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Thread: Alpha Dogs, Dominant Dogs, Bus Driving Dogs?

  1. #11
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    I think I agree with that, Fedra.
    Mine are having a whale of a time after mice when they run around their garden shed they sleep in.
    Pretty catches rabbits. I have not followed her to see if she is actively hunting them or they run across her line of sight.

    There are a lot around and she gets them in varying sizes but usually a few the same size in a row then it changes. Maybe as she found one burrow she goes back to chase more...who knows. Usually she eats them.

    The others have also caught the occasional one when they have been out the front.
    They are only out the front with access to the whole farm one at a time as otherwise they will pack and run off. They stick very close to home by themselves.

    The burrows have to be pretty close by.

    Any posts made under the name of Di_dee1 one can be used by anyone as I do not give a rats.

  2. #12
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    Vislas and other hounds aren't meant to find, kill and eat their prey. They're meant to assist the human to do all that.

    And yes dogs will chase and kill things. My brother's staffy knocked off nearly a whole chook shed with the encouragement of something akin to a border terrier. And those - along with Jack Russells definitely kill things - rats, snakes. My dog however - won't kill a mouse or rat or rabbit, and I'm pretty sure the crickets deaths are accidental on her part. She doesn't kill all of those she digs up either. So my dog might starve left to her own devices with no scavenging opportunity. Given what scavanged food does to her digestion - I think scavenging would kill her too.

    But other dogs - do kill and eat (some of) their kill. Or farmers wouldn't be so quick to shoot them.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyacinth View Post
    Vislas and other hounds aren't meant to find, kill and eat their prey.
    Which ones are then? Scent dogs will point where the prey is but shouldn't actually kill the prey. It's been bred out by selection. Terriers will go and dig and kill, but wouldn't eat the badger or a boar for instance. So tell me, which breed does have a full behavior pattern that hunter does which is (in order):

    Scent --> track --> watch/orient --> stalk --> chase --> grab --> kill --> dissect --> eat

    They're meant to assist the human to do all that.
    Correct. And humans, as well as evolution and domestication have altered this traits.

    And yes dogs will chase and kill things.
    They will, but it dose not make them hunters and predators. Not in a true sense of meaning. A hunter is not just an animal that kills; it’s an animal that kills to eat.

    But other dogs - do kill and eat (some of) their kill. Or farmers wouldn't be so quick to shoot them.
    Again, you are missing the point. They will, and they do. But id does not make them predators and hunters. They will do it when they are presented with an opportunity. BGut the behavior sequence that defines a hunter and a predator is missing.
    Respect and you shall be respected. Animal is always right.

  4. #14
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    behavior sequence that defines a hunter and a predator is missing
    Is that like technical definition eg from a text book? Like the operant conditioning, reinforcement, punishment etc - all have text book definitions so scientists know they're talking about the same thing?

    If a hunter mostly scavenges - does that make it a scavenger and the hunting is just opportunism? Where do (grey) wolves fit? What does it mean when Polar Bears decide that rubbish dumps are a better source of food than seal hunting?

    Anyway - I'm not familiar enough with the technical meanings for categorising an animal as a predator or a scavenger or something of an overlap to argue with you. I suppose one could say some dogs are predators and some are not. And not sure what category you put a dog in that is fed by its owner and trained not to be an opportunist with food in the park.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyacinth View Post
    Is that like technical definition eg from a text book? Like the operant conditioning, reinforcement, punishment etc - all have text book definitions so scientists know they're talking about the same thing?
    It's biological, ethological definition. Operant conditioning is perhaps text book definition for something that is applicable to all living beings since life on Earth begun. We all live by its principles.

    If a hunter mostly scavenges - does that make it a scavenger and the hunting is just opportunism? Where do (grey) wolves fit? What does it mean when Polar Bears decide that rubbish dumps are a better source of food than seal hunting?
    All animals will choose the best opportunity for survival. So, yes, bears will scavange if it's the easiest option to acquire food and make their survival less complicated. Wolves too, but because they're much more shy and careful than bears, they will do it less often. But dogs will rather scavenge than hunt. And because the behavior pattern of a predator is not complete is much easier for them to scavenge than hunt. Hyenas will rather steal and scavenge than hunt.

    And not sure what category you put a dog in that is fed by its owner and trained not to be an opportunist with food in the park.
    Dogs are opportunists full stop. You control the resources so they don't need to scavenge or hunt. You can't train a dog not to be an opportunist. Because they are, you are able to teach them so many different things providing them with what they like (regardless whether you use food as primary reinforcer, or toys, or whatever they might find awarding). They will do what works and avoid what does not work or cause discomfort.

    Anyway, there's a topic about the great book I put recently. In the book you might find better explanation than I can give you here. It's quite complicated to explain in few sentences.
    Respect and you shall be respected. Animal is always right.

  6. #16
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    whether dogs in the wild or their ancestors or whatever were a pack or not the fact of the matter is our domesticated dogs live within a pack, their family. any animals who live with other animals need a structure of hierarchy to live together peacefully. anything that lives together has to have some form of leader or leaders. even a human family i.e parents at the top, kids (descending in age) below them.

    there is a lot of theories, specific word being "THEORY". if it works for you and your dog, then great, if it doesn't try something else. that is why it is so important for us to be open to anything and everything that others have to say who have experience and knowledge or even intuition behind them.

    i live with 3 dogs they live peacefully, never any fights. they listen to me and my mum when it counts. we are not as structured as some with out "leadership" but they know that we control everything of theirs and they are happy to follow our lead.

    oh and my 2cents about the "scavenger vs hunter" i don't think any dog would starve itself because it was alone. it would do whatever it takes to survive whetehr it be hunting, scavenging or joining a group to learn from them
    "In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn't merely try to train him to be semihuman. The point of it is to open oneself to the possibility of becoming partly a dog." - Edward Hoagland

  7. #17
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    fact of the matter is our domesticated dogs live within a pack, their family. any animals who live with other animals need a structure of hierarchy to live together peacefully
    That's not a fact. It's an untested Theory.

    Not sure you understand the word "Theory" in the way that scientists and mathematicians use it. A scientist comes up with a plausible idea and then devises experiments to test the truth of the theory ie tries to prove or disprove it. Most mathematical theories have logical proofs associated with them. And unless you change the axioms (eg is 1+1=2 or not), the theory stands as "proven fact".

    So "learning theory" is fact. It is well proven and well understood, but since so many people use "theory" meaning "untested idea", I tend to refer to it as "learning science". Using the techniques described in learning theory works. On almost every living thing as Fedra said. Well as long as the living thing can make choices/has a brain, learning theory applies.

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