Sunday, June 6, 2010


We had Ken McCort at Posidog to speak today. It was really quite fabulous. People came from several different states and lots of locals, including a few students.

He's very into ethology and behavior patterns and wild canids and all of that I love. I have lots of notes I need to go over and re-think and interpret. I'm in a panic mode for some exams tomorrow... so here's tempting tid-bits:

-We exercise our dogs too much. 2 miles is really too much. [I said "WHAT!"]
-Motor patterns are more important than we give them credit for.
-Dogs are really really really dumb. At least compared to wolves.

In other news...I had a really really really (really) great education opportunity I had to turn down due to a very bad-sad-not-good family emergency. Me leaving for a week would cause many problems, the most selfish of which is that no real adult would be available to care for my dogs. I'm literally feeling sick about not being able to go... and so of course my studying is not very productive.

And the puppyness leaves on Tuesday. He'll only be with me for 48 more hours! I miss him already.


Karin said...

2 miles?!? Huh!? What is his explanation behind this. Wow. If thats true my dogs are in trouble:)

Kristen said...

The exact quote I wrote is "2 miles is nonsense". He referenced that domestic dogs in a feral setting will rarely travel more than a few hundred yards (....feet? I didn't write this down..) in a day. Mental exercise can be a more productive use of time for the human-animal bond. Most pet clients don't want to go out for a long walk after a 12 hour work day (to which europeans would say "WHY get a dog!"). If he's giving advice and they aren't able to follow's poor advice to some extent. If it's a dog with a behavior problem, building endurance is NOT want you want.

For now I'll probably stick with what I tell students: Off property leash walks (more the better) are good for preventing problems and maintaining exposure to the world. Vary exercise to provide for different needs and to prevent your dog from needing a lot of any one. Training can be a good substitute for exercise when you are unable to.

But maybe we do need to stress training as a daily necessity?