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Stupid “Dog Trainer” Tricks

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Stupid "Dog Trainer" Tricks

Watch the video below and decide about this variation on ‘Might Is Right’ Dog Training.

Multiple Choice

For fear of being beaten, will these dogs learn?:

  1. To avoid this garbage pail
  2. To avoid all garbage pails
  3. To avoid this garbage pail when this human is watching
  4. To avoid the garbage pail when any human is watching
  5. To avoid humans
  6. To avoid humans around garbage pails
  7. That perhaps people that would be hard pressed to successfully stock shelves but decide to “work with animals because they love them”, don’t necessarily know enough to:
    1. train their own dog
    2. train someone else’s dog
    3. volunteer or work at a shelter for anything other than cleaning up poop
    4. change a child’s diaper
    5. wipe their own rear ends
    6. all of the above


John ‘Ask The Dog Guy’ Wade
Embracing Science and Common Sense
London’s #1 Referred Puppy and Dog Trainer


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2 thoughts on “Stupid “Dog Trainer” Tricks”

  1. Thank you for showing this disturbing video! Is anyone else seeing the Shiba offering calming cues (stretch, yawn) that indicate the dog’s stress? Please tell me this was posted by a regular dog owner and not someone claiming to be a professional. Yikes! Keep up the great work, John Wade!

    1. While useful to recognize, far too much is often made of what dog trainer Turid Rugaas referred to as “calming signals.” Yes, there are multiple physiological indicators that a dog is under stress and yes if someone is going to call themselves a dog trainer they’d best be able to recognize the physical signs, and more importantly know how to gauge THE LEVEL of stress in the individual dog. Learning new things (changing an established behavior, exercising control over a genetically influenced drive, etc.) is going to be stressful so one needn’t panic if a dog exhibits a calming signal.

      Dog trainers, particularly those, ‘All Positive/Purely Positive/Force-Free/No Need For No!/Skinner Meant Two Quadrants Not Four/Everyone Gets A Trophy/Don’t Wreck The Dog’s Self-Esteem/Sit Down And Talk About Our Feelings’ that get their knickers in a knot when they observe a dog exhibiting a “calming signal” because a dog is “stressed” need to learn a bit about evolutionary biology before they worry too much about “calming signals” as a sign the approach used to shape behavior is invalid, inappropriate, etc. The student, whether a dog, a wolf, an ape or a human being, will always be stressed when learning/being taught to do something of significance. It is the teacher’s task to assess the individual student’s capacity for stress and teach in a manner that stretches the “elastic band” (that is the path of behavior modification) and refrains from snapping it (‘Might Is Right’ dog training for example, but there are other ways to snap it).

      The calming signals in this video were expected. The dog in the video, faced with irrational or perplexing behavior provided signs indicating its perspective on the matter. I shared the dog’s view. However, the dog would have exhibited those or other signals using an alternate more intelligent approach to “don’t do this.”

      Just an example of yet another person that decided to work with dogs would be better than stocking shelves and so-called themselves a dog trainer, and in the unregulated industry that is dog training – Poof – they’re a dog trainer. Failing which they seem to become life coaches.

      Not good for dogs, dog owners, and dog training.


      John ‘Ask The Dog Guy’ Wade
      Embracing Science and Common Sense

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