A bunch of points to respond to...
I didn't say I pinched to simulate a nip. I said removing the puppy by the scruff of the neck was what the mothers do. It works when the dog is smaller, less and less as it grows up. It's not about pain, it's about being in control and preventing the dog from pursuing the unwanted activity. You're applying pressure to modify behaviour. "Pressure" could be a stern voice, a 'tsssk', a 'hey, listen to me' poke, a control collar or an eCollar.
I also didn't say I was a supporter of physical punishment. I think I said I would NOT be in the market for a shock collar anytime soon. However, I am willing to accept that every situation is different and there may be cases where *the collar* is justified. In my experience, they can be used very effectively when used properly.
Two events that had a big effect on me in my younger years...
1) a rancher was having newborn calves run by a dog from down the hill. Several warnings were given to the owner. The owner did what he could to control the dog, but it wasn't a dog you could easily cause to conform to human rules. After a few weeks of this, the rancher removed his 22 from behind the seat of his old 4x4 and reluctantly put it down. Or almost. The back end was paralysed and it suffered considerably before he was able to get to it and finish it off. Those noises disturbed me for years... as did the final spasms after the second shot.
2) a dog slipped his harness and ran into the road and under a car. The shrieks were heart-wrenching and the dog didn't last to the vet. Those sounds haunted me for some time too.
You can blame the owners in these situations and you'd be right. But the dogs died painful deaths and scenes like this are far from uncommon. It's fine to take a moral position, however life is not cut and dried and not everything fits perfectly in its little slot. Both dogs were 'difficult'. Both owners tried. Both owners failed. A collar might have helped. A collar might not have solved anything. But if a training program with an eCollar would have prevented those ugly scenes I know which way I'd go.. And for what it's worth, I've felt the shock as I mentioned in a previous post. It's more of a surprise than a pain and at a low setting, is simply a tickle. And the idea is worse than the reality of it to us... who would rather scrape their knee than get a paper cut or feel the stab of sensitive teeth at the dentist? Our reactions aren't in proportion to the severity of the injury and electricity has most people spooked! Projecting our impressions to dogs is a stretch... given the huge amount of dog brain matter dedicated to scent, compared to humans, who is to say a whiff of perfume doesn't set off an LSD-like reaction in them? They are hugely sensitive to scent, as we all know.
Pack theory (in general) is simply that - a theory. Anyone can dispute it or promote it. I don't buy into all of it, but there are certainly aspects that I believe to be correct. Dogs are still largely controlled by instinct... training is simply an override we've attempted to insert to maintain control. Anyone who doesn't believe in the basics of pack hierarchy has never been to a dog park... Correct that the theory was discounted because the 'pack' was not representative of the multi-generational family unit that a wolf pack typically is. But also true that nobody (to the best of my knowledge) has ever tried to build a pack over generations, left mostly to their own devices. Dogs won't necessarily hunt together, but they will hunt and they will run together. And they certainly establish a pecking order. A huge part of the genetic mutations that created dogs also changed its abilities. A wolf is better at problem solving but a dog is much better at reading humans. Can't really say one is smarter than the other... they're just developed different strengths that would seem to be connected to the mutations we selectively promoted.
I'm not saying they see us as part of a dog or wolf pack... but that they understand the structure of a pack and want to find their place within the human pack. Our pack activities don't typically involve taking down game, but they do involve a social structure of sorts. We need to understand how the hard-wired instincts of the dog can co-exist in our society. Trying to mold them into furry four-legged humans won't see much success and anyone attempting to treat them as their children are misguided in my opinion.
Using the term 'evolve' is a bit dangerous when referring to dogs. Evolution is natural selection, typically from a lower to a higher form. Dogs are what they are due to humans taking advantage of genetic mutations. In the context that has been used, a purebred dog would be more 'highly evolved'... Just the opposite - it is more likely to suffer from abnormalities and health issues - exactly the opposite of 'natural selection' (see my previous post Belyaev reference).
"Anthropomorphising of dogs"... yes, but we aren't really teaching them... we're training them, or molding them. There might be some low level learning involved, but 'teaching' implies a greater intellect (or does to me). Understanding their thought processes (don't we wish!) would let us tailor our efforts. A great book on this is http://insideofadog.com/
which isn't really about training at all. Rather, an attempt to understand *how* the dog (might) think, which in turn allows you to consider how best to work with your dog.
Not at all sure how a kid who has suffered abuse is relevant to the choice between being tasered vs. shot, so I won't comment on that one.