It's Me or the Dog

Discussion of Victoria's books, It's Me or the Dog: How to Have the Perfect Pet and Fat Dog Slim: How to Have a Healthy, Happy Pet.

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DogloverNH
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It's Me or the Dog

Post by DogloverNH » Mon Jul 05, 2010 6:40 pm

This is the most amazing book on dog training we have seen. We browsed several at a pet store (this one wasn't there, but we decided to order it). We devoured it in two days, and will have it handy as a reference guide while we are training our newly adopted shelter dog, who is coming in three weeks. Thank you for such a comprehensive guide. We highly recommend this book to anyone who is getting a dog for the first time. Get it and read it BEFORE you get your dog! It is a great investment!

josie1918
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Re: It's Me or the Dog

Post by josie1918 » Thu Jul 08, 2010 12:46 pm

When I got my copy in 2007, I read it, loaned it to my co-workers and got rid of most of the other books I had on dog training. I have given this book to friends who got a "new puppy" or adopted a dog from a shelter. The dogs have I think greatly benefited and the owners all tell me it has made life with the new dog SOOOO much easier. It is wonderful book, full of accurate information for all dog lovers.

grnbutterfly17
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Re: It's Me or the Dog

Post by grnbutterfly17 » Wed Jun 29, 2011 1:24 am

I love the training, I always wondered how to get a dog to sit or lay down without touching it.

The whole idea of him doing it on his own and then adding the command is amazing. I am amazed at how fast Ninja has been picking everything up---no clicker, he's happy to get praised with love n petting n stuff. I wish I knew about it long ago.

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j-f
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Re: It's Me or the Dog

Post by j-f » Mon Aug 08, 2011 3:44 pm

I just got the book, and I love it! However, I found this contrast, because in this forum, it's all about being super positive with your dog and throwing the dominance thing behind. But in the book, there is a topic of corrections, there are listed types of corrections which she uses etc. also there's a topic about how to be the Top Dog. You couldn't say Victoria has completely thrown out the dominance thing? I have read Jan Fennell's books and the ideas Victoria describes there are likely taken from there.

dontpugme
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Re: It's Me or the Dog

Post by dontpugme » Mon Aug 08, 2011 11:17 pm

j-f wrote:I just got the book, and I love it! However, I found this contrast, because in this forum, it's all about being super positive with your dog and throwing the dominance thing behind. But in the book, there is a topic of corrections, there are listed types of corrections which she uses etc. also there's a topic about how to be the Top Dog. You couldn't say Victoria has completely thrown out the dominance thing? I have read Jan Fennell's books and the ideas Victoria describes there are likely taken from there.
"Top Dog" means that you're a respected, confident, trusted leader and not a feared bully.
--dontpugme

chay
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Re: It's Me or the Dog

Post by chay » Tue Aug 09, 2011 12:12 am

j-f wrote:I just got the book, and I love it! However, I found this contrast, because in this forum, it's all about being super positive with your dog and throwing the dominance thing behind. But in the book, there is a topic of corrections, there are listed types of corrections which she uses etc. also there's a topic about how to be the Top Dog. You couldn't say Victoria has completely thrown out the dominance thing? I have read Jan Fennell's books and the ideas Victoria describes there are likely taken from there.
admittedly i have not read victoria's book, but surely in the context of the material it makes it clear that those term's aren't about dominance?

as dontpugme says, i don't think 'corrections' and 'top dog' refers to dominance at all in the context of positive training (and by extension, victoria's book). unfortunately those terms have been a bit poisoned (in my opinion) by other 'old school' trainers.

i haven't come across fennel's work, but i think victoria's methods are based all her experience of training, lots of research and study, and an openness to continuous learning and updating one's own knowledge, rather than being based on any one trainer's ideas ;)

jacksdad
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Re: It's Me or the Dog

Post by jacksdad » Tue Aug 09, 2011 5:41 pm

j-f wrote:I just got the book, and I love it! However, I found this contrast, because in this forum, it's all about being super positive with your dog and throwing the dominance thing behind. But in the book, there is a topic of corrections, there are listed types of corrections which she uses etc. also there's a topic about how to be the Top Dog. You couldn't say Victoria has completely thrown out the dominance thing? I have read Jan Fennell's books and the ideas Victoria describes there are likely taken from there.
I can't speak for Victoria, but keep in mind that books represent what the author had to say at the time the book was written. The knowledge, information etc represents what they know/believe/experience etc at the time the book was published. People like Victoria are always growing, learning, updating their knowledge and views.

I found a video of Jan Fennell that would seem to indicate that she is pro choke chain. Or is that an old video and out of date and not accurately reflect how she feels today?

It's important to keep in mind that the older a book or video becomes, there is bound to be some parts of what the author felt, believed, knew at that time that has since been updated with new knowledge and experience they didn't have when the book or video was made. If they are worth listening to, you can bet on it. someone who doesn't update probably isn't worth listening to.

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j-f
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Re: It's Me or the Dog

Post by j-f » Thu Aug 11, 2011 7:35 am

Victoria hasn't come up with the clicker theory, although she talks about it in the book, also the techniques under the topic of how to become a top dog are exactly the same what jan fennell suggests in her books. I don't think this is a bad thing at all, people should always read what other people write, and it seems to me Victoria has taken all the good things out of other philosophies and mixed it to make her own approach. It's just that I'd completely leave out the corrections part, as in clicker training books it's thoroughly explained why these are unnecessary and could be, for some animals, harmful. Not getting the click or "good boy" for a behaviour is bad enough, so it's no point making it worse by saying "UH OH". Ignoring gets same, or better results. Being "top dog" seems to be necessary, as you have to get the dog to trust and respect you, at the same time the book shows ways to respect your dog, which makes it balanced.

jacksdad
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Re: It's Me or the Dog

Post by jacksdad » Thu Aug 11, 2011 6:27 pm

Personally, I don't worry about being "top dog" or do anything to try and be "top dog". I don't feel there are any respect or trust issues because of it either.

I would have to go back and and see how Victoria phase it, but the more I learn, the more I think people really are way too focused on the idea of needing to be "top dog". It's such an ingrained idea that I think sometimes people see the likes of Victoria or Patrica McConnell make some reference to being "the leader" and their brains fill in a whole bunch that wasn't said.

For me not worrying about it has opened a whole new "world" in how I view my dog or what he is doing or not doing and has caused me to actually listen to what my dog is actually trying to say or is saying rather than writing off things he does that I don't like as an attempt at a coup or me not being "top dog".

I actually feel my dog trusts and respects me a whole lot more due to this approach, verse any overt effort to be "top dog". which isn't to say he has free run and is allowed to do whatever or is even perfect. just that I focus more on listening and teaching what to do or what I want from him rather than conducting a one sided "status" battle between my dog and my self.

chay
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Re: It's Me or the Dog

Post by chay » Thu Aug 11, 2011 7:12 pm

j-f wrote:Victoria hasn't come up with the clicker theory, although she talks about it in the book, also the techniques under the topic of how to become a top dog are exactly the same what jan fennell suggests in her books. I don't think this is a bad thing at all, people should always read what other people write, and it seems to me Victoria has taken all the good things out of other philosophies and mixed it to make her own approach. It's just that I'd completely leave out the corrections part, as in clicker training books it's thoroughly explained why these are unnecessary and could be, for some animals, harmful. Not getting the click or "good boy" for a behaviour is bad enough, so it's no point making it worse by saying "UH OH". Ignoring gets same, or better results. Being "top dog" seems to be necessary, as you have to get the dog to trust and respect you, at the same time the book shows ways to respect your dog, which makes it balanced.
fair enough, but that still doesn't mean that victoria uses the terms 'correction' or 'top dog' in the context of anything to do with dominance, which was what you indicated in your original post. i think words like that have been unfortunately poisoned by the "old school" dominance type trainers. i don't think the word itself matters, but how it is applied.

another example could be with loose leash walking. a positive 'correction' is as simple as about facing and walking the other way to get the dogs attention back on you. a dominance 'correction' is a violent yank on the leash to stop the dog in its tracks. same term, but completely different application and intent.

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