Dog Training World Forums Aggression Problems General Aggression Problem Discussion Humans OK @ Assessing Some Social Situations BUT Underestimate Aggression Reply To: Humans OK @ Assessing Some Social Situations BUT Underestimate Aggression

  • Arthur Lopatin

    June 18, 2023 at 11:15 am

    Horrifying stories. IMO dogs have most of the emotions we have, including jealousy, and are far more intelligent than they are given credit for (check out How Stella Learned to Talk and Chaser, for example). If I’m right about this, then the basic problem is not anthropomorphizing per se; rather it’s anthropmorphizing ignorantly. Their emotions are triggered somewhat differently than human emotions — they tend to be more impulsive — but not as differently as we might like to think and — even more importantly — dogs don’t speak English, so you have to know how to read their body language and vocalisations and know when/how to manage and when/how to train (as per FSDT). To do that, takes curiosity, commitment, ability to admit and learn from mistakes, physical/emotional competence, and a lot of time. Easier to look the other way and blame the dog. It’s an old, old story, dating back at least to the Middle Ages in Europe. duckduckgo ‘animals on trial medieval times’ if you are interested. I don’t think things have changed so much. Related thought: whenever I hear stories like this, I wonder how different is the behavior of a lot of dogs (and wolves, as per Schenkel’s study) from the behavior of human felons in a max-security prison.