So I chatted with you yesterday about learned helplessness and said I see it a lot while dogs are being groomed and when dogs are wearing headcollars.
Now…..I am not anti headcollars but sadly 95% aren’t introduced to dogs properly and they quite often don’t fit correctly either.
I HATE seeing dogs wearing headcollars, being dragged along on short leads with the headcollar riding up into the dog’s eye.
Every chance the dog gets, it’s rubbing its head on its owner's legs, scratching at it with their paws and even throwing themselves on the floor in an effort to get the headcollar off.
I also REALLY HATE it when I see a dog wearing a headcollar getting checked. What I mean by checked is when the lead is yanked causing the dogs head to be yanked around.
All the pressure on their fragile neck.....it makes me flinch.
Just because the dog isn’t fighting the headcollar every second doesn’t mean they are happy with it.
Remember the definition of learned helplessness from yesterday?
‘A dog has been repeatedly exposed to a scary object and has learned he no longer has control over the adverse situation. The dog shuts down and becomes helpless, knowing he can’t change the outcome.’
That scary object can be a headcollar.
Quite often the headcollar comes out to take the dog for a walk and they run away.
What does that tell us……
You got it!!! It tells us they hate the bloody thing and I don’t blame them.
I am also not keen on the figure of eight leads for a similar reason. I have seen horrible burns and rubs on dogs faces due to these leads. They also tend to get tighter and tighter and not release squeezing the dogs face.
Headcollars can be a useful training tool. emphasis on training tool. It should not be relied upon for long-term use.
There is no replacement for training a dog to walk on a loose lead walk.
If this is something your dog struggles with then I can help. If a headcollar is necessary I can teach you how to make your dog love their headcollar and make sure it fits correctly.
Teaching loose lead walking is much easier when your dog is young. I am not talking about 8 months, I am talking about 8 weeks.
It makes everything so much easier to start when the puppy is as young as possible.
Need help, give me a shout.