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Cagayan de Oro Dog Training and Rehabilitation on Facebook

Cagayan de Oro Dog Training and Rehabilitation

Promoting a good relationship between dog and human

Dog obedience

Relationship dog-humanFor quite a while I have been teaching dog obedience and my original focus was helping people deal better with their dogs, as Cesar Millan did in his TV show Dog Whisperer. But lately my goal is becoming a bit more ambitious, as I want people have the same experience, the same feeling, I have in general with dogs, after I get to know them and they getting to know me.

I have learned that dog obedience starts with pack leadership, with the owner or owners being the leader of their dog or dogs. And often that is hard, as many people, including me, don't like being the leader, being the boss. I think we humans prefer to have equal relationships, where there is no 'boss'. However, I have learned that dogs are different, as in my experience dogs appear to be much happier when they are in the follower position. Over and over in training sessions I see dogs calm down, see the household calm down, when the owner takes the leaderposition and puts, yes often forces, the dog in the 'underdog' position.

ArfAnd I am the last person to believe in force, in dictatorship, in authority, but over and over I see that what I am doing with dogs and teaching related to dogs seems to work: much happier dogs and much happier owners and visitors and family members. So somehow it must be true that the first and foremost needs of a dog are safety and security. And yes, whether we like it or now, safety and security comes with authority, and authority, in the end, comes with force. I guess the vast majority of all people agrees we have a justice system, including police to implement things, with force if needed.

And I must be doing something right, as my dog Arf (sic) follows me everywhere I go, and often I am not easy on him, as he can be very naughty, like trying to get away on his own when we are walking and trying to eat everything everywehere outside, even though he knows that is not allowed.

Man's best friend

When talking about the dog-human relationship people often think of the phrase Dogs are Man's Best Friend, but to me that phrase is very misleading, as in my experience a dog is not your friend, as to me friendship implies equality and a dog is not your equal. You normally own a dog and that implies equality. So I prefer to use the term companion, as to me dogs are your companion, not your friend. I also don't know dogs as knowing something like 'friendship'. They are pack animals and normally live in a pack, but also with multiple dogs I never really see dogs themselves being 'friends'. They live together with each other and with people like in a family and somehow support the other pack members, but they are not 'friends'. Most dogs, also my own dogs, are pretty individual and rarely do things together.

Bond human-dog

So then what about the bond, the relationship, between humans and dogs, the thing I am trying to promote in this page. Well, to me that emerges when the human properly takes the (pack) leader role and the dog becomes the follower. And in my experience, when the human establishes that position, automatically the bond emerges. And it is hard to explain what it exactly is, as one has to experience it. But when experienced I think most people would agree with me that it is a very strong and a very special bond, and very satisfying for both human and dog.

So instead of 'obedience', I think my main teaching is actually how to create a healthy dog-human bond, a healthy dog-human relationship. And the weird thing is, that even though there is hierarchy, like the human is the leader and the dog is the follower, in the end the relationship is equal. And it is one of the strongest, best bonds, relationships I know, in a way stronger than human to human relationships.