Want a better trained and better behaved dog for the whole family and the whole community to ENJOY? Sure you do!
Then listen to this exclusive Podcast as Janette Ghedotte Founder & CEO of Accurate Body Language interviews Michael Burkey President of Michigan Dog Training Inc (MDT) regarding dog body language and behavior!
INCREDIBLE!! Through the patience of a family pet Beagle dog, young Michael gained trust and confidence enough to talk to humans!! Dogs truly are man’s BEST friend!!!
“What is the best way to introduce two dogs together?”
This is a very common question asked of dog trainers. What isn’t asked frequently is, “How should people introduce themselves to a dog?” That is because people think they instinctively know how to approach a dog.
When it goes wrong, they ask, “Why did that dog do that?” (bark, growl, lunge, snip, or bite) without considering their own actions that triggered the dog to act in a fearful, defensive and aggressive manner.
So let’s talk about some points to consider when encountering a dog in regards to your body language and movement. It is need to know “Dog Bite Prevention.”
Dogs are very special creatures.
Like you, they have personal comfort zones. Some dogs such as goofy friendly Labs (Labrador Retrievers) seem to have no personal space issues.
Whereas many dogs do have a distance they like to keep until they begin to trust you. That distance can be different for the individual dog as well as due to the person it’s encountering and the environment where the encounter occurs.
Dogs with trust issues will usually move backwards to your frontal approach until they understand you offer no threat and/or you have a treat to entice them to come closer and be rewarded with same.
So, after gaining the dog owner’s permission to pet their dog; encourage the dog to come to you rather than invading their space.
A confident person allows and even encourages others to come into their space rather than evading the person or dog’s space in this context. If the dog doesn’t want to come to you, they won’t and that is okay.
We as a race understand that people have differing comfort zones in regards to standing near or far from others. However, many times people don’t stop to think and realize dogs deserve the same respect.
To entice the dog to come into your space, you can offer a treat to the dog by tossing it to him or her. You can also stand sideways toward the dog.
This prevents you from bending over the dog, which can be viewed as confrontational. When you stand sideways and reach out to offer a treat or pet the dog, you’ll bend slightly forward but not over the dog and thus not use social pressure.
As the dog comes into your space, place your fist down to your side so that he/she can sniff your hand. By placing the hand in a fist, your fingers aren’t exposed in case the dog becomes frightened and tries to snip your hand. If the dog appears relaxed, proceed to petting the dog under the chin and later work around to petting the neck and back of the head.
Most people attempt to initially pet a dog by quickly moving their hand over the top of the dog’s head because they falsely assume that it is safer to do so as it is further from his/her teeth.
However, by doing this you’ve placed social pressure on the dog that he/she may not be comfortable with, as they can’t see where the hand is going. They may also have an aversion to having their collar grabbed from past experiences.
The bite may happen as the hand comes toward their head but often times they cope with the social pressure as best as they can. However, when they are no longer able to cope or when the hand retracts, the bite occurs because they are tracking the hand as social pressure is removed.
And, biting is a stress reliever for the dog. The same can happen as you step away from an unknown dog.
At the end of the encounter, it is best for the dog owner to call their dog away from you or stepping between you and their dog rather than you turning and walking away from the dog.
So in review, consider these body language tips when meeting an unknown dog:
- Obtain the dog’s owner’s permission prior to petting their dog
- Entice the dog to come into your personal space
- Turn sideways to the dog so as not to present a confrontational frontal approach and to prevent leaning over the dog
- Allow the dog to sniff your fist before petting
- If the dog is relaxed, open your fist and pet under his/her chin before moving to the side and back of the head
- At the end of the encounter, have the owner call their dog to them or step between you and their dog rather than you turning and walking away from the dog.
Michael (734-634-4152 ) and his staff at Michigan Dog Training Inc. offer private dog training services for all breeds of dogs, large and small:
- Board and Train (K9 University, K9 College, Jumpstart Education)
- Dog Day School
- In-Home Dog Training
- Private Dog Training lessons
- Service Dogs – Diabetic Alert Dogs
- Dog Day Care VIP (Very Important Pet)
- Dog Boarding (Home Away from Home and Home Away from Home Plus)
- Temperament Evaluation
The Power of Body Language for Humans and for Dogs!
Janette and Michael Team Up and Offer Workshops on Human and Dog Body Language:
Coming Soon on Saturday, March 8th, 2015 from 9:00 am – 12:00 noon:
Don’t Miss Our Dog & Human Body Language Workshop!!
On Saturday, March 8th, 2015, Michael Burkey, President and Dog Behaviorist of Michigan Dog Training and Janette Ghedotte will co-present a body language seminar regarding understanding DOG and HUMAN Body Language. Stay tuned to both websites for updated information regarding the 2015 seminar.
Michael Burkey is an EXPERT in Dog Behavior and Training:
Michael Burkey is the President and Dog Behaviorist at Michigan Dog Training Inc. (MDT) located in Plymouth, Michigan. He has been training dogs for 18 years and is a former Police K9 Officer, Search and Rescue (SAR) Dog Handler and SAR Team K-9 Training Director.
He and his MDT staff help HIGH ENERGY DOGS become IDEAL COMPANIONS. Burkey specializes in working with dogs who have shown fear and aggressive behaviors. He is an Expert Court Witness on dog behavior.
Additionally, he trains Service Dogs, particularly Diabetic Alert Dogs. He has had a close bond with dogs since being a young child. It was a dog who taught him how to talk.
To learn more about that interesting back story and how MDT can help you and your dog, visit http://www.MichiganDogTraining.com or call 734-634-4152. Burkey and the MDT Team are known for their experience, results, integrity and professionalism.
“Get-to-the TRUTH!” Janette Ghedotte is an EXPERT in Human Behavior & Communication:
- Get to the TRUTH faster
- Avoid costly mistakes
- Maximize CONFIDENCE, COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE, and CAREERS with Body Language and Lie-Spotting SAVVY!
CONTACT Accurate Body Language, LLC today:
- Comprehensive Body Language and Statement Analysis
- Fraud and Deception Detection
- Effective Interview & Interrogation Techniques
- Human Behavior, Relationships, and Communication
- Management / Employee / Sales Team Development
- Speaking Engagements / Keynote Presentations / Conferences
- Education / Training / Workshops / Seminars
- Jury Consultant / Commentary on Criminal Cases