Posts Tagged ‘energy’

dog and hunter

 

Back in the late seventies I was, as my Uncle Eldon would say,. still wet behind the ears.

I decided that I no longer wanted to train dogs in the fashion that was prescribed by my Uncle, who was the dog trainer in the family.

 

I had become disillusioned with the practice of dominance based dog training, and began to form my own way of thinking about dogs and as it turned out my philosophy was the polar opposite of what Eldon believed.

Eldon was of the old school mind-set that said if the dog did not obey, or showed aggression to family members, he needed to be taken in a notch.

Which didn’t mean Eldon injured the dogs in any way,  no, he was very careful about how he dispensed what he considered discipline,.because they were highly valued assets that required care and protection.

In his words, “ A well-trained dog that can hunt is worth his weight in gold.“

His go-to punishment for bad behavior was,  if he thought the dog was being disrespectful, or willfully disobedient, he would give it a swift kick in the ass, and give the dog the veiled threat,

“If I have to talk to you again, I am going to let the ax handle do the talking.“

I had come to realize that what Eldon saw as respect in the dogs was really fear. The dogs always obeyed but they would come to him low to the ground, ears back, tail tucked in.

I could see the stress the dogs were under, and it made me feel bad for the dogs, and frankly pissed off at Eldon.

I did not voice my concerns, because to do so would have been an exercise in futility, and to my Uncles way of seeing things, disrespectful, therefore worthy of a swift kick in the ass.

At this point I had already trained a couple of my neighbors dogs to herd cattle, and I had brought home an eight week old , female Australian Shepherd pup, who I named Tiny, and had trained her to herd the cattle, my way.

Now back in 1978 my way of training a dog was not a method that could be named, and for the next 35 years remained un-named, and I was not even thinking about dog training philosophy, methodology, or even why dogs did what they did,. I was not that deep of a thinker,.. I just let the dog be true to his temperament, and I shaped behaviors, like come, sit, down, and stay.. as they presented themselves during daily life,.. and I based all this on those times when I saw that the dogs were their happiest and most dog like.

When they were hunting or herding.

The idea struck me one evening as we readied our weapons and moved from building to building, gathering traps and the supplies we would need to spend the night in the camp we had built at the end of the trap line, some eight miles up the stream.

I suddenly noticed the dogs were much more vocal than usual, with was not unusual,  I just had never noticed it before, and then…

The thought hit me like a ton of bricks.

When my Uncle`s dogs were not working with either hunting or herding they would just lay around and never showed any what I would call enthusiasm for what was going on,.unless someone came in the driveway, or a deer would come out into the field., then they would light up like a Christmas tree.

I realized that the dogs seemed to know what we were going to do, that preparation for the hunt was happening, and they seemed to perk up in spirit, they had an anxious anticipation about them… their normally fearful nature seemed to disappear,..and they became more vocal in their attempts to communicate with us.. and it wasn’t until much later that I further realized that the dogs knew what we were going to do, even before we did.

Then the thought I had earlier suddenly solidified, and I understood.

The spirit, or heart of the dog resides in the hunt.

The next morning the dogs would be electric with energy and enthusiasm to get started.., they required a little coaxing to settle down enough to eat, and sometimes we just fed them by hand along the way.

They acted like puppies again, full of life and energy.

They would walk behind and then charge ahead searching for things to run up a tree or corner,.

They would respond to our whistles and calls, circling back, moving through the brush, and with every bound through the snow you could see the layers of stored stress melt away as they used it to organize themselves in concert with our movements,..reading us like a book.

I observed the dogs after the hunt and regardless of if it was successful or not, they seemed to be re-born, and the fear and stress that had burdened them was suddenly gone…at least for a short time.

I began to train my pups with the hunt in mind, I would take them to the woods and walk around, play with them, and  let them be dogs, games like hide and seek, find the stinky cheese, tug of war, and I always let them win, because it made them so happy to run off with that old sock tied to a rubber hose.. I never considered that I should teach them that I am the boss.

I was not their boss, I didn’t want to be.

I was the one they depended on to provide outlets for their stress, by teaching them how to hunt, and to shape their behavior with the words I used to communicate my intentions.

All this I accomplished simply by playing with my dogs in a way that spoke to their true nature as hunters.

In return they give me respect and life long trust.

I knew dogs lived in the moment, but I was missing some information that if I had know about it back then would have changed my perception about not only dogs,.. but myself.

I now know that what I was seeing in my Uncles dogs was stored emotional energy that manifests itself as stress in the dog’s body and mind, and that energy is jam-packed with information that is vital to the dog’s ability to learn, and they are only truly able to release it and connect with us when they are free to express their true nature as hunters, and work with us as team mates.

All the best,

Harley

 

wolf and moose

The Anatomy Of The Hunt, How Dogs And Wolves “Feel” The Energy Of The Moment

Imagine for a moment that you are looking through a microscope at a pack of wild wolves in a meadow.

The wolves seem agitated as they snap and snarl, engaging one another in what most would call dominant/ submissive behavior.

They haven’t eaten in days.

 

The air is electric with energy, can you feel it?

Like the static electricity that is produced when you rub an air-filled balloon on the rug and then hold it next to your arm..the little hairs rise up,.. the ever so slight change in atmospheric pressure,..you feel the tickle of energy as it moves..attracted to the invisible magnet produced in the balloon.

As the intensity of the energy grows in the group of wolves to a fevered pitch..suddenly the wolf with the highest emotional charge takes off and the pack follows( Usually this would be the wolf that gets the title of Alpha)

So, now let’s imagine for a moment that we can see the color of the energy,.. and hear the sound of that energy that surrounds these wolves ..it may have started out looking light blue in color, as the pre-hunt ritual began..and has a low humming sound like the sound of your computer as it uses the energy stored in its battery.

As the energy ramps up during the pre-hunt ritual, the color and sound of this energy begins to intensify as well, and if you tried to look at this,.. in the moment phenomenon,.. in visual form,.. it might look something like this..

 

1st phase… (Energy is light blue, hums like a computer, time lapsed ..10 minutes)

 

During this time there is whining, lip licking, jostling for position, and howls of frustration. 

 

The flow of energy is moderate but the purpose is clear

<——————————————————————————->

 

________________________________________________________________________________

 

 

2nd phase.. (Energy is darker blue, hums like a remote-controlled car..time-lapse 10 mins)

 

During this time, there is aggressive behavior like biting, and the pinning down of others, as the stress from not eating and the rigors of defending territory comes to the surface, preparing them for what is coming,.characteristic of what most scientists today would call dominance and or submission.( I don’t agree with this explanation, but I will save that discussion for another day.)

 

 

 The flow of energy gains momentum and purpose as it intensifies

<================================================>

 

 

________________________________________________________________________________

 

3rd phase.. (Energy is bright blue, hums like a 25,000 watt power line.. time lapse 10 minutes)

 

During this time the intensity grows until the energy is about to explode and then without notice or command,..

 

Every wolf in the pack is emotionally charged and ready to hunt

<+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++>

 

Now let’s take our microscope and move to the valley next to a stream where a herd of Caribou have gathered to rest, graze and tend to their young.,..just a typical day in the life of the caribou.

All animals are able to feel the energy or vibrations of the environment to a greater or lesser degree, so the Caribou know the wolves are coming long before they can see or smell them.

So into this herd of Caribou the wolves trot ..but what the Caribou do is contrary to what you might think they would do..one would think that at the first inkling of the wolves approach the herd would up and run away..but they don’t ..they just lie where they are and do nothing.. their behavior suggests that they are not nervous about the wolves at all.

Why is this?

The wolves seem to not see the herd of Caribou, and take no notice of the numerous calves that have taken refuge inside the massive herd of adults.

The wolves stop and drink from the stream..

The amount of information shared between the caribou and the wolves in one single moment in time is staggering to comprehend,. this communication cannot be heard or seen, it is invisible, can’t be measured or quantified by any scientific instrument.

It is a feeling, that tells the wolves that the herd of caribou are and strong in their resolve to remain energized and grounded.. and will hold the line..they will not run.

They are not afraid of the wolves.

Suddenly.. one wolf stares off into the distance, and though if you looked where he is looking you would not see anything but trees and brush..

But remember we have our microscope..so refocus on the far distant horizon..and suddenly you will see what the wolf can’t see or smell but somehow feels a presence,.. and knows this is it..the thing that has attracted all his emotions..and draws him like a magnet..

A lone Caribou..who’s energy is vibrating in a way that tells the wolves that his energy is breaking down..emotionally speaking..

He is an old Bull who is wounded, and now the wolves have targeted him for the hunt.

To the wolves the energy they feel coming from the Caribou might look like this..

________________________________________________________________________________

The color of the energy is green but is not constant and highly charged..it wavers and shakes.. and the hum of his energy is more like a sputtering airplane engine as it crashes to the ground.

The bull’s energy is depleted from a wound and the rigors of old age..

<++++++++++>)””++++++++***—–+++ >

________________________________________________________________________________

 

The wolves rush in,.. their emotional energy weaves individual wolves into a team, each one feeling his team mates movements, energy, and intentions,.. and it is that collective mind-set that gives them the confidence to take down a prey animal that is 10 times their size and could easily defend itself against them all .

They lay down highly charged.. and stare the caribou in the eyes,.. projecting all the energy, aggression, and stress they have built up onto the caribou,.. until the bull’s energy essentially vibrates so hard that it breaks down and runs..

The wolves move in,.. like a well oiled machine,.. and kill and eat the bull.

Although in today’s society the dog has very little need or opportunity to hunt large game, yet they still practice the art of the hunt in the same manner as their ancestors the wolf,.. as is evidenced by their desire to hunt and chase prey animals, like mice, birds, squirrels, cats, and sometimes deer or moose.

Dogs communicate perfectly with the world, and with us by feeling and plugging into the energy that each living thing gives off.. and are attracted to those things that have the emotional energy that indicates they are prey animals.

So if you want to have reliable control of your dogs behavior,.. and have them be more attracted to you than anything else in their immediate moment, then it is in your best interest to develop your energy into the vibrating energy of the old wounded moose or caribou,..do this and your dog will look to you to resolve his feelings and become the happiest dog in the world.

All the best,

Harley

dog jumps up

 

Find Out Why Your Dog Jumps Up On You And Other People: Also How To Stop It

 

I lost a tooth.

To be totally accurate, I lost a tooth and a half.

Not today, but a few years back when I was just starting to go into people’s homes to teach them how to train their dogs.

I will never forget this Golden Lab, her name was Clementine, a beautiful dog full of life and energy, friendly as they come and eager to play with the humans in her pack.

But that’s not what comes to my mind when I think of Clementine.

I’ll get to the what-n-why in a minute.

Clementine’s energy was the problem, it was unharnessed and unfocused, and like many dogs I have met, had no idea what to do with it, at least not in a constructive way.

I worked for ten minutes or so building trust with Clementine which wasn’t a problem she loved people to a fault and was eager to interact with me, but it was clear she was used to things being on her terms.

However she had never met someone like me before and it wasn’t long before I was making progress, I began to set the rules of engagement, and she was calming down and going with the flow much better.

I had her so she would sit for 10 seconds before moving in anticipation of the food reward. Before I came on the scene sitting was something only the people of the house did.

Clementine was not the sitting kind of dog.

Bouncing off the walls, knocking stuff over kind of dog, yes,

Sitting kind of dog,. no, her chaotic behavior knew no bounds.

If she was asked to sit, she would, but only for the fraction of a second it took for her butt to hit the floor and bounce right back up, as if her bum was spring-loaded. 🙂

I remember thinking this is going to be a piece of fried chicken, ( I know the saying is, “It’s going to be like a piece of cake”,.. but I don’t like cake”, I do however,.. looovve fried chicken.)

My cholesterol level not so much,

but it they will never know, as we are not on speaking terms right now.

But I digress…

Any hoo,..just when I thought I had this one in the bag, out comes Clementines owners who up till this point had been watching from inside the house.

The lady of the house hit the yard like a tornado, she almost ran toward me saying that she would never have believed that Clementine would be able to sit still like that if she hadn’t seen it with her own eyes.

Her excitement was electric, even I felt it.

It took all of one second for me to figure out where Clementine learned to be so hyped up and excited.

One Reason Dogs Jump Up

Dogs feel what we feel, and Clementine was expressing in a physical way (jumping up, running hog-wild around the house ect),  what her owner lived everyday, and that was a chaotic life style with periodic high levels of excitement and anxiety.

It was in that moment of Clementines owner coming into the backyard that Clementine picked up on her energy and exploded from her sit position in front of me, straight up into my face.

More precisely, her big hard head,. met my pearly whites,.. in a head on tooth collision that didn’t end well for one and half of my front teeth. 😦

How To Stop Your Dog From Jumping Up

One of the best ways that I know of to get your dog to stop jumping up on you is to not reward him for the behavior, either intentionally or unintentionally.

When dogs are little we tend to meet them with excitement and joy and when the pup gets close enough we go down on one or both knees and coax him up on us to play and rough house a little.

Maybe we pet them when they jump up on us, while saying things like, who’s a good boy, what you want?, wanna get the stick?, and we throw a ball or give him treats just because he is so damn cute,..

That is the human thing to do, but in a dogs eyes this is a humongous reward and you can bet he is going to remember all the good things that came when he put his cute little paws up on you.

Fast forward 18 months and things are not so rosey, he now weighs a heck of a lot more than he did when he was 12 weeks old, and now when he greets us by jumping up, he can hurt us and wreck clean clothes.

Your friends and family stop coming for visits.

You try your best to get him to stop, you try every thing you can think of,

Yelling, scolding, turning your back, maybe even giving him a scruff up side the head, but nothing works.

All these attempts to stop your dog from jumping up on you are in and of themselves,..rewards..all be it..unintentional and negative in nature.

One of the ways to begin to fix this problem, is to take stock of the situation and make changes in your behavior in order to influence your dogs behavior.

Remember I said earlier that your dog feels what you feel, so with that in mind ask yourself these questions.

1- Do you act excited to see your dog when you come home?

2- Are you getting angry with your dog in those times when he jumps on you?

If you answered yes to either of these questions then you have to do some inward looking and try hard to not give your dog attention either positive or negative when you first greet them.

Instead of acknowledging your excited dog when you come home, ignore him and go about work with other chores, like getting supper ready or making a cup of coffee.

Ignore your dog like he was not even there, don’t look at him, don’t talk to him, and don’t touch him.

When you dog is calmer then you can say hello, don’t look them straight in the eye because this will cause more anxiety in an already hyper excited mind.

Call your dog to come and at the moment you know he is going to jump on you, look him right in the eye and say,.. “NO!! .. in your best I mean it voice, show your teeth, turn sideways, and don’t move.

When you show a dog your teeth it speaks volumes to the dog in his native language.

You see,..

 

Dogs are repelled by predators, especially if they are showing teeth and looking them right in the eyes,..

As far as predators go, humans are top of the pile.

Don’t take a step backward because this will only make him want to jump on you more.

Stand still,.. be the rock,.. and if he jumps up,.. let him,.. and when he gets no response,.. either positive or negative,.. he will soon learn that there is no reward in jumping up and he will stop.

Remember the more a dog gets rewarded for a behavior the more likely he is to repeat that behavior often.

As long as you stay consistent with minding your own energy,.. and be aware of the way you feel,.. couple that with providing no reward for your dog,.. before long jumping up will be a thing of the past.

If your dog is rebellious and refuses to respond, then remove him from the room and give him a 1 minute time out in a place where he has nothing to do but wait for you to come and get him.

Short time outs are a very effective method of learning for a dog.

Dogs are very social animals,.. and they don’t like being isolated from the rest of their pack, this will help the learning process move more quickly.

Teach your dog to sit, there are literally a hundred things your dog can’t do when he’s sitting,.. and you guessed it,..jumping up is one of them.

Your friends and family will be so impressed, and relieved,.. they will once again want to spend time with you and your good dog.

Be sure to teach everyone how to do this exercise with your dog.

If your dog is behaving like Clementine and has free run of the house,.. your first order of business should be to crate train your dog.

Not only does crate training allow your dog to have place of their own to sleep and feel safe, the crate is a great tool for managing unwanted behavior while you teach your dog the rules of the house.

Talk soon,

Harley

 

 

 

 

 

brown dog tugs

In this post I demonstrate how to use the tug toy as a means to connect with your dog and to help release stored up stress.  It is designed to keep the flow of energy moving so it don’t get stuck, and to bring fear to the surface so the dog can process it better.

Although I use the example of Lola being attracted to the power truck out on the road, this exercise is designed to answer the question that all dogs ask..what do I do with my energy,..regardless of it is a person, dog, or squirrel that your dog becomes attracted to,.. this is how you can get them to give their energy to you.

For more information about playing tug with your dog click here,.. Play Tug

tug of war reuse

I am sure you have probably heard from one trainer or the other that you should not play tug of war with your dog.

Some trainers say you can play tug with your dog but you must never let them win.

 

What I teach people about playing tug of war with their dogs is in direct contradiction to the thinking of conventional dog training. I play the game based on the premise that all the things your dog does has a direct connection to their prey drive and their desire to hunt, and the more value an object has, the more attracted and emotional your dog becomes when they see that object, and if your dog catches, bites and eats that object then there is a certain amount of stress relief that the dog will experience.

Let’s examine this for a moment..

For the sake of argument let’s place a dollar value to some of the prey items your dog finds valuable..with regard to how emotional energized and attracted your dog will be to each object.

When a dog sees a mouse scurry through the grass, he might become attracted and give chase..and while it is fun to stalk and pounce on a mouse and eat it..the dollar value to your dog is about 1 Canadian dollar.. or as we call it..a loonie.

That’s cool, your dog experiences a small reduction in stress levels, and your dog will most likely do it again if he sees a mouse.

Later that afternoon your dog sees a rabbit, or a squirrel, now things are heating up..he gives chase and if he catches the squirrel or rabbit and eats it.. he experiences a bigger rush of “good feelings” and stress reduction, and that is like depositing 10 loonies or so in the dogs emotional doggie bank.

The next day your dog sees a moose, suddenly every nerve in his body lights up with an emotional charge like nothing he has experienced up to this point.. in terms of money..he has just seen 10 million loonies worth of energy and emotion head off into the brush..and if he could only catch the moose and eat him..his stress would totally disappear and he would be the happiest dog on the planet.

You can see how it would benefit you as a dog owner to learn how to be the moose in the eyes of your dog,.. you don’t want to be the mouse, or the rabbit or squirrel, those prey items are fun but don’t attract your dogs emotions and, feelings like a moose, buffalo, or caribou would.

One of the ways you can begin to be the moose is to play tug of war with your dog, the only thing is you must ALWAYS let your dog win..no exceptions.

Here is a step by step guide to playing tug of war with your dog

1. Don’t stand face to face with your dog or smile a lot,.. humans are the top predators and this posture and showing your teeth will make your dog defensive and we want him to be in prey drive, so stand sideways, don’t smile, and don’t look him in the eye.

2. Get two tug toys…I like to use two foot lengths of rope tied in many knots. Put one in your back pocket or tuck it under your arm so you will have one to play with and get your dogs attention when your he or she don’t want to bring the one they have back..when your dog drops the one he has and turns his attention to you..tug and pull with him and when he runs off with that one, pick up the one he dropped and begin the game again.

3. With your dog on a 30 foot long line begin the game slowly, stay relaxed, make sure there are no other distractions, like other dogs playing or kids running around, and be sure to be on your game and paying attention..this game requires your dog to bite hard and if they miss the toy..you might get bit..but if you are careful, this doesn’t have to happen… tease your dog with the tug and entice him to bite it..this might take some time especially with nervous, timid dogs who have built up anxiety and stress..but keep at it..act like the mouse or the rabbit…run away waving the tug, lay down and roll around like a prey animal, and keep teasing your dog with the tug..he will bite it at some point.

4. Amp up your emotions and use your voice to get your dog into prey drive..say things like..” Get it boy”, Sic a hold on it,” or” bite that thang.”

5. If your dog starts to growl a lot then that is not a good thing, this means your dog is afraid he is going to lose the war..so you should quickly let him win.

Winning means he gets to run away with the toy.

A little growling is o,k. just don’t let things get out of hand.

6. When your dog bites on the tug, pull smoothly, don’t jerk hard,,and keep the play session short so your dog don’t get bored..once you have reached a place where your dog is pulling and biting hard try to time it so you release the toy when your dog tugs hard on it..so that to your dog is seems like he earned it and you are not just giving in to him..they can tell the difference.

7. When you are ready to end the game, have a piece of chicken some tasty treat in your pocket, take it out and offer it to your dog, they will take the treat and you can gather up the tug toys..and put them away until the next time you want to work with your dog.

* It is important that the game ends with you having possession of the toys, once you get home put the toys away out of sight of your dog until the next time you bring them out to play.

There you have it, if you have any questions about how to play tug of war to engage your dogs prey drive, tell me about it in the comment section below, thanks for visiting my blog and make sure to come back often.

All the best,

Harley

 

 

 

barking dog reuse

 

 

 

 

 

Part of what I do as a dog trainer is to answer daily messages from people who are having problems with their dogs that they just can’t get a handle on.

I thought I would share some of these emails with you, I hope you find them entertaining as well as informative.

This message came in a few days ago, it was from an lady who lived alone on a nice quiet street, where she had spent most of her adult life.

She wrote me asking for help with her 7 year old German Shepherd Roxie, who she said for the most part was well behaved and easy to handle..and up till this point had never really been a cause for concern.

She went on to tell me that about a month ago construction had started across the street from her, a new house was going up, and there were crews of men working with various tools and making a lot of noise.

They were cutting trees, and moving dirt, and she began to notice that every time she went out to go for a walk she had trouble with Roxie pulling and barking trying to get across the street., and she described her actions as vicious in nature..to use her words,

“She acts like she wants to take a chunk out of their hide.”

She then went on to tell me that the behavior had progressively gotten worse..now she can’t let Roxie out for a moment without supervision, as she will no longer just stay in the yard and bark at the boys across the street., she now goes after them..and has on more than one occasion put them in their trucks or up a ladder..

To use her words again,

“I am scared to death she is going to bite someone, and I will lose her, and I can’t lose her,.. she is all I got, can you please help me.”

The first question I asked her was how she felt about what was going on across the street.

She told me that she was annoyed that they were cutting down the beautiful trees that stood there and that she would miss taking Roxie over there to run around and play fetch with  her..

That little patch of land was one of the last vestiges of nature left in her fast growing community.

In short it pissed her off to no end.

I knew immediately what was going on, so I explained to her how our dogs feel what we feel, and Roxie was picking up on her anger and frustration about the work going on across the street, and a dog will try to help us identify our deepest emotions even if we are not even aware we have them.

I suggested to her that she try to find some way to make peace with what was going on,.. to own her feelings about it and understand that her dog will reflect even slight variations in our emotional make up.

Sometimes it is in our best interest to simply have the courage to accept the things we can’t change.

I explained that in order to help Roxie ground the fear she has been dealing with,.. it would help is she taught Roxie to bark at her instead of the crew across the street, so the next time she starts to react to the commotion of construction..just tell her it’s OK, that the construction is just part of the flow of energy now..and if she is fearful and needs to bark, then bark at her so she can be the ground that absorbs the energy Roxie needs to keep moving.

I went on to explain to her that a dogs bark comes from the deepest part of their emotional being, and that in times of great stress they will bark to express fear,.. instead of going to that primal place that would cause them to bite…barking gives them a way to express their fear instead of acting on it.

Barking moves energy that would otherwise become blocked. 

How To Teach Your Dog To Bark On Command

Some dogs will hold onto the fear because it is deep down in their emotional battery, and it may take a fair bit of time to bring that fear to the surface in order for them to feel safe enough to bark on command. 

Other dogs who have less stored fear stress will bark on command very quickly.

This is how I teach my dogs to bark on command.

Get a treat that your dog is really into..hold it close to your chest and your dog will sniff and root around, maybe scratch to get the treat..in a playful tone of voice say..speak, speak.. and the second he or she barks give the treat and give them love and praise to let them know that this is the way to keep the energy flowing… and to be safe.

If your dog is less inclined to bark..

Put some pressure on your dog to cause a little stress..wave it around in their face and in a sweet voice say..speak, speak., in time, the dog will need to express themselves,.. to relieve the stress,.. and he or she will bark…give them the treat and continue to praise them in a sweet puppy wuppy voice..” good girl,”  “that’s such a good dog.”

Repeat this exercise daily for a while until your dog will speak on command without the food reward.

All the best

Harley

CHECK THIS OUT

 

crazy dog reuse

 

 

 

 

 

 

My dogs are not inclined to run hog-wild around the house.

I believe that it’s because I work hard to make myself the moose that attracts their emotions, and therefore I’m able to help them bring the fear they have accumulated just by virtue of day-to-day living, to the surface, so that it can now become useful energy.

I accomplish this through games that engage their prey drive and urge to hunt, like tug of war, and hide and go find.

Once the fear energy is under control they can use it to connect with me in a meaningful way.

For example, when we take walks through the woods, play tug of war, hide and seek, and other useful avenues of co-operation, like herding and hunting.

Some people mistakenly think this seemingly out of the blue behavior is humorous, and reinforce their dogs fear by chasing them around in a game of sorts,.. thus bringing that initially invisible threat that set them off in the first place,.. into reality.

For most people this is something they will regret doing later on.

Even though my dogs don’ t behave in this hectic, bouncing off the walls way..I have rescued a few dogs that did.

I always thought it was about the stress and confusion of the new environment, memories of past life experiences, and having to deal with my dogs exuberant social behavior.

I was aware of the “fear factor”, because I observed the way they hauled their buts in low to the ground when they ran in random zig- zagging geometric patterns, as if to protect it from getting bitten by what ever was chasing them in their mind.

I gave it very little thought because after a few days of bonding, ie,  walks in the woods, and playing games designed to engage prey drive.

The crazy hog-wild running around just disappeared.

There is only one down side to my dogs not running hog-wild around the house..I don’t have a video to show you..but thankfully there is YouTube.

I found this short video that shows the behavior I am talking about..and you will see the person with the camera is under the false impression that this is funny, and inadvertently reinforces the dogs fear by chasing him around trying to film the action.

This person doesn’t understand that the dog is trying to connect with him, but don’t know how.

If you have questions about this post or anything that is on your mind , I would love to hear from you, leaving a comment here is a good place to start.

All the best,

Harley

Resource: Natural Dog Training.com

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dog yoga reuse

There’s just one thing that all dogs want to know, and they need you to answer it.

Between raising the kids and making meals, working a shift, going to soccer games, swimming lessons, making time for your better half, going to the gym walking the dog..well.. the list could go on and on, but there is no doubt about one thing..at the end of the day your energy is spent, taking off your shoes seems to be a chore that might require some assistance.

With all the things we do daily that drain our energy, the very act of doing them causes stress to our bodies and our minds, and stress as we all know can have very negative effect on us if we don’t deal with it.

So..we have learned that in order to alleviate some of this stress so that we don’t explode..(emotionally speaking,) there are certain activities that help to keep us in balance so we can get up the next day and do it all again.

You might enjoy listening to music, yoga class, reading a good book, massage, sitting on the porch watching the sun go down, smoking a pipe., the possibilities are endless, and individual to you..what works for you might not work for others.

Now let’s consider the daily life of most dogs..not all dogs but most.

A dogs day starts the same time your’s does, if not before..and they have even more energy that you have to start their day..but, instead of getting ready to go to work …they will be lucky to get out for 5 minutes to use the bathroom, come inside and have 10 minutes to eat…a quick pat on the head from you, and a be a good boy till I get back..and then they are sequestered in their assigned areas until you come back.

For most dogs their day is spent either tied in the yard, behind a fence, in a crate, locked in the house.

One thing  is for sure their range of movement is restricted to some degree.

Still he is constantly bombarded by energy coming from life going on around him.

Someone repeatedly knocks on the door because no one there to answer it, a squirrel runs across the yard, the dog next door is in heat, the boom of a passing thunderstorm, needs to relieve himself but it will be two hours before anyone comes to let him outside.

Over the span of the 6-8 hours most people are away from the house the dog has absorbed vast quantities of stress, but has burned very little energy..so when you finally get home, your dog is a quivering emotional stressed out mess..as soon as you open the door or let him out of the crate he jumps up on you, runs around the house maybe knocking over plants and what not.

He paws at you for attention, barks non stop at you or someone passing on the street, surfs the counters, chases the cats, and if you do take him for a walk he pulls you down the street with your feet practically off the ground, and stops only when another dog approaches him and he starts to growl and lunge dragging you toward the strange dog.

The reason a dog does all these different and sometimes annoying behaviors is due to the fact that he is stressed out and is searching for something, anything to satisfy his emotional state of mind, which brings me to the main point of my article..there’s just one thing all dogs want to know..

What do I do with all my energy?

All the best,

Harley

Resource: Natural Dog Training.com

 

stressed dog reuse

I am going to get a little “sciency” on ya for a minute or two..yeah I can be a nerd like that..but in order to help you understand how your dog “senses” the world, I gotta put on my lab coat and talk about energy.

 

In the dictionary energy is described as a source of power.

An example of this would be as follows

In the world of physics potential energy is described as… the energy of a body or a system with respect to the position of the body or the arrangement of the particles of the system. 

In other words potential energy is energy waiting to be released.

So to understand how a dog experiences the world he lives in, we will be talking about your dog as being a biological living system, and the energy that drives their behavior is,.. how they feel at the moment about the emotional energy  of what ever it is they are attracted to..be it a squirrel, person, or another dog.

We are much the same  as our dogs.. living systems of emotional energy.

Sadly,.. most humans don’t live in the moment,.. so we take the long way round, we think and feel,.. and then make a decision based on our emotions.

Humans absorb the energy the world gives off through 5 distinct senses..

1. Sight

2. Smell

3. Feel

4. Hearing

5. Taste

Dogs use these same five senses as we do., as well as some that can’t be quantified..like a sixth sense or gut feeling.

In other words,..

Dogs and humans will have a feeling about something or someone long before they actually have time to think about it.

I am sure you have heard someone say, “I just knew something was up..I had a bad feeling about that guy.”

I believe it is this sense that can’t be measured that allows a dog to sniff out cancer, or to alert their owners of an impending seizure.

To put it in more simple terms, a dog takes in the energy that the world gives off, as vibrations..and in doing so one of two things happens.

Either the energy flows through the dog and has no effect on the dog or..

The energy is left unresolved and gets stored in the dog’s body as stress.

This can happen in times when your dog sees a squirrel or another dog and he starts to react by going into prey drive and you drag him away.

Dogs store stress as potential energy,.. it’s like a charge in their internal battery, and the stress is used to help the dog in times of intense activity,..when they need to exert a lot of effort, like the next time they are confronted by the dreaded squirrel, or that dog that just gets their energy going every time they meet.

Now in nature there is nothing inherently wrong with stress..it’s what allows a dog or wolf to hunt dangerous animals much larger then themselves,.. like moose or deer.

The problem is that domesticated dogs do not have the opportunity to hunt large game, so it is in our best interest to keep their stress levels low, and maintain a high level of relaxation..a relaxed dog who has very little stored up potential energy is much easier to handle when a high level of excitement takes place, such as seeing another dog or coming upon a squirrel.

Think of it like this, your dog’s body is a system,.. though which the energy of the world flows.

If your dog is relaxed their body is a wide open channel,.. and large amounts of energy can flow through easily.

If your dog is tense, full of stress and fear, their channel is narrowed,.. and if the same large amounts of energy is pumped through it, the flow is constricted and there is a dramatic increase in pressure, thus producing a higher risk that your dog is going to “blow up”, emotionally speaking.

This is why the best trained dogs will suddenly take off after a dog that strayed onto the property, growl or snap at their owners after years of having no issues with unwanted behavior.

So how do we make sure that we can drain our dogs battery so that their energy channels are wide open,.. therefore reducing the risk of blowing up.

It is really very simple.., the next time you take your dog for a walk and he sees a squirrel or other dog.., and starts to react..instead of dragging him off,,. thus insuring he will have unresolved stress about the situation, try this instead…pull out a tug toy..

Get his attention on you and the toy… and when the dog has past or the squirrel is up the tree…have a rousing game of tug of war, and remember to let your dog win..

This way your dogs stress will be relieved through the natural flow of energy during the prey drive inducing game of tug of war…and in time your dog will learn that this is what it feels like to chase the squirrel, or connect with that dog, and he will start to be more attracted to you as the source to resolve his feelings, and in time,.. looking to you will become an automatic response to highly charged energy situations.

So to sum it up, we have discussed how our dogs are feeling and thinking animals, and it should be your goal to help your dog be relaxed enough to respond to highly charged emotional energy with feelings..and engage their prey drive to make sure they don’t have time to think..

When a dogs goes from feeling (emotional energy).. to thinking( acting on instinct)..it is nearly impossible to get them to respond to you..and it is during these moments of instinct.. that a dog can get into all sorts of trouble in the domesticated world he lives in.

Thanks for stopping by and if you have questions or comments leave them below, I want to hear what you think.

All the best,

Harley

Resource:  Natural Dog Training.Com

 

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moose and wolf reuse

Drive training your dog is about engaging your dogs prey drive to bring about the behaviors we deem favorable.

Obedience behaviors like, come, heel, sit, down, and stay.

Some of the more popular dog training methods tell people who in order to have well-behaved dogs they have to be the alpha, or pack leader in order to gain their dogs trust.

While I can’t argue that this method does not work, I suggest it misses the mark by a fair bit, and in the process a dogs true nature as a predator gets squashed and the dog can never live to its full potential, or feel like it’s part of a team, which is what all dogs crave and need .

Now why would I say something as silly as your dog loves the moose?

Why not a rabbit?

Or a squirrel?… (We all know how most dogs love to chase those nut hoarding chatter boxes.)

Let me explain.

In a dogs world, a rabbit or squirrel offers a small reward when it comes to helping to drain their stored energy, and let’s face it, a rabbit or a squirrel is not a big dinner to a group of dogs or even for one dog.

The satisfaction is fleeting.

The moose on the other hand has all the requirements of a high value prey animal, it possesses everything a dog needs in terms of high level stress relieve and belly packin’ punch.

Another trait the moose has that draws the dog in like a moth to a flame is the fact that the moose can be very formidable, it is way bigger and stronger that a dog or even a group of dogs, and if the moose wanted to he could easily dispatch with extreme force, each and every one of those dogs..

And they know it.

Yet if they see this moose they will not be able to resist, and even with the very high risk of injury or death, they will begin to test this moose to see what his energy is., and if the moose follows the path of least resistance in the face of a threat, he will run, and the dogs will give chase.

However if that moose suddenly stops and turns to face the dogs, they will hit the dirt in an energized down and stare at the moose with all their energy..trying to get the moose to break down and run again…if the moose snorts, paws the dirt, and holds the dog’s stare… they will most likely break down and leave the moose alone.

Now the question begs to be asked,

Who is in control of who?

Is it the dogs, or is it the moose?

It would appear that the prey always controls the predator.

When the moose runs, the dogs run, when the moose turns on the dogs the dogs go down waiting to see what the moose will do next.

They are in harmony with the moose’s energy and that energy is what dictates their behavior.

There is no Alpha dog high on a hill, commanding the dogs to flank right, now rush in fast, their behavior is a feeling that runs through the group of dogs.

It is what they were born to do, to intuitively work together toward a common goal.

So the benefits of being the moose your dog loves are many.

I have listed but a few of them.

1. Being moose-like makes you the most satisfying thing they have in their life.

2. Because the prey controls the predator, your dog will always look to you to resolve their feeling about any intense situations that may come up, like an dog off leash, or when a squirrel crosses your path.

3.  You can become the predator to get your dogs juices flowing..and bring all their social skills to the surface where you can then become the prey and shape obedience behaviors as they are offered by your dog.

4. The most important thing that can happen when you start to act like a moose is that you will begin to think about your dog in a different light, no longer will the term alpha apply to the relationship with your dog,  you will begin to replace old habits with new ones, and that will allow you to develop a deeper more meaningful bond with your dog.

all the best,

Harley