Page 20 - 2014 Le Mag 1st Qtr
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A Briard Temperament Series by Terry Miller

Rules for Understanding the Management and with a consequence, the dog learns that message from you-the
Communication with Dogs message of taking you seriously.

1. Dogs in the wild live in social groupings called a pack. This 11. Training is best accomplished by integrating life’s lessons and
is the basis for dog social behavior and their relationship with commands into day to day, moment to moment living. Practice
you and your family. In the wild, there is one or sometimes two can teach new vocabulary and behaviors but it is in the rein-
leaders ( a male, or a male & female). forcement that consistency is accomplished. Training is not
2. In the absence of the dog pack, you and your family will fill magic. It is teaching words, the expectations with those words
that role. and then practicing and reinforcing the consistent response to
3. The pack leader serves as the decision maker and director... the words taught.
cruise director. Apologies are not made, the pack is ruled with a 12. Training is best practiced in short bursts of just a few min-
clear and iron fist. It is about survival- future and current. utes at a time. You will accomplish more by practicing multiple
4. Most dogs do not want to be nor are they equipped to be short sessions per day, rather than one long one. You will create
a pack leader. Most will feel more comfortable with a leader more motivation by stopping after a few minutes leaving the
setting limits and boundaries. The average house pet seeks dog wishing you would do more, rather than practicing too long
direction and rules and thrives far more succesfully when that is leaving the dog wishing you would go away.
5. Who is in the driver’s seat as pack leader is up to you. Without Bibliography of recommended reading:
leadership, the dog will make poor decisions with no impulse How to Be Your Dog’s Best Friend by The Monks of New Skete
control. If the dog perceives himself to be the leader in the fam- The Art of Raising a New Puppy by The Monks of New Skete
ily he will expect you to assume the role of lower pack member. Mother Knows Best by Carol Benjamin
The dog in this position can become a bully, aggressive and How to Raise a Puppy You Can Live with by Rutherford and
presumptuious. McNeill
6. It is inconsistent to not become the leader to the dog, yet to
expect him to FOLLOW...your rules, your commands, your val- From the Blog:
ues, your ideas, your directions, your expectations. It’s A Dog’s Life
7. Initially, dogs learn best without the challenge of distractions. by Terry Miller
However, dogs are context learners. Over time be sure to prac-
tice in many different contexts and situations so that the dog can
learn to generalize. Rules and commands should apply in the
same way all the time no matter where or when. Only training
and applying life’s lessons in the quiet of your house or yard will
not ensure your dog’s consistent responses in other locations or
We suggest that the dog wear a leash and collar when you
are together around the house. This enables you to follow
through on directives to the dog. If you tell him to do some-
thing, or tell him to stop something, you can enforce it if he
disregards you.
9. The three conditions which determine when or whether you
correct are:
a. the dog must do WHAT you say
b. the dog must do it WHEN you say
c. the dog does not determine the length of a command. You
choose when a command is over.
10. Don’t teach the dog to disregard you or your commands.
Repeating yourself will teach him that listening is optional. It
teaches him to choose his time line. Behavior tends to erode. It
is only kept alive by reinforcement. If you repeat yourself, you
are reinforcing the dog’s haphazard response. If you give one

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