I hit my dog for the first time and I feel like a piece of shit

@phanthanh96 Man I hate those types of people who would poison or hurt animals just for the fun of it

I don't blame you for ur reaction. Don't feel bad, next time that this situation happens again your dog will listen to you. You saved this dog's life in the future
@phanthanh96 I’ve had something similar happen. I know how awful you feel. But you know what great about dogs? They are incredibly resilient! Your dog won’t hold this against you forever. Show yourself some compassion, you are not a piece of shit, you are a wonderful dog owner, because you know that you would never intentionally hurt your dog.
@phanthanh96 I read something on reddit once about having to do stuff ‘bad’ to our dogs and it’s always stuck with me. Think of your dogs love like a bank and every time you do something nice or something they love it’s a deposit and very occasionally as owners we have to do something considered ‘bad’ as in what you had to do it’s a withdrawal. As long as your deposits far outweigh your withdrawals your girl will get over this completely, and she’s obviously not ever going to know why you did it but it’s not even going to be a factor to her because it’s not a regular occurrence. I use this terminology to make myself feel better that once a month I have to shove both my dogs flea/tick/worm tablet down their throat for their own greater good and that’s exactly what you’ve done in the situation.
@phanthanh96 I don’t hit my dog but they’re pack animals, wolves aren’t really gentle creatures. As long as you can be a consistent fair master I think what you did may have done more good than harm.
@phanthanh96 Being pack leader is not easy. Especially with a young curious pup. You did the right thing in the moment.

Unfortunately now you do not have the luxury to feel bad. I find my GSD is very sensitive to the families mood, you girl is probably picking up on your worries. Focus on training, especially “leave it”, “drop it”, outdoor “heel”, you girl can put her worried energy to safety commands.
@mime412 It took me disturbingly long to identify the anxiety cycle with my dogs. It goes like this:

Something's a bit off with one of the dogs.

I get a little anxious while I try to figure out what's up.

The dogs get a little anxious because I'm anxious.

My brain decides, oh no! The dogs are suddenly anxious! Something's seriously wrong here! I get more anxious.

The dogs think, oh no! Mom's getting anxious! Something's seriously wrong here! They get more anxious.

My partner walks in on us evaporating in a cloud of shared anxiety, laughs, gives everyone a biscuit (sometimes I get a cup of tea too), and breaks the spell.

Lesson: They pick up on your mood, so teach yourself 'leave it' so that you don't trigger a mutual freak out.
@marinda This is literally me and my dog!

I remember at the vet one time she just was not having a great day (had to get blood drawn and kept moving and then had to get shots) and I could tell she was anxious, which in turn made me anxious, which was making her more anxious and ME more anxious. I ended up stepping out of the room until they finished her shots cause I knew I wasn’t helping being in there. The tech comes out 5 minutes later and says oh yeah she was fine and we had no issues!
@houstonreborn I feel like I should apologize for how much this made me laugh. I give my vet and the staff at the practice cookies or chocolate every year, with a card from my animals thanking them that we've gone another year without anyone darting their mom with a rhino tranquilizer.
@phanthanh96 Has the poisoning thing been reported to the police or animal services? Or is this something they consider trivial. I know in some places people would get fined or arrested for that stuff.

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