The myth of alpha dogs
I remember reading books years ago that talked about the need to be the “alpha” in your house in order to keep good control of your dog. I read about the importance of “alpha rolling” the dogs to show dominance, to always go through doorways first, and to always eat before feeding the dogs. It was considered important for humans to show dogs that we were in control, we were dominant in the relationship, and we were the “alphas” in our households.
This was important, we were told, because our dogs would seek to take that “alpha” role from us. Now, after years of scruff shaking and “alpha rolling” our dogs unnecessarily, we have learned the truth. “Alpha Dominance” is one of the most persistent lies in all of what we know about dogs.