So we all know that the dog-world is full to bursting with products and services – many we didn’t even know we needed!! Some are useful, others not so much!
We as dog owners/guardians/caregivers (insert your preference!) are now, more than ever, bombarded by marketing and advice to part with our hard earned cash. It’s up to us to decide how it gets spent – the power is with us dog people!
Like anything, it’s all on a spectrum, and also relative to the individual (just like a behaviour modification program!):
£250 on a luxe embellished personalised leather collar for a rich individual is fine! No probs!
£250 on a luxe embellished personalised leather collar for a low/regular income & who would have to forgo high quality nutrition, or veterinary care for the Instagram fix is NOT fine!
Please don’t get me wrong, I love a new collar as much as the next person, but it’s so important to keep perspective. A great way to do this is to keep the “Hierarchy of Dog Needs” in mind
I see plenty of social media accounts who portray the ideal of the relaxed, chic and peaceful life with their perfectly outfitted dogs - often in a Cotswolds Gastro pub – the reality is often very different. There are those who promote product that they would never use with their own dogs, and dogs with a variety of behavioural issues (I have seen some high profile users whose social pics have leads edited out due to poor recall/aggression issues/chase behaviour and many behaviour issues, worries and concerns about their dogs).
Social pressures run much deeper than “thinspiration” and “Kim K butts” social media can really infiltrate most areas of our lives if we allow!
So onto the Guerilla!!
Guerilla marketing that is:
In the past 2 years I’ve noticed a real onslaught of high volume, high impact marketing creating a real social buzz around canine behaviour and training.
I love that so many people engage with it and take a sincere interest in their dogs and their dogs welfare. I also love that much of the highest profile providers are reward based and positive now too – full marks!!
But what I don’t love is when online advice is used to attempt to solve serious behaviour problems. Some recent serious bite cases I have on my books could have been avoided if real-life in-person support was sought earlier.
Additionally, know how to spot a gimmick, a buzz word – all designed to give you that FOMO (Fear of Missing Out), must subscribe to find out, only £25 month etc. Many of the ‘new’ games promoted are a rebranding of existing techniques!
Knowledge is power – do lots of research!!
Substance over form – what’s the real substance of what you’re buying?
We all work really hard for our money and cost of living is seemingly always on the rise, lets spend smarter when it comes to our dogs too. And please remember, if you have concerns about your dogs behaviour, in particular with regards to aggression, then call a canine behaviourist in your area for a no obligation free of charge chat.
All the very best
Claire & The Dogs