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  #11  
Old 11-03-2010, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by milos_mommy View Post
We're discussing dominance heirarchy between dogs and humans. Whether or not domestic dogs have a pack/social heirachy among themselves is an entirely different argument irrelevant to training.
According to the latest research and studies, domestic dogs don't create a hierarchy at all between themselves....nothing consistent or organized about it. And they certainly don't view us as a pack member when they aren't even pack animals. They know we're not dogs. Only conspecifics form packs anyhow. Our role should be as a benevolent leader or partner. (so don't look at Cesar Milan for an example. He is not benevolent. And he doesn't understand dogs) People look at individual behaviors and plug them into a human-construct without looking for simpler answers first. This has been going on for a long time. It's time to put that to bed once and for all....that chalking up behavior to non-proven, ambiguous pack theory. It is not relevant to domestic dogs.

Maxi hit the nail on the head when she wrote to look at it as behaviors you want and behaviors you don't want.....and then train accordingly....benevolently. (that sounds so familiar to me...like I've said the same thing before many times. lol) It's not about pack theory and dominance.
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  #12  
Old 11-03-2010, 06:02 PM
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I posted another answer, but it was way too long. Is dominance theory widely accepted? Yes. Hence the popularity of C. Milan and others like him. Even if you don't use Milan's techniques, even positive/clicker trainers believe in social hierarchy and use it to advantage. There are extremes in belief, some believe that everything is status related, others believe that nothing is status related. I am nonviolently in between.
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  #13  
Old 11-03-2010, 06:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Maura View Post
I posted another answer, but it was way too long. Is dominance theory widely accepted? Yes. Hence the popularity of C. Milan and others like him. Even if you don't use Milan's techniques, even positive/clicker trainers believe in social hierarchy and use it to advantage. There are extremes in belief, some believe that everything is status related, others believe that nothing is status related. I am nonviolently in between.
Only by people who aren't educated in animal behaviour. There are lots of things people believe that are wrong, just because something is believed by a lot of people make it correct.

I really find the lack of critical thought very depressing. Right now there is a push to remove wifi from public schools because its a 'health hazard' Problem is there is NO evidence, and its not even logical. But loads of people believe it......
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Old 11-03-2010, 06:11 PM
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Originally Posted by scox1313 View Post

but what about "confrontational play" like tug of war and wrestling? does that fall under the dominance umbrella? what other examples of dominant human behaviour is irrelevant now? like spitting in the dog's food (never heard of that one till i read those articles)
Actually tug is co operative play. If you dont' tug back the dog can't play. And it mimics co operative rending of large prey. Also if tug made dogs difficult almost all of the worlds agility dogs would be big trouble makers and flyball dogs would all be demons... a good portion of competitive obedience dogs too..
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Old 11-03-2010, 08:42 PM
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I too find the lack of critical thought to be depressing. So many hear something from someone they like and reguirgitate and recite their writings over and over and over again without really taking time to think or seeing what else is out there, thus becoming nothing more than a parrot.

but since I am but a lowly internet nobody, I'll post these words, you tell me who said them
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As you all know, some people think that just about all of our problems with dogs relate to “dominance” and advise owners to “be the alpha dog.” At the other end of the spectrum, some argue that “dominance” and even the concept of “social status” are completely irrelevant to a dog’s behavior, and that the terms should be struck from our vocabulary. I don’t agree with either extremes of the spectrum
oh, and it was written this year so no, it's not too outdated.

so is there "really" NO dominance and NO heirarchy???? or is just different than you previously thought? It's definitely more complicated, I don't think it's too useful for basing your dog training BUT if I'm in control of who gets what food and how much every single day of my dogs life, what does that do to a dog's psyche overall? I think it has some impact. and even by behaviorists and the general publics definition of "dominant", that act alone makes me dominant in that situation. and it is useful for training
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Old 11-03-2010, 08:59 PM
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Originally Posted by release the hounds View Post
It's definitely more complicated, I don't think it's too useful for basing your dog training BUT if I'm in control of who gets what food and how much every single day of my dogs life, what does that do to a dog's psyche overall? I think it has some impact. and even by behaviorists and the general publics definition of "dominant", that act alone makes me dominant in that situation. and it is useful for training
A parent has full control over what their young child eats and pretty much every aspect of their child's life...does that make them "dominant" over their child? Technically, I guess so, but certainly not in the sense people view dominance in relation to alpha-theory and pack mentality.

And you say in the first part of your statement 'I don't think it's too useful for basing your dog training" and then at the end you say "it is useful for training", so which is it?
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  #17  
Old 11-03-2010, 09:10 PM
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Originally Posted by scox1313 View Post
i only post this to clarify, since everything i've read on training talks about this owner as alpha pack member approach. i'm reluctant to change the routines i've based on this without discussing it more. (examples are: always eating first, humans through doors first, dogs on floor/people on furniture)
Sounds like you're reading the wrong books.
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  #18  
Old 11-03-2010, 09:37 PM
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Of course there is some. You put two animals together and there will be some. But to plan your life around some idea of it isn't useful.

The point is the common thoughts are that its linear.. one top dog, then a beta dog etc etc over all aspects. Ie alpha dog will be alpha over all dogs over all things. This is not true. Its not true in horses or wolves who do live in quite structured relatively permanent social groups.

@scox training your dog to wait for you to go through the door is useful. It teaches the dog to wait for permission before they can do something they want. So you give a cue, the dog obeys and gets a reward. It sets the dog up to want to earn things from you. That does not mean it has anything to do with you going through first. You could train your dog to sit when you reach for a door handle and wait for a release word and go out ahead of you.. it all has the same affect.
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  #19  
Old 11-03-2010, 09:38 PM
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Originally Posted by milos_mommy View Post
A parent has full control over what their young child eats and pretty much every aspect of their child's life...does that make them "dominant" over their child? Technically, I guess so, but certainly not in the sense people view dominance in relation to alpha-theory and pack mentality.

And you say in the first part of your statement 'I don't think it's too useful for basing your dog training" and then at the end you say "it is useful for training", so which is it?
Why does it have to be one or the other? read it again and tell me what YOU think I mean. I have a feeling I already know your answer
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  #20  
Old 11-03-2010, 09:54 PM
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Originally Posted by release the hounds View Post
Why does it have to be one or the other? read it again and tell me what YOU think I mean. I have a feeling I already know your answer
It can't be both "useful" and "not very useful". If I knew what you meant, I wouldn't have asked.
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