Yesterday I was waiting for a friend to join me for coffee at a beautiful spot in Dana Point, California.

It feels like summer already and lots of people were out. I also noticed that the spot I was at must be the coffee version of “Cheers” because there were a number of groups of people that met each other to socialize and connect.

As I was staring at the water, to my left I heard a dog bark violently. I turned my head towards the direction of the noise and saw that the was barking at a small child. Scared, the child fell over and started to cry. Can you imagine what a dog barking at you would feel like when you are that small?

The parents took to their child. The owner called back the dog and called it a “bad dog.” Right after that, the owner touched the dog gently as if to pet it. From the table behind me, I heard someone say “bad owner.”

When I learned about dog training, I discovered it was 20% about the dog and 80% about the owner. I would have to agree with the woman in the back of me about the “bad owner” comment. Dogs follow every signal we give them. If I was to speak dog, I would probably think that “if I bark at people I don’t know my owner will pet me.”

But that would mean that the owner was doing something wrong, and most people avoid being wrong at all costs.