Author Topic: Leaning Towards Your Dog  (Read 712 times)

BoxerWB

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Leaning Towards Your Dog
« on: September 04, 2008, 11:55:34 AM »
This started in the Entertainment section, which I know a lot of our members don't read too much, so I thought I'd re-start the conversation here.

The question came up whether leaning towards your dog is an intimidating behavior, one meant to illicit fear.

I belief that leaning, in and of itself, is not intimidating but situations and dogs can make a difference. Leaning does exert pressure, but can be done in a non-fearful way, IMO.  I use it as a tool along with body blocks when I want to direct a dog's body without putting my hands on them.  Here are some things that I factor into the overall effect:

#1. Dog's personality -  A submissive dog is bound to feel the pressure much easier than a highly confident dog.

#2. Distance - Someone leaning towards you/a dog at a great distance is going to have a different effect then someone leaning up-close.  Xena is a somewhat submissive dog, but leaning towards her when I'm several feet away does not cause her to display submissive behaviors - leaning when I'm only 1-2 feet away may cause her to show one or two signs and leaning directly over her will cause a number of them.

#3. The rest of you - What you are doing with your body and voice effect the overall impact on the dog.  Leaning forward with a loose body and relaxed face is going to provoke a different reaction than leaning forward with hard eyes and a tight body. Xena will actually jump to kiss the face of a person leaning directly over her with a relaxed body whereas leaning with a tight body is received with tongue flicks and possibly even rolling over.

I'd love to hear from other folks and their feelings on the topic. 
Julia
Delta 03/12
Dash 07/06
Shady 07/05
In my heart: Xena 03/10/03 - 02/16/12

Bugsys Mom

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Re: Leaning Towards Your Dog
« Reply #1 on: September 04, 2008, 12:05:21 PM »
I use leaning and body blocks also in Obedience training.  I also cross my arms to let them know I am not playing around.  I have seen no indication that they are fearful (especially Zeus).  They don't display any submissive behaviors.  Ears stay perked up and eyes stay focused on me. 
Vicky

BoxerWB

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Re: Leaning Towards Your Dog
« Reply #2 on: September 04, 2008, 12:16:23 PM »
Oh yeah, I should have noted that Dash doesn't display any submissive or fearful behaviors when you use leaning... the most I get is a sort of curious "what?" look if I'm really invading his space - which I've only done to test his reaction, I don't use it in normal training.  When I started using leaning and body blocks to keep him from barking at the windows, he started out looking annoyed and ended up looking curious - like it clicked that I was trying to communicate with him, not just stand in his way.
Julia
Delta 03/12
Dash 07/06
Shady 07/05
In my heart: Xena 03/10/03 - 02/16/12

highdrama

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Re: Leaning Towards Your Dog
« Reply #3 on: September 04, 2008, 01:58:52 PM »
I can't say I've ever leaned into my dogs, if I am getting you right.  I have blocked with my body and I do use hands on hips and a stern look at times.  Neither of mine are submissive and I would say if your dog is trusting of you they won't feel intimidated regardless, you'll know this if you've ever rushed towards them, they don't blink an eye because they know you wouldn't barge into them.  Anything that made my dog intimidated wouldn't be something I would use but I do wish my dogs to know I mean business, that being achieved by my seeing things through, eg if they don't come I go and get them. 

blynn03

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Re: Leaning Towards Your Dog
« Reply #4 on: September 04, 2008, 02:13:28 PM »
...but I do wish my dogs to know I mean business, that being achieved by my seeing things through, eg if they don't come I go and get them. 

Too bad more people don't feel that need to follow through in that way with their children!!


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