post-title Unsub for being positive?

Unsub for being positive?

Unsub for being positive?


Photo by J.P. Bonnelly/ Republic of Dog

When I get unsubscribe notices from my newsletter, I try to check the reason if I get one, so I can improve upon the content. This one was interesting: “Dallas Dog Life only supports pure positive training. I’m not a pure positive fan.”

I never really have discussed this topic publicly but I have to admit it’s been something I’ve struggled with from time to time. Dallas Dog Life is not a rescue or a non-profit, although I do help run a local rescue group. Dallas Dog Life is a for-profit company, and I make money from advertisers. So I had to think long and hard when I started getting requests to advertise businesses and events that I would not personally support.

I made the decision early on to not include breeders in my Business Directory because I want to promote adoption. Then boarding facilities became an issue – did they discriminate against certain breeds? I do not support breed bans; I believe in evaluating a specific dog for behavior.

Then last year I got a request to advertise an electronic (shock) collar workshop. I have not personally used shock collars on any of my dogs before, but I know many people who use them and like them. I called several people for advice about this workshop. I thought, I don’t want anyone to think that I support the use of these devices. On the other hand, if people are going to use them, I don’t want them to fry their dog. Maybe it’s better they use them responsibly. In the end, I decided not to post it. And then I knew. Dallas Dog Life is not an “unbiased news source.”

Dallas Dog Life started in 2008 as a way for me to compile information that I thought would be helpful to other DFW dog owners. Over the years, it’s grown in a way that is very personal to me. It reflects what I believe in and not what will make me the most money. I try to promote rescue groups as much as I can. I want to help pet owners get reunited with lost dogs. I don’t want people to surrender their dogs because they are misbehaving when there are plenty of social and training events in the community to help them channel their energy. And I am passionate about saving homeless pets and reducing the stray dog population. I don’t like when dogs are discriminated against because of their breed. And I prefer that you show a dog what you want and praise him for it rather than shocking a dog into submission. (There. Whew. I said it. I feel better.)

I know Dallas Dog Life is not for everyone. I don’t expect everyone to agree with the things I post. But in the end, I have to be true to myself.

Regardless of whether you believe what I believe or agree with my rants, I hope that you all know I love dogs, I never want to see them suffer, and if there’s something I’m doing that I need to re-examine, let me know – I have changed my mind about a lot of things in the past 5 years and I am continually learning.

Thanks for reading.


Comments (4)

  1. Yvonne –
    I applaud you for standing up for what you believe and supporting the causes that are important to you. Running a business we are faced with decisions on a daily basis, some that might offend people. The important thing is that you can go to bed at night knowing you have tried your best and you have made a positive difference to many. Don’t feel bad for a second for not being a non-profit, you have to eat too! You give so much more than most, we try to do the same. Thank you for Dallas Dogs Life and all you have brought to the community. I remember when you were starting out and I have loved watching you and DDL grow. Keep it positive!

  2. Yvonne, more power to you! My friends and I thoroughly enjoy your site and newsletter and greatly appreciate it for what it is, a way for dog lovers to get the inside scoop on what is going on in Dallas.

    The part of this blog that strikes me as being odd, is that your site is not blasting everyone about your stance on training through negative reinforcement or being judgmental against the approach. Instead, you, the owner of a company, made a business decision and simply chose not to include topics or events that encourage or promote the subject.

    If I want to find information on shock collars, I’ll google it.
    If I want to learn about negative enforcement training techniques and trainers, I’ll google it.
    If I want to find out about clicker or agility training in my area, Ill google it and end up on DDL site
    If I want to know what fellow dog lovers in dallas are doing this weekend to encourage learning, dog awareness and overall improve the lives of not only our canine companions at home, but all the ones who need a forever home in Dallas, then Ill go straight to Dallas Dog Life

    Keep up the good work and stay positive 🙂


  3. Bravo! It’s virtually impossible to be completely unbiased in the dog world. The best you can do is maintain your integrity while entertaining respectfully submitted differences of opinion. I think your unsubscriber threw the baby out with the bathwater, but that’s their loss.

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