Category Archives: Stress Signals

The Right Words, Revealed

Last week I published four “deceptive” photos in  A Picture is Worth 1,000 Words, But Are They the Right Ones? As promised, here are explanations and context for the photos. #1 Zani doing “Whale Eye” Below is the photo in context … Continue reading

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Posted in Dog body language, Fear, Reactivity, Stress Signals | Tagged , , | 9 Comments

A Picture is Worth 1,000 Words…But Are They the Right Ones?

Here are four photos that are probably not as they seem. I’m telling you that up front. This isn’t a trick. The shutter speed of a typical digital (or analog) camera is far less than a second. Especially if your … Continue reading

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Posted in Dog body language, Fear, Reactivity, Stress Signals | Tagged , , | 11 Comments

Shut Down Dogs (Part 2)

This is Part 2 of a two-part series. In Shut Down Dogs, Part 1 I talked about the fact that people appear to believe and say that a shut down dog is relaxed or calm since it is motionless. In … Continue reading

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Posted in Dog body language, Fear, Punishment, Shock Collars, Stress Signals | Tagged , , , , | 58 Comments

Another Look at a Fearful Dog

Little Zani is not sound sensitive in general. She thinks thunderstorms and fireworks are great, since they predict spray cheese at our house. Things like vacuums and generators she is good with. And she hears various beeps, dings, and various … Continue reading

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Posted in Dog body language, Fear, Stress Signals | Tagged , | 17 Comments

8 Common Dog Training Errors: Cautionary Tales

As the great trainer Bob Bailey says, training is simple but not easy. The principles are very simple and straightforward, but actually applying them in practice can be very difficult. I’ve mentioned many times that I am not a professional … Continue reading

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Posted in Dog body language, Dog training hints, Dogs' perceptions, Generalization, Human and dog misunderstandings, Multiple dogs, Stress Signals | Tagged , , | 45 Comments

Shut Down Dogs, Part 1

I recently wrote a post about the phrase “calm submissive” as promulgated by Cesar Millan. I said that the phrase (actually Cesar) was misguided and confused. Not to mention wrong. For Cesar Millan, “calm submissive” means, “I can do stuff … Continue reading

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Posted in Dog body language, Fear, Multiple dogs, Stress Signals | Tagged , , , | 70 Comments

Calm Submissive

According to the well known TV personality (I won’t call him a trainer) Cesar Millan, “calm submissive” is a very desirable state for your dog to be in. OK, I don’t even want to begin to address the word submissive. So … Continue reading

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Posted in Dog behavior, Fear, Human and dog misunderstandings, Stress Signals, Training philosophy | Tagged , , | 26 Comments

How Can She Possibly Be Eating?

Over threshold. Have you heard the term? In dog (and other animal) training, “over threshold” is used to describe the point at which a dog undergoes physiological changes that comprise a state of stress. The state of being over threshold is … Continue reading

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Posted in Dog body language, Fear, Stress Signals | Tagged , , , | 16 Comments

The Look of Fear

What happened to little Zani while I was at work one day? Summer was in the crate. Cricket was in the other room. But something had gotten Zani very very worried, and she took a long time to recover. I … Continue reading

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Posted in Dog body language, Fear, Multiple dogs, Stress Signals | Tagged , , , , , , | 29 Comments

Yes, You May Comfort Your Dog!

Just a quick reminder for the upcoming fourth of July holiday in the U.S. with the attendant loud booming noises. Behaviors can be reinforced. Emotions can’t. Fear is an emotion. If you comfort your fearful dog, it doesn’t somehow “reinforce” … Continue reading

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Posted in Fear, Stress Signals | Tagged , | 30 Comments