Richard Day's picture



    You ever fall in love with a dog?

    No, this is not about bestiality.

    I mean, have you ever truly loved a pet?

    Well I have and there are certain things that have to take place in order for this bonding to occur.

    Fundamentally, dog training is about communication. From the human perspective, the handler is communicating to the dog what behaviors are correct, desired, or preferred in what circumstances and what behaviours are undesirable.

    A handler must understand communication from the dog. The dog can signal that he is unsure, confused, nervous, happy, excited, and so on. The emotional state of the dog is an important consideration in directing the training, as a dog that is stressed or distracted will not learn efficiently.

    According to Learning Theory there are four important messages that the handler can send the dog:

    Reward or release marker

    Correct behavior. You have earned a reward.

    Keep going signal (KGS)

    Correct behavior. Continue and you will earn a reward.

    No reward marker (NRM)

    Incorrect behavior. Try something else.

    Punishment marker

    Incorrect behavior. You have earned punishment.

    Using consistent signals or words for these messages enables the dog to understand them more quickly.

    It is important to note that the dog's reward is not the same as the reward marker. The reward marker is a signal that tells the dog that he has earned the reward. Rewards can be praise, treats, play, or anything that the dog finds rewarding. Failure to reward after the reward marker diminishes the value of the reward marker and makes training more difficult.

    The meanings of the four signals are taught to the dog through repetition, so that he may form an association by classical conditioning so that the dog associates the punishment marker with the punishment itself. These messages may be communicated verbally or with nonverbal signals. Mechanical clickers are frequently used as a reward marker, as are the words "yes!" or "good!". The word "no!" is a common punishment marker. "Whoops!" is a common NRM. A KGS is commonly a repeated syllable (such as "g-g-g-g-g" or a drawn out word such as "gooooood".)

    FUCK THAT!!!

    Hell, this is how my first wife attempted to train me!

    And besides, she kicked me out when I tossed her clicker.

    Look if the pet does not poop in the house and does not destroy things in the abode while you are visiting the outside world without her, ALL IS GOOOOOOOOOOD.

    First and foremost, in order to establish a relationship, the dog must refuse to obey sometimes.

    If you order the mammal to sit and to fetch and to walk and to heel and to shake hands and the fellow or lass always complies; well that aint no relationship.

    There have to be times when the mammalian affection becomes strained.

    Fuck you says Bowser. I really am not in the mood for this heeling stuff. For chrissakes I am on a real scent here.

    You cannot be on a real scent. There are two feet of snow out there you fucking snowzer!!!


    Now that's what I call a relationship. You see?

    And you build upon that relationship correctly and you have a friend for life!!

    Now, the dog will eat the cheap dry dog food and be happy as long as you share whatever you have going for dinner that night. As long as you are throwing in your stew or whatever in the dog dish over the dry food, everything works out. The dog aint gonna bitch even if you are a lousy cook.

    Because the dog knows that he or she is eating the best grub available under the circumstances.

    There is always the matter of communication.

    Never let it be said that WHAT WE HAVE HERE IS A FAILURE TO COMMUNICATE!

    So talk to your dog.

    Now if you are a hermit, it is easier to talk to your dog. I mean there is nobody else there anyway and no one to say:


    And, as you scream about something said on cable news, pause and let the doggy chime in from time to time.

    I mean when you are talking to your dog, look at her once in awhile as if you are seeking a response.

    The dog will like you better if she feels she is part of the conversation.

    Now I have found that dogs become worried over certain weather situations.

    The thunder rings and the lightning flashes and the dog becomes lost.

    The mutt needs to be reassured. So you tell her to come—and she always will under these circumstances—and give her a hug and keep telling her it will all be okay.

    It works, even if you are not too sure about whether or not it will be okay. I mean, sometimes the thunderstorm seems like it will envelop you and your cabin just like it was an ark or something.

    And never talk baby talk to your dog. Your dog is not an idiot.

    Conversation with a dog:

    Okay, that’s just fine stay in the corner under the piano. I of course have no idea what you all pissed off about. We did our eight miles today in the snow.

    You had the leash off at least a quarter of that time.

    You did miss your chance at the squirrel. But damn that was a good try. Really!

    Oh, is that right?

    Well on our second outing today you took off and I had no idea when you would get back.

    Oh is that right?

    Yeah I was yelling. For chrissakes you cannot just take off like that, out of sight if not out of mind.

    Oh is that right?

    We you deserve to be called ‘chicken brains’ when you act like that! Ha!!

    But we still had a good day for heavens sake!

    Well I am tuckered out and attempting to watch this old Bridges flick now.

    Ever notice how he talks with his chin out kinda, I mean you cannot make those sounds unless you are speaking with your bottom teeth out in front of your front teeth. Kind of like how Ray Charles sings, you know?

    What’s that?

    No I do not wish to go to bed early tonight. Besides I gotta see the end of this, I always forget how it ends.

    Oh come and give me a hug.

    Come on damn it. You cannot be that comfortable over there, there aint even a rug.

    Well I mean for the dog to live with you, there are certainly questions regarding the dog’s sanity and all. But what choice did the mutt have in the first place?

    I mean it is not like the dog found you at the pound and took you home out!!!


    AMONG the grassroots
    In the moonlight, who comes circling,
    red tongues and high noses?
    Is one of ’em Buck and one of ’em
    White Fang?

    In the moonlight, who are they, cross-legged,
    telling their stories over and over?
    Is one of ’em Martin Eden and one of ’em Larsen the Wolf?

    Let an epitaph read:
    He loved the straight eyes of dogs and the strong heads of men.


    I have done mostly what men do,
    And pushed it out of my mind;
    But I can't forget, if I wanted to,
    Four-Feet trotting behind.

    Day after day, the whole day through--
    Wherever my road inclined--
    Four-Feet said, 'I am coming with you!'
    And trotted along behind.

    Now I must go by some other round--
    Which I shall never find--
    Some where that does not carry the sound
    Of Four-Feet trotting behind.

    --- Rudyard Kipling ---



    Hear our humble prayer, O God, for our
    friends the animals,
    especially for animals who are suffering;
    for any that are hunted or lost or
    deserted or frightened or hungry;
    for all that must be put to death.

    We entreat for them all Thy mercy and pity,
    and for those who deal with them we ask a
    heart of compassion and gentle hands and
    kindly words. Make us, ourselves, to be true
    friends to animals and so to share the blessings
    of the merciful.

    --- Albert Schweitzer ---

    Previous version of this @



    Nice. Good Albert S prayer too. I got a Wookie for Christmas. The package said they're easily-trained. Personally, I have doubts. That one Harrison Ford had couldn't drive that spaceship for shit. This one I got better produce. Or I'm leaving him here on Latrix3.

    I bought a pretty dog waggin and i call it a wookie

    Now we're goin to woof city...


    Thanks DD for this wonderful commentary on the complex reality of interspecies communication.  When we talk about our “pets” I can’t help but think that when they gather on a lawn or a back fence they speak of us the same way. 

    Your best remarks here were the ones about “training.”  My pet crocodile Milhous and I have been together for seventeen years.  It never occurred to me to attempt to train him.  As a youngster he showed such an impressive “joie de vivre” that I abandoned early any efforts in that regard.  He took a liking to my living room and that has been pretty much his domain all these years.  In fact I regularly come and go through the back door, such is the egalitarian nature of our relationship.   I only have Milhous but again this year I have bred two eggs.  If they hatch then I will name the second  “Dick” in your honor.  As you might understand I have always intended to name my first baby crocodile  “Quinn.”

    Well you cannot make an omelet without breaking a few crocodile eggs; that's what I always say.

    That's DOCTOR Quinn to you.

    I love this, DD. Dogs (and cats and horses) are good conversationalists with whom it is possible to have stimulating discussions whether in agreement or disagreement. They also know the value of companionable silence.

    Why aren't they running seminars for their humans who are, in this regard, less evolved? 

    Evolution is kind of a matter of perspective, right? ha

    Happy New Year!

    Happy New Year to you as well, DD. Pax.


    I love moma. hahaha

    Latest Comments