There are two things that bother me on occasion: pithy and terse internet memes that break down a complex problem into a simple answer and anthropomorphism in animal training. So let me do both in one fell swoop!
My three a.m. mental exercise was to distill the most basic ideas of relating to the dog in to some simple concepts based on how dogs behave. Here is the list (in your best dog voice)-
“Going where I’m going is based on my desire to follow or based on my desire to act independently, dependent on the context of the situation”
“Sometimes wanting what I want is just as important as getting what I want”
“The daily environment during my development helps to determine how I interact with the world as an adult dog”
“I simply behave in order to avoid stress and to seek reward.”
“My handler rarely understands how good I am at receiving training or cues.” (Intended and unintended)
“My behavior is reflective of the repetitions I have been rewarded for in the past.”(intended and unintended)
“I wish my handler understood me as a dog and did not try to relate to me as a human.”
Over the next week I will elaborate on each anthropomorphic meme!