Very interesting article. What do you guys think?

Discussion in 'Dog News and Articles' started by youhavenoidea, Aug 20, 2008.

  1. Dekka

    Dekka Just try me..

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    no one is saying they don't' see us as leaders. I am sure my dogs do. But not cause I am 'bigger and meaner'. I am smarter, I OWN everything. (actually that is the definition of the 'alpha' anyway. The one who controls the resources)

    I am saying the popular idea of one clear leader in dog packs as a solid model is not the norm. I am saying that the outdated idea of 'pack theory' is bunk. That is not to say that pack animals don't have a hierarchy and complex social interactions. The scientists who originally put forth 'pack theory behaviour' back in the 60's actually published papers saying they were wrong. But the idea grabbed hold of the general public and people have ran with it.
     
  2. ttwillow

    ttwillow New Member

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    In CM first book he writes about his childhood. Growing up around the dogs on his grandfathers ranch. His observations come from this. Not from observing wolves in the wild.

    My little dogs sleep in a pile with contact with each other. They play, lick each others mouths, eyes and ears. What would you call that?
     
  3. ttwillow

    ttwillow New Member

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    Horses have been domesticated for a long time. Still, they remain herd and grazing animals. If given a choice by their human caregivers.
     
  4. Maxy24

    Maxy24 Active Member

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    I don't think that dogs are not social animals, I don't know if I'd call them "pack" animals because their "pack" would be quite a bit different from a wolf pack. So I just call them social. See I consider gerbils clan (pack) animals, studies have been shown that they behave differently and live shorter when not provided with another animal of their species. Dogs can be just fine without another dog, many are happier without another dog.

    What I do consider ridiculous is not at all that people call them pack animals but how people go about treating their dogs because they think this. They think to be "alpha" you have to manhandle the dog, intimidate the dog and do unnecessary things like walk through the door first, ban dogs from furniture, not play tug, show little affection, not praise (because only subordinate dogs show the aloha affection, not the other way around), always have the dog behind you or next to you when walking etc. because "That's how dogs do it". Well hey, I'm not a dog, I can teach and control my dog without acting like a dog, I can use my big brain to think about other ways to do things. I have tools that allow me to reward my dog in the best ways to teach him (toys, treats, clickers are all tools because of how I use them, food sitting on the floor is not a tool, food being used as a well timed reward is a tool). I can teach commands that allow me to control my dog without punishing him.

    We have what other dogs do not and we should USE it if it works, and more importantly training has been moving forward because this new stuff DOES works (like clicker training). We don't need to stay stuck in the old methods, there is a reason things have changed.

    The leader is simply the one who controls resources, and because we are humans with our big brains we can do that without force, we can teach using tools. I choose to use positive reinforcement tools. Some people use punishment tools. Some people act like dogs and use what dogs have, themselves. Dogs have to bite, snap, growl, charge and intimidate sometimes or a lot of the time. It's not like they can bust out the treat bag or start praising the other dog. The most praise they can give is negative reinforcement by removing their punishment/intimidation. we can do more. if you took away my ability to use tools and language and you took away the big brain of mine that allows me to think up methods of prevention, think to the future, analyze the past etc., I'd have to use those punishment/intimidation methods too, luckily I have all those things and have chosen to use them.

    And don't let CM come into this, talk about methods not people because we all know that will branch into all his other methods/ideas and we have been through that already, talk about the article if you could (I can't see it for some reason so I'm going off of what you guys are saying. If it does talk about CM then never mind.
     
  5. Lilavati

    Lilavati Arbitrary and Capricious

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    It doesn't mention CM.

    Willow, just so you know, CM is a . . . err . . . controversal topic here.
     
  6. dr2little

    dr2little Moderator

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    Comparing the domestication of dogs (from self domestication history) to the forced domestication of horses is simply not a reasonable comparison.
     
  7. Tazwell

    Tazwell New Member

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    When I watch interactions between my dogs, there is no solid pack structure. Perhaps that's because some came in as adults, we've had a ton of foster dogs come through, and we've got a variety... Their "Pack" is not even clear to me, let alone comparable to the level of socialability that wolves exhibit.

    At my home, Todd is definitely the one that shows most social behavior. He came in last, as a puppy, so he's the baby of the bunch. He's a year old now. He submisses a lot-- He shows his submissive grins, and will approach the other dogs and lick their chins and pester them with submissive behaviors. He also shows dominance over puppies that we foster. Yuki is also like this, but only when she needs to be. She doesn't approach other dogs.

    Bojangles does not show anything over any of the other dogs, whether it involves resources or not. He does play with Todd.

    Archie just shares the house, he does not seem to have any interactoins with the other dogs what so ever. He doesn't even look at them if he doesn't have to. He is in no way submissive, however.

    I don't mean that there is no pack structure between dogs. I believe that if you raised a litter of puppies together, there would probably be a much clearer example of pack structure between dogs-- given the correct circumstances. I simply think that the selective breeding of dogs has decreased this, a lot, especially with certain breeds. And with breeds that are prone to Dog Aggression...? I'm not quite sure what to think about that...
     
  8. Lilavati

    Lilavati Arbitrary and Capricious

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    You know, I'm not sure if saying dogs are less social than wolves is correct. They don't have the full range of communiation than wolves do, and many dogs don't form the kind of tightly knit packs that wolves do. Dogs are also more capable of going it alone. But they are social with far more individuals (usually) than wolves. They make friends more easily, bond much more easily with humans, and (again, depending on breed) form packs with any group of dogs they regularly encounter. They are also far more laid back, often, with those groups . . . you don't see the kind of status jockeying that occurs in wolf packs (again, depends on the breeds and many other things. Sarama, without being aggressive about it, is highly aware of status). Dogs are often happy just be together. I'd call that highly social. Just not the same KIND of social.
     

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