Your Dog in Your Mirror

Discuss dog books! Anything from training to holistic remedies, or even just dog-related fiction.
RobinS
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Your Dog in Your Mirror

Postby RobinS » Wed Apr 04, 2012 9:31 am

http://product.half.ebay.com/Your-Dog-I ... 01&tg=info

Anyone read this book? It was recommended to me.

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Re: Your Dog in Your Mirror

Postby connie » Wed Apr 04, 2012 10:07 am

Yes. I love it; I'm a huge Behan fan. I did a phone consult with him in January and his suggestions have made an ENORMOUS difference in Rowley's ability to relax around sheep, and in our connection (mine and Rowley's). Incredible, he was right on the mark about everything.

I'm surprised it was recommended to you; most people don't know who Kevin is. :tongue:

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Re: Your Dog in Your Mirror

Postby RobinS » Wed Apr 04, 2012 10:52 am

Connie, a fellow dog trainer recommended it to me...sounds like I need to pick it up. What all did he do for your phone consult? I had never heard of him until this recommendation.

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Re: Your Dog in Your Mirror

Postby connie » Wed Apr 04, 2012 11:40 am

He will do phone consults and I did one years ago with him for Shiri. When I was getting so frustrated with Rowley's blocks at working stock, I asked Kevin for his input and sent him the details by e-mail. Kevin hasn't trained herding dogs but he trains protection dogs and it's not dissimilar in many ways -- it's all about the dog's response to pressure, which is often just a look or an infintesmal movement by the prey or handler.

I read his first book, Natural Dog Training, when it came out in the mid-90s. It helped me SO MUCH, it really allowed me to feel I understood what drives a dog and why they do what they do. Kevin's website is http://www.naturaldogtraining.com

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Re: Your Dog in Your Mirror

Postby RobinS » Wed Apr 04, 2012 1:05 pm

http://naturaldogtraining.com/natural-t ... nhibition/

I sure can't follow his logic on this one.

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my2cotons
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Re: Your Dog in Your Mirror

Postby my2cotons » Wed Apr 04, 2012 3:11 pm

Ok, so I downloaded the kindle version of the book. I read the introduction and the first chapter. He talked about a woman named Linda with a dog named Rosie who was aggressive toward children. I thought - this is great - that is the problem I have with Pistol. Well it was all very interesting. Turns out Linda herself had some deep-seated emotions toward children related to her past so, supposedly Rosie was picking up on this and that is what was causing the problem. I was thinking, ok so Pistol's problems with children has something to do with me. I was trying to figure that out - but then it dawned on me - I have had a number of other dogs, including Pappy, who have absolutely no problem with children at all. So if the problem is with me, why have my other dogs been fine with children. I think Pistol's aggression/fear toward children has to do with some experiences he has actually had with children and maybe just the fact that he is generally a fearful dog. So, I guess what I'm saying is I just can't buy into the idea that all of our dogs behaviors are somehow caused by something going on in the owner. Maybe that was true with Linda and Rosie, but surely there are many cases where behavior is caused by experiences the dog has had or simply a temperament the dog was born with. Otherwise, why is it that the different dogs we have owned have been so different in the ways they respond to different stimuli?

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Re: Your Dog in Your Mirror

Postby connie » Wed Apr 04, 2012 3:23 pm

Kathy, if you can make it through the rest of the book, all that stuff gets addressed. :)

Behan is not saying that each and every dog is an exact emotional replica of the owner -- or else we would, as you say, have multiple dogs with the same issues over and over. And we don't. The temperaments of the dogs certainly play a large role in the behaviors of those dogs!

What he's saying in the first chapter is that if a dog has problems maintaining emotional equilibrium in certain situations, it is helpful for the owner to examine his/her own emotional state in that situation, and see if the dog is reflecting back what the owner is feeling. This isn't really a new concept. :) For years, trainers have been telling us that being nervous and apprehensive will make our dogs nervous and apprehensive.

He put that story in chapter one because it's a pretty dramatic illustration of his basic principle, which is that dogs are creatures of emotion and that we can determine their emotional state(s). Certainly we are not the ONLY factor, but we are the determining one.

I think you are right on the money when you say that Pistol's issues with kids are part of his temperament -- he is a dog who is stressed easily in certain situations and that is how he shows his stress. Could you work with him to change that? Sure. But it is not something that is a step-by-step 'do this, do that' program. It is often easier to simply keep the dog out of trigger situations, than to try to re-form the behavior that results from the trigger.

His books are not easy reads by any means, and they are more philosophy than they are training manuals. I find him very accessible and as I said, he has been a tremendous help to me, but that doesn't mean that everyone will find the same things in his work. :)

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Re: Your Dog in Your Mirror

Postby my2cotons » Wed Apr 04, 2012 4:33 pm

Yea, I was thinking after I posted, it wasn't really fair to judge the book by just the first chapter. I do know that when we are with the grandkids, if I don't have him in a pen I am very anxious if any of them get close to him and he probably does pick up on that. But when the problem first began that wasn't the case. I wasn't expecting the problem and even after it first surfaced I was in denial for a while until he actually broke the skin on my grand-daughters knee. So even though I don't think it was anything in me that first triggered the problem, my emotions may make the problem worse now. But I don't think there is anyway I can control my emotions now. It just seems easier to keep him in a pen most of the time when we are there than to worry about the kids being bitten. I will continue to read the book and see how much of it I can understand.

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Re: Your Dog in Your Mirror

Postby connie » Wed Apr 04, 2012 5:06 pm

Well, FWIW, I am in 100% agreement with you about prevention and managing situations that I know trigger unwanted behaviors in my dogs. :) My work with Kevin Behan was to get a handle on some issues I was having with Rowley in his herding work, and it was either get them resolved or give up herding. But other behavioral quirks in a couple of my Shelties -- I just work around them.

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Re: Your Dog in Your Mirror

Postby JudyL » Fri Apr 13, 2012 8:40 pm

Kevin Behan is conducting a workshop at a nearby farm at the end of this month. I wish I could go, but it's probably filled by now and I also can't afford the luxury of going now with all my recent vet bills. :(

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Re: Your Dog in Your Mirror

Postby connie » Sat Apr 14, 2012 5:18 am

I hear you about recent vet bills, Judy! Ugh!

Kevin seems to do workshops pretty regularly, perhaps he will be back in your area later this year. He was out in Indiana earlier, but not close enough to Chicago that I could make a day-trip of it. I don't go to workshops as a rule, but I would go to Kevin's. IMO he's that good.


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