An article in the most recent edition of the Whole Dog Journal jumped out at me, 'For Better Behavior, Pretend Your Dog Is a Tiger'. First, great title! Second, even without reading the whole article, the subtitle and a subheading alone carry a strong message:
Subtitle:"Frustrated with your dog? Then manage and train him as if he’s a captive animal out of his element – because he is!"
Subheading:"Don’t Expect A Dog To Know Our Human Ways"
We need to match our expectations of our dogs to who and what they are; then we (humansandour dogs) will be happier :-)
Amanda, David, Rodna & Ruth Gentle Modern School of Dog Training
Great News for those of you seeking fear-free Services for your Dog!
You know that Gentle Modern School loves to support services that have canine well-being front and centre. Thornbury Vet Hospitalrecently opened theHappy Dog Hubto provide the following services:
Myotherapy and rehabilitation services,
Nurse consults/health checks
Happy Dog Hub's aim is to provide high-quality services, advice and support in between dogs' vet visits.
Lucie Bland is the resident canine myotherapist - many of you will know Lucie from Play+Train. We've enjoyed the company of Lucie and Brendan and their Bernese Mountain Dogs, Parker and Riley, on many occasions.
Lucie is kindly offering Gentle Modern School newsletter recipients20% discount*on their first groom and/or myotherapy treatment(*if you haven't already taken advantage of a 20% discount for Thornbury Vet Hospital clients). Offer expires 30 September. To book call 9498 6073. To redeem the discount, mention 'Gentle Modern School' when booking.
“Somebody has a bagel, and it’s not you. And it’s not gonna be you with that kind of behavior.” (Man to hungry hound)
“I see you doing weird stuff. Cut it out.” (Woman to one of her small dogs)
I talk to my dog all the time, maybe you do too. I smiled when I read these quotes recorded by Alexandra Horowitz inConversations With Dogs. Maybe those types of comments aren't really useful to our dogs :-) but Kathy Callahan inHow to Talk to Your Dogmakes a strong case for verbally labelling things to help our dogs know what's coming up.
Kathy suggests routinely and consistently naming things to indicate to your dog s/he
doesn't need to worry about them - e.g. "Just kids" -> children playing
is in for an interaction - e.g. "Hey, buddy" -> a dog your dog will get to meet and greet
isn't going to accompany you - e.g. "Bye-bye"
is going to do something - e.g. "This way" -> change of direction
"Those words help my dogs to categorise this experience because it’s part of a pattern they can recognize. They can now predict what’s next . . ." and (hopefully) therefore feel more comfortable and relaxed.
Dogs in the News
More Dogs in the Neighborhood Could Mean Less Crime, Study Finds
A recent US study found that "Neighborhoods that have lots of dogs as well as high trust among neighbors tend to have less crime . . . 'People walking their dogs are essentially patrolling their neighborhoods', said Nicolo Pinchak, a doctoral student in sociology at OSU and lead author ofthe study." Are playful dogs smarter? Study finds link between learning and rompingby Linda Carroll
“'Gifted' dogs, who have a rare talent for learning lots of words for objects easily, also turn out to be more playful than other dogs", a new study based on Border Collies by animal behavior researchers from Eötvös Loránd University in Hungary has found. "The new findings might help people who want to buy or adopt a puppy. It suggests that playfulness might be a good attribute to consider. 'The playful ones might be more likely to interact with a person, assimilate words more easily and be more intelligent", said Dr Nicholas Dodman, CEO & President, Center for Canine Behavior Studies. Missing dog Abby found after surviving two months in a 'pitch-dark' Missouri cave
Poodle X Abby "managed to survive nearly 60 days on her own, apparently much or all of it in a pitch-dark, 14 degree Celsius cave. . . . Since her rescue [by holiday-making cavers], she has regained weight [Abby's human Jeff Bohnert estimates she lost half her weight in the cave] and started to get back the voice she likely lost barking for help."