Subject: Jerry Howe's Free Training Manual
Date: 2002-05-17 12:59:05 PST
I adopted my little shepherd mix pup, Ginger about
a month ago and enrolled us in obedience school
so she could learn to be a good house dog.
I love the classes and she is doing very, very well,
but a few of the techniques the trainer is teaching
us make me a little uncomfortable.
In the instances where I tried to use them exactly,
poor Ginger ended up cowering away from me and
looking sad and scared, and that bothered me.
Our trainer's main theory seems to be contained in
what he told us: Your dog has to fear your wrath more
than he looks forward to any pleasure gained by
disobeying you, whether it be to steal food or chase
a rabbit or just ignore a command.
I dont want Ginger to fear my wrath, or be intimidated
by me, but I also want her to listen! A few times, I
ignored the training method we were taught in school,
and tried just gently correcting her and showing her
again how to do what I wanted, along with lots and lots
of encouraging praise and she seemed to learn more
quickly that way than when I was yelling NO at the top
of my voice.
I downloaded Jerry Howe's Wits End manual and
read through it, and so much of it rang true to what
my own experience with Ginger has been. She learns
if I yell and yank her leash, but she is also unhappy
and frightened. She learns if I correct her gently and
encourage her, and she actually enjoys our training
So even though I havent used Mr. Howe's techniques
exactly yet, it seems like they would work very well for
me and Ginger!
I especially was interested in the part about submission
and rolling your dog over, as that is exactly what the trainer
told us to do, even if the dog was scared and snapped when
you did it!
According to Mr. Howe's manual, thats a terrible thing to do to
your dog, and after seeing a cowering little pup in class used as
an example in front of 15 other dogs, I have to agree with him!
My Ginger rolls over all the time, to have her tummy rubbed, and
Im glad I never had to try to force her like the trainer advised,
as now I see I might have harmed her psychologically by doing
I just wanted to say that I was very happy to get the information
Mr. Howe provided, since a lot of it just validated my own doubts
about our trainer's methods and I feel better now about ignoring
some of them. Im going to read through the Wits End manual again
and try out some of the methods there.
I dont care if Ginger becomes a superdog...I just want
her to be a happy house dog that comes when I call
without fail, and doesnt jump on people or furniture or
steal food -- the usual good house dog behaviors.
Im much more comfortable with Mr. Howe's methods
for achieving this.
Has anyone else used this manual? Any feedback
from other users would really be appreciated.
Subject: Re: Jerry Howe's Free Training Manual
Date: 2002-05-17 13:10:26 PST
I agree with you!
I didn't want to scare my dog, or hurt her, or pull on her leash,
or any of that. I wanted her to want to work with me, and do
things with me the right way on her own. Or else I don't have a
dog, I would have a robot dog with a sad face a broken spirit.
I have had a German Shepherd pup. And a couple mixes.
They can be challanging. But let me tell you, the reward
you get from having a trained, happy German Shep far out
weighs the weeks or months or training.
And you DON'T have to hurt them to get them to listen. :)
I am now reading Jerrys manual and working with
it for my second day. My roomates, my boyfriend,
and me have already noticed that I have more "control"
without actually working harder to get it with her.
I really enjoy Jerrys "distraction" methods of sort,
the really are working fast for my Jack Russell.
Stick with it! and hey the worst that can happen
is you instill a good feeling with your dog, who
won't be afriad of you throwing her on her back,
or jerking her leash and possibly creating a
spinal injury :)