What is a Dog?

Ravyn 7mo on grill (6)sm

I am editing and fully reformatting my second book.  It is winter and no way I can get out and take pictures for it, therefore I am doing yet another rewrite – amazing the things I found even after it was sent out to be edited and rewritten a couple times!  Anyhow, I wanted to share with you a section from it.

Normal Dog Behaviors (aka things humans may dislike)



Rolling in stinky things

Relieving themselves where they want






Playing with everything, even our $500 pair of shoes (I had no idea they were not for fun)

Destroying things (I got bored)

Grasp the opportunity when it arises (you left that food unattended, you must have been done)

Not liking all dogs (or cats or other critters)

Chasing things


Not liking all people

Pulling on lead

Not liking to wear clothes (or collars)

Eating things we think are gross (but that mummified toad I found was great!)

Greeting by sticking noses where we may not want noses

Humping (mounting)

What do we demand of dogs?

Do not growl (bark or communicate in other ways)

Do not bite

Potty when and where I tell you

Sleep where I tell you

Do not roll in, eat or play with things I think are gross

Do not chew, chase, bite, or destroy things

Do not greet my friends the way you would a dog

You must wear a collar and a leash (and maybe even clothes)

You will eat from a bowl when I feed you

You will walk on a loose lead and ignore all the things that attract you as a dog

Do not touch my sandwich I left on the low table as I go out to talk to a friend

Do not chase things

Be friends with everyone and every animal I shove in your face

Tolerate a small box without any acclimation or training for hours on end

Do not bother me

So, we take a foreign species and demand that they learn all our social norms and desires, without much work from us, and then get upset when our dogs behave LIKE DOGS.

Many behaviors that owners demand are not normal behaviors for dogs.  Making life work with dogs means understanding what they are as a species.  Then we need to understand what within the species we can expect from various breed traits.  Then we need to understand the individual dog himself.

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