Dogs Do It So Shouldn’t We?
Since posting my webinar series on Dealing With Your Dog Training Challenges where I shared the challenges trying to live life in “Do-Land” I have gotten some really thought provoking questions about what I am suggesting. Thanks for those.
First of all, let me be clear. I am no saint. My goal is to live this lifestyle but like all of you I get frustrated and will occassionally holler at my dogs. However, I immediately realize that is not “teaching” anything. And it brings me back to my quest for a complete “Do-Land” lifestyle. It is possible, even if I don’t have all of the answers just yet:).
This comment was left here on my blog this week:
While I completely agree that dogs learn better in the “land of Do” they have an understanding of the “land of Don’t” also. Encore’s resource guarding is a “Don’t come closer” and your “No biting” is a Don’t which may currently be getting a blank look now but as you say it’s definitely improving.
In the natural world “Don’t” is a survival tactic. Don’t piss the lion/rhino/gator off.
Should our relationships with our dogs be defined by their relationship with other dogs?
This may actually seem reasonable thought until you investigate it further. First of all, dogs are weird. They also sniff each others butt’s something I have no desire to do. Let’s face it Encore has different motives than I do in her interactions with Swagger.
There will never be a time when Encore will ever want to work on building Swagger’s enthusiasm for working with her or get him to drive into Reinforcement Zone when she handles him around an agility course. She being a dog, will be completely happy if Swagger just bowed to her and showed her the proper higher-ranking respect she thinks she deserves.
Me, on the other hand, I want to be Swagger’s team leader not pack leader. I have rules I want him to respect but I will inspire him to follow those rules rather than intimidate him to think he “must” follow them or else . . . I don’t ever want Swagger to be afraid of me or to be afraid to be himself around me. I want him to know I will always be consistent with my expectations and I want his interactions with me to be joyous.
I am sure Encore’s expectations are far less noble. She would want him to always defer any thrown toy in the yard to her and for him to leave the area at dinner time allowing her to eat both her portion and his ration as well. Beyond that she has no immediate use for the puppy.
This video shows that it may not be a wise to look towards dog on dog interactions as a role model for our relationships with our dogs.
Dog to dog interactions are not always kind or even fair. I think we all want more than that for our relationship with our pets don’t we?
I will follow this up tomorrow with looking mixing methodologies in dog training.
Today I am grateful for all of the help I am getting from our current Puppy Peakers sharing their insight into my new project. Keep it up guys, you are all a big help to those that need more answers!