Am I Hurting My Dog With My Dog Training

If you are asking yourself: “Am I hurting my dog with my dog Training” you are in the right place for the answers. Lets get the elephant out of the room. The answer is yes. If you think you might be hurting your dog chances are that you are. I know this is not intentional or you wouldn’t be reading this.

Training your dog

I am assuming you found your way here because of your dogs behaviour. Or should I say ‘bad behaviour’. But what you consider bad behaviour might not be the dogs fault but yours or your dog trainer. Dogs are very simple to understand creatures. Unfortunetly being human is what complicates things.

There are not many rules in Dog behaviour but this is one of the most important onces.


If your dog is allowed on the bed sometimes to them that means they can be there always and when will not understand why you are telling them off for it sometimes but not other times. So be consistant and that goes for all the members of your family.

Are you feeling helpless and frustrated? Are you thinking :” this is not what I had in mind when we decided on getting a new dog”? You are not alone in this there are thousands of people out there that find themselves in the same position. They too didn’t quite know what they were getting into and are now knee deep in “bad dog behaviour” with no solution in site. They too might have spoken or been to a dog trainer around the corner just to walk out with the same problem and a dog that is now traumatised, frightened and even worse behaved. If that rings a bell with you then don’t worry help is just around the corner (or just a little bit further down this page, I should say).

dog pulling on the lead

I have worked as a vet on 3 continents and the problems are all the same all over the world. You might think that is not helping you now but it will. Just stick with me for a minute.

There are lots of dog and lots of dog trainers in the world and they all have a slightly different approach to training or in the case of bad behaviour “corrections”.

I use to work with a lot of police dogs and seeing how the police has completely changed their training routine over the years has been an eye opener. And a refreshing change for the police dogs involved.

The Traditional (old) way use to involve Dominance training. It used to be based on the theory that dogs are domesticated wolves and they are pack animals and you needed to show them how is boss.

Be the Alpha dominant in your family while part of that theory is still being use most of it is being scapped.

What we use to find was that a lot of handlers would get bitten in the course of their career by their own dogs. This would result in the handler being told off for not being Dominant enough or the dog being destroyed considering it took a lot of money and time to get these police dogs “qualified” for duty that was not very helpful.

Over the year they started to change their training methods and refine it in a way that now they hardly get any handlers that get bitten and the dogs are usually trained quicker and better. The dog training is no longer fear driven but reward driven( they don’t get treats but a special toy) and it works very well.

This is how avoidance Training or correction training would work. To teach your dog to heal you would walk next to your dog. Then you would change direction abruptly and you would give your dog a leash correction if he wouldn’t follow you straight away. Your dog would learn how to avoid these corrections by reading your body language and predict your change of direction before you would do it. Very clever of your dog but these avoidance training could be very dangerous too.

Some trainers would use it in situations that were less desirable. Say the dog would growl at people and then attack. The trainer would correct the dog when he growled. This could result in the dog avoid the growling but would then just attack without warning.

Timing is the crucial part of this exercise, and with new dog trainers this usually doesn’t happen. When you don’t get it right the relationship between your dog and you will suffer. Your dog may become confused, stressed and depressed.

The art of dog training is to know what kind of correction to apply and what level correction to give.

And Make sure if you are using a correction that you are 110% sure your dog knows meaning of the command he is refusing to follow.


Your language need to be clear. If you are struggling on your own there is good help out there.

So if you are still thinking that you are hurting your dog with your training then you need help from a gentle trainer that will help you and will be kind to your dog like you would like any trainer to be

One of them is Doggy Dan which is online help with simple dog friendly advice that anybody can follow with any type of dog.