Dogs can not comprehend earning food as a reward for training and good behavior. This myth is false. Researchers have proven that dogs understand that their behavior influences their environment. If their behavior causes a change in their environment that pleases them, they won’t forget the behavior. If your dog grabs something and you chase after him, this is misconstrued as fun for him. Even though it may not be fun for you, your dog will remember how to get this attention. In the same way, if your dog’s behavior earns him a treat, or some of his dinner, he will learn to repeat these acceptable behaviors.

Using treats to train your dog increases your dog’s chances of becoming ill, or makes your dog unreliable around food. This myth is false. Your dog will only be reliable when you have food. All dogs should be taught a command, such as “off” or “leave it”. Dogs should not be left unsupervised in any area where they can be offered food by strangers. When food is properly used as a reward, not as a bribe, dogs will begin to learn to work for long periods of times before wanting a treat. How many of us get paid every hour, or expect to be paid every time we complete a task? Dogs learn to wait for their pay and continue your command while waiting. Properly trained dogs will learn to ignore food over time, whether it is on the kitchen table, the floor or from someone’s hand.

One major myth that is false is that dogs will generally misbehave because they are trying to be dominant and seeking higher rank. According to the American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior’s (AVSAB) recently released statement. The use of this dominance theory in behavior modification of animals, this theory has limited use in animal training and rank is rarely the motivation behind your dog’s bad behavior or actions.

In vice versa, there are a lot of myths about a need for dominating your dog. TV shows promote this false idea. When owners use forceful tactics to dominate and punish their dogs, the dog will generally shut down. What the dog has learned is to suppress their way of signaling they are uncomfortable in certain situations. This may cause a dog to escalate its behavior to lunging, biting, showing it’s teeth or growling.