The Other End of the Leash: Why We Do What We Do Around Dogs

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9780345446787: The Other End of the Leash: Why We Do What We Do Around Dogs
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The Other End of the Leash shares a revolutionary, new perspective on our relationship with dogs, focusing on our behavior in comparison with that of dogs. An applied animal behaviorist and dog trainer with more than twenty years experience, Dr. Patricia McConnell looks at humans as just another interesting species, and muses about why we behave the way we do around our dogs, how dogs might interpret our behavior, and how to interact with our dogs in ways that bring out the best in our four-legged friends.

After all, although humans and dogs share a remarkable relationship that is unique in the animal world, we are still two entirely different species, each shaped by our individual evolutionary heritage. Quite simply, humans are primates and dogs are canids (like wolves, coyotes, and foxes). Since we each speak a different native tongue, a lot gets lost in the translation.

The Other End of the Leash demonstrates how even the slightest changes in your voice and the way you stand can help your dog understand what you want. Once you start to think about your own behavior from the perspective of your dog, you’ll understand why much of what appears to be doggy-disobedience is simply a case of miscommunication. Inside you will learn
· How to use your voice so that your dog is more likely to do what you ask.
· Why “getting dominance” over your dog is a bad idea.
· Why “rough and tumble primate play” can lead to trouble–and how to play with your dog in ways that are fun and keep him out of trouble.
· How dogs and humans share personality types–and why most dogs want to live with benevolent leaders rather than “alphawannabees!”

In her own insightful, compelling style, Patricia McConnell combines wonderful true stories about people and dogs with a new, accessible scientific perspective on how they should behave around each other. This is a book that strives to help you make the most of life with your dog, and to prevent problems that might arise in that most rewarding of relationships.
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The Other End of the Leash begins with an eloquently simple premise: "All dogs are brilliant at perceiving the slightest movement that we make, and they assume each tiny movement has meaning." With that in mind, all of Dr. Patricia McConnell's recommendations for communicating with your canine make immediate sense. Don't we all automatically bend forward when coaxing a dog to come and play? Break eye contact when we wish to avoid a confrontation? While these instinctive behaviors are right on target, a number of other habits aren't so positive, and McConnell helps us break them with both humor and common sense.

Chapters are categorized by senses such as sound, sight, and smell; specific pack behaviors such as dominance and play also merit their own sections. McConnell uses the same humor and patience she recommends with dogs on her readers. Whether she's referring to maggots as "a value-added commodity in canine economics" or ruminating on attempts to verbally cue her dogs to exit the house one at a time, her wise and gently self-deprecating book brings training--of both dogs and humans--to new levels. Jill Lightner

About the Author:

Patricia McConnell, Ph.D., CAAB is an ethologist and certified applied animal behaviorist who has consulted with cat and dog lovers for more twenty-two years. She combines a thorough understanding of the science of behavior with years of practical, applied experience. Her nationally syndicated radio show, Calling All Pets, played in more than 110 cities for fourteen years and her television show Petline played on Animal Planet for two and a half years. She was the behavior columnist for The Bark magazine (“The New Yorker of dog magazines”—Time) and is adjunct professor in Zoology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, teaching “The Biology and Philosophy of Human/Animal Relationships.” Dr. McConnell is a much sought-after speaker and seminar presenter, speaking to training organizations, veterinary conferences, academic meetings, and animal shelters around the world about dog and cat behavior, and on science-based and humane solutions to serious behavioral problems. She is the author of thirteen books on training and behavioral problems, as well as the critically acclaimed books The Other End of the Leash (translated into fourteen languages), For the Love of a Dog, and Tales of Two Species. She lives with her Border Collies, Willie and Maggie, her rescue Cavalier Spaniel, Tootsie, and a very spoiled flock of sheep, and suffers from separation anxiety when she leaves them.
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