I think one of the main problems with the "Alpha Theory" is that people make a judgement on something they do not fully understand. The words 'alpha' and 'dominant' were always terms for the "strong leader of a pack" in the old school terms of hanging dogs and physically dominating.
First things first the definition of dominant =
ruling, governing, or controlling; having or exerting authority or influence: dominant in the chain of command.
occupying or being in a commanding or elevated position.
predominant; main; major; chief: Corn is the dominant crop of Iowa.
As you can see it has nothing to do with being aggressive. I personally do not use the term dominance I simply prefer 'leader' as it is a more passive term and most people do not take it the wrong way. Just think of the some of the best leaders in the world. They have been passive, persuasive and they have this .... air about them (sorry could not think of the best word to explain it) A true leader just has a way of being that you can never mistake.
Those under a good leader respect, follow and trust them, and that's what I think everyone should aim for with their dog. Not to be "dominant" or "alpha" or anything like that. I try and be a good teacher, parent, leader and friend. So that my dogs respect and trust in my judgement and follow where I lead.
EDIT TO ADD: I see the leader as controlling every resource of value, food, play, toys, walks etc. You control and structure all of them (in a GOOD way) so your dog goes to YOU for everything good he ever gets and if you are able to just pull food from out of mid air you doing is totally going to respect that
Last edited by Kaz Tarja; 10-23-2011 at 08:44 PM.
"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