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Thread: An Alpha Dog????

  1. #1

    Default An Alpha Dog????

    I posted this in another forums sometime ago and it came up again recently. The level of stupidity is so incredible that if you simply heard the details, you'd swear I was making it up.

    The author is a strong Millan advocate and unfortunately believes all the 'alpha/dominance' stuff he's fed her.

    As not to affect your opinion, here are the three videos on showing the trainer's methods on what she calls an alpha dog, red zone case. What do you see?

    http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/Video/Al...lkProtest1.mov

    http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/Video/Al...efuseWalk2.mov

    http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/Video/Al...efuseWalk3.mov

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    I'll just point out some sections of interest to show how this alpha thinking can color our interpretation of behaviour so badly that everything, no matter how absurd gets painted with the dominance brush. Eric Goebelbecker at DogStar Daily wrote an article called ‘How Dominance can Make You Dumb.' After reading and seeing what went on here I think that Dominance makes you really dumb.

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    When we had first headed out for the night the dog had refused to walk with his owner, the dad of the family. The dog had sat down and put up a loud protesting fuss. When the owner had tried to coax the dog to begin walking the dog had bared his teeth at the owner.

    Given what they write later on, I suspect by "coaxed" she really means force. And why try to force the dog to do something it is clearly against? To enforce your idea of dominance?

    The dog sat in a pacifying/appeasement gesture and remained immobile - together these behaviors give a strong indication of the dog's intention. They ignored the dog and used more force. The dog responded with a stronger indication and bared his teeth at them. How many warnings do these fools need?

    Through the walk the dog was whining in a very anxious way
    .

    Once they got him moving (by force) they see dominance in the dog being in front. I would argue that the dog was motivated to get back home and for that reason was ahead of them. And of course the dog was anxious. Most dogs are during Halloween.

    This is what dog psychologist Cesar Millan (the Dog Whisperer) calls a red zone case, because the dog bit someone drawling blood.


    Millan is not a dog psychologist, there is no such thing. And at best he is a dog groomer. Red zone is a nice marketing term, and based on the videos and the amount of abuse this dog suffered without responding, he is NOT a red zone dog.

    I do not consider drawing blood to be that significant. Depending on the location of the bite, it can be relatively easy to draw blood. Given the events on Halloween, it's pretty clear that the people consider communication a one way street. THEIR WAY!

    Luke was a White German Shepherd who not only believed he owned his family, his home and everything around him, but he had bottled up energy from lack of exercise.
    This woman must be the world's first dog mind reader. Dogs, AFA Is K, don't have a concept of ownership.

    As soon as someone challenged him, for example asking him to sit when he didn't wish to, he would put up a protest refusing to listen.
    Again while she writes 'asking' I suspect it really means forcing, hanging, jerking or some other use of aversive. I doubt this dog even knew that SIT was related to a specific behaviour.

    when he was corrected it was either done in a passive way or done in an angry way and the dog would pee.

    Submissive urination. This kills the the author's thesis that the dog is dominant. However because she is a Millan acolyte, dominance is the only way she has to interpret the dogs reaction. It also tells us that the use of aversives in this case is bordering on the abuse.

    We knew the best way to get the dog to see humans as his pack leader was to take him for a pack walk.
    That this woman actually believes this idiotically simplistic meme is sad and dangerous. `

    In another article she defines a pack walk "where the dog is made to heel beside or behind the human who is holding the lead." which begs the question: Where do dog pack leaders keep their leashes hidden? They don't have pockets? Or hands.

    However Luke refused to leave his home. It was very clear Luke owned his human family, especially the lady of the house.
    So because the dog was anxious about going out, the author concludes the dog owns the human family? How are these related?

    from the way he was protesting walking away from his home, I decided he absolutely needed a muzzle to keep the humans around him safe.
    From the abuse the dog suffers on the 1st video, it is no wonder she was afraid of defensive aggression.

    We did not want to walk him back to his home because that would be giving the dog what he wanted, making him mentally stronger
    Because the dominance/punishment trainers see everything as a struggle for status, it is impossible for them to conceive that this dog was simply afraid and wanted the comfort of his home.



    We did our best to keep his tail from going between his legs in an attempt to help him snap out of his negative state of mind.
    Not abusing a fearlful animal would go a long way toward easing his negative state of mind. Doing something stupid like pulling on the tail is equivalent to having someone pull on the corners of your mouth to make you sad or happy.

    She was very visibly nervous making it almost impossible to get the dog to move on. We tried food. No go. He was not food motivated at all.
    The dog has been severely manhandled and is on his way to shutting down, and now they offer food?

    He was so loud people were coming out of their houses mistaking his reaction for us abusing the dog.
    I'd call it abuse.

    We knew we had to try harder to get him to walk, however we were drawling a crowd and the people watching had no idea why the dog was acting out.
    This trainer is a bloody idiot! She abuse the dog to the point people are coming out of their house. She has no success with force, so here reaction: more force!


    We decided to call the owner back and get her to drive the dog to my farm.
    Ashamed to be seen applying her training methods, this trainer takes the dog to where people can't report her abuse.

    For two hours straight Luke refused, protesting up a storm. Thank goodness for muzzles! We knew if we allowed Luke to win this battle he would be that much stronger, that much harder for this family to get under control.

    Because these two idiots are so stuck on the idea of dominance they abused this poor dog relentlessly for several hours. And since they see everything in terms of a contest for dominance they are unable to see sign after sign that this dog was not dominant at all but fearful.

    In the video we see the dog throwing submission, appeasement, calming signals left and right. All ignored by the trainers stuck on the idea of dominance.

    So, these idiots abuse the dog for 4 hours to the point where the dog was collapsing from the treatment and their response to it? To pull the dog's tail from between its legs, as if this would somehow undo the hours of abuse.

    Finally the dog walks, exhausted, beaten and afraid and they celebrate this as if it was some great victory.

    I ask myself what the f@## does a dog have to do for this woman to see something other than dominance?

    Truly, dominance has made them dumb.

  2. #2
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    Corinthian

    You are preaching to the converted here, and based on what you write, I doubt Cesar would approve either. It's over the top and a misunderstanding of what he teaches.

    Have you reported it to the dogbreedinfo site where it is hosted? I don't know how you found the stuff but I'd report it to the website, Cesar and the equivalent to the RSPCA in the country where that woman works.

  3. #3
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    That is heart breaking. Anyone with half a brain would see a dog wetting itself as a sign of fear...

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    awww . noo. poor darling ..... i feel so bad for him.... somebody else needs him .

  5. #5
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    Having now made dog training a living I've made it my business to read just about every book out there, attend the lectures put on by APDT etc. I like bits and pieces of all the well known or TV trainers but not all of their methods. Nor does TV lend itself to showing you the whole picture so we never get the whole story.

    But there is one thing that I do personally believe in and that is not treating aggressive behaviour problems with aggressive methods.

    I've worked in large boarding kennels, dog walking businesses and the like and as yet have only come across one dog that was not "fear" aggressive. It wasa police dog.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyacinth View Post
    Corinthian

    You are preaching to the converted here, and based on what you write, I doubt Cesar would approve either. It's over the top and a misunderstanding of what he teaches.
    I had just seen an episode of Millan and the St. Bernard that doesn't go up the stairs and it reminded me of this dumb woman. In the episode Millan fights the dog so hard that by the 20th step he is sweating and puffing on screen. It was very similar, the dog lies down, pulls back and fights the Millan all they way up the stairs.

  7. #7

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    Aww i feel so sorry for the poor dogs that the nasty trainer & Millan get their hands on

    All i can say is thank freaken goodness that my dogs are safe from such cruel self proclaimed trainers.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aussie Floyd View Post
    Aww i feel so sorry for the poor dogs that the nasty trainer & Millan get their hands on

    All i can say is thank freaken goodness that my dogs are safe from such cruel self proclaimed trainers.
    I agree that the trainer the OP said was very misinformed and just didnt get what she was doing completely. The wetting is a clear sign of fear.

    However I dont see how Millan can be seen as mean/nasty. The dog going up the stairs causing Millan to get out of breath was just purely that he is a big dog. He was going up and down those stairs in less than half an hour without hardly any fuss and will be much happier for it. I use many of Millans ideas to control my dogs and they have become so much better for it.

    As with most training ideas they are only effective is they are done correctly, the OP trainer obviously wasnt.

  9. #9
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    Corinthian

    I have a weird dog. She hates going for walks on lead. Actually she's now comfortable enough to take herself for a walk up my street to her friends the beagles house but that's it. Sometimes she hides when I get the lead out.

    So when she was little and I described the trouble I was having getting her to go for a walk - there was no inbetween lying down or pulling like a cart horse - didn't matter which way we went - towards home, away from home. Several dog instructors recommended "just pulling". So I just pulled - and she got up and walked normally - well she went into pull mode. I got a front attach harness and that stopped the pulling so we can go for a walk to the oval - which she loves - without fighting. But it started with the fight.

    Having a dispute with a dog about who is boss - is one thing.

    Calling a dog that is displaying all sorts of fear behaviour including peeing itself "being dominant" or thinking that pulling a dogs tail up makes a difference to how upset it is - that's the misunderstanding and I can't imagine Cesar Millan doing that. Not that I approve of all of his methods or beleive "alpha dog" or "pack mentality" theories. I do believe some of the methods can be useful with some dogs, but the reasons stated - ie "that wolves do that" is usually crap.

    I'm learning the hard way that nothing works for all dogs. Some dogs require Individual Education Programs (IEPs).

  10. #10
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    Sometimes its better to get the dog to do the action so it over comes its fear , Its known as flooding... But it needs to be done correctly.

    Millan did it with a Dane in Season 1 who wouldn't walk on a slippery surface after the dog had a fall and a scare...
    Dogs Aren't Our Whole Lives, But They Make Our Lives Whole


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