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Ethics and Editorial Policy

At The Dog Clinic, our goal is to help dog owners give their pets the best possible life. To achieve this, we teach how to care for dogs in a positive and compassionate way.

Dogs are complex social animals that need kindness and consistency to thrive. We believe it’s every dog owner’s responsibility to understand their pet’s emotional and physical needs, so they can meet them in a positive way.

Putting The Dog First

We have a “dog first” approach to creating content. This means we only give recommendations that we truly believe will benefit the dog, even if the methods used aren’t the most convenient or straightforward.

We also write about dog body language and how to assess canine behaviour. By helping dog owners to understand what their pet is saying, it becomes much easier to resolve common issues.

Our Ethics and Editorial Policy in a Nutshell

  1. We only advocate positive training methods. Outdated and negative methods, such as choke chains, shock collars, and punishment, cause immense stress to a dog and can have a lasting impact on your bond. Instead, we teach behaviour redirection, management, and positive reinforcement.
  2. We only promote modern canine behavioural theories. “Dominance”, “alpha dog”, and “pack leader” theories have been repeatedly debunked, but it’s still common for them to be given as reasons for a dog’s behaviour. This leads to ineffective and negative training methods, or dog owners feeling they need to “dominate” their pet.
  3. We don’t anthropomorphize dogs. We want to teach dog owners how to meet their dog’s needs in a kind and positive way. To do this, we avoid assigning dogs human traits, such as “guilt” or “naughtiness”. Instead, we focus on how the dog’s environment, experiences, and needs affect their behaviour.
  4. When possible and responsible, we recommend rescuing a dog rather than buying one. We also believe that every dog is an individual. While breed traits and tendencies do exist, a dog’s personality depends on its environment, upbringing, socialisation, and many other factors.
  5. We always aim to provide scientifically backed and accurate dog advice. Many websites contain inaccurate or misleading information about dogs. We strive not to be one of them! Our articles are written by dog experts (including accredited dog trainers) and contain references for further reading. See our Meet The Team section for more details about our writers and editors.

Do you have any questions about The Dog Clinic’s ethos, goals, or editorial policy? You can get in touch using the Contact page. You may also want to read our Content Feedback page.