Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Ontario Canada
Submit Photo: 3
Photo Submissions 119 Times in 117 Posts
Sorry for your unfortunate situation. But I have to disagree with your statement ..."The worst thing (I feel) you can do for a dog is to raise it by attempting to change it's personality and inborn desires. Yes, you can train it in a positive way, but you'll never permanently change it's personality!"
Temperament is not immutable. It can very easily be changed especially in puppy hood. Your problem was probably not being prepared to know how to bring up a puppy . Don't feel bad. A lot of people are in that boat. A lot of professional trainers do not have much faith in the Volhard puppy tests. It is a snapshot and is very limited, and quite often is not performed accurately. Breeders would be better off working on areas that are not up to par. eg. shyness rather than labelling it with a score.
To quote Ian Dunbar. "While a puppy temperament test can provide some insight into a puppy's personality, there are serious limitations on their ability to predict how a dog will behave when it grows up. Far and away, the most important factor in an adult dog's behavior is the training and socialization they received throughout their life. Any puppy can be trained, regardless of how they perform on a temperament test.
Unlike obedience training and behavior modification, temperament training must be viewed in a developmental context and MUST be accomplished during puppyhood. Preventive intervention is the key; to delay is utter folly. Preventative measures are easy, efficient, effective, virtually effortless, and even enjoyable, whereas in most cases, treating temperament problems in adult dogs is so time-consuming, so difficult and often, so dangerous.
Just as it is impossible to breed a dog that always scores a perfect 300 in the ring and never breaks sit-stays, it is impossible to breed a dog with a perfect temperament - a dog which never fights and never bites. Certainly good breeding is essential but by itself, selective breeding is not sufficient. Perfect scores and reliable stays are largely the product of good training. Similarly, dogs have to be trained not to fight and TRAINED never to bite people.
The temperament of every dog needs to be modified to some degree - molded to suit the owners' lifestyle. All dogs are different: some dogs lack confidence, whereas others are too pushy, some are sluggish and others are too active, some are shy and reserved, standoffish, asocial, or antisocial, whereas others are overly friendly, or rambunctious. People tend to forget that a domestic dog is not domesticated until it has been adequately trained and socialized. If the dog is not socialized and has not learned to inhibit biting, then the so-called domestic dog (of any breed) is much worse than a wild animal.
Dave and Molly
Ian Dunbar was awarded the Outstanding Achievement Award from I.P.D.T.A. Here's a picture of me accepting the award on his behalf.
Member of IAABC ,International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants , Member of Pet Professional Guild
Last edited by davetgabby; 01-25-2011 at 07:06 PM.