A dog is a dog is a dog and, therefore, is and always will be, a pack animal. Why not teach the dog how life is going to be in your home, according to your Rules, but in a way a dog understands instinctively? Not only is that possible, but it can be fun (and not just for the dog, but for owners, too). Dogs do EVERYTHING for a REASON. Understanding the why’s can then determine the how’s of fixing/changing a dog’s behavior.
Miscommunication (and thus household disharmony) comes about when dogs treat people like dogs and people treat dogs like people. We HAVE to think like them in order to effectively teach them to behave in our world. To do so we have to use the dogs’ standards and Rules since a dog simply cannot see life from “the people perspective.” The key to the Calling All Canines philosophy is to employ the dog’s Rules of behavior to train it to behave the way you want.
The methods of training are based in reality: a dog in an environment with people, jobs, schedules, children, other pets, and the hectic lifestyle most people have. If a dog does not see its owner as “the boss” in his own, daily environment, how is the dog supposed to see the owner as “the boss” when everyday distractions appear? New puppies especially, and newly-adopted dogs as well as “old” dogs, need STRUCTURE; it is vital to their very existence. Even though the Calling All Canines training program is fundamentally the same, dogs differ in personalities.
Some require more firmness, others more confidence-building praise, etc. A puppy (as well as an adopted dog) need to IMMEDIATELY understand their place in the new “pack” (i.e., your home) so that prior unwanted and new “bad” behaviors are not allowed to be displayed or developed. Knowing what your particular dog needs to ensure a smooth transition is what Calling All Canines is all about. And creating harmony in a household where Fido’s been running the show is also part of the Calling All Canines program because it’s never too late to train.
Training with treats and food creates an unhealthy, fat dog. Following direction solely for the “reward” of an external stimuli (such as a treat) and not out of an instinctive need to please its pack leader creates an unreliable, inconsistent dog and an unreliable, inconsistent dog response.
Even though we have domesticated them, dogs ARE PACK ANIMALS! They are ALL wired like their cousin: the wolf. From Fido to Fluffy on up to Cujo…they all have teeth and the potential for inappropriate behavior. AND BREED DOES NOT GUARANTEE BEHAVIOR. There is no such thing as a “bad dog”; a dog is a product of genetics and its environment.
Obedience training starts with the proper foundation in the dog’s daily environment: YOUR HOME. Puppies do not come pre-programmed knowing they cannot chew on wires or your furniture.
This negative behavior is commonly reinforced by fabric-covered “chew” toys, all which feel remarkably like your favorite chair when sitting in your puppy’s mouth. Incidentally, these fabric-covered “chew” toys usually contain stuffing which can be dangerous, if not outright fatal, to your puppy if ingested.