|Mocha Bear- (Mokie),- VGG, KPA, |
CEO of Rewarding- Behaviors Dog- Training
|Barked: Wed Apr 2, '08 10:04am PST |
I haven't checked group in a few days and was wondering if our phone call last week spawned this? LOL!
I know exactly what members you are talking about.
I've actually discussed this with a few of my fellow B & T pals lately. I don't care if someone's a professional or not and wants to offer advice in the forums.
What I do care about is the dishonesty. I know for a fact that bad information kills dogs and has the potential to hurt or maim people.
I get mad when people call themselves "behaviorists" when they are obviously not. I feel like "behaviorist" is a title I dream of achieving someday. Khola is my friend, and I have a lot of respect for how hard Khola's "person" has worked toward the eventual goal of earning this distinction. It makes me mad when people self-apply a title which takes a large amount of dedication and focus to earn. Calling myself a "behaviorist" would be disrespectful to my friends who are legitimate behaviorists.
It's lying, and it's dangerous. Unfortunately, some people really do come to dogster's B & T forum as their only source of training information.
I have no degree, no experience as a professional trainer (yet!). I can tell what I've learned experientially or through my reading, but don't feel that I need to fabricate credentials in order for my information to be valuable. It makes me angry when I've tried so hard to expand my knowledge, and will be disregarded just because someone else who gave themselves the title of behaviorist disagrees with me while providing dangerous information. I agree with Vance, this type of behavior lends the average dog owner to believe that, unless you give yourself a title, you are incapable of training a dog.
I think of Nick, Asher, and Indy, some of my B & T pals who are very knowledgable and willingly offer insightful and helpful advice in the forums, and don't think that they're any less respected in the B & T community because they are not professional trainers nor do I believe that their suggestions hold any less water because of this.
It's hard for me not to get frustrated that one is expected to refrain from "calling these people out" in the forums. I know that dogster is supposed to be a kid-friendly site. But based on this assumption, we can assume that there are children in the B & T forums. Based on my knowledge of children, if they read something and it sounds good, they will try it! In my opinion, when "trying out" clicker training, there is little risk of injury with your average dog.
My trainer always said that there's a reason clicker trainers don't have the "don't try this at home" safety disclaimer that CM has on his show because clicker training is a safer approach to working with a dog.
But some of the methods touted by these alleged "behaviorists" would, improperly applied, maybe lead to someone (dog or human) getting hurt very badly. So what is worse...to call a spade a spade and say "your credentials don't match the title you've self-applied), or to let them continue giving bad information until someone gets hurt?
I think it's very scary, honestly.
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