Archive for the ‘Cesar Millan’ Category

Here we go again, another hot button issue on the periphery of our friend, the dog.  If it’s not training methods, then it’s breed standards, or standards of a particular breeder.  Those are the evergreens.  We might also include the differences between rescuers as opposed to buying from breeders.  Vaccinations against more holistic methods.  Raw feeders v Kibble feeders…The arguing goes on no matter the subject.  It is my belief that, as dog people we will soon be completely unable to stop outside factions from taking control of our interests, because we can’t agree on anything that really matters.  When I posted a challenge to my readers to find something that we ALL do agree on, I was disappointed in the answers.  Most were based on emotion.  And while I agree with the sentiment, “We all want what’s best for our dogs.”  it doesn’t really protect us from the onslaught of rules and legislation that some would impose on dog-owners everywhere.  So I’m going to wade into the latest attempt to prevent good people from practicing what they love most, and are most skilled at doing.  Much of the problem comes from those with “Certification”, “Title” or “Degree”, but little experience.  Education, but little instinct for the art.  Desire for control, but scant leadership ability.

  Should “Dog-Training” require higher education and Licensing from a Controlling Organization in order to protect consumers and ensure that Positive Methods of Training are observed?

This is the latest skirmish among those of us in the canine professions, and there is at least a small group that would love to make it a subject of Governmental legislation.   Not to put too fine a point on the subject, but most of the sturm und drang, encouraging more control and necessitating expensive licensing, is coming from those that follow the Purely Positive philosophies.  Many of them have an alphabet soup of degree’s that they love to place after their names wherever they can find space for them.  They complain against, and harbor real hatred for individuals such as Cesar Millan, who has no degree hanging from his wall.  Don’t misunderstand me, I’m not entirely in Millans camp either, but he may be the foremost authority on being demonized and hated by fellows in the industry.   Anyone that can rightfully say that they practice anything similar are also demonized by the “Other Side.”  And truly, Cesar Millan is only the tip of an iceberg that would have crushed the Titanic, as opposed to the minor, but effective damage that  hunk of frozen water caused.

The largest impetus behind this legislation of “Certification”, seems to be, ubiquitously, filthy lucre.  Money.  With a dash of  “do it MY way, or don’t do it at all.”  Check out the websites of the various “professional” organizations that claim to represent “Dog Trainers/Training” as an industry.  None of what they offer is inexpensive, although some of the programs may have benefits.  Pay the charge, and you may be allowed to train with one of several big names in the industry.  Pay more and you’ll be given credentials, some without ever having to meet the individual responsible for teaching you.  Assembly line “certification”.  But under the proposals of an elite cadre of individuals, those payers would still be able to hang out a shingle “legally.”  And make no mistake, they are overwhelmingly instructed, indoctrinated, and walking lock-step with the Purely Positive mind-set coven.  Their intent is too force everyone to lose the use of certain tools, techniques, and methods that stand out from Purely Positive.  Don’t believe this can happen?  Then why are German Trainers forced to hide and deny use of training collars or various types?

Keen observation of this situation fascinates me.  I get to see  dog-training from several divergent perspectives.  First, The Law Enforcement K9 trainers.  Second, The IPO/  schutzhund/PSA  perspective.  Third, The Service/Therapy dog perspective, and finally, The Pet Dog/Rescue/Boarding facility perspective.  They couldn’t be more different.

In the Schutzhund/IPO/Law enforcement world, Performance Is The Proof of a good, solid, trainer.  There’s no obsession over who holds what degree, what Trainer Organization pay homage (and cash) too.  What matters, is what the dog has learned under your guidance.  Word of mouth is the best advertising, and the weak and unskilled, or ego-driven can’t survive.  And they don’t.  Yes, there are plenty who claim great skill in training protection/sport/LE dogs, but they soon fall victim to their own failures.  Performance is the primary judge in this arena.

The Therapy/Service dog arena has hitherto been a world of people wanting sincerely to help.  Good people more concerned with capable, skilled, dogs than who trained the dog.  But I see disturbing trends in this system.   over certification, outside interests controlling what types of training are mandated, outside interests trying to change where Service dogs are welcome, businesses restricting access to PTSD/Emotional support dogs, and more.  Alongside those problems, there are people selling credentials to anybody that wants to walk an untrained dog anywhere they please, whenever they please.  The Service Dog problems are two-headed and complex.  I don’t know where the balance will come from, but there’s a real battle ahead.  This area needs discussion and balanced administration.  I hope that those involved have the wisdom to find ways to continuing to provide these valuable working dogs to people that desperately need them.

Finally, the Pet Dog industry.

You’d find more rules/laws in Port Royal, Jamaica circa 1655.  Anybody can hang out a sign and print business cards and call themselves a “Dog Trainer”.  But don’t get me wrong, I support that right.  Success or failure should come from the hand of the consumer.  If a dog trainer doesn’t produce successfully trained dogs/owners, the market and word of mouth will eliminate them.  Trainers of ALL methods.  Trainers with an alphabet soup of degrees after their names, and trainers with nothing more than skill and experience to bolster them.  This then is where the ugliness rears it’s head.

A small but loud group of individuals, coupled with others that smell money in the water, see a fur-covered gold-mine in them thar’ hills.  These people want very specific laws and standards to be mandated upon everybody, with subsequent denial of licences or certification as support.  Most of those in this group are from the Purely Positive training cabal.  Only their way is the right and proper way.  Most of them seem to care more about controlling how others train than actually training themselves.  If they had to prove that their methods are totally successful, by producing results of lasting effectiveness, then the open market would soon eliminate them.

The blogs, FB pages, and books that are published by this crowd seeth with contempt toward anyone that dares question “Science”, and the modus operandi of the Purely Positive Crowd.  Anyone without the “required” titles given by the “professional” dog trainers associations is considered unfit for the public to seek help from.  This attitude has become so vitriolic that certain trainers are even adopting an outward appearance of supporting the militant minority of PP.

Does anyone prove their skill, talent, or instincts with a display of which seminars they’ve attended or which Dog Training Organization they mollify with lucre, or how many acronyms follow their name on a business card?  Like the politics of our time, it seems the Least qualified keep getting elected because they have the media on their side, or the money to overwhelm any opposition.  And the least qualified become the voice of Canine Behavior because our society is impressed with academic achievement and the fallacy that education is the end-all-be- all of our profession.  It’s time for proof.  Go out and Prove you are a skilled dog trainer.  Train people, train dogs, and do so in a way that stands the test of time and professionalism.  Work in such a way that doesn’t rely on bashing other trainers and their methods or philosophy of dog behavior.  If you feel the need to challenge someones opinion or methods or lack of qualifications to train dogs, let YOUR ABILITIES prove it, not your word processor, or even worse, words spoken loudly from the relative anonymity of the internet.  That being said, be happy to know that there ARE schools for dog trainers that are quite good, and worth their cost.  But only because they teach you to decide what works best for you, not a militant curriculum of their own.

My personal solution to these arguments is to do what I do regardless of anyone else’s “opinion” of what I “should” be doing.  My success will speak to my clients, not my influences.  We need more legislation like we need new holes drilled in our skulls.

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I’d given up writing about training methods, good, bad, and silly.  It seemed that the Non-Aversive loving, Operant-Conditioning Zombies had been winning the heart of the politically correct society we live in, and it just wasn’t worth the flaming stupidity that happened when you dared argue with the Clicker Sorority.  (Yeah, it’s mostly a female movement.)  I no longer cared what these people did in their training, as long as I was free to train in the method that I know works best.  Click your brains out ladies, and hope you don’t need to correct any behavior problems with that thing…And I left it at that.  What a relief…

But something has happened, and a new uprising is stirring in the dog training world.  Balanced Trainers, like myself, are beginning to rise up on blogs, chat rooms, and other canine based internet sites.  They are writing and making video’s, and finally pushing back on the tidal wave of Skinnerites, and Pryor Zombies.  They are exposing the failures of Non -Aversive training, they are pointing out the harm that a militant stand for any SINGLE method causes dogs.  When a Clicker trainer admits that they have behavior problems with their own dog, or a clients, the Balanced Trainers are finally jumping on it and providing guidance where none has existed before.  What happened?

Well, it seems that the “politically correct” (as a collective) , always seeking complete control, went to far too fast.  Amongst other actions, they have succeeded in legislating a complete “Ban” on certain training collars in the country of Wales.  They are aiming at the rest of the U.K., but Balanced Trainers are rising up in defense of methods that are not only successful, but completely harmless to dogs.  The methods of Balance succeed where non-aversive devotee’s regularly fail.   The Balanced Trainers have risen up.  It’s about freaking time!!!

I think this latest turn-around, and subsequent surge of Reason, came at the guiding hand of Ivan Balabanov, World Champion competitor and Trainer.  Oh yeah, he’s also a breeder of the Belgian Malinois, something else that ticks off the HSUS,  ASPCA, PETA and the other alphabet soup of busy bodies that think they know best for the dog world.  Ivan has probably been to busy traveling the world training dogs and winning everything to keep abreast of this nonsense.  He has really turned his attention to helping train new handlers, study canine learning, and inspiring a new era in dog training.  He’s written some fantastic new things, and I suspect and hope that he is working on a new book discussing the topic of “Aversives” in training.  Beware Non-Aversive types…such a book could cause serious brain hemorrhaging to many of your militant types…Here’s a link to some of Ivans stuff.  http://malinois.com/site-training-tips/positive-training-or-reliable-training/    Ivan knows his way around a training facility, the mind of the dog, and oh yeah…The top of the Winners platform.  But he also trains peoples pet’s.  The dogs enjoy being with him, and their families enjoy learning from him.  I’m writing a separate post about this remarkable Dog Man, so I’ll move on to some other very fine posts and opinions that have recently jumped into the public domain.  Maybe Common Sense is making a much needed resurgence…

Stop number 2 on our tour of Balanced Trainers is to Mr. Roger Hild of http://www.tsurodogtraining.com/  Check out his methodology on the main page as you scroll down.  The  Tsuro Method…Balanced, effective, and well described.  Also visit his interesting articles link http://www.tsurodogtraining.com/articles_of_interest.htm      Remember, my purpose in highlighting these trainers and their sites is to encourage you to pursue BALANCED Training, rather than a militant stand for any single method.  Every dog needs a unique combination of things to successfully  take to training.  NO SINGLE method alone can help a dog with behavior problems…One article that he writes on is here…http://www.tsurodogtraining.com/_articles/real_training.html     Another is titled, http://www.tsurodogtraining.com/plan_b.htm

Our next stop on the balanced trainers trail is Mr. Dale McCluskeys video heavy website…http://k9pack.wordpress.com/2013/09/20/dog-psychology-corner-physical-response-and-relational-disconnect-2/   Very strong on relationship training, Dale has lots of great balanced training while also going after the damage of an unbalanced view with a vengeance…Dale tells it like it is, but his experience makes the truth pop off the screen!

And then there’s The TerrierMan!  http://terriermandotcom.blogspot.com/2010/02/calm-and-assertive-clicker-training.html   His is a wide open blog site with so many interesting things that you’ll search this site for hours!!  The link above is especially interesting if you want to belive that Clicker training is a superior method!

Finally, I have enjoyed Mr, Tyler Muto found here…(And on Facebook!) http://connectwithyourk9.com/    and the blog, full of great reading is found here:  http://connectwithyourk9.com/category/blog/.    So balanced, and wide ranging, that you really must explore it yourself…some of my favorite articles are: http://connectwithyourk9.com/humane-dog-training-a-different-perspective/   and  http://connectwithyourk9.com/the-relativity-of-pressure/   see also:http://connectwithyourk9.com/a/  and its follow up article  http://connectwithyourk9.com/now-that-i-have-your-attention/.

Sometimes it has felt that Balanced, omnivorous trainers have been shut into small prison cells and joyously shouted down by the cult of OC and Aversive Training deniers.  I am thrilled to be able to start hearing from and seeing the Balanced Methods finally get their word out and slowly eroding into the monopoly that a relative small group of VERY LOUD and media savvy +R trainer militants have held.  All I ask of you, my reader, is to investigate everything that is out there for your dog!!!

I have been a fairly tenacious advocate of training early, training often, and training with intent.  My dogs began training the day they came home at about 8 weeks of age.  We began with the basics, Sit, Go Potty, No Bites…you get the drift.  Shortly thereafter, I began Scent work training.  Within 6 months, we also mastered most of the CGC tests, even though the test couldn’t be taken at that age.  Everywhere we went was a test of behavior, obedience, or socialization.  Many of the books that I read strongly encouraged that “Time for training must start early, you have very little time, hurry, hurry, hurry!!!”   One of the most desperate sounding was Ian Dunbar, who seems to believe that dogs stop learning at 9 months old.  Fortunately I have learned that the mind-set and methods of Dunbar and his followers is  incomplete, and based on questionable conclusions.  Dogs can learn everyday of their life, and they do.  There’s a better way, and “Science” backs this conclusion.

I wish now that I had focused more time and attention on interactive “Play” between us during the first year.   I was fortunate in this:  My style of training was (and is) more centered on “fun” than most others.  I love watching the dogs just being dogs, chasing toys, chasing each other, playing tug-of-war with various items, digging for hidden rewards, and wrestling with me on the ground.  There is one central reason that PLAY is so important to the development of your puppy.  This ingredient will affect your relationship as a team for the life of your dog.  What is this ingredient?

           You Must Be The Most Interesting Thing In Your Dogs Life.  

Are you naturally drawn to an employer that piles work on you every minute of everyday?  Your dog, especially puppies up to about a year old, are hard-wired to Play.  It’s a combination of Exercise (or Stress Relief, a topic upcoming here) Discipline (Time to “release”  the toy) and Affection(rolling around on the floor letting the dog search you for a toy, or playing Tug are Rewards!!)  Your dog will celebrate every time you walk into the room because YOU=Playtime!!!!   This developing focus on you will create a dog/human team that are completely in tune with each other.  There will never be a problem with a distracted dog, because YOU, (Not food treats, and certainly not Clicking) will be the center of his world.

I’ve written about what follows in “German Shepherd Adventures” a couple of years ago, and it raised eyebrows in some.  That’s okay by me, because I’ve seen the results of my practice.  I’ll repeat what I wrote then for the benefit of those who may have missed it. The most important game you can develop properly with your dog is a good old-fashioned game of “Tugging”.  I know, I know…Many of you are of the belief that this creates an aggressive dog, .  You believe that you are developing a dog that is capable of dangerous reactions. You may believe you are creating a “reactionary” dog… You are, in fact, doing just the opposite.  Notice this quote from  Jean Donaldson, a positive training maven, writes that tug games “are not about dominance and they do not increase aggression. These are myths.”  (Quote from this source-(http://www.leecharleskelley.com/top10myths/dontplaytugofwar.html

You are in fact, creating an “Outlet” for your dogs “prey” instinct, while using the natural, inborn inclinations of your dogs “Hunting” instincts to relieve , (Here it comes…) stress. To quote Kevin Behan in “Natural Dog Training”, –Many parents may be nervous about this whole notion of prey instinct. We are not creating the prey instinct: it is already there. We are channeling it into an appropriate activity. This way it is not as likely to go where it does not belong, such as after a child’s hand. Otherwise, you are leaving it up to the dog to decide what he wants to do with his prey instinct.

Okay, I’m springing something new on you.  The idea that your dog has stress, and is better off with an effective way to release it.  That’s going to be the subject of another post.  Energy and Stress, and your dogs “Natural” state of being a “Predator”, are going to be major subjects in the near future here.

As part of the Communicative Approach, Tugging games build a bond between Handler and Canine.  During these games, your dog’s focus is %115 on YOU!  Remember, a tug toy, rag, or sleeve is a lifeless object UNTIL you pick it up!  Then you become the life of the party!!!  The practice will soon eliminate distractions, and improve recalls, and obedience.  I have always played serious tugging games with my protection dog “Hans”.  Without really knowing “Why”, or “How”, I’ve raised an obedient, focused dog.  Looking back, I realize that we bonded over this type of play.

Now, for my heretofore failure, and its recent resolution:  Our young female GSD, “Holly”, now 18 months old, was slated specifically for Therapy work, and as an experimental “Cancer Detection Canine”, (A newly developing study.) from 8 weeks of age.  My wife would train her, and I’d promise to not teach the pup to tug, chase me, or anything else resembling “aggression”.  Holly did fine for about the first year, earning CGC status, passing TDI training, and doing well.  But she never quite earned our trust in “Off-Leash” activities, such as fetch.  She suffered a lack of “Focus” being easily distracted at times.  Outside, her “recall” was questionable, but inside was fine.  She seemed “bored” while working my wife opined…CarolAnn actually became very distressed over this lack of enthusiasm, and Holly’s lackadaisical response to obedience while unleashed.  She actually “borrowed” a friends Vizla, to make her Care Facility rounds for two weeks while we investigated this occurrence.  Well, of course, Holly became despondent and a little destructive at home.  Some how we were not fulfilling her needs, while we were protecting her status as a Therapy Dog.  All bad things.  Hans had never been thru anything like this in his training, and we were searching frantically for answers.  Thinking that “Physical Activity” was the missing ingredient, we enrolled CarolAnn and Holly in Agility training.  In good portion, it helped.  Holly does well, has no fear, and loves to burn off steam.  But her “focus” on her handler was still an issue.  It was during this period that picked up on “Natural Dog Training” by Kevin Behan, and the work of both Lee Charles Kelley and Neil Sattin (found here: http://www.naturaldogblog.com/

What I read and digested was very similar to the way I had raised and trained Hans.  Different terms were being used to describe what I was developing on my own somewhat lacking method, but the same spirit was there.  We decided that I would recreate with Holly, what I had done with Hans.  “Pushing”, a training technique that “Natural Dog Training” emphasizes is one such example.  I called it “Keep Away” with a high-value item.  (There’s a lot more to explain “Pushing”.  Check the link above, Please)

I also introduced Holly and CarolAnn to Tugging Games.  My wife at first resisted mightily, being wisely aware that Holly had grown some impressive dentition.  I began to play tug with Holly everyday for a week, which is more time than needed.  Within that time, her behavior turned 180 degrees about!!  Her recall reminded me of a Sparrow missile inbound…I pushed her training to things she had been taught NOT to do, such as giving Dad a Big stand up hug as she saw Hans do everyday with me.  Holly was shortly going after an Arm-sleeve with a gusto that belied her hitherto somewhat (Bored! Unfulfilled!) gentle nature.  But the fuzzy little phoenix was rising from her own frustrated ashes…Everything changed about her behavior.  I chalk it up to fulfilling her natural instincts.  Period.

So go out and play with your dog.  Learn to play Tug safely, and properly.  Again I will provide some links below for this purpose.  The result will be Focus Focus and more Focus from your dog, and the end of many behavioral problems!!!!

http://www.naturaldogblog.com/blog/2007/07/how-to-play-tug-of-war-with-your-dog-and-have-the-happiest-dog-on-the-block/

My beautiful, Natural Trainee, Holly...

My beautiful, Natural Trainee, Holly…

© Robert W. Vaughan and German Shepherd Adventures {2010 to Current} Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Robert W. Vaughan and German Shepherd Adventures  with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

I’m never going to get rich from dog-training.  It would be wonderful if I was able to develop a bullet-pointed, annotated, technique rich, program that I could take on the road as a way to make a living.  Karen Pryor has her Clicker Expo.  Cesar Millan has a road-tour.  Michael Ellis has well attended seminars all over the country.  Roger Abrantes is known globally for his speaking engagements.  And there are lots more…

"I already know how to learn!  Now it's YOUR turn!"

“I already know how to learn! Now it’s YOUR turn!”

If  I developed such a speaking tour, each date would probably last less than 15 minutes, and my audience, (If they showed up at all) would feel as though I owed them more time for their investment.  I can give you the foundation of the Communicative Approach in just about 5 minutes, with 10 minutes left over for audience questions and a friendly meet-and-greet.  Write an entire book on the subject?  Five or six total pages does not a book make…The reason for this anti-marketing of myself and the Communicative Approach is simply this:  YOU alone are responsible to define, develop, and practice your communication with your dog.  The steps leading to that goal are straightforward, self-revealing, and they come from within YOU…Not a long-winded seminar, not a book, and not a DVD.  Not that I’m criticizing those talented trainers out there with something concrete that enables them to produce an actual “Program”, or  “Training System”.  They are certainly out there.  I recently reviewed Angie Winters new “3 Dog Days” dvd and it was wonderful…I love the Michael Ellis DVD’s produced thru the groundbreaking Leerburg company…and there are others.

But the Communicative Approach to Training Theory (C.A.T.T.)  does not make that approach possible.  The Heart cannot be fully instructed externally.  Your heart could NOT sit in a classroom and be taught to love,  develop relationships, or empathize with other living things in a meaningful way.  That comes from within you…That’s why this post carries the title above and this warning:

“Do Not Attempt This Technique Without Consulting Your Motives and Commitment. “

Many people “own” dogs.  Some because it’s a status symbol to have a cute little dog in your shoulder bag. (Think Paris Hilton)  Others because the dog is used as a tool to achieve some dubious and highly questionable honor or personal glory. (Think Michael Vick)  A few don’t think having a dog thru with any understanding. (“Hey…A cute little puppy!  That would be a great Christmas present for the kids!  What breed is it??”)  Others have the wrong motive entirely.  (I want me a dawg that’ll attack anybody that comes around my house or property!)Granted, perhaps Paris Hilton takes good care of her pup.  Or pays someone to do it for her.  I’m seeking evidence that her Chinese Crested is more than just another Helsburg Diamond to her.

But there also those owners/trainers that do pursue good training for the dog, and for themselves.  Yet something it missing.  I’ve seen them at schutzhund, agility, and formal dog shows.  The dog is incapable of socializing properly with people and other dogs, so they spend the balance of their time in a crate,often covered with a blanket to keep the dogs world insular.  The dog’s life is simply to perform when commanded.  They are trained as little robots…Thankfully, these types are not common.  Most Dog people at least try to develop a relationship that fulfills their dog.

So now I’m going to give you the only bullet-pointed list that goes with the Communicative Approach to Training Theory.  I will expand upon each of them in upcoming posts, but I hope you can think about each of them, and come to your own conclusions.  They work with  formal training methods, not replacing them.  You still need to learn about training.  But go beyond them, and embrace these attitudes, and you will  find success beyond your expectations!  (Note: These are NOT in order of importance.  That order can change and be adjusted every day)

* Love Your Dog

*Live With Your Dog

*Listen To Your Dog

*Learn With Your Dog

*Learn About Your Dog

*Learn Your  Chosen  Method Well

* Prioritize Play With Your Dog

There you go…The foundation of the Communicative Approach.  Next up, I’ll expand on each of these.  I believe that if we all practice these attitudes, our dogs will be better, our training will be better, and you just might learn something about yourself…Thanks for reading, and don’t forget to FOLLOW us!!!

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    A  Dog-Training DVD that is simple, effective, AND engaging.  Hmmmmm…Sounds like the most difficult formula in the industry today.  So many training  dvd’s become victims of bad editing, poor production, or convoluted training methods that require too much explanation.  Many others, while informative, are often boring.  Well, now I’ve found a DVD that is entertaining, informative, and uses a methodology that IS  something truly innovative…Common Sense, and sound canine psychology.

 The title of the DVD is,  “3 Dog Days”, produced by Columbus, Ohio based Dog Behaviorist, Angie Winters, and “German Shepherd Adventures” gives it an enthusiastic  5 PAWS UP! (5 out of 5). 

  It should be noted from the start that the methods here are NOT intended for dogs under 4 months of age, but are designed as lessons for teaching respect, structure, and leadership to your pet.  They would be especially effective for Rescued dogs, or those taken into your home at a later time than puppyhood.  That’s as close as I can get to a critical statement of the DVD…I truly hope that Angie produces more instructional dvd’s in the very near future, addressing other subjects such as bringing home a new puppy.  She has a gift for understanding dogs, and teaching people what to do for them.  Let’s get to the meat of the matter!

  “3 Dog Days” is based solidly on the owner being a LEADER.  Ms.  Winters first point is that her method provides “…firm structure in a respectful manner…never hit, kick, or yell” at your dog…Anger doesn’t teach anything” .  (Now you can say the words, “that’s just common sense”)  She further makes the point very clear, that this is all about the Relationship that exists between humans and dogs.  It’s a very special and unique arrangement that effectively helps the team to develop a mutually supportive atmosphere based on trust between Leader and Follower.  Winters has a sound understanding of how dogs think, and what they want from us in every day life, and she describes it very well.

Using three techniques, (1) Silent Support  (2) Companionship and Control  and (3) Crate Work, “3 Dog Days”  will guide you both thru a weekend that will create an entirely new atmosphere in your home.  These are very positive techniques, without being mired down by the “jargon” and “What does that Term mean?” of so many “positive training methods”.  Again, this is just innovative “Common Sense” being used.  Somewhere, we lost that in the science that has become so prevalent in dog training.

“3 Dog Days” also utilizes the idea that each and every dog is a unique individual, requiring  a different approach.  This is the true strength of Ms. Winters approach.  Her well-rounded, and flexible techniques allow for such needs, which makes the canine in the equation more at ease.  Affect the dogs mind, to create a respectful relationship…This is powerfully demonstrated by the use of a “feral”, completely untrained dog, undergoing the transformation into an ideal pet dog. 

One outstanding method used here, is the most difficult to master for the human.  KEEP SILENT while training.  Do Not use the voice to calm the dog.  All of us talk too much in this relationship and learning Silent Support will push you into a powerful tool in training your dog. 

Body Language is another tool in the “3 Dog Days” that you will learn.  Our dogs watch us closely, far more so than we as humans do.  Focusing on that will be a revelation to some.  Using the snap of a finger, Winters corrects the dog from a distance, and gets the results that make your dog the well-behaved pet you desire.  Achieving Leadership, Leadership, and Leadership are the backbone of the “3 Dog Days” method.  The dogs mind, and personality , are both  fully engaged by the trainer/owner.  The steps to follow are clearly and easily explained in their entirety.  Many instructional dvds today seem to hold back small details from the viewer, so as to create a need for another DVD, to explain even further.  “3 Dog Days” gives you every detail the first time…

Mention should also be given about the technical details of the “3 Dog Days”.  If you have ever watched DVDs from Leerburg productions, you have found them instructive and interesting.  But they have taken little care in their editing.  Spelling errors and other glitches are common, and annoying.  “3 Dog Days” was produced by professionals that crossed all the “T’s”, and dotted all the “I’s”.  The settings and lighting were well designed and easy on the eyes.  The best compliment I can give is that this dvd is one that you will watch over and over again!  “Common Sense” has found a home in the world of canine training!!!

  In conclusion, I need to explain something about the title of this review, in which the words “Bubble Bath” appear.  In a wonderful moment of whimsy and humanness, Winters demonstrates that your dog and his training should be FUN!!!  That’s all the detail I’ll give on that.  But the fact that this very instructional and informative  DVD doesn’t take dog-training rigidly serious, will surprise and delight you!!! 

The DVD is available from Amazon.com    found here.  It’s well worth purchasing!  http://www.amazon.com/Days-Revolutionary-Training-Rehabilitation-System/dp/B00AIAC5SM/ref=pd_rhf_se_p_t_1

 

“German Shepherd Adventures” was first published on the ubiquitous Facebook.  As my posts became longer, and more photo-centric, I moved into the wonderful world of WordPress.  I love my online home here, and I am ever so thankful that this well-run, and easy to use site exists.  WordPress you are THE BEST!!!

Recently, as Facebook has become more of a mind to make as much cash as possible, or gather as much  information about its users as possible, they are making it more and more difficult to publicize and share my blog there.  At times, I have received messages from FB stating that I am writing SPAM, and will be prevented from posting for as much as 15 days at a time.  I do NOT sell anything on “German Shepherd Adventures”, I do not espouse political or religious views, but rather, I write a very positive blog that most dog lovers seem to enjoy.  Why “German Shepherd Adventures” has suddenly been branded  as SPAM by the FB people is beyond my understanding.  I can no longer depend on them as a conduit to spread information that helps people and their dogs.  It’s apparently okay to spread other “unsavory” sites featuring puking, drunkenness, violence, and foul language, but not stories and information about German Shepherds.  So be it.

That’s why I’d like to invite as many of you as would like to Subscribe to “German Shepherd Adventures” by hitting the “Follow” button at the top of the page.  If you don’t like my posts, you don’t have to do anything.  I suspect that perhaps someone on FB has labeled “GSA” as Spam enough times to make some computer somewhere take this action.  If you don’t want to read something you disagree with, I’ve never forced you to do so.  I’ve survived other attacks on FB over training methods, and perhaps one of those knuckle-draggers has something to do with this.  I don’t know…

So, please, if you enjoy my blog, come on over and subscribe.  I promise you it will be free, and I’ll continue to do my best to entertain, enthuse, inspire, and help you out with every post!   Thanks for your support!!   Robert Vaughan

http://dogingtonpost.com/beware-of-trainers-who-say-dog-should-do-for-me/

 

When the nice lady Muse that helps me write descends, she’s normally very friendly and quite amiable.  To just about everybody…But ocassionally, she’ll have a raging migraine, PMS, or her bunions will be bothering her.  Then, she provides me with ideas that rarely see the PUBLISH button activated here.  Mostly because I pass these pre-posts pass my designated Voice Of Reason, or VOR .  My VOR’s name is Kimberly, and while possessed of a sharp and subtle wit, she seems convicted to keep me out of trouble with certain corners of society.  Like the idea I developed about re-writing the Wizard of Oz using dog people that I know as the characters.  The Wicked Witch of the West was played by a certain famous Clicker Trainer (who shall remain nameless), and the Winged Monkeys were played by a bevy of the drones that follow her ideas with militancy.  It wasn’t meant to be mean, but it was wickedly funny, and I enjoyed writing it.  Kimberly would have burned my house down if I had published it.  She’s good for that…

But the following piece came together so quickly and fluidly, that it had to be written.  The situation reminded me of scene #5 from the classic Monty Python film, “The Holy Grail”.  Therein, Sir Bedemere has been approached rather boisterously by a gaggle of medievel villagers.  They have detained a young woman that they have accused of being a Witch.  (A fairly acceptable occurrance in those times.)

The Militant Witch Hunters…

Bedemeres first question to the haranguing mob is, “How Do You Know She’s a Witch?”

The response is both simple and profoundly revealing.  “She LOOKS like one!!”

The accused woman then pipes up and says, “I’m Not a Witch! I’m Not a Witch!” to which Bedemere responds,

“But You LOOK like a Witch…”

“THEY dressed me up like this!”  And the mob had indeed given her a pointed hat, and a long carrot as a nose, which was attached by a string around her head.  The script continues:

WITCH:  And this isn’t my nose, it’s a false one.
 BEDEMERE:  Well?
VILLAGER #1:  Well, we did do the nose.
 BEDEMERE:  The nose?
VILLAGER #1:  And the hat — but she is a witch!
CROWD:  Burn her!  Witch!  Witch!  Burn her!
 BEDEMERE:  Did you dress her up like this?
CROWD:  No, no… no … yes.  Yes, yes, a bit, a bit.
VILLAGER #1:  She has got a wart.
 BEDEMERE:  What makes you think she is a witch?
VILLAGER #3:  Well, she turned me into a newt.
 BEDEMERE:  A newt?
VILLAGER #3:  I got better.
VILLAGER #2:  Burn her anyway!
CROWD:  Burn!  Burn her!
 BEDEMERE:  Quiet, quiet.  Quiet!  There are ways of telling whether
she is a witch.
CROWD:  Are there?  What are they?
 BEDEMERE:  Tell me, what do you do with witches?
VILLAGER #2:  Burn!
CROWD:  Burn, burn them up!
 BEDEMERE:  And what do you burn apart from witches?
VILLAGER #1:  More witches!
VILLAGER #2:  Wood!
 BEDEMERE:  So, why do witches burn?
[pause]
VILLAGER #3:  B–… ’cause they’re made of wood…?
 BEDEMERE:  Good!
CROWD:  Oh yeah, yeah…
 BEDEMERE:  So, how do we tell whether she is made of wood?
VILLAGER #1:  Build a bridge out of her.
 BEDEMERE:  Aah, but can you not also build bridges out of stone?
VILLAGER #2:  Oh, yeah.
 BEDEMERE:  Does wood sink in water?
VILLAGER #1:  No, no.
VILLAGER #2:  It floats!  It floats!
VILLAGER #1:  Throw her into the pond!
CROWD:  The pond!
 BEDEMERE:  What also floats in water?
VILLAGER #1:  Bread!
VILLAGER #2:  Apples!
VILLAGER #3:  Very small rocks!
VILLAGER #1:  Cider!
VILLAGER #2:  Great gravy!
VILLAGER #1:  Cherries!
VILLAGER #2:  Mud!
VILLAGER #3:  Churches — churches!
VILLAGER #2:  Lead — lead!
 ARTHUR:  A duck.
 CROWD:  Oooh.
 BEDEMERE:  Exactly!  So, logically…,
VILLAGER #1:  If… she.. weighs the same as a duck, she’s made of wood.
 BEDEMERE:  And therefore–?
VILLAGER #1:  A witch!
CROWD:  A witch!

“How Do You Know She’ a Wich?”

As silly and seriously funny as I find this interchange, and grand example of Circular Reasoning run amuck, it reminded me of a post I read by a Professional Clicker-Trainer not long ago…It was written by a young lady at the website, Dogington Post.  The article is no doubt the result of a fairly new and inexperienced trainer, that has been swept into the mob of Positive Trainers, and thoroughly drank the Kool-Aid that convinces them that “If you don’t Click, You make me Sick!”

Okay, the point is this. In the movie, the accused woman is a Witch, because the small but loud mob SAYS she’s a Witch.  They even go out of their way to put on garments and accessories that demonstrate she’s a witch.  This is what Positive/Operant Conditioning/Clicker trainers have done to EVERYBODY ELSE that doesn’t practice Pryorology.  We are BAD, and Old-Fashioned, or even cruel and brutal, because THEY say so!!  I’m going to list several quotes from the article below, as well as the link to the site, that demonstrates the attitude I’m pointing out.  “Your WRONG because WE say so!!”

http://dogingtonpost.com/beware-of-trainers-who-say-dog-should-do-for-me/

“Why should old-fashioned trainers come to the positive side? Because positive training works!” –  Apparently NOTHING ELSE DOES…

“… it won’t deteriorate the human animal bond, it will not cause negative stress or physical pain to your dog through the use of force or pain, and it’s totally supported by science and the laws of learning just to add a few reasons.” – I’m weary of being told that I’m causing my dog pain or stress when we train using Relationship Training.  And, I’ll put our Human/Canine bond up against ANYTHING you can demonstrate!

This next quote demonstrates the addled thinking of the writer.  She’s actually making my point for me…and she doesn’t even know it. – “There’s always more than one way to reach the top of the mountain. Being closed-minded and adamant about what they don’t understand can create dogs that lose their homes and family and possibly their lives. Shouldn’t the goal be to help in any way possible that will aid the dog in its understanding of what the owner is looking for from that dog?

The next quote is more of the same…- “Is it not our role as the allegedly intelligent species to understand our dogs and find a way that works for them rather than forcing them into a one-size-fits-all mold. (You mean like Militant Clicker Training?) When you’re forced to do something, do you enjoy it? Of course not, so why should dogs enjoy being pushed into downs and manipulated into sits, jerked by the neck in the name of training? ( You assume that non-clicker users hurt their dog to achieve obedience!  And you are WRONG.) 

“How Do You Know He’s Cruel and Mean to his Dog??”

“Because we say so, and the Laws of Learning and Science prove it!”

I’ll allow you the chance to read the rest of Ms. Sarasin’ post.  It goes off on a directionless path that merely mirrors what certain Trainers TELL her is true.  There is no accounting for the uniqueness of each dog.  No opportunity to learn about the individual mind in that single dog, and shaping a training program suited ideally to that dog.

Thankfully, many of us are seeing beyond Positive Training/Clicker Training zeitgeist, and incorporating them into something even better.  Aiming at developing a Relationship within the Canine/Human team.  Yes, We ARE positive trainers, we do NOT hurt our dogs, we do not stress them.  That’s only been the rumor because They have said it’s true.  Look beyond the methods and build something WITH your dog that fulfills his needs as a dog.  He doesn’t care about the science.