As a scientist, I find myself in the curious culture that revolves around pet dogs. I hear “science-based dog training” and am mystified by the context it’s used. The term “science”, which is a very broad, all-encompassing term, has been misappropriated to represent a very narrow training approach. In the pet dog training culture, “science-based dog training” is synonymous with “positive reinforcement training”. This is not accurate in so many ways and creates confusion and frustration for everyone, especially for our sweet little dogs. Continue reading
Happiest of Holidays!
Wishing everyone the Happiest of Holidays! We are so blessed to live in such a beautiful area that welcomes so many dog-friendly lifestyles. Walking, hiking, biking and swimming with our dogs is just a sample of all the fun ways to enjoy life each and every day, including the holidays, with our faithful companions.
Please give your puppy dogs an extra hug for us! Continue reading
Will you be getting a puppy for Christmas? Did you get a puppy last Christmas? Do your puppies need training but you have no clue how to train a dog? Do you need help right now? Or yesterday?
You are probably a busy person who does not have time to read all the books and websites on dog training to figure out how to go about this very important part of your dog’s life – training. Would you appreciate if someone or something would explain or summarize your options for getting basic dog training? Do you want want training to be fun so that it is a daily pleasure, not a dreaded chore? Do you want to make an educated decision about how to train your own doggies? Continue reading
Imagine you and your dogs are the talk of your neighborhood – for all the right reasons. Imagine your dogs walk on leash without pulling – ever! Even when they see a cat, squirrel or another dog! Imagine that you can walk up to strangers or neighbors and your dog does not jump, bark or lunge on the leash. Imagine that your dog listens to you the first time and every time! Now imagine that you can take your dog off leash and you have the confidence that your dog will not bolt or runaway. Imagine that your dog is the poster pup for the well-mannered dog. Continue reading
Volume 1 ~ A Philosophy Primer
Introducing the first volume of the Kindle eBook* series, The Dog’s Perspective: How to Train a Dog by Thinking like a Dog. The objective of this book series is to explain how to train dogs by thinking like a dog. The Dog’s Perspective is a simple and straight forward approach to dog training that enables anyone to find solutions to many of their dog-related issues. The objective of this first volume, A Philosophy Primer, is to explain the philosophical foundation of the Dog’s Perspective.
This volume describes, compares and contrasts three different training philosophies and their ultimate effect on dog training success. Current training methods are easily categorized into two basic philosophies: Wolf’s Perspective and the Human’s Perspective. This book presents a third training philosophy, the Dog’s Perspective, which is an evolutionary approach that shares both similarities and differences with the other training philosophies.
There are numerous reasons this book needed to be written. First, so much misinformation about dog training is running rampant, especially where it comes to unsubstantiated claims of scientific evidence supporting an opinion or viewpoint. Second, some training methods are too complex and/or ineffective. These problems frustrate most humans to the point of quitting – just giving up on training their dogs.
The individuals harmed the most from this are innocent dogs. Some untrained dogs are just left home alone or confined to their yards. Others are less fortunate and find themselves surrendered to a shelter or worse. The goal of this book is to help stop the abandonment trend by explaining just how easy and straightforward dog training is from the Dog’s Perspective. Trained dogs are lucky dogs and their humans are very happy companions.
When you search for information on how to train your dog, do you consistently find references to B.F. Skinner and the learning theory he proposed known as operant conditioning? Understanding operant conditioning and properly applying the concepts to dog training can be a daunting task, but is necessary for achieving success in dog training. This is where our new book series, The Dog’s Perspective: How to Train a Dog by Thinking Like a Dog, will be very handy. Not only is operant conditioning fully explained and applied to dog training in Volume 1: Philosophy Primer, but it also explores how operant conditioning from the Human’s Perspective, does not coincide with the dog’s point of view (The Dog’s Perspective). These differences in approaches is explained in how to “Think Outside the Skinner Box”. Continue reading
Co-evolution of Dog & Human Companionship
Humans have associated with wild canids for at least 30,000. The fossil record confirms human (Homo sapiens) developed relationships with canines as far back as the times of the Neanderthals (Homo neanderthalensis). From these early wild canids evolved the domestic dog. Humans and their dog companions have been together for the last 15,000 years or so, which is a very long time for BFFs. Dogs and humans are two different mammalian species that have developed a highly beneficial, co-evolutionary relationship. No other interspecific relationship, between two species, is as complex and mutually beneficial as the dog-human companionship. The success of our canine companions’ relationship is their ability to communicate and cooperate with humans, a separate species. However, how this communication occurs between humans and dogs is debatable. Continue reading
Asheville – Winter Storm Jonas 2016
If you live on the East Coast, the effects of Winter Storm Jonas are still in the current news, on our minds and, depending where you live, covering the streets. An inch of snow will bring southern cities, like Asheville, NC, to a standstill. The last official total snow accumulation reported for Asheville was 13 inches. Needless to say, Asheville is covered by a thick blanket of beautiful, glimmering snow crystals and no one is going anywhere anytime soon. Continue reading
Touch & Petting are Critical for Thriving
There are fundamental training skills a dog needs to possess to develop an ideal relationship with their human companions. Some of the skills involve Food, Water and Shelter, vital necessities for the long-term physical health and survival of every living being. Here the focus changes to a need that is not a vital necessity for survival, but is vital for individuals to thrive. Continue reading
Obstacles to Health & Fitness Goals
Happy New Year’s! Hoping 2016 has gotten off on the right start. With the start of the new year comes many New Year’s resolutions to improve personal health and fitness. A “desire” to improve personal fitness is KEY to success. However, many New Year’s resolutions to improve personal health and fitness fail. What are the typical reasons? Don’t have enough time to workout, or the fitness classes don’t fit into your work schedule? Do you believe fitness gyms are too expensive and too crowded? Would like to go with a friend, but no one wants to go or they cannot go at the same time because of scheduling conflicts? Do you find working out on weights, treadmills and machines boring? Are you are too embarrassed to have others see you in workout clothes? What is your excuse? Continue reading