Fluffy black and white puppies reminiscent of baby panda bears are very tempting but are you prepared for the commitment of taking one of these wonderful working dogs into your home for its natural lifetime?
Border collies are extremely intelligent and active dogs with a wonderful sense of humour. They evolved to work with one master rather than the usual “pack”. They are loyal and sensitive dogs. and have an in-born desire to please their master, so much so that the slightest reprimand from that beloved person will upset them enormously. They have a natural distrust of strangers which stems from their task of guarding the sheep from stock thieves. There has been much negative criticism of the B.C. often as a result of ill-informed owners taking on these highly intelligent creatures with tremendous stamina and making little if no attempt to meet their working needs. Then when the un-stimulated B.C. finds unsuitable ways of coping with their boredom, they are labelled destructive and un-manageable.
Shenanigan Henderson B.C.
Monkeys, baboons, squirrels and rhino bark, so the phenomenon is not peculiar to dogs. The chirping of birds, tape recorded and played back at slower speeds, sounds surprisingly similar to the bark of a dog. Barking is usually a warning that someone or something is approaching. The alarm does not indicate whether the person approaching is friend or foe, but merely acts as an alert, ”Halt, who goes there?” When this individual has been identified, the behaviour changes, and if the subject is seen as a friend then the dog may whimper and wag its tail. If the visitor is considered potentially hostile then the dog will growl and become threatening.
WHAT IS WRONG WITH THE CONFRONTATIONAL METHODS USED BY SOME TRAINERS, AND AREN’T THERE BETTER WAYS?
Yanking a dog up by the scruff of the neck, overturning it and pinning it down on its back and staring into its eyes (all naturally read by the dog as signs of aggression) is one example of the bad training technique favoured by practitioners of the popularized but increasingly discredited Alpha Dominant school of thought which is based largely on false premises.
This style of training was thought to mimic methods of establishing dominant leadership among wild wolves, but research has shown that this is not in fact the way of wolves. Secondly, the domestic dog has evolved enormously from its wolf origins over a period of more than forty thousand years in the company of humans and our ancestors. We recognize humans as distinct from chimpanzees, and so should we distinguish between wolves and dogs. There are similarities but so are there differences. Emphatically, then, a dog is not a wolf.