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My Top 10 Pet Peeves About Pet People

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My Top 10 Pet Peeves About Pet People

I’ve been an animal lover all my life, and through the years, I’ve developed some pet peeves when it comes to people interacting with pets. Here’s my list of the top offenders:

10. Not giving dogs enough space

All dogs need space, much more so than humans. Without space, many don’t feel safe. People often allow their dogs to come running up to my car in anticipation of me letting my dogs out. They can wait forever, as  I won’t let Sanchez or Gina out when dogs are crowding their space.

9. Telling me I am bribing my dogs when I am rewarding them

My dogs work hard for a living, and they are very well paid. If they are in an environment with high levels of distraction, I will reward them for paying attention to me. It not only helps them listen to me, but it builds their confidence and strengthens our bond. Gina is very dog distracted. (That’s why Guide Dogs for the Blind career changed her when she was a puppy in training.) While she’s improved considerably, it is something I will always have to pay attention to. We recently went to an event with dozens of dogs nearby. I asked her to sit and started rewarding her. An acquaintance said, “That’s it. Just keep bribing her with food.” I said, “Would you work for free?”

8. Telling me how I should feel about my dogs

Only I know what my dogs are capable of and what their needs are. I was once meeting a man for a first date, which involved going for a hike with Sanchez, after our meal. When I  went to move my car so that Sanchez would be entirely in the shade, he said, “Don’t worry. He’ll be fine.” Not only a pet peeve, but also a deal breaker. There wasn’t a second date. (And I did move the car anyhow.)

7. Giving my dog a treat without asking me

Sanchez is allergic to chicken and eats a gluten-free diet. But, he’s a Lab, and, left to his own choice, he’ll eat anything. I’ve worked hard to clear him of all allergies by paying careful attention to his diet. When strangers don’t ask before they feed him, it creates problems for us.

6. Giving my dog a treat when I’ve just called him to me

Unfortunately, this scenario happens frequently… I am walking my dogs off-leash. They see a stranger with food for them (see pet peeve #7). I call them back to me, and the stranger feeds them when they run to him. They’ve just been rewarded for unwanted behavior. Gina’s recall is good enough that she’ll come back to me when called. But, honestly, Sanchez’s isn’t. It only makes my training that much harder.

Next: Top 5 Pet Peeves about Pet People

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Lisa Spector

Lisa Spector is a concert pianist, Juilliard graduate, and canine music expert. She is co-founder of Through a Dog's Ear, the first music clinically demonstrated to calm the canine nervous system. Their new high-tech pet gadget, iCalmDog, is the portable solution to canine anxiety. Lisa shares her home and her heart with her two "career change" Labrador Retrievers from Guide Dogs for the Blind, Sanchez and Gina. Follow Lisa's blog here.

343 comments

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5:28AM PST on Dec 2, 2013

Love your pet

11:03PM PDT on Sep 23, 2013

Don't bring your pets around people?...or maybe tell people the Do's & Don'ts beforehand.....I'm sure most are well meaning..you just have to say something..this article would've been unneccessary

8:19AM PDT on Sep 12, 2013

noted, sounds like this is a backstabbing post!

8:12AM PDT on Sep 12, 2013

AS TO CAT KILLER -- He should NOT be set free -- he MUST be thrown in a rubber room -- he's a danger to all of society -- animals, humans! NOT holding a human accountable for his/her actions, a human who has the ability to choose, to know right from wrong, tells you about those in charge, those in positions of authority who make decisions that affect all of us -- these people in charge must come to see the light and hold Graham and all the Grahams of the world responsible for their depravity, for their cruelty, for their criminality, for their lack of conscience -- they're MURDERERS and should be thrown in jail and rubber rooms!

5:45PM PDT on Sep 8, 2013

The man that stole all of those cats and tortured and killed them deserves multiple years of hard time in a prison. But he will graduate to people soon enough and then do his time. He should be locked away for life now, to save his future victims.

8:31PM PDT on Sep 7, 2013

For the piece of trash that killed all of these innocent cats. This would be my justice for you if I was in charge: Life without parole wollowing around in cat piss and cat shit and then cleaning it up. You would be the states new pooper scooper for cats and dogs all over! What a sad, pathetic, so -called human being you are. Your useless and disgusting.

8:20AM PDT on Aug 30, 2013

thanks for sharing :)

1:16PM PDT on Aug 29, 2013

As I've said before, Grow Up Emma R. I have noticed your responses to others as well as to me. It never ceases to amaze me that you sound as much like an ill equipped, snide, and less than intelligent person the way that you do, Don't you ever read your ignorant quips, and attacks and find yourself embarrassed by how juvenile, and senseless you sound? I will be very honest and say up front that if I hadn't made it a policy to not demean another human being by feeling sorry for them as if they are inferior I would find myself pitying you. You make it really hard to keep from it.

12:22PM PDT on Aug 29, 2013

@ Melissa A. "
"Emma, your comment to me makes no sense"..

MY ANSWER to that @ Melissa A. " well this conversation is for a HUMAN BEING WITH A BRAIN so no need for me to explain too hard for you to comprehend...!

@CHAZZ DO I GET A BLACK HOLE STAR FOR THAT answer @CHAZZ....!I look up the so called dictionary FOR "SNIDE" and here is SNIDE FOR YOU.....MEAT ANYBODY!http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=SNIDE&view=detail&mid=4D3748233636E2C6CCB44D3748233636E2C6CCB4&first=0&FORM=NVPFVR

12:14PM PDT on Aug 29, 2013

@ Melissa A. "
"Emma, your comment to me makes no sense"..well this conversation is for a HUMAN BEING WITH A BRAIN so no need for me to explain too hard for you to comprehend...!

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