!'.), the trainers who use varying degree of physical punishments towards their dogs in training, would most certainly not show it in group/individual training for fear of being reported and because they would become aware of the knowledge that their clients disliked and disrespected the trainer for using those methods. Those trainers, the ones with talent but a laziness/stubbornness to chance their ways, would change their ways for they would need to find alternative ways to teach their clients or find themselves losing clients. Sadly the narcissist trainers will more than likely not change his/her ways as he/she more than likely does not have the talent to do so or the intelligence, or even the desire to please his/her clients, especially as those trainers/handlers pleasure is derived from the dominance and abuse of the animal that they abuse.
I personally have no 'one' method of training, I will use whatever one will work for the dog, I will use clicker and food based reward, but do not use it for most of the training, for most of the training I find my vocal praise to them and/or the item they are retrieving is reward enough for them. I do find clicker training useful at the start of training to teach the obedience work, and used the clicker on Ellie to get her to bring the retrieve all the way to my hands. Before the accident down the flight of stairs, I always taught the girls from the get-go, as soon as they could walk, and done correctly it does not make them into Robots in fact it gives them confidence and expands their minds, creates good habits that will help you when you begin to finalise their training, and creates a cracking bond between you and your dog, such fun!
I suppose what I am saying is, if you see a toddler being tapped across the hand by its mother, you won't like it BUT you wouldn't dream about doing anything about it, but if you saw a toddler being hit, especially more than once, you most certainly should do something about.
The same for a dog, if we see someone tweak a dogs ear, we more than likely wouldn't like what we saw BUT we certainly wouldn't do anything about, but if we see a dog being hit or kicked, then we most certainly should report it, and if one can (safely) video the abuse on mobile video than one should do so without being seen and hand that to the police or RSPCA.
If you are in any doubt to whether a dog can be trained with kindness alone, watch the you tube clip, you will see the answer to that is ...YES
Enjoy your dogs, be understanding of them, and if any nasty videos come up on Facebook, especially those horrid ones were the horse have been abused, don't look.
Let Gundog people be known as the group of people that others would say about them
'........but you can't hit your dogs in front of them!'.