A recent vital video depicting a polar bear patting a dog on the head is being grossly misinterpreted.
"When we insist on seeing animals [like humans], we do them a disservice. We assign them the responsibility that comes with being human, including a code of morality that other animals [our dogs included] simply cannot follow." (Read more at, http://qz.com/841693/that-video-of-a-polar-bear-petting-a-dog-turns-out-to-show-us-a-predator-playing-with-its-prey/?utm_source=parBBC)
This is a problem that many of our domesticated pets, dogs especially, are continuously burdened with. We treat them like humans, expect them to behave like humans, hold them to the same accountability as humans. And then when they fail under such a heavy load, we're shocked. The dog ends up at the shelter, on death row, for our own stupidity and unwillingness to see them for who they truly are.
They are not little fur babies, little humans, babysitters, nanny dogs, etc. They are in no way, shape, or form genetically related to homo sapiens. In fact, they are a completely different species!!! Imagine that. They are Canis Familiaris, genetically 98% of they're wild forefathers, Canis Lupus, i.e. wolves...not humans...wolves.
Most of the behavior problems we see in today's society (separation anxiety, containment phobia, general anxiety, over excitement, aggression, reactivity, hyper arousal, household destruction, etc), behaviors we think can be fixed with medication or more love, will disappear if we treat our dogs like dogs.
Show your love, share your affection, when it is appropriate and earned. Then give discipline at the right time with just the right amount of information to teach your dog how to cope with domestic life.