Comment to 'Walking the Pack'
Comment to Walking the Pack
  • ALV: I am not opposed to the man making money...I am opposed to overwrought dominance theory. Dogs are not lying around plotting to take over the world. They do what works for them and the sooner people realize that the dog is in it for the dog, the better. Every darned little thing a dog does that is deemed unsuitable IS NOT because of "dominance". I am happy that Ceasar has salvaged numerous dogs as well as many dogs' relationships with their owners. But I encourage people to critically evaluate some of his spoutings...Is there something to glean? Probably - but he is not the second coming. It's a good thing Ceasar is not "training" dogs because not much learning occurs during passive resistance. There are many dogs that are thought to be lazy, stubborn or plain dumb for the simple reason that they in fact, might need a paycheck. They might not see the point in doing something over and over and over again just because we asked them to. I am also not adverse to fair reprimands. My dogs get reprimands but they also get treats. We with the bigger brains should be able to figure out how to motivate our dogs by controlling resources. A resource is not necessary squeaky praise or a cookie (you're right...some trainers DO overdo it). It could be the opportunity to run, to play with the raccoon pelt, tug with squeaky piggy, to check a culvert, get a chewie, tree a squirrel, go for a car ride... In a recent article in the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT) newsletter, Dr. Ray Coppinger -- a biology professor at Hampshire College, co-founder of the Livestock Guarding Dog Project, author of several books including Dogs : A Startling New Understanding of Canine Origin, Behavior, and Evolution; and an extremely well-respected member of the dog training community -- says in regards to the dominance model (and alpha rolling)... "I cannot think of many learning situations where I want my learning dogs responding with fear and lack of motion. I never want my animals to be thinking social hierarchy. Once they do, they will be spending their time trying to figure out how to move up in the hierarchy." You might find the research outlined in this article interesting. Cheers
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