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Untrainable Breeds
Perhaps it's the other end of the leash
Dalmatian Dutch Shepherd dog training rescue obedience
Can you guess which of these breeds is untrainable?

My friend Pat recounted a conversation in which two strangers told her that Aussies are untrainable. Funny, because her Aussie, Scout, has an impressive list of agility titles. They did not happen without training! I often get the same comments about Dalmatians, of which I have two. Are they easy to train? Not particularly. But if you enjoy creative problem solving and find the right guidance, you can train any dog. To what level depends on many variables, but if we're talking basic good manners in public, it's within the realm of possibility. Has anyone ever questioned your dog's trainability due to its breed?


Julia Kamysz Lane, owner of Spot On K9 Sports and contributing editor at The Bark, is the author of multiple New Orleans travel guides, including Frommer’s New Orleans Day by Day (3rd Edition). Her work has also appeared in The New York Times Magazine, Poets and Writers and Publishers Weekly.

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Submitted by Doggerel blog | June 21 2012 |

I've always found Aussies to be extremely trainable! I grew up with one who was extremely intelligent and eager to learn. I've never heard of the stereotype that they were hard to train.

We just adopted a 1-year-old German shepherd, and many people assume that she's very easy to train. For the most part, she is, but she is also quite shy, so progress there has been slower.

Every dog is different! It's silly to stereotype trainability based on breed.

Submitted by Leanne | June 21 2012 |

Yes I get this all the time with my afghan hounds, actually total strangers often tell me that afghan hounds are the dumbest breed. I am more than happy to educate those individuals as my dogs are usually calmly standing or sitting at my side.Both of my afghans have their CGC certificate one is also TDI certified and competes in agility. I feel it is all about building a positive relationship with your dogs.

Submitted by Camille | June 28 2012 |

YES! My English Bulldog is VERY food motivated and this has worked in his favor when training. I showed up at an agility training facility and they looked at me very skeptically, (he did look out of place among the border collies!) but when he did ALL of the exercises the first time around just to get some home made organic garlic chicken, they were surprised!

Submitted by Teresa | June 28 2012 |

My email addy is terrierteacher & I am asked most frequently if I own terriers or if I am teacher. However my reply is "both but I ALSO train terriers in obedience, agility, tracking, therapy dog work and earthdogging". Oftentimes I get the "cocked dog head" response from folks. Which, of course, further entertains me LOL.

Submitted by Gregg | June 28 2012 |

I have a well trained (mixed breed) dog and never get these comments. But when we're in town I hear a LOT of folks tell me their dog is untrainable. I've heard this from owners of many different breeds. Frankly, these owners use their dog's breed as an excuse for their own lack of dedication to training. A typical response to my dog's obedience is "Oh, my dog could never do that." To which I reply, "My dog couldn't either a year ago, then I spent some time training him."

Submitted by Ian Thompson | July 1 2012 |

I have 6 gundogs and am always getting told that they are easy to train as they're dogs from working lines. Not so!! I also have a working Sheepdog/Springer cross who is massively intelligent but really hard work to train. If my dogs were as easy to train as the expectation behind their respective breeds then my life would be so easy!! On the flip side, knowing the right training strategies to adopt means I can train my pack with not too much trouble and it's nothing to do with the breed.

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