Confessions of a bad owner...

This is a place to gain some understanding of dog behavior and to assist people in training their dogs and dealing with common behavior problems, regardless of the method(s) used. This can cover the spectrum from non-aversive to traditional methods of dog training. There are many ways to train a dog. Please avoid aggressive responses, and counter ideas and opinions with which you don't agree with friendly and helpful advice. Please refrain from submitting posts that promote off-topic discussions. Keep in mind that you may be receiving advice from other dog owners and lovers... not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a trainer or behaviorist!

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Maggie,- Tika, &- Porter

Aussie-tastic- Trio
Barked: Thu Aug 16, '12 9:51pm PST 
I have been reading through some threads here on Dogster and am seeing people with awfully high expectations of dog ownership (not only here in the behavior section...but this is where most of my bad owner things would fall). I know that some people can meet all of these strict requirements of dog ownership that some people believe is right...but there are plenty of happy dogs and happy people that don't fit into these cookie cutter descriptions I have been reading.

So I guess this is a confession thread where people can confess to the things they do (and heck - "did") with their dogs that others would frown upon. I personally don't care what other people think about how I deal with my dogs, they are happy and we have made it through the bad things generally unscathed.

I'll start - boy oh boy...it is a list shock

- my dogs rarely wear collars
- my dogs are offleash when outside
- my dogs rush people walking by the property (they do have gorgeous recalls though)
- I say "NO" to my dogs
- the first year of owning Maggie I lost her at least half a dozen times
- I sometimes yell at the dogs if their are being buttheads
- I let my dogs bark like crazy when outside
- Tika's current crate is a little too small (she honestly doesn't care though)
- I leave my dogs in the car (Maggie used to hang out in the car for my 14 hour workday - what was I supposed to do with her...she was not place-able and probably would have had to be euthanized)
- I had to hotwire my yard to keep Maggie inside it
- I feed my dogs people food...and not just a french fry that I licked the salt off of, they get the whole fry and a bite of my burger
- I am sure there are plenty more big grin lol - and here are some...
- I will bang a crate if the dog is being a butt in it
- I let Maggie pull on leash and even use a flexi with her
- I don't take the dogs into yearly check-ups at the vet (they go in when they need a vet)
- I let Porter chase kitties

But I also have some of the greatest dogs. I do agility with two of them and have retired the boy. They have an incredible connection with me and I even have lost some family ties due to people not understanding that my dogs mean the world to me.

Edited by author Fri Aug 17, '12 12:33pm PST

Jackson Tan

Lad about town
Barked: Thu Aug 16, '12 11:06pm PST 
My confessions:

I feed him at the table (okay, sofa) from my own plate.

If I take him to mcdonalds I actually buy him an ice cream and give him like half my fries. (I used to do this with Yorta too, he would sit outside the restaurant demanding belly rubs from everyone walking in ... and got them!)

He has attacked other dogs at the park before (back in the days I just used to leave his leash on him and let him run.) Big whooops on my part.

I also used to walk him that way in the street! Trotting a mile ahead dragging a short leash (it was a very quiet town though.)

I fed him the nastiest home brand dog food for about a year.

I encourage him to play tug with my sleeves.

I leave him in the car.

He jumps on strangers especially kids. Last kid he tried it on with said sit though and he actually did it lol.

He used to live and sleep outside.

I let him bark like a spaz in the park, and chase birds. (boy oh boy that's his favorite thing.)

I've yelled on occasion.

And I did give him a light smack once (he cocked his leg on my computer. Stopped him though.)

I'm just a horrible dog owner too! Geez it looks bad all listed like that ... silenced He's a great dog though, I gotta say, very bonded to me (probably coz I let him get away with so much crap, ha.)

Edited by author Thu Aug 16, '12 11:12pm PST

Maggie,- Tika, &- Porter

Aussie-tastic- Trio
Barked: Thu Aug 16, '12 11:56pm PST 
Hmm...maybe we will need a thread about being a good owner here in a bit wink Probably going to need to lift some spirits.

It is nice to know that most of us are real people and not these perfect owners that select words can make us sound like we are.


More Bored- Collies
Barked: Fri Aug 17, '12 4:29am PST 
- I too say the word "NO" when I see necessary.

- I don't crate my dogs while riding in the car - it's too small to fit 1 of them, let alone 3

- I leave them in the car (on cool days)

- 1/4 of my yard is lined with invisible fencing, 3/4 has real fence

- My dogs will spend an hour outside unsupervised (they are free to come in and out as they please)

- When I go through the Tim Hortons drive-thru I always get them each a timbit

- I walk my dogs off-leash in conservation areas where they are to be leashed (though I leash them when I see others with leashed dogs or no dogs at all)

- I used to walk Cobain off leash around the block when working on my off-leash heel

- I have used the prong collar on Cobain

- I go to the local dog park about once per week (essentially an off leash hiking trail, so I do find it better than most dog parks)

- If the dogs are ever left home alone, they typically are left uncrated

shrug I'm pretty terrible too laugh out loud
Toto, CD, RN, CGC

We don't do- doodles!!!
Barked: Fri Aug 17, '12 4:47am PST 
Some of my dogs do not even know what "sit" means.
Some of them pee on the floor in the bedroom and I just clean it up.
ALL of them surround me when I eat... yes, they get rewarded for it, too.
Basically, my dogs are well behaved IN SPITE of me.big grinred face
Rocky *CGC*- With the- angels.

Gone but never,- ever forgotten- xxx
Barked: Fri Aug 17, '12 6:00am PST 
Gosh... This could be fun lol...

Rocky begs like he has never been fed before and always gets food out of it....

I let him sleep in my bed with me and we always have a good snuggle on the sofa...

I encourage him to chase small, fuzzy animals. Just because of the sheer joy he gets out of it puppy

I have also always chased him around the house when he steals socks, now he thinks it's an awesome game!

Rocky as well as getting dog food, eats all human food... Even chocolate every now and again. Slap my wrist!!!!

Dexter is a whole other story... He escapes all the time and tries to herd everyone which most people just laugh off.

He jumps up on everyone!

And although he has very good recall, he runs riot all the time and is hardly ever on a leash. Both my dogs always walk of leash but because I live in the UK, it's allowed puppy

Oh! And when I first got Rocky, I didn't know any better and let a friend use an electric collar on him. It worked amazingly! He had it on for fifteen minutes and has never needed it since and he has never ran away since then either... That was 10 years ago...

I do feel a bit bad about that though


We are soooo bad!!! Lol.
Droopy CD,- RA, HH, TDI,- CGC

I didn't do it
Barked: Fri Aug 17, '12 6:15am PST 
Droopy begs so badly when I eat that he will have a line of drool from his mouth to the floor. Usually, I give in and give him something.

At PetCo, he drags me across the store to the self-service treat bar and eats every single cookie that has dropped on the floor. He has even jumped up and stolen a cookie or two from the bar itself. He will go behind the counter when we check out in hopes of schmoozing cookies from the checker.

He pulls on the leash when we go for walks. He tries to chase cats and squirrels.

His outdoor, non trial recall is terrible. If there is a bunny around, I might as well not exist. His prey drive is off the chart.

Droopy is a dumpster diver and a counter surfer. I just manage these behaviors. I have done very little as far as training.

He is also my obedience dog and has done well in indoor trial settings. laugh out loud
Sanka- I'll Miss- You

The ground is my- newspaper.
Barked: Fri Aug 17, '12 6:56am PST 
I got Sanka when I was a little girl. I tried to walk him when when he was a pup, but he was frightened. So, I assumed he didn't like walks....and thus never walked him. When I got older, a few years later, I would take him on an occasional walk. He loved it...but a bit too much, and his pulling and peeing was just too much for me, so I didn't take him on many walks again, for years. In high school, I was into sports that took up pretty much all my after school time, so in addition to no walks, Sanka rarely was even played with.

I regret it so much. That was his glory years. I could have used him as a training partner for my sports, but I just didn't know any better.

And now?

I love letting my dogs stick their heads out the car windows.
I don't always restrain them in the car.
They're outside dogs.
I don't constantly supervise them when outside (obviously).
I let Kato off leash in on leash areas.
I let Sanka eat the critters he catches.
I let Kato jump the fence at the dog park when there are no dogs there so he can romp in the corn field.
I encourage the chasing of squirrels and rabbits.
They always get leftovers from supper.

I suppose there's more, but I just can't think of them at the moment.smile

Edited by author Fri Aug 17, '12 6:57am PST


When the night- closes in I will- be there
Barked: Fri Aug 17, '12 7:00am PST 
We've done this before and we all felt better afterwards.

Sabi lays under my legs while I'm eating, sometimes things 'fall'
I have allowed a selective hearing issue to go unchecked
I never restrain them in the car
They are crated all day while I work
Shadow charges the fence at passers by, or dogs, or cats, or cars.
They all get bites of my food
They all get Timbits from the drive thru
Sometimes when they are training me I just throw up my hands and go with it. Its how we learned Tag.
As Toto said, in spite of melaugh out loud

Herpaderp-apotam- us
Barked: Fri Aug 17, '12 7:21am PST 
I feel less bad about some of the things I do now....

- Noah and I frequently share McDonalds kids meals

- I yell at him sometimes

- He has been crated for 10+ hours at a time if my workday is overly long (thankfully not so much anymore since he often goes to work with my wife now)

- I frequently walk him without a leash, knowing full well I can get him back to me within seconds

But he's still a good boy and I have no doubt that he still loves me.

- He's not restrained when he rides in the car, he just curls up and sleeps on his hammock seat cover
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