Pack behavior . . . dependent upon breed?

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Postby TheRedQueen » March 16th, 2009, 10:29 am

SisMorphine wrote:I think because NILIF is us meeting them in the middle of understanding.

Another thing I've been thinking about is that my earliest experiences in training were based around pack-type behavioral stuff: always eat before your dog, never let your dog go out the door ahead of you, etc etc etc. And it was always said that "for some dogs these things don't matter" and I never really looked into it. But now thinking about it regarding pack drive, whether it is little to none, makes sense.

I DO think that pack behavior is important, and I DO think that we can take some of what the dogs do and some of what we do and marry it. I just don't think that dogs see humans as their pack, the way they would see a room full of dogs.


I'm just now reading these and catching up...and I'm gonna agree with you, Sis.

My dogs all play well with the other species in the house...esp. the cats and the rabbits...but they don't see them as part of their pack. Inara will rush over if a new dog gets too pushy with Pippin or Fry, but it's the same way she reacts if another dog goes near her precious trash can or a favorite toy. It's different when a new dog messes with a member of the dog pack...then they'll all come rushing over to help out.

I don't know if it's a breed thing, I tend to think of it as an individual thing...especially the way they demonstrate the pack behavior. Ripley is an Aussie like the others...but is much more aloof. But he's the head man in charge, and will poke his nose into anyone's business if they're new to the house. My guys will all lay together to sleep, hang out together when they're loose somewhere, and will check in with each other a lot...except for Sawyer who just hangs with John mostly. He's not as interested in being part of the dog pack...and is the most snarky within the pack of dogs.

I think the rabbit pee'd under the couch...so I'm off to figure out where. Pee-yeww! :nono:
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Postby mnp13 » March 16th, 2009, 10:54 am

I don't look at people as a member of the pack, I also don't look at people as the "alpha" of their dogs.

I think dogs know what species they are and what species we are. They communicate as dogs and have learned to understand our language, just as we communicate as people and have learned to understand theirs. In my opinion, that doesn't mean that the dog thinks we are "pack leader"

I think NILIF works because it is teaching the dog that you are in charge of the household. It enforces respect, but I don't think that translates to the dog thinking you are part of its pack. A dog I am currently working with is a major bully, we instituted NILIF right after I started training with them. It has made a huge difference and the dog has begun to look to them for direction when he is unsure. I just don't see that as "pack leader" though it may just be semantics. :|

Horses are very social animals and herds act much the same as dog packs. However, I don't think a horse views any person as a herd leader. (Yes, I know that it is apples to oranges to some extent.)
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Postby Moe » March 18th, 2009, 4:43 pm

I honestly think it depends on how people handle their dogs...Not as a "pack" leader...I have 12 dogs here currently (well the puppies I consider maybe 2 dogs ..) Its not easy bringing a new adult rescue into the house, but in time they are fine, although Steve and I closly monitor everything that goes on in the house, and corrections are made when needed...All my dogs except the puppies, and they except new dogs AFTER a period of time...Honestly I can not have 5 dogs running around in my house, so I do crate the rescues...but I can let the rescues out without having to contain my dogs or put them away...I release the puppies with no fear of one of my dogs trying to kill them...Again..I believe they can have a pack mentality (among dogs) I see it in my crew..You know Koji is big man on campus here, just by the way my other dogs and even rescues treat him...I know Molly is the nurse maid of the group like in a wolf pack, the "wolf" that takes care of everyone...I may have that wrong..I know Titan is the lowest...Emma is under Koji...But we handle our dogs, we make sure they respect us, I am not their "pack leader" I am not a dog...My views are very different from a canines view..I can read a dogs behavior pretty well...But I am not a dog :D My one friend will argue me everytime about pit bulls being pack dogs, for some people they can not get it to work, and thats ok..for some it comes easier...I mean Molly was SUPER DOG aggressive when I adopted her, I mean crap she would growl at PICTURES of dogs and get amped..Now she is doing a hell of a lot better (obviously)...but its a lot of work...I put a lot of time into her to mold her into the dog she is today..is she perfect, by no means...but shes almost 95% better then she was when I adopted her...
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