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Recently, I have been reading Dr. Dodman’s The Well-Adjusted Dog.* The book is very well written, devoid of clichés, unsentimental, absolute common sense and brilliant. Every dog owner and prospective dog owner should read it.
I’ve lived with rescue dogs for years, consider myself a compassionate person and thought I knew what I was doing but reading Dodman’s book was a humbling experience. I realised that too often it was my ego, my needs, which determined the way I interacted with my dogs rather than a deep and unfaltering commitment to meeting their needs. The latter, of course, not the former, as Dodman reiterates throughout the book, results in a well-adjusted and rewarding dog.
I am about to re-read it to make sure I remember my training!
It’s available on line for virtually just the postage.
In only one area does Isis confound Dr. Dodman’s wisdom. In an aside he states that
‘An interest in food and fearfulness are incompatible states.’
This has been my experience too with every dog I have lived with and every dog I’ve met, except, that is, for Isis for whom an interest in food seems to override all other considerations, except, perhaps, getting outside to play. But then it is almost certain that she suffered considerable deprivation in both areas. I have observed her taking a treat from G. even when her tail is firmly between her legs because a dog has barked loudly near her.
P.S. Tunnel news. Yesterday evening I had to take away the tunnel as Isis has torn sections of the fabric from the wire skeleton and the wire loops are potentially dangerous, of course, for a dog who can’t see.
But earlier on, when there were just tears in the fabric but no exposed wires, she was playing inside the tunnel when her beautiful tail popped out of a particularly large hole. It looked hilarious. The incident passed too quickly to record on camera, but ……………………………
I hope this will do.
*Dr.Nicholas H. Dodman, The Well Adjusted Dog. Publisher: Mariner Books.
Isis came from the Aeza cat and dog rescue and adoption centre in Aljezur, Portugal. For information about the centre’s work and/or adopting an animal from the centre, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.dogwatchuk.com