When I was in my late teens, I was attacked by a dog in the Walmart parking lot.
I spotted the huge dog and his tiny little owner walking across the parking lot. The dog was wearing a prong collar and the leash was tight as he pulled her across the lot. He was a huge black mastiff of some kind.
Rightfully so, I was leery of him.
But I was also a dog nut and I wanted to meet him. So I struck up a conversation with the lady from a good distance away.
We walked towards each other casually, while continuing our chat. When we were within the comfortable conversation distance, I followed the advice of so many dog trainers out there…I offered my hand for the dog to sniff. And…
Nothing. The dog looked at me but didn’t sniff or make any moves.
I dropped my hand and kept chatting.
Then BOOM. Seemingly out of nowhere, I was body-slammed by the dog who weighed as much as I did. He jumped up and his jaws went around the side of my chest.
I was ok.
Other than my severely wounded pride, the dog’s teeth had just barely opened the skin. It could’ve been so much worse.
At that time, I didn’t know. I thought it was random.
Now I know better.
I might not remember exactly what happened, but I know it certainly wasn’t random.
First of all, I shouldn’t have offered my hand for him to smell. That’s a hard no. Secondly, I should’ve listened to my gut and all the signs to stay away. Thirdly, that owner was NOT ready to be walking that dog in public.
Nothing is random to a dog. Every move, every choice, has meaning and intent.
Your dog that comes up to you and puts his head against your legs isn’t doing that randomly.
The dog that picks his food out of his bowl piece by piece and eats it elsewhere isn’t doing that randomly.
Your puppy that drops a stick at your feet isn’t doing that randomly.
The dog that barks out the window every day isn’t doing so randomly.
Dogs don’t do random things.
If you don’t know why they do what they do, sure, they might seem random. But when you learn dog psychology, and you understand what makes dogs tick, then you’ll see how every choice they make is calculated and full of intent.
When you have a consult with me, you’ll learn what makes your dog tick and why he does what he does. You’ll also learn how to respond to your dog in a way that is not random - but very meaningful to him.
When you understand your dog, and you know how to respond to his not-so-random behaviour, he’ll see you in a whole new light. You’ll earn his trust and respect.
Here's to you and your dog,