I was all set to post about my experiences at the Duke Canine Cognition Center but I am so mad that I will have to postpone that for another day. On Monday mornings we like to go to the dog park in Chapel Hill to meet our pit bull friend Cherie. She is a sweet girl but sensitive so we don't go to the park at times when there are lots of dogs and people. Unfortunately when we got to the park today it was packed. Cherie's person decided not to bring her in but Barbara let us go in to run around for a bit. The park is quite large and Ambrose and I mostly played with each other since Barbara did not like the play style of some of the other dogs and was rather annoyed with the casual attitude and general cluelessness of some of the people there.
We weren't there long when Barbara decided to take us out. All of a sudden a big dog fight broke out. She called us over to her and put on our leashes and took us straight out of the park as she didn't want us involved. The dogs were picking on a young Bernese Mountain Dog but the worst thing was the idiot owners! Barbara said many HBO words about their lack of intelligence. One idiot person grabbed his dogs and did an alpha roll on him. Like that is going to teach the dog not to fight! None of the people whose dogs were involved in the fight took their dogs out of the park even though the dogs were still very aroused. They let their dogs go after the Bernese again and pin her.
We did not hang around, even outside the fence, to see what happened but I have a few things to say. First of all the alpha roll is a ridiculous way to train a dog and it is a good way for a person to get bitten. No matter what some famous TV trainers do, it is still not right. The Association of Pet Dog Trainers has come out with a position statement on "dominance" in dog training. You can read it here along with lots of good information about proper training, dog park play and safety tips.
Just say no to the dominance model of dog training!!!