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Flyer, there is NO anger! Trust me! Typed words can never convey as truly as face to face.

 

As far as his experience goes, Ceasar Milan has worked with lots and lots and lots of dogs, many years experience. But SOME people still call his methods poppy-cock. All I'm saying is that he is taking natural instinct, reasoning, deducting, and thinking and calling it energy. But calling something different, doesn't change what it is. Energy, if you get down to it, is nothing without some guidence. Take lightening. High in the sky, it goes ever which a way. No particular pattern, and never the same twice. But when it gets closer to the ground, it will hone in on the closest (read tallest) object and go straight for it. High in the sky, it spreads out in spectacular patterns, closer to earth and it can zero in on a person and leave everything around that person alone. Energy is needed to think, and reason. But that doesn't mean there is no thinking or reasoning, only energy.

 

 

He isn't calling reasoning or deducting or thinking energy as he does not believe dogs do any of those things. I admit when I first started to read his site I thought whoa, new age and I am uncomfortable with new age. I kept reading though, because there was so much that was so interesting and resonated and I see that Behan is actually very much grounded in reality and his work has helped me so much with Colt in particular. I haven't needed any help with Bea, but she has truly benefitted.

 

Behan's work gets to the heart of the dog. What I see in his vid's is the same relationship I see with a lot of stock dog people and their dogs. At least the one's I admire.

 

Here is a link to Behan answering the why call it "energy" question.

 

http://naturaldogtraining.com/faqs/whats-t...such-as-energy/

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Are some of a sheepdog’s responses to stock hardwired? My guess would be yes.

 

I believe a lot of dogs' behaviors are hard wired, especially after seeing Quinn's first, dramatic response to sheep or 7 week old pointer pups going on point the first time they were exposed to a pheaant tail.

 

I also believe a lot of humans' behaviors are hard wired. Doesn't preclude thinking in either species.

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Okay, I read the article, and several more. All I can say is,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,really? Is he for real? I can not, will not, ever be able to convince you of anything if this guy is helping you. I'm sorry, not trying to be mean, but go ahead, have another sip of kool-aid.

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Okay, I read the article, and several more. All I can say is,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,really? Is he for real? I can not, will not, ever be able to convince you of anything if this guy is helping you. I'm sorry, not trying to be mean, but go ahead, have another sip of kool-aid.

 

To each his or her own. No convincing necessary on either side.

 

Slurp! :rolleyes:

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I think if they could think they would think this a fair bit :rolleyes:

 

Every single dog I've ever worked with either of my own, a friend's or at work, I would classify as a dog that was thinking. As far as i'm concerned, anyone who doesn't think a dog thinks is someone who needs to spend more time around dogs.

 

Hell, Mick spends entirely too much time thinking...

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I don't understand how this is arrogant at all? Would one of you mind explaining?

 

Personally I don't see intellectual facility as being a superior way of being. i.e. I've never been insulted by a dog.

 

The arrogance, to me, is in the anthropocentric, deep-seated assumption that what Behan sees operating in dogs must be entirely different from what he sees operating in humans. When I was a kid, they told me all kinds of rules about what separated humans from animals. ("Animals can't use tools. Animals can't feel emotions. Animals have no sense of time.") As I grew up, new research proved that just about all these 'separators' were not valid - that there were examples of animals doing all the things they told me they couldn't do. Plus, I owned some dogs. So, I amended my world view to fit the facts: there isn't some big wall separating how we are from how they are.

 

As for Behan:

 

I'm not angry at all. Maybe a bit annoyed by Behan's writing (what little I've seen of it), because I think he is deliberately forcing a square peg into a round hole to make his theories apply. Seems like he came up with a fun idea, and plays around with it, and writes philosophical musings about it - but it sure as heck isn't science. (Now mind you, a person who understands dogs can interpret his understanding through a wacky, pseudoscience lens and still have a good working relationship with dogs. Scientists could always tell with certainty when the sun was going to rise - even when they thought the sun revolved around the Earth.)

 

My big problem with Behan's view (and most 'dogs can't think' views) is that everything he says about energy could be applied to humans as well - and yet Behan doesn't try to deny that humans think or reason. So, if he believes that humans think - even while humans seem to work in the same world of 'energy' that dogs do - why can't he acknowledge that dogs think? Flip side, if he believes that dogs operate solely on 'energy,' why does he believe humans, who seem to also operate on 'energy,' can think? Why the need to see 'energy' only in dogs, and 'thinking' only in humans?

 

(TIME-DELAYED FURTHER RANT:)

 

I just went on Behan's website, and have to admit that I've upgraded myself from a "little" annoyed by his writing to "severely" annoyed. Heck, I may even be the tiniest bit angry, now:

 

"The physical center of gravity is the kernel of a dog’s self and it is activated by eye contact. This is because a state of attention is composed of two beams, the external focal gaze by which the dog looks outward, and which is simultaneously accompanied by an internal subliminal beam by which the dog looks inward, specifically, the subliminal beam is directed on the body’s physical center of gravity since mastering the mechanics of motion to get to things the dog wants is the primal imprint it absorbs in the first weeks of life. Whatever a dog wants, becomes imprinted onto its physical center-of-gravity during the early phases of life, and which will be constantly reinforced during every social interaction thereafter. The body mechanics of locomotion become the template for complex social interactions. (This may seem hard to believe, but I read somewhere that the sensory systems related to physical motions are the sensory basis for the human conceptualization of time. Piaget posited that a child first understands time as a function of a physical distance to be traveled. Likewise a dog’s apprehension of another being is first and foremost a function of that being’s movement and orientation around its physical center of gravity. " http://naturaldogtraining.com/articles/physical-center-of-gravity/

 

Honestly? This paragraph is gobbledygook. It's poorly-written, rambling, and nebulous. It's this guy's new-age, cutesy and individual world view. Facts, schmacts - think about beams! (But look! He throws Piaget - an expert on thinking, human child development - in there to help defend his theory!)

 

Hell, I can tell from 50 yards if a dog wants to meet me or not - if he'll be happy to wrestle with me and get cuddles, or if he'd prefer that I ignore him entirely. I can pretty safely determine if a dog will growl at me when I reach to pat him, and I thus avoid dog bites. And I'm a thinking, reasoning human. What's the big mystery? Where's the need to talk about 'energy?' Do I, too, have a center of gravity that is the kernel of my self and is activated by eye contact beams, the external one and the internal one? Is my locomotion the template for my complex social interactions? Cuz if those things are true for dogs, I could say they are equally true for me - except they're gobbledygook!

 

So, yeah, his writing annoys me a great deal. I'm a deep-seated skeptic and a science teacher. It frustrates me to see gobbledygook, pseudoscience, pseudoreligion, pseudopsychology, and quackery painted as "fact."

 

Again - doesn't make him a bad dog trainer. But it sure as heck doesn't make him right, either.

 

Mary

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^^I agree with you wholeheartedly. Gobbledygook is a great descriptor--that coming from a professional writer and editor (whose job it is to make gobbledygood understandable for the reader) who also is trained as a chemist and biologist.

 

I guess if it actually helps some people to better relate to and train their animals, then more power to him, but frankly, I find it quite simple to train animals when I also consider them to be thinking beings. They may not be able to prove they think, but nothing I've seen of Behan's writing proves they don't.

 

Behan's work gets to the heart of the dog. What I see in his vid's is the same relationship I see with a lot of stock dog people and their dogs. At least the one's I admire.

 

I'd be curious to know if the stockdog people you admire think that dogs think. Or do they all buy into Behan's theories? Because honestly, I don't really see a connection between his theories and his relationship with his dogs and the relationships that stockdog handlers have with their dogs. I doubt the latter are working off of some energy theory and excluding the idea that their dogs think.

 

J.

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If that's a true representation of how he thinks and how he writes, I'm glad I'm not into reading and following his philosophy. Gobbledygook is a good description, in my opinion.

 

Whatever works for you, though...

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I'd be curious to know if the stockdog people you admire think that dogs think. Or do they all buy into Behan's theories? Because honestly, I don't really see a connection between his theories and his relationship with his dogs and the relationships that stockdog handlers have with their dogs. I doubt the latter are working off of some energy theory and excluding the idea that their dogs think.

 

J.

 

I was thinking along these same lines. I don't see how anyone who has worked with dogs much at all, especially on stock, could believe that they are not capable of thought. I'm not saying they think in the same way we do, but I will never buy that they don't think!

 

As for the paragraph that Mary quoted, uh wow. Just wow. :rolleyes:

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I don't see how anyone who has worked with dogs much at all, especially on stock, could believe that they are not capable of thought. I'm not saying they think in the same way we do, but I will never buy that they don't think!

 

Now that's one point on which we "behaviorists" would agree wholeheartedly! :rolleyes::D :D

 

I find it quite obvious that dogs think. No, not in the same way that we do, but in the way that they are supposed to as dogs. They know what they like and can figure out how to earn it. They solve mental problems. They let us know - if we are clued in - when they understand something and when they are confused. And that barely scratches the surface.

 

How dogs think and learn is fascinating. Maybe even more interesting because we can never really get into their heads and know completely how it is . . .

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I was thinking along these same lines. I don't see how anyone who has worked with dogs much at all, especially on stock, could believe that they are not capable of thought. I'm not saying they think in the same way we do, but I will never buy that they don't think!

 

As for the paragraph that Mary quoted, uh wow. Just wow. :rolleyes:

 

 

You think that's a "wow" paragraph, ya oughta read the theory behind why dogs like car rides and cats don't.

Doesn't explain Sammy liking rides and Holly hating them, but oh well. They just didn't read the guys theories! :D

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The arrogance, to me, is in the anthropocentric, deep-seated assumption that what Behan sees operating in dogs must be entirely different from what he sees operating in humans. When I was a kid, they told me all kinds of rules about what separated humans from animals. ("Animals can't use tools. Animals can't feel emotions. Animals have no sense of time.") As I grew up, new research proved that just about all these 'separators' were not valid - that there were examples of animals doing all the things they told me they couldn't do. Plus, I owned some dogs. So, I amended my world view to fit the facts: there isn't some big wall separating how we are from how they are.

 

As for Behan:

 

I'm not angry at all. Maybe a bit annoyed by Behan's writing (what little I've seen of it), because I think he is deliberately forcing a square peg into a round hole to make his theories apply. Seems like he came up with a fun idea, and plays around with it, and writes philosophical musings about it - but it sure as heck isn't science. (Now mind you, a person who understands dogs can interpret his understanding through a wacky, pseudoscience lens and still have a good working relationship with dogs. Scientists could always tell with certainty when the sun was going to rise - even when they thought the sun revolved around the Earth.)...

 

...Again - doesn't make him a bad dog trainer. But it sure as heck doesn't make him right, either.

 

Mary

 

Yes. Yes. And Oh! H*LL yes!

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Couple of things. My stockdog trainers aren't aware of Behan's work and I'm sorry I brought up his site. It didn't occur to me that comments would be mean spirited.

 

I have always been an open minded sort. Love knowledge. Love learning. I don't pass judgments hastily. Too much I don't know. Most trainers around here are either all positive or alpha folk. Neither of those paradigms are a fit for me. The former had something missing and the latter, well it has never been a consideration.

 

Behan has taught me to work with Colt's drive which I was actually working against using the CC techniques I was employing. Although Colt and Bea were happy healthy, mannerly obedient dogs before NDT, I now have access to Colt when he is under duress and can shift that anxiety very quickly into playfulness which then turns into relaxation. I appreciate Behan's site, his generosity and insightful suggestions. Anytime his work has been criticized on his site or in discussions he has had on other forums, I have never seen him say a mean word to anyone. He is very capable of a back and forth discussion in a very respectful way.

 

I'll take my leave, now.

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