Don't Punish The Warning Signs!
"A growl is an important mode of communication from the dog to you. It's not aggression - it's a warning. When the police say "stop or I'll shoot," it doesn't mean they want to shoot you; it's a warning. If you punish a dog for growling, you deny yourself a warning that your dog is feeling threatened. If you're smart you'll thank your dog for growling because he's just letting you know that he's very uncomfortable, and if you don't stop what you're doing, he may bite you. A growling dog doesn't want to bite you - that's why he's growling as a warning."
- Pam Dennison, Certified Animal Behavior Consultant
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Jeff Dentler, CPDT-KA, IAABC-ADT, FFCP, CTDI