The Number One Reason Your Dog Is a Monster

The first time I saw this video, I thought it was a set up.

Then I realized that it wasn’t, and I think I was even more horrified.

I mean we have all seen dogs steal food, or get in the trash, or counter surf.

But, most of us don’t have dogs that are so brazen, they will literally steal the food out of our mouths.

We Have Lost a Crucial Element in our Dog Training… Impulse Control!

This dog has zero impulse control.

Some people are too embarrassed to even take their dog in public.

Some people can’t have friends or family over to their house, because of their dog’s behavior…

It seems so extreme!

Imagine for a Moment

Imagine you are hungry one day. It feels like you are starving, so you wander into a buffet and begin bobbing your head in and out of people’s plates, eating everything you desire.

If you don’t want what is close to what you are eating, you shove the plate away, and move on to the next person or the next plate.

What a life, right?

I’d give you about 5 seconds before someone in the buffet punches you in the face and the police are called.

I mean, you can go into the buffet ready for a fight, fists clenched, and perhaps a weapon on your person. But eventually, someone who is bigger than you, with more firepower, is going to stop your rampage.

When you think about it, I am describing a “feral” human.

What keeps us from being “feral”, is learning rules for civilization.

When You Were a Toddler

When you were a toddler, you were probably a slightly cuter version of the above scenario.

You saw something, you wanted it… you tried to take it, but one or your parents probably stepped in and smacked your hand.

They didn’t hit you hard, they just basically hurt your feelings and let you know that “NO!”, in no uncertain terms, it wasn’t yours.

You probably tried to take things a few more times before you learned the lesson and some self-control.

This is what we are missing in dog training these days.

It seems we have forgotten to teach our puppies some basic control of their impulses, or self-control.

We, in essence, have terminally “feral” puppies that never grow up!

We are living with serial food snatchers.

And, there are no repercussions for it.

We are living with serial jumpers.

And, there are no repercussions for it.

We are living with serial biters and mouthers.

And, there are no repercussions for it.

We have lost the desire to, or the knowledge of how to, train the simple things…MANNERS!

Just Yesterday

Just yesterday, I was hard at work at the veterinary clinic, preparing furry clients to meet the doctor and getting their histories. (I love veterinary medicine, I just can’t stay away!)

A five year old, 82 pound dog with a gigantic prong collar around his neck, but absolutely no impulse control, came into the clinic.

Thankfully, he was mostly training, puppy training, dog is a monster

But, when he didn’t want to do something, he would grab your hand with his very large, open mouth.

Or, he would jump on you and hurl you a foot or two away.

It was nearly impossible to convince him to be still long enough to look in his eyes, ears and mouth, much less palpate his joints.

We don’t want to body slam dogs at the vet hospital!

I would have figured he was a puppy; after all, who could live with a dog like that for over 5 years?

The owner was completely oblivious.

And, it wasn’t that he didn’t treat her that way, too!  He mouthed her and jumped on her just as hard, if not harder.

It was like she was disembodied, or in a completely different room than my doctor and I were in that day.

He was a sweet boy, he had a lot of promise behaviorally, but he lacked even the simple ability to control any of his urges. I can’t imagine the things he steals at home, or the idea of walking him.

He was a monster!

Impulse control would soothe the savage beast.

She can’t even find anyone who wants to pet sit her dog in her home, because he is a furry monster!

Don’t Do It

Don’t do it!  Don’t fall prey to letting your dog get away with being a monster.

Don’t let him steal food from your mouth.

Don’t let him pounce you or your family.

Don’t let him put his mouth on you!

Stop giving him everything, and start teaching him how to control his impulses.

Because, until he can control some of his basic impulses, he will be the monster dog that everyone avoids, instead of the great companion that you wanted when you picked him up and brought him home!

It Doesn’t Require Punishment.

It Doesn’t Even Require Months of Training.

It will just require some consistency, a little bit of time (30 minutes a day), and some patience!

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  1. Fiona says:

    It’s called “spoilt rotten”.And it makes for very scared canines. They don’t know how to relax, or when someone scarier than them is going to appear and change any rules they may be familiar with. It’s taken my son and I nearly a year, hundreds (of dollars) in medication, and dog training hours to get his rescue (whom he bought as an 11 month old) reasonably sociable…with this blogs’ help, and much pain and frustration. And he’s a clever, energetic STAFFY Cross …maybe German shepherd, maybe Malinois…so to get to a ‘tired dog’…takes half a day of tug, pull the bike/skateboard and then an hour’s training…spinning, jumping, fetch, ‘canine pushups’…and only then can he mostly be safe in public on a walk. So you’re spot on. Train young, train consistently and show them who is the boss…kindly, or they become monsters – nightmarish to themselves and others.


  2. Mickey says:

    unfortunately, these are the dogs that get put to sleep every day in shelters because “he bit me !!”…well? He’s a DOG right? And you taught him…probably even laughed at him being a bully with no manners.
    ONE jump on an elderly person…
    ONE grab at a childs cookie in it’s hand…
    ONE charge at a neighbors small dog ending tragically…. and BAM ! that poor dog is history. is NOT the dogs is OUR fault…the lazy owner that allows such behavior when a cute puppy is 10 lbs…then tries these behaviors at 80 lbs.
    SO sad…
    I see these videos all the time too..and have to turn them off.


  3. P. Chavez says:

    I had a doberman cross when I was newly married. My husband wasn’t used to big dogs. My husband had a piece of chicken he was munching on, walking outside in the yard. My dog quietly and calmly walked up to him and took the chicken out of his hand. My husband was shocked and asked if I’d seen what the dog had done. I told him to take it away from him. He said he might as well have it, the deed was done. I told him, “NO, it’s the principle of the thing.” I walked over to my dog, told him to drop it, shamed him, and told him “No, no, no.” Neither one of them got to eat the chicken.


    Minette Reply:

    Unfortunately some dogs will eat it too quickly for that and some dogs will bite you for taking something from them… which is why teaching impulse control is so important


  4. Patty Chadwick says:



  5. pat thorne says:

    you’re singing my song, chet. I’ve taught this stuff for over 30 yrs. some folks
    listen, some don’t and never learn the joy of having a trustworthy, loving, respect-ful, intelligent lifetime companion. so sad.


  6. Phoenix says:

    My eldest dog stole food ONCE when she was younger (still a learning pup). She didn’t listen when i said “drop it!” so i took it from her. She snapped at me – by instinct, and without even thinking about it, I’m sure – drawing blood from my thumb. I was shocked and upset, but when she realized what she’d done (hurt and upset her master), she tucked herself away in the bedroom. My disappointment in her was probably the worst punishment she ever could have gotten, and i tell you, she has not tried to steal from someone’s plate since! Mealtimes now are a breeze – i won’t start eating until she’s lying down, and she STAYS lying down now until I’m done and give her her reward for good behaviour (last bite/scraps, lick the plate or – if there’s nothing doggy-appropriate on my plate, then a proper dog treat or a quail egg.) The younger pup is a non-issue – she learned proper behaviour by observing the older one’s training and grew up from 8 weeks learning right from wrong, among other things. (Example: we’ve never had to ask her to lie down at mealtimes, she just automatically always did it because she saw that we asked that of the older girl.)


  7. IRISH PACK says:

    This is a bit of an off-topic giggle:

    My younger dog (Fauxy) has been working on a lamb bone for about 8 months now. About a week ago, she joined me on the sofa and started crunching away. I was praising her and telling her what a good job she was doing the whole time. When I stood up, there were lil teeth everywhere….she had torn up my denture!! Since I had been praising her the whole time, I couldn’t get mad at her, but my shocked reaction sent her scurrying to her ‘cave’ under the loveseat.

    Sometimes, you just gotta laugh


  8. Molly Cham says:

    Good article, good comments. I trained my dogs to wait for their food, not nose-dive into it. Full dish, sit, wait, then use a release word, mine was ‘Yes’. Worked a treat. Two dogs, two cats, all would wait in front of full dishes, then release word ‘Yes’, with gesture, and all animals calmly eating, and no messing in each others’ plates. Calm and civilised.
    Never fed from the table. Never fed from a human plate – they have their own dishes ! Never let by the table, out of the way, lie down – no one wants to trip up over an animal suddenly in the way ! Any ‘appropriate’ food left after the meal can find its way into the animals’ bowl/s. Certainly never permitted with food items on the furniture – and dogs, not permitted on furniture anyway !
    Meal times should be enjoyable and relaxed, for *everyone.


  9. Lorraine says:

    All this bad stuff I read is simply that the dog thinks it’s the mom or dad! You did wrong in their eyes so they correct you. You can gently and calmly assert yourself to be leader and they the follower then all is harmony in the pack family. Alpha dogs eat first, check out the territory’s safe. That’s why dogs fence bark, they saying my Terraine go away. Separation anxiety is barking, clawing at door cos their babies gone out and they are worried about you. You need to step up and if you calmly take control of unruly behaviour they stop worrying about you, stealing food cos they know you are able to look after them .all about pack behaviour in their mindselse they willend up having to be alpha over us!


  10. Cindi says:

    We had a couple of bigger dogs a few years ago. One being a Samoyed-Chow…sweet as can be and the other one a Shephard-Husky mix. I had just taken a pizza out of the oven one evening and set it in the counter to cool,when my son called me needing a ride. So I left in a hurry and realized t half forgotten to put the pizza up out of the dogs reach. So I called home and left a message for my girls on the answering machine. Telling them this was “mommy” and that they needed to leave it. I repeated the command and hung up. Proceeded to call back again a few minutes later with the same command. When I returned home (with my son) the pizza was STILL ON THE COUNTER all in tact. The both receive lots of praise and a special treat for leaving it. But not a piece of pizza.
    Sadly the both have passes away from cancer. And are still missed


  11. Angela Smith says:

    I cannot believe that dog did that!


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