“A dog reflects the family life. Whoever saw a frisky dog in a gloomy family, or a sad dog in a happy one? Snarling people have snarling dogs, dangerous people have dangerous ones. And their passing moods may reflect the passing moods of others.”
- Sherlock Holmes, The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes
To strip away our preconceived ideas, we need to first understand why our attitudes to dogs have changed.
So, what did happen? When did those attitudes change? When did “man’s best friend” turn into “man’s duplicitous little backstabber who’ll take over the household if you let them on the sofa”?
This whole change in human attitude is more to do with the change in human expectations and lifestyle than the canine species plotting to overthrow the human race.
As our lives have become more and more technologically advanced, we’ve left our doggy friends behind.
When humans and dogs started to live together, thousands of years ago humans gained a friend who offered companionship, an animal who can guard, and a sentry who could bark to warn of dangerous situations. Not only that, but they made a long-lasting bond with an animal who could do very specific jobs that humans could not manage. In return, the dog gained companionship, food, shelter and the joy of using their instincts to work. Dogs and humans lived side by side, together and understood the way each other saw the world around them. The relationship between the human and dog was one built on trust.
In today’s world of instant fixes, more and more people look for theories and ideas that will sort out any issues with their dog immediately. If those fixes don’t work quickly, then they assume that the dog has an insurmountable problem. In the worst cases, these dogs can be put to sleep for no good reason.
Because our lives have become so technologically advanced so quickly, we have assumed that new gadgets and gizmos will solve all our doggy problems. Sometimes, these problems are being caused by the gadgets and gizmos. Trying to mask a problem never works – you need to get to the root of the issue to be able to solve it.
Instead of looking for the quick fix, we’ll be exploring how to Inspire your dog (hence the title of the site), and in doing that, you’ll Inspire yourself. One of the first steps is to think about what it is you expect from your dog, and then discover whether those expectations are fair. Lots of people subconsciously hold their dogs to a higher standard of behaviour than they hold themselves, which can’t be fair. We’ll explore that concept much more in other articles on the site.
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