Words Matter




The way you think and talk about your dog matters because it tells your brain how to interpret things. If you think your dog will never change, they probably never will. If you continually call your dog difficult or naughty or stubborn or a nutter, that is how you will start to see them. And this will subconsciously influence how you behave towards them.

You will start to make assumptions based on these beliefs and descriptors rather than look more closely at the situation.

So you think of your dog as stubborn and he stops suddenly in the street. You get frustrated because this is proving that he is stubborn. But he might be uncomfortable in his walking equipment, dislike the walking surface, in pain or have a negative association with the place. Or he may simply be aware of something that you are not and be taking in information. Without the label of “stubborn” you are more likely to notice these things.

And if you describe your dog in a certain way it will also influence how other people see them.

So think about how you talk and think about your dog. What positive ways can you describe them? Are they playful, affectionate, improving for instance?

And how can you let people know to give your dog space without painting a negative picture of your dog?

Words matter so make yours count!

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