The psychology of the dog has been misinterpreted by many ‘experts’ in the past, present and will continue into the future. All animals on the planet have a psychology from the ant to the elephant. The psychology of these animals can be understood by observing them in their natural environment whilst asking ‘ what drives these animals and why do they act as they do?’
Attempting to understand the dog in the domestic environment can be observed but will never be mastered. This is due to the domestic environment being a very recent advancement in the dog’s existence; hence this environment is not ingrained in the dog’s nature. The true nature of the dog can be observed by studying his most common ancestor, the wolf.
The dogs closest ancestor
The wolf has been on this planet for many years before people. In the last 14 000 years humans accepted wolves in their communities for the purpose of aiding hunting and protection. As these wolves grew by our sides their brains shrank and appearance changed due to them no longer using their natural abilities. The wolves that were first accepted were then bred with other wolves in a similar situation again and again creating a sub species known as the dog.
Although the wolves’ appearance changed dramatically and quickly in to the dog due to human intervention, the instincts that have been around for millions of years could not be altered.
The wolf is an intelligent animal and has mastered a set of rules in which they live by in order to survive. These rules have to be reinforced on a daily basis through communication. This communication can be subtle or very obvious. The subtle part of their communication is the massive majority of their language. Understanding this subtle language is the key to understanding your dog’s behaviour.
The art of communication
This language is a gentle language, often reinforced with affection and kind teaching. Mimicking this language in the domestic environment will be a language that the dog understands. This language can then be used to communicate effectively, ensuring a great friendship with your dog. Humans often do not understand or are not aware of this language so are unable to use it.
Due to humans not understanding this lost language encourages them to rectify the problems often with frustration. As a result gadgets and tools have been created to solve these problems. Unfortunately gadgets and tools will never understand the psychology of the dog. Gadgets and tools will only service to restricting a dog from doing what he thinks he should be doing. The dog is supposed to be man’s best friend, so is administering shocks or choke chains in order to control, a friendly thing to do?
Attention to detail is paramount to becoming an expert with the dog. If you are using gadgets and tools to solve dog problems would you say this was attention to detail? Or would you rather use the psychology of the dog to understand WHY?
Look around and question which methods are cruel and which are kind. This way we will learn more, we owe dogs that.
https://www.dogtraininginlondon.co.uk/ covers all of London. Call now to speak to a dog behaviourist and trainer about your dog’s issues.