Posts Tagged ‘dog behavior’

“Equal Work Equal Pay” Say Dogs

A recent study by scientists in Austria show that humans are not the only ones with a sense of equal rights.

The PNAS report details how a group of dogs were hand selected for their willingness to paw (the doggie equivalent to a handshake).  The group of willing participants were then grouped into pairs, and the not so willing sent home – along with a border collie who was more interested in herding the other dogs.

The dog pairs were then presented with a plate of treats. One side had pieces of bread while the other side had pieces of sausage.  Each dog could see the rewards, and could see what rewards the other dog in the pair was given.  The different pairs were then given different scenarios.

After being asked to “paw” one test group rewarded one dog but not the other.  The dog that did not receive a reward for its action, but watched the other dog get rewarded, refused to participate again.

This suggests that dogs understand fair play and fair pay.  Jealous dogs will not respond to commands and this could be an indication of why your dogs are not obedient.  Is your disobedient dog the victim of favouritism?

Another test group rewarded each dog, but one dog only got the bread treats while the other dog got sausage treats.  The dogs getting the bread treats did not refuse to participate because they were paid less.  However, a similar test with monkeys where they could see a better reward than what they were getting resulted in a boycott.

The phenomenon known as “inequity aversion” where we recognise that a situation is unfair or at least unequal is obvious in people because we can articulate our feelings.  People leave jobs or protest because they are not getting equal pay for equal work.  Children fight because a sibling got a certain toy or treat and they did not.

Now we find out that our pets are equally affected by inequity aversion.  Although they may not have been able to articulate their feelings as well, it seems they do demonstrate behavior which when properly understood is screaming “Unfair! Equal Pay For Equal Work!”
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Stop Your Dog Jumping on People

No matter how much we might enjoy our pet jumping up to greet us, there are many people who dislike having a strange dog coming up and jumping on them.
For many people it can be a frightening experience as not everyone is a dog lover.

Besides that, many people just don’t want dirty paw marks over their clothing.

It can also create major problems if a large dog were to jump up on a child or an elderly person.

Dogs will generally jump up on people because they are overly excited and pleased to see them – even if that person is a stranger.

Many people inadvertently encourage this behavior by rewarding the dog with attention after the dog has jumped up on them.  The dog then seeks similar reward from other people whether they like it or not.

This is detrimental to the proper training of the dog and all members of the family must realize that they’re doing more harm than good by encouraging their dog to jump up on people.

Consistency is important in all forms of dog training, where members of the dog’s family will need to exercise discipline and accept that training will be all the more difficult if the dog is allowed to continue with this behavior.

Failure to do so will lead to confusion with the pet not knowing what is right or wrong.

An alternative to having your dog jump up on you and other people is to teach it to sit and lift it’s paw when greeting you for a handshake or similar tricks where the dog will be rewarded with attention.

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Have you noticed any changes in your dog’s behavior?

Even the smallest of irregularities could be a clue that something is not right with your pet.

One of the best things you can do for your dog besides regular exercise, good food, water and shelter, is to be aware of any changes that it might exhibit in all aspects of it’s life.

Particularly as dogs get older they might seem like they are just not interested in exercise any longer but this might be due to the fact that they are suffering from pain of some form or another.

Many older dogs suffer from arthritis and this can be very painful.
There are all sorts of remedies that can help your dog from natural remedies to ones that your local vet might prescribe.

Our beloved pets cannot talk to us and they can only hope that we are aware of their conditions by knowing what they are usually like and noticing any behavioral changes.

Even if a normally quiet dog starts whining or barking more often they might be trying to give you a signal that something is not quite right in their life.

A regular checkup at the Vet is a good solution to ensure that your dog is always in optimal health and that includes their mental state.

Older dogs can become depressed because they are no longer getting the required stimulation mentally and a depressed dog will suffer just as a human can do in similar circumstances.

If your dog starts to eat more or less food than normal this could be another sign that there is a problem and also if they gain or lose weight they could be suffering from some health problems.

Always be aware of their behavior and it will help ensure that your dog has a happy and long life.

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