Dogs and Owners!
The relationship between an owner and his/her dog is determined by a number of factors.
Through the domestication of dogs they still retain their primitive instincts. Every dog belongs to a species that led a communal life. In every dog pack there is an order of rank and each member of that pack knows and accepts his or her place. There is only one leader who watches over, guides, disciplines and commands followers. The leadership will only be challenged by other members of the pack when the leader has shown to be incapable of leading. The domesticated dog still retains pack instinct. The dog must take its place in a pack which has human members. An owner must become leader of the pack. The owner must not only be the leader but also a friend. Owners should adopt an easy going nature. Dogs will develop mentally if their owners understand and appreciate their dog’s mental capabilities.
Although a dog recognizes differences between moods in a leader, a dog does not understand the reason behind the mood. A dog will become extremely unhappy when its leader is in an unpredictable mood. During training exercises, the owner must control their moods of anger or frustration, which avoids confusion and insecurity in their dog.
When humans are subjected to panic or fear, adrenalin goes into the blood stream and produces a specific odor in the sweat. A dog’s nose can detect this odor and the dog will immediately sense superiority. This can be a reason why a dog may become aggressive around a nervous human who is attempting to handle them.
There is a difference between canine and human intelligence. The difference is a dog thinks in terms of mind pictures. Each mind picture stimulates the next without any mental effort. People who do not accept the differences between the human and canine mind, will never be as successful when training dogs as those people who understand the psychology of a dog. When a dog carries out a positive action on their own accord, it is not because their brain has solved the problem, but because of some previous action that has provided the stimulus to the next. Dogs receive impressions through senses and respond with an action.
A dog in a wild state had community or pack maintained control of a particular area or territory. This territory had clearly defined boundaries which members of neighboring packs respected. Boundaries were defined by urinating on trees and grass. This indicated to other dogs where one territory ended and another began. In the domesticated dog, these instincts still remain.
Temperament in the dog is modified to various degrees by such characteristics as aggressiveness, timidity, laziness and alertness. Although temperament is largely governed by inheritance, certain characteristics can arise from experience. Nervousness, for instance, may be the result of earlier bullying or wrongfully applied training. Most dogs, regardless of temperament, have a capacity for teamwork and acceptance of training. However, the owner must understand the temperament of his/her own particular dog and train it accordingly. Although training methods are laid down, they must be adapted to suit individual dogs.