There is absolutely no place for anger in dog training. I say this because lately I haven’t been feeling well. Some days I’m good, like today. And some I’m not so good, like yesterday. And when I don’t feel very well my patience gets short and I get angry much easier.
Getting angry at the dogs for not doing what I want them to do, or what I think they should do, is a very bad thing. A good dog trainer will assess what the dog knows and adjust herself to that level and train the dog accordingly, with love and patience. The dog is doing the best he can. Dogs don’t feel spite like we do, they don’t try to ‘get back at us’ like humans can. Dogs are dogs and not humans in suits.
Getting angry at a dog in training says absolutely nothing about the dog, and everything about the trainer. I do not abuse the dogs or hit them or anything, I just get frustrated and have to stop. I have to know my limits as a trainer and as a human because, the gods know, I have some big limits.
Anger teaches the dog nothing except to be afraid of humans. And there are enough bad humans in the world that can take care of that all by themselves. And when we were in Las Vegas doing agility and made Las Vegas hotel reservations, the dogs did their best in the hotels even though the noises can be very scary.
Sometimes I get frustrated with Chase. Like when we were practicing obedience and rally at the last USDAA agility trial. But seriously, what a difficult environment for him. He is a good boy and he tries hard, and it’s not his fault that he gets so distracted and so worked up around agility. It’s my fault, for not doing more drive shaping with him when he was younger.
Chase is a good border collie boy. He does try his best and he loves to work. The smooth collies are also very good and do their best. I love them all. It’s up to me to adjust myself to their level, as they cannot adjust themselves to mine.