I have been thinking about the power of the mind, in relation to training your dog or feeding a new protein source or just determining who gets that choice spot on the sofa, all of these can become issues with your raw fed dog or your Carolina Dog, well, any dog for that matter! If you are uncertain or wishy-washy in your mind, dogs can tell!
I have heard of people who are having troubles "trying" to make the switch to raw feeding. Suddenly a dog is a food bully. Upon starting to feed raw food, one of their dogs becomes a resource guarder or even becomes aggressive with them. Behaviors that are not normal for the dogs and inevitably get blamed on the "raw meat" myth that feeding raw makes dogs 'bloodthirsty". Utterly ridiculous, but it happens so often.
Also I hear of Carolina Dog adopters and even owners who have had their CDs since puppy hood say that their CD destroys furniture and personal items, bolts through the door and jumps on their neighbors. CDs are supposed to have a "pack" mentality in regards to their family and home and they are not usually destructive of anything in their "den" unless they are not given rules, boundaries and limitations.
How is a loving kind owner supposed to enforce those rules, boundaries, and limitations? What can be done? Maybe a better question is why do the animals suddenly act this way?
I learned this firsthand through my own experiences with my Carolina Dogs and Raw Feeding. Like him or hate him, Caesar Milan taught me this principle. I watched his shows for months prior to getting my first CD. Also the advice given by the breeder of my dogs, Jane Gunnell, meshed with this way of thinking.
Upon getting my first CD puppy I determined in my mind that no matter if I had never been able to potty train a dog or keep one from bolting through the door, I was going to have the mindset that I am in charge and I am the pack leader. I became totally sold out to the idea, after all, the many other methods I had used in the past had not worked for me.
I remember seeing an episode of the Dog Whisperer, where CM was explaining to the despairing dog owner that they needed to visualize the dog responding exactly the way they wanted, not visualizing how the dog could screw up. That made a major impact on me. I was determined to try it! (Upon proof-reading this, I realized that that last sentence was confusing. I was not going to try it, I was going to do it! )
In each training session and every interaction with my new puppy I did visualize him doing exactly the right thing. I saw Cooter, in my mind, stopping when I asked him to wait at the door and not him bolting out past me to go after the cat. I saw Daisy dropping whatever object she had in her mouth as soon as I said "Drop It" And you know what? It worked! I didn't have to get physical or punish my dog in any way. It really is all about how we think!
How does it work? Well, when it comes to dealing with a Carolina Dog, we know that they are supremely intuitive. They can read our body language. CDs can tell if we are weak in our determination. Subconsciously, if we are thinking "failure" in our minds, then our body projects "failure" in our presence and posture. CDs can assuredly read that and WILL take advantage of it!
If you feel sorry for your CD and what she went through in her past, she will sense your weakness and inability to be firm with her on a problem issue(chewing, bolting, resource guarding, etc). You will end up with a dog that develops bad habits, some of which could be dangerous. Worst case scenario- escape, illness, or surrender to a animal shelter could result.
For example, I am not meaning that you think in your mind: "I'm opening the door, I hope the dog does not dash out past me. I'm really scared he will and will get hit by a car. Oh crap please don't let that happen! Now Sweetie, you stay over there please while Mommy opens the door a crack and peeks out. No! Stay BAAACK! Arrgghh!" - You KNOW you have done this!!!! LOL
I am meaning the situation goes like this: You, with a strong calm presence back the dog away from the door and entry area until he has given you a good amount of space, so he is not crowding you or the door or entry. You put the dog in a down/stay and firmly say 'Wait' . You visualize Sweetie staying right in that spot until you release him. You turn and open the door and greet your visitor and invite them in. Then you release Sweetie and praise him and allow him to calmly greet the visitor.
Does that whole scenario happen every time someone comes to our door? No. And that is my fault. My dogs can pick up on my weakness, inattention, nervousness, or agitation or even happiness and will show the same amount of 'excitement' that I am projecting. They will bark and "alert" me that there is a stranger at the door. That is their "job" when we are home alone all day. I do try to use each time somebody knocks on our door as a training exersize. Sometimes I don't get to play it out like I would like to, due to visitor urgency or whatever. But I try to practice at least some parts of our ritual. I am confident that I can open the door and my dogs WILL respect me & 'my' doorway and will not bolt through. I know that I can ask them to back up and give me space at the door.
Early on in my raw feeding journey I experienced my dogs refusing to eat something new. Thinking back I always had that worry in my mind; "I hope they will eat this turkey(or fish or whatever). What if they don't? It was expensive, if they don't eat it I will be out that money and they will have nothing to eat! "
When I realized what I was doing, I almost smacked myself in the head! Doh! They can tell I, their pack leader, am worried about this new food. "It must be dangerous, or bad. Better not eat this!" They probably are reading from my body language!
When I next fed a new food, I made sure I was thinking happy thoughts, positive about them eating the new food, thinking how nutritious it would be for them, how yummy they would think it is. And yet again, It worked! They ate it with no problem!
These are just some examples of the power of Pawsitive Thinking I have experienced. I hope you learned something that you can apply to your journey with your Raw Fed dog or Carolina Dog!
Remember Visualize Pawsitive thoughts!
- Applicants Read Before Applying
- Puppy Application
- About Susan & Nature's Way Carolina Dogs
- Naturally Rearing Puppies, Conception to 8 Weeks of Age
- 8 Laws of Health and Natural Rearing
- Healthy Wild - Carolina Dogs as God Intended
- LINKS PAGE for Carolina Dogs and Natural Rearing Topics
- Switching Your Kibble-Fed Dog Over to a Healthy Raw Diet
About Nature's Way Carolina Dogs
- Susan Lewelling, Nature's Way Carolina Dogs
- Seymour, Tennessee, United States
- Welcome to my site about my Naturally Reared Carolina Dogs! Carolina Dogs are a relatively new, rare breed recognized by the UKC, AKC-FSS & ARBA, and are quite possibly America's own indigenous wild dog. CDs make wonderful companions, athletes, hunters, and bedwarmers! Natural Rearing is the philosophy wherein we raise our dogs and puppies by following the 8 Laws of Health, employing Biologically Appropriate Raw Food and no toxic chemicals on, in or around our dogs. We have found this way of life fosters balance, health and longevity in our beloved companions. For our puppies, we welcome homes that have a very similar philosophy about dog rearing, or wish to learn. Check us out, follow us and share us in other places!!! YouTube@ Susan NaturesWayCarolina Dogs NaturesWayPets and FaceBook @ https://www.facebook.com/mycarolinadog on Twitter @https://twitter.com/NaturesWayCDs Thank you so much for visiting our site, feel free to leave us a comment or send us an email! firstname.lastname@example.org