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  1. #21
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    I don't think it's funny. People falsely attributing human emotions/ attitudes to dogs to "explain" their behavior is a major cause of dog abuse. Probably the worst is the "guilty" dog who "knows he was bad". The second-worst is the "dominance" excuse- the idea that dogs form packs, and try to become dominant was discredited decades ago. Most dogs who do things their owners describe as "dominance" are just very confused, undertrained dogs. Who get even more confused when their owners respond to their behavior by trying to "put them in their place".

    Most "funny" stories about "dog attitude" just make the dog owners sound clueless, and/or make you feel really bad for the poor dog being so misunderstood.

    We humans do dogs a huge disservice when we attribute non-doggy emotions to them. They don't think in terms of spite, so why would we want to attribute that negative emotion to them?
    ESPECIALLY with "potty" incidents. Dogs don't think about pee/poop at all the way people do. People find it disgusting; dogs like it. Many dogs eat poop. Most dogs enjoy smelling pee, and deliberately place pee in locations so other dogs can smell it.
    So how do you go from a dog's attitude towards elimination to a dog somehow figuring out you don't like pee/poop, and deliberately placing it somewhere to "make you angry" or to "spite" you?



  2. #22
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    Talking

    Yes, this is supposed to be a FUN thread, no training advice or dog whispering needed.

    Except for anyone who believes that dogs can't think of themselves as being a princess, you apparently have never spent significant time around a doberman.
    I will gladly send my brother's dog to you for a few weeks.



  3. #23
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    Well, I guess I agree with wendy. I don't find this to be a funny or fun dog thread at all. Funny and fun is chasing frisbees and playing in the lawn sprinkler and squeezing squeaky toys, or walks in the woods and bike rides. Inappropriate elimination in the house and a dog refusing to go through a baby gate because he doesn't want to be locked up for the day are not fun. Not fun for the people, or the dogs. Especially when the dogs are a GSD and a Doberman - large, powerful breed dogs that get a bad rap anyway because of inadequate training and socialization. If today you are thinking the Doberman has an attitude and is flipping you the finger, then tomorrow what if the dog bites you or runs off down the street and terrorizes a kid and refuses to listen to you? Would that be funny too?

    Would it be funny to have a thread about horses who rear and strike their owners, or break away from the trailer and run down the road with their tail over their back? Hardly. And I don't find it funny when dogs are behaving in inappropriate ways due to lack of training, socialization, fear, and so forth.

    But ok, I'm done. I'll stop wrecking the "fun" and shut up about it. Carry on............



  4. #24
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    Can someone explain to me why when my dog has done something wrong, I can tell the second I walk in the door? I can't even see what she's done, whether it's counter surfing or she was on the couch, I KNOW when she's been naughty. I don't punish her, but she TELLS me when she's done something wrong....



  5. #25
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    I think it's hilarious that we're getting all up in arms arguing that dogs cannot do things out of "spite", but there is no dissension whatsoever that cats can and do.
    bar.ka think u al.l. susp.ect
    free bar.ka and tidy rabbit



  6. #26
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    Professor of Psychology, Dr. Alexandra Horowitz's research led to a study where dogs were separated from their owners and then given access to a tasty treat, or sometimes not given the treat. The owners were told false information - the dog inappropriately ate the treat - or the dog was a good dog and did not take the food. The owner was then reuinted with the dog, and were asked to give their observations. When the owner thought the dog did something naughty, they declared that the dog looked guilty and knew he had been bad. And when the owner thought the dog had done the right thing and not taken the food, they did not notice this look of guilt. The "guilty look" actually had no correspondence whatsoever to the dog actually eating the food or not. And what's more interesting is that the dog's "guilty look" became even more apparent and pronounced when the dog was chastised by the owner for taking the food. Even if the dog had not taken the food!

    I would bet that you "noticing this look of guilt and the dog knowing she did something wrong" is an act of total coincidence. If you walked in the door and thought the dog looked guilty, yet you did not find any evidence, you would simply ignore it and forget it. But if you think the dog looks guilty and then you find the stick of butter gone off the counter, then it reinforces in your mind that the dog knew she was bad and looked guilty.

    Guilt is a human trait that does not exist within the dog's mind.



  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rubyfree View Post
    I think it's hilarious that we're getting all up in arms arguing that dogs cannot do things out of "spite", but there is no dissension whatsoever that cats can and do.
    Maybe in the world you live in. But in the world I live in, cats are not humans and they do not possess all of the traits that we do.

    Yes I believe that animals are complicated beings who are capable of feeling many emotions and that they can have a deep bond with their caretakers. But I don't believe that they act out of spite or revenge in the way that a human does.



  8. #28
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    I'd love to know the explanation behind my (now long-deceased, bless his spoiled little heart) Yorkie's apparent "spite peeing".

    I got Andrew when he was 4 years old. His original owner was giving him up because she was re-marrying her ex-husband, and Andrew and the husband did not care for each other.

    When Andrew heard Ted's car pull into the driveway, he'd look around for something belonging to Ted and pee on it. Favorite targets were Ted's golf bag and stereo. But anything would do - it just had to be something of Ted's.

    Now, I know dogs are usually decent judges of character, and I personally would have tried a bit harder to make it work. It was not an insurmountable problem, and I'd not have given up my dog. Behavior modification for everyone involved would probably have worked well. Even with me, Andrew was always something of a possessive and clingy little dog when it came to "his" person. But I never had a problem with boyfriends and Andrew - they just made sure to make friends, play with him, and give him enough attention that it just didn't create issues. He was really a genuinely likeable little dog as long as he felt secure. The guy I dated during most of Andrew's tenure in my life was quite fond of him, and was enough of an adult to not feel jealous of a nine-pound dog.



  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Auventera Two View Post
    Well, I guess I agree with wendy. I don't find this to be a funny or fun dog thread at all. Funny and fun is chasing frisbees and playing in the lawn sprinkler and squeezing squeaky toys, or walks in the woods and bike rides. Inappropriate elimination in the house and a dog refusing to go through a baby gate because he doesn't want to be locked up for the day are not fun. Not fun for the people, or the dogs. Especially when the dogs are a GSD and a Doberman - large, powerful breed dogs that get a bad rap anyway because of inadequate training and socialization. If today you are thinking the Doberman has an attitude and is flipping you the finger, then tomorrow what if the dog bites you or runs off down the street and terrorizes a kid and refuses to listen to you? Would that be funny too?

    Would it be funny to have a thread about horses who rear and strike their owners, or break away from the trailer and run down the road with their tail over their back? Hardly. And I don't find it funny when dogs are behaving in inappropriate ways due to lack of training, socialization, fear, and so forth.

    But ok, I'm done. I'll stop wrecking the "fun" and shut up about it. Carry on............


    I will video him the next time I am home and you can decide for yourself if you think his behavior is anxious or playful. I don't think 'playfullness' is a human emotion that shouldn't be attributed to a dog, I didn't say he runs around the table out of spite, I said he uses it as a way to play. I don't think running around with your dog is too far off from playing with a squeeky toy, except that some of us are more capable of running around a playing.

    For the record, dog lives in a six bedroom house with my retired parents. He has access to all bedrooms, the den, the computer room, the basement and entertainment rooms, and to all of the bathrooms. My parents literally spend all day with him, he is only in a crate at night or when my parents go out (grocery, golfing, etc) so I hardly think its fear of being 'locked up for the day' being as he is only blocked from the kitchen and dining room. I don't think he has ever truly been locked up for more than a couple hours unless its bedtime (and he is fabulous about getting in his crate).

    He also knows ALL ABOUT food motivated training . Because he is a big GSD-x he has a A LOT of hair and we live somewhere where it gets HOT and HUMID over the summer, so my parents brush him out every day during the summer to help cut back on shedding & keep him cool. The only problem is that he's not a real big fan. So at the beginning of the summer my dad would grab some treats and walk him out to a concrete bench in the garden in our backyard, he'd have Duma get up on the bench, give him a treat, brush him out, and then give him treats for being a good boy, and they'd be done. After about a week every time my dad would grab the brush Duma would run out to the bench and wait for him . He's a clever boy. He taught himself how to pull open the back door and theoretically he could let himself inside but after he pulls it all the way open he gets nervous about going through. Its a little unsettling to be at my parents alone and hear the back door slam repeatedly but I'm used to it now (I have a video of him doing it and me trying to get him to come through if anyone wants to see...)
    He also knows if he howls/screams (he must be part husky...) that my parents will come do as he wishes (this is how we truly know when he is tired of being locked up, he starts howling from his crate bright and early when he is ready to go out).


    He also lives with our 13 yr old JRT (who is a bit of a devil, if I would ever be worried about a dog taking down a baby gate, it would be her) The JRT is used to people moving out as she has been around for both of my brothers going off to college and then me going away too, so she is excited when I come home but goes about her day as usual. Duma will spend the first few hours that I am home following me everywhere, i have to take him outside, i take him on his walk, he won't let me out of his sight just to make sure that i'll stick around for a while .

    All and all I think we lucked out with his personality, as he is our first pound puppy.



  10. #30
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    OK. We get it. No fun having ever, move along, only science and cold hard facts folks.

    I'm sure most of us are aware that anthropomorphizing our pets behaviors is just projecting.

    I'm sure most of us on this thread also get a giggle or two out of doing so on occasion.

    My best friend, who has Bacon the cat at the moment, had a new roomie move in. New roomie is quite a slob. BF spent the first two weeks slowly filling with rage at new roomies housekeeping skills, or lack thereof. At the end of the second week, BF walked in the door to find the pile of wet laundry that had been laying in front of the washer still there, despite her having asked new roomie to relocate said pile of laundry while she was out. BF dropped her keys on the floor, balled her fists and screamed at the ceiling. As she finished venting her frustration, she looked down and watched Bacon stroll casually into the kitchen, look right at her, walk to the pile of laundry and take a mighty fine kitty dump on the clothes. The clothes had been there for days, Bacon had never before (and hasn't since) done anything even remotely like that. It sure made us laugh.
    bar.ka think u al.l. susp.ect
    free bar.ka and tidy rabbit



  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sabino View Post
    Can someone explain to me why when my dog has done something wrong, I can tell the second I walk in the door? I can't even see what she's done, whether it's counter surfing or she was on the couch, I KNOW when she's been naughty. I don't punish her, but she TELLS me when she's done something wrong....
    Because your dog has paired you coming home with certain conditions that equal an unpleasant response from you.

    You might think she is reacting out of guilt, but she pays a whole lot of attention to what happens before what happens happens. You think it is couch guilt, but in her doggy mind it has more to do with the fact that she noticed that when you look at the couch first and then look at her, you get upset and speak in a tone that worries her, or your body language changes. That glance at the couch might only be a millisecond long, and not something that you're even aware of doing, but she pays attention to stuff like that.

    Your dog is telling you that she pays attention to all the tiny signals you give off in ways that you are not even aware of. She is reacting to you, not the idea that she has done something wrong.
    Sheilah



  12. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mara View Post
    I'd love to know the explanation behind my (now long-deceased, bless his spoiled little heart) Yorkie's apparent "spite peeing".

    I got Andrew when he was 4 years old. His original owner was giving him up because she was re-marrying her ex-husband, and Andrew and the husband did not care for each other.

    When Andrew heard Ted's car pull into the driveway, he'd look around for something belonging to Ted and pee on it. Favorite targets were Ted's golf bag and stereo. But anything would do - it just had to be something of Ted's.

    Now, I know dogs are usually decent judges of character, and I personally would have tried a bit harder to make it work. It was not an insurmountable problem, and I'd not have given up my dog. Behavior modification for everyone involved would probably have worked well. Even with me, Andrew was always something of a possessive and clingy little dog when it came to "his" person. But I never had a problem with boyfriends and Andrew - they just made sure to make friends, play with him, and give him enough attention that it just didn't create issues. He was really a genuinely likeable little dog as long as he felt secure. The guy I dated during most of Andrew's tenure in my life was quite fond of him, and was enough of an adult to not feel jealous of a nine-pound dog.
    Dogs use urine marking as a form of communication. They urine mark the edges of their boundary and they leave urine in strategic locations where they want other dogs find it. Dogs do not use urine in spite or jealousy or anger or anything else. It's like you leaving a post-it note on the bag of cookies "These are mine."

    The higher ranking dog in a household will sometimes pee overtop of the pee and poop spots of the lower ranking dogs. It's not an act of spite. It's communication. My space. I own this. Stay back. Everybody should pee HERE. Urine marking is a very effective communication tool for dogs.

    By urinating on something that belonged to (and smelled) like Ted, Andrew was probably trying to convey the message "I rank higher than Ted. I pee on Ted's scent to cover it up." He wasn't thinking "Gee, I really hate Ted so I'm going to purposely pee on something that belongs to him so that it ruins it, and ruin's Ted's day and Ted has a lot of work to do by cleaning up my pee." That's how PEOPLE think. Not how dog's think.

    In my 3 dog pack, the hound is the alpha. NOBODY screws with him. Underneath him is the Pit Bull. Underneath the Pit Bull is the Weimaraner. The Pit Bull will pee *ON* the Weim while she is peeing. She will be squatted down peeing, and he will walk up behind her and hike his leg over top of her and pee down her back. He takes every opportunity afforded to him to tell her "I am higher ranking than you." These two are best friends. Neither of them really like the hound much, and the hound doesn't care for them. He is a loner that prefers to do his own thing and not be messed with. But the Pit and Weim play together, sleep together, they are buddies.

    If one wanted to assign human emotion to these dogs, there would be no reason why the Pit would want to spite the Weim and ruin her day by peeing on her. But he does it all the time if we don't let them out at separate times. He will pee all over her and then they will run off together bouncing and play fighting. She seems clueless that he just took a whiz all over her silky blue hair.

    The Pit has NEVER done this to the hound. He has no desire to seek out where the hound went and pee on top of it. But he seeks out the Weim spots and pees on top of every poop and pee she makes in the yard.

    If anything, the Pit and the Hound don't really like each other much, and if this was out of spite and hatred, the Pit would be trying to pee on everything the hound touches or pees on as an "I'll show you." But it doesn't work that way. He knows the hound outranks him. He has zero motivation to challenge that pecking order, or get on top of the hound. But he wants the Weim to know daily that he outranks her.

    Dogs use pee and poop as a powerful communication tool. They don't use it out of anger or spite.



  13. #33
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    I've had my dog Scooter for 10 years now. I got him right before I started dating an abusive guy. Of course the guy wasn't abusive at first, like many abusers he slowly lured me in. Anyway, Scooter didn't care for him right from the start. Every time my ex would try to leave something in my apartment, Scooter would shred it (starting after the second date when the ex lent me a book). This is the only time I ever had problems with him chewing things he wasn't supposed to. He would also occasionally pee on clothing or whatever that the guy left there.

    It wasn't spite, though. Scooter was uncomfortable with the guy and expressing it in dog-language. He didn't like things that smelled like a person who scared him. I should have listened, that dog knew more than I did back then. He never did stop that behavior over the couple of years I spent dating that guy, but never showed any sign of it with subsequent partners who are actually nice guys and good with dogs.

    I do have to say that it is incredibly tempting to anthropomorphize Scooter, though. That dog gets up to all kinds of nutty things including inviting himself along on a cattle drive and taking a road trip to a labor union conference where he sat in on all kinds of organizing workshops and the like (the only two times he's escaped in 10 years with me). I'm never tempted at all to do it with my other 3 dogs but Scooter is pretty unusual.



  14. #34
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    I had a vindictive pooper (my cocker spaniel). She never ever had an accident in the house ever, unless she was shut out of the room when my daughter had friends spend the night....then she left land mines.
    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." ~Immanuel Kant



  15. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by LauraKY View Post
    I had a vindictive pooper (my cocker spaniel). She never ever had an accident in the house ever, unless she was shut out of the room when my daughter had friends spend the night....then she left land mines.
    I prefer to think that situations like this are more physiological in nature........there are strange people in the house who bring with them strange sounds and smells....the daily routine is interrupted....the dog is more mentally and physically stimulated due to the increased activity and unusual circumstances in the house - especially if these are little kids (girls) there will be more shrieking, squealing, and other noises that are likely to alarm the dog but the dog is not allowed in the room to investigate.....the dog's bowels are hyperstimulated due to the release of stress hormones and adrenaline into the blood stream, which is a natural reaction in such a situation (how many times have YOU gotten a belly ache/nervous stomach and had to "go" during stressful, unusual cirumstances?).......dog poops on the floor inappropriately.....but then human says dog is vindictive.......



  16. #36
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    I've always thought inappropriate chewing (I don't mean the puppy kind due to teething or excess energy) to be more of a stress-related/anxiety thing as well, rather than vindictive. My hound has more or less outgrown the chewing thing, but occasionally if we are gone for longer than he'd like, he'll "relocate" things that smell like us, like hats and shoes. He used to chew them, but now I think he just likes having things that smell strongly of us near him.



  17. #37
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    Good gosh. Y'all are total thread killers. Saw two pages and was excited to read about silly animal stories and instead was greeted with this. I love this forum but sometimes y'all take yourselves way too seriously.

    For everyone who had a sense of humor and shared, I really enjoyed reading your posts.



  18. #38
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    I agreee with GraceLikeRain, and I'd like to add that ultimately what matters in these instances is how we react to them in the moment and long term when dealing with our pets. Our cats/dogs don't care one whit about whether or not we call them "princesses" or "vindictive" or anything else on an internet forum.

    Describing pet emotions in human terms is just not an exact science.
    Last edited by Wayside; Nov. 26, 2011 at 11:56 PM. Reason: typo
    "In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn’t merely train him to be semi-human. The point of it is to open oneself to the possibility of becoming part dog."
    -Edward Hoagland



  19. #39
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    Honestly I do see what posters like wendy and A2 are saying. I have seen a lot of abuse caused by people misinterpreting animal behavior as being malicious or spiteful. I think there's no harm in a little fun, but I also think the way we talk about things does shape how we think about them and it can be harmful to believe a dog is being vindictive when in fact the behavior is caused by other factors. I don't think there's anything wrong with pointing that out in a thread like this.

    I'm out of funny dog stories that I can think of at the moment, but I've got a story about calling an animal "princess." The animal might not care, but my husband sure did when I called his horse "princess" enough that all our neighbors thought it was her name. One was chatting with him over the fence and asked, "So how is Princess doing?" and when he figured out that she was talking about his mare he came in to lecture me.



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