Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Back Yard Dogs are Sad and Lonely Dogs

Dogs are pack animals. That means they are social and need interaction with others. They are not hard wired to be all alone day after day trapped behind walls or fences they can't escape from.

If we are going to have dogs in our lives we should learn about and understand them so that we can care for them just as we would any other family member. When we bring pets into our lives they become part of our family. Therefore, we are responsible for their well-being in all respects. That means their emotional well-being as well as their physical health. It breaks my heart everytime I see one single dog who lives in the back yard all by itself. I guarantee you that is a very sad and lonely dog. I don't understand why people who banish their dogs to their back yards even bothered to get them in the first place, if they aren't going to have them be part of their family. Even if they are loved, they certainly aren't getting the time and attention they would if they were living in the home with the rest of their pack.

Dogs need socialization and interaction to learn and be healthy and happy members of the pack. They learn from each other and they learn from us. When they are quaranteened out back they miss out on the interactions and opportunities to learn and grow. They are disconnected and isolated and therefore not really part of the pack. They are more like a frustrated prisoner who is forced to witness a pack they long to be part of but aren't accepted in. They are trapped with nowhere else to go, so they make the best of the situation and eagerly accept whatever scraps of attention are thrown their way occassionally. Really! That is no way to treat a dog. They are far too deserving a creature of love than that.

Dogs deserve to be loved like a fmily member and therefore treated like a member of the family pack. When they are they reward us with protection, loyalty, companionship and unconditional love like no other could master. Dogs are social, intelligent, pack animals who are hard wired to be part of a social community so please invite them inside and let them stay. You will love the results and so will they!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Why Dogs Are Better Than People- Continued

Dogs are better than people because they are great listeners who never judge. In fact, they could care less what we say but are more concerned with how we say it. It is quite amusing to say anything you want to them in a kind tone of voice no matter what the content and they will wag their tails and follow us anywhere.

They are content to just be with us no matter how attractive, thin, old, rich or poor we are. They love us unconditionally. They are happy to simply have us around to be their companion. It is so simple to love and be loved by a dog.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Dogs Need Exercise

I have a lab puppy staying with me right now who is becoming a dog right before my very eyes. He is growing huge fast! He looks like a dog but still acts very much like a giant puppy! Like most labs I've met, he's a lovabe and fun dude to have around- most of the time. This weekend however, I notice he is more unruly and frustrated as he tries to engage the other dogs to play. He is annoying them because he has not been getting enough exercise to help him burn off all his playful, puppy energy. He can't help himself as he tries to engage the other dogs or me to play, play, play! He is just doing what comes naturally to him. He is just trying to burn up all that energy that has been building up in there from lack of exercise and proper daily discipline and training.

I agree with Ceasar Milan, The Dog Whisperer's, philosopy that dogs first need exercise, then discipline and then affection in that order. When we exercise dogs to burn up all their pent up energy then they can relax, focus and pay attention to us. Then we can train them into the appropriate behaviors that make them loving, well-behaved companions. When we don't help them burn up all their energy, it gets stuck in them. They aren't able to focus their attention on listening to us because they are like a hyper-active child who has not had their medication. Exercise is the medication almost all dogs need in order to be happy and then be trainable. It starts there. If they aren't given a regular way to release all their instinctual hunting, mating energy, they start looking for ways to release all that pent up frustration. They start to misbehave and do things we deem as "bad."

What they are really doing is just trying to exercise their natural tendencies. If we don't give them a regular, daily, healthy outlet to burn up all their natural energy they will find a way to burn it up that we don't care for. So, if you want your dog to be better behaved then you have to start with commiting to and following through on a daily walk of at least 30 and preferrably 60 minutes each and every day. This is not only a way to help them burn up all their energy but also a time for you to bond and be their pack leader. When they get the exercise they need then they are freed up to give their mental attention to listening to and following you, their pack leader. Walking them each day can satisfy all the elements of a healthy, happy bond between you. While you are walking, you are giving them the physical as well as mental stimulation they need but you also can use that time to train them on the leash as well as to sit, stay, and focus their attention on you primarily. Once they are exercised and you have spent some time bonding with and training them on your morning walks then reward them with a treat and some of their favorite smooches like ear and belly rubs. The added benefit to you in helping your dog be happy, healthy and well-behaved through daily exercise is that you improve your health too and may even drop a few lbs along the way. It is a win/win practice for you as well as your favorite canine companion.

Life is short, wag more, bark less,

Doggie Diva Deb

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Dogs Are Better Than People!

The more time I spend with dogs, the more I discover that they are superior to humans in many ways that we could learn from. For example, as I have mentioned previously, they respect each other's space. I have watched them many times while trying to get past another dog who is comfortable and has claimed a certain area. They give each other a wide berth or they find another path or give up trying to get past them. Watch out for those young, ignorant pups who charge gleefully through a space, when they run right over an elder who doesn't take kindly to the intrusion! They learn quickly!

Dogs are better than people because they forgive and forget and shake it off. Due to my business as a pet sitter, Doggie Diva Pet Care http://www.doggiedivapetcare.com/, I get to observe animals, mostly dogs all day long. Yes, it's a tough job but someone has to do it. What I have come to appreciate about dogs is once they have had an upset with another dog they literally shake it off and move on. It is a fun and fascinating process to watch. In fact, I've noticed that dogs shake things off as a way of transitioning from one event to the next. Which segways nicely into how in the moment they are. They live in real time. And yes, for those of you who have wondered or doubted if dogs have memories, of course they do! How could we train them without a memory? How could they remember where they live and get all excited as they get closer to their favorite dog park to visit?

They are in the present moment, ready for the next invitation or content to "just be" and lay around and relax. They conserve their energy when there isn't anything fun or interesting for them to bark at, sniff or chase. They have an interesting way of being able to just go with the flow and just be in the moment, relaxed and happy to lay at our feet yet, they are poised for action as soon as something intersting captures their attention. Then up they go barking to the new exciting event of the moment. It's a nice balance don't you think? They are relaxed yet alert!

This is just the tip of the iceberg on this post! There is so much more we could blog about on this one subject. I have just gotten the converstion started. How about you? I am interested in hearing your thoughts on the subject.

in your opinion, what makes dogs better than people? :-)