Nothing in life is free

Right now I am pissed right off. My landlord’s kids decided to throw a party. Early in the morning, my mother came over to pick me up to do laundry. Unfortunately I was dead asleep and did not hear the alarm or anything that ensued. A couple of the kids demanded to know who she was and what she was doing. Then they called her a bitch, made obscene gestures and scared her enough that she did not even come to my door; just drove away and called me on the phone. We’re still waiting for the landlords to come home.

We’ve heard some of the laments from our landlords before. Their children are lazy, rude and unappreciative of the advantages they have. Our landlord regularly mows the lawn; his children never stoop so low. They are helpless when confronted with a set of gardening tools or cleaning equipment. I have never seen them in the laundry room, but you can bet I’ve met their mother in there.

They are clear products of parents who never set boundaries or expected their kids to adhere to a standard of conduct. Everything these kids got, got handed to them on a silver platter. Consequently, they are useless wastes of skin. What is disturbing me is that they are now threatening wastes of skin. My mother is 73 years old and was deeply frightened by the menacing behaviour of these teenagers.

We might think that this is a human issue, but it is also an issue of importance to those of us who own dominant, pushy dogs who will, if not properly trained and socialized, use aggression to get what they want. Shibas perfectly fit this description. If they are handed everything they get without having to work for it through obedience or certain behaviours, they will assume that they have the right to take it. And take it they will.

Biting dogs are usually made, not born. People just ignore or don’t recognize the signs. It starts small – a dog pushing ahead of the owner out the door or growling over food or a cherished toy. An owner who makes excuses for their pet or who does not pay attention is telling the dog that they accept the dog’s taking an Alpha role. This enables the dog to think that it has the position to possess, warn and eventually take the final step of attacking to maintain its perceived standing.

I believe that when it comes to dominance, you cannot be your dog’s friend. You can love your dog and rely on his companionship, but you always have to be willing to stomp to death the slightest notion that your dog has the standing to threaten you or any other human being. You must always be on the alert and be ready and willing to deal with dominant behaviour.

This doesn’t mean that you take a baseball bat and beat the everlivingfuck out of your pooch if he lifts his lip. It means that you need to take the time out of your day to regularly enforce your dog’s subordinate position with you and your family. It means sometimes feeding your dog his meals by hand – only after he obeys commands or is maintaining a certain position. It means insisting that he sit quietly and wait at the door when you open it instead of bolting out ahead of you.

It means involving your spouse, friends and children in your dog’s education as a subordinate pack member. There’s a bit of an ego boost when your dog will only listen to you, but do you really want your dog to ignore or threaten your spouse, family or (Dog forbid) your child when he’s being told something that he doesn’t really want to do? No. Especially if it involves removing something from his mouth.

I believe if these children were raised with the NILF principles I’ve outlined for dogs, they might not be the self-serving, rude, lazy, useless pieces of shit that they are today. Tierce might have followed in their footsteps if I had allowed his pushy behaviour to develop into true aggression. Fortunately, there is no way that I am going to allow a dog of mine to be a little shit who thinks he’s all that and a big bag of kibble. I’m thinking more of a small bag myself.

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