Ruminations

Blog dedicated primarily to randomly selected news items; comments reflecting personal perceptions

Saturday, December 31, 2011

End-of-Year Curiosities

As ridiculous goes, this story is a fairly good example. Perhaps a little more than ridiculous; pointing out perhaps our ability to discern good nutrition from bad, value from potential harm. Of course it was long ago pointed out that something as essentially innocuous as the popular soft drink Coca-Cola (and its like counterparts) is inimical to health, particularly when used to excess. The high sugar content and the chemicals in the drink prove, over time, to be injurious to human health.

Those who become addicted to the liquid sugar-cola should experiment as many have done, to see that it can be a very effective, quite volatile and harsh cleaning tool. More than that, it's also effective in destroying textiles, for example, through its harsh chemical interaction. It might make a better toilet-bowl cleaner than a harmless, good-tasting alternative to fruit juice or milk, on the other hand, so it does have its conceivable uses.

And then there's the so-popular fast-food choices available at someplace like McDonald's, the franchise first-choice of millions of people that took the consuming public by storm, appealing to the human taste for extreme amounts of internal-human-organ-damaging fats, sugars and salt. A woman living in Windsor Ontario, has kept a McDonald's hamburger, untouched, for a full year on her kitchen counter.

What could be more perishable than a soft bun and a grilled hamburger? Yet this combination of bun and beef has managed to withstand the ravages of time. It appears, visually, unchanged from the time it was placed on Melanie Hesketh's kitchen counter. Whenever her teen-age children agitate for fast food, their mother points to the presence of the hamburger.

Untouched by mould, maggots or fungi, it squats there, awaiting consultation with a chemist, a nutritionist, an economist and a teen. "It makes me wonder why we choose to eat food like this when even bacteria won't eat it", commented Ms. Hesketh, herself a nutritionist at Windsor's Lifetime Wellness Centre.

The casual observer would see that the hamburger looks eminently edible, though the meat patty itself appears to have shrunk as the original moisture content contained within it has evaporated over time, though it "still smells slightly like a burger". McDonald's Restaurants of Canada Ltd. has yet to comment.

And, more or less in the same type of genre - food, that is - there is the Restaurant Les Princesses d'Hochelaga whose special allure to foodists has been catering to people who enjoy having their bacon-and-eggs brought to table by waitresses wearing shoes, a see-through skirt and a smile. In operation for 11 years, the restaurant and the city have been wrangling over the lack of a permit.

Making the restaurant's nearly-nude waitressing service illegal. The restaurant's owner finally succumbed, and the waitresses are now suited out in mini-dresses with small vests, serving clients their bacon and eggs, more modestly dressed. The result was interesting; the waitresses report receiving about 50% less of the tips they were formerly accustomed to receiving.

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Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Apple and Its Tree

Now, that's using the old noggin. Sometimes, the activities of young people in a community become so tirelessly troublesome to the mature people among whom they live that radical, drastic action must be taken in attempts to dissuade them - or at the very least - encourage them to curtail their objectionable activities, or even take them elsewhere.

There have been instances where (gasp!) classical music has been played in areas where teens like to gather and create problems with loitering, making it difficult for shoppers to access store fronts, and the shop owners, in desperation turn to such measures as forcing the exquisite sound of Renaissance music upon the ears of hip-hop-loving youth, causing them to scatter in disgust.

And here's another unconventional solution to a community's classic problem of wayward youth. where the city council of Middlesbrough in north-east England hit upon a truly unique solution to their common-enough problem of young people smoking cannabis and drinking alcohol in a woodland area near a housing estate.

Solution: they spread a thick layer of pig manure on the ground around the paths and trails and places where the teens were apt to gather. Although, because of its proximity to the woodland area, residents of the housing estate were able to catch a 'whiff' of the pig manure that sent the youth elsewhere, "they would much rather have a pong than a bong".

In Vancouver, on the other hand, what do you do when your neighbours don't much care what happens to your home in your absence, when it's their teens who illegally enter and trash your place? As occurred to a family taking a holiday in Italy, returning to discover their home had been used as party central for three straight days, in their absence.

A neighbour, as it happened, living close by but without the burden of having to admit that any of the invading teens were his responsibility, forewarned them as they arrived home, that they would find all not to be quite normal, on inspection. The peculiar thing about this is that the neighbour obviously was aware of what was happening, but did nothing himself about it. Like informing police.

They discovered their bed, and the bedrooms of their teen-age daughters who had been with them on the trip, had been used for sex, the house had become a casual drop-in-spot for friends of the friends who had occupied it, and their garbage was strewn everywhere. Meat had been taken out of the basement freezer and tossed on the floor, where when it was discovered by the returned family, it had become thick with festering maggots.

One neighbour called, afterward, to apologize, and offer to pay for the damage himself, saying he and his wife planned to move from the neighbourhood to get their teen-age daughter away from the influence of the neighbourhood kids who had mounted this three-day party. He had informed the victimized family that he had called other parents in the neighbourhood whose kids were also involved, but no one had returned his calls.

The family, who had a lot of cleaning up to do, and involved themselves in a lot of deep thinking about the value of neighbours, and their sterling neighbourhood, heard from none others of their neighbours, apologizing or taking any kind of responsibility for what their teens had done. Evidently none of them had any interest in what had occurred, much less having to take responsibility.

How's that for neighbourliness and responsibility in raising kids to respect themselves and the rights of others, let alone the letter of law? The invading kids, by the way, were so little concerned about the morality and legality of what they had done, that they left indelible and identifiable evidence of who they were for the family to discover on their return.

Disheartening at the very least, infuriating at the other end of the spectrum. The family should take it upon itself to press charges and mount a legal offensive. But in all likelihood they weighed the potential outcome to realize that little would come of it.

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Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Car-Dog Anxiety - Ottawa Valley Dog Whisperer

IS YOUR DOG ANXIOUS, OVER-EXCITED IN THE CAR?

PANTING, WHINING, BARKING, NOT SETTLING DOWN… if the experience of going for a drive in the car with your dog has become stressful for you and your dog it’s time to address the situation. Left as is, neither you nor your dog can relax, normalize and enjoy the time spent together.

To cure the behaviour you must address and correct the root cause - this is a psychological issue – your dog’s and yours. Rescue remedies may help but they are unlikely to cure the behaviour.


FIRST LET’S TALK ABOUT HOW THIS BEHAVIOUR DEVELOPS

Here are a few examples of how we de-normalize the situation for our dogs and create the behaviour problem…

One - If you make a fuss when you are about to go out to the car, you ‘wind’ your dog-up and teach your dog that leaving and going out in the car is associated with excitement… i.e. ‘hey boy, you want to go for a ride in the car!’ By creating intense excitement you are destabilizing your dog’s state of being. You are overwhelming and flooding their senses. You are telling your dog to be excited, you are enabling an altered state. For an insecure dog, this can trigger anxiety and anxiousness.

Two - If, in the past, you or your dog has experienced a traumatic incident in the car and you still carry some of that stress from your traumatic experience your dog can sense your disquiet, nervousness, upset.

Three - You may have been upset or very excited when you first brought your dog home in the car.

Four - Your dog has motion sickness. When your dog gets sick in the car you get worried, frustrated, angry or otherwise stressed. For guidance on curing motion sickness in your dog you can read this article.


Now let’s talk about curing this behaviour

STEP ONE - CHANGE YOUR OWN BEHAVIOUR

I usually spend the first 30 minutes to 60 minutes of a four-hour session just dealing with the human's issues - which trigger the dog's issues. When we humans start to accumulate nervousness pertaining to our dogs in certain situations (i.e. Our dog going up to another dog) we teach them to associate that situation with tension, nervousness, fear, insecurity, excitement...this is why dogs become reactive. Our dogs read our body language as our thoughts translate directly and instantaneously to our bodies. The second you feel tension, your body shows it...compression of your lips, tension around your eyes, your shoulders - your dog knows how you feel before you are aware of how you feel! You must relax and normalize so your dog can too.

To understand more about how you can inadvertently communicate the wrong message to your dog and to understand more about how to communicate the right message you can read these articles…



Because dogs live in the moment it is easier to change a dog's 'bad habits' than it is a human's. Humans carry grudges, dogs do not. Dogs form associations with places, things, animate and inanimate objects. Dogs are very forgiving and treat each day, each experience as a new beginning. It is only with difficulty that we are able to convince, permit and allow ourselves to do the same.

Make the future different than the past. You must let the past go - must not anticipate that the past will and must repeat itself - let it go from your mind. Envision a new future in which you forget about what has happened before and focus instead on what you would like to happen - a nice peaceful ride in the car with your dog.

When you change your thoughts from negative to positive you relax - this allows your dog to do the same. You are leading by the right example.


STEP TWO - SET THE FRAMEWORK AND GET READY TO GO OUT

You then have to set the framework for the car ride before you get into the car! How you go out of the house with your dog matters! You must have control of your own state of being and your dog at every step of the way. This sets the framework for good behaviour in the car.
A - When you want your dog to go to the front door to get ready to go, call your dog over in a calm, confident manner. Don’t wind your dog up. Don’t say, ‘we’re going out’ or ‘do you want to go for a ride’ - you do not need to say anything at all - your dog already knows. Don’t engage your emotions, just be matter-of-fact; remember, this should be a normal event.

B - Your dog needs to be calm and quiet before you walk out the door. If you are attaching a leash to go out to the car, your dog needs to be calm and quiet before you attach the leash to your dog’s collar.

C - When you are ready to approach the door, stand up straight - your posture should be upright, confident, not tense - be aware of your shoulders, arms and how you hold the leash in your hands. If you are gripping the leash with tension, if your arms and shoulders are stiff with apprehension and tension you are giving your dog a message - you are communicating that you are not in control of yourself and therefore you cannot be in a leadership position with your dog. You are enabling stress, anxiety, insecurity in your dog.

D - Your dog is behind you before you open the door;

E - Your dog is to stay behind you as you walk out the door (and down the steps);

F - Your dog is either behind or beside you to the garage or across the lawn (pathway) and out to the sidewalk and to the car.


If you or your dog is not calm - stop.

I see so many people keep moving forward when their dog is not calm, when they (the person) are not calm. Stop, get your dog calm and then continue moving. If your dog is reacting and you keep walking, you are telling your dog it’s OK to behave as you are. Stop, regain control and then move forward.

It matters 100% what state you and your dog are in before you get into the car!

Don’t engage in an argument with your dog and don't whine! Don't say to your dog ' oh, I wish you wouldn't do that'...to do so is whining and complaining, not directing - provide leadership, coach and mentor your dog. If you expect trouble you will get trouble…your dog can feel if you are anticipating an argument. Instead, remember to think I direct, my dog listens and that is it! Be 100% committed - your dog knows when you are not. Your dog knows when he has an edge to manipulate and control. Be fair, but be determined.

Tugging and pulling, yelling - it’s all an argument. This is a psychological test of wills - make sure your will is greater and comes from a place of confidence and strength of commitment.

Remember, your dog has probably been doing this for awhile (as have you!), so have patience and persistence. Adjust your expectations too. When we are tired or stressed we don’t have the same focus, patience and control as we do when we are relaxed and refreshed. Some days are better than others – never give up hope. Persist…change can take a little time. It takes time to train yourself to lead, communicate and direct effectively and we all have good days and bad days!

If your dog starts to get excited you must be the polar opposite – calm and directive. Don’t get sucked into the vortex of your dog’s emotion, disengage your emotions, engage your working mind.

And remember if you need to disagree with any excited behaviour…

One - Make sure you are calm (without excess emotion) and ready to coach with fair, firm confidence. Don't be aggressive; don't raise your voice in anger.

Two - Lead...addressing from a distance is not leadership! Calmly but with assurance go over to your dog. If you need to move a distance - fine, move quickly, deliberately, confidently - not panicked or excited! Don't match your dog's state, if you do so, you lead by the wrong example.

Three - get your dog's attention, you can touch your dog firmly but quickly with your fingers - at its neck or waist, you can snap your fingers and say 'hey' or ‘shh’ firmly, but not with anger. Never touch or talk in anger as you then lead by the wrong example!

Four - tell your dog what you want i.e. 'shh’

Five - tell your dog what you would like it to do, instead i.e., 'Relax or ‘calm’' etc.

Six – wait until the dog is calm, to move forward.

STEP THREE - GETTING INTO THE CAR

One – when you stand beside the car your dog must be calm;

Two – when you open the car door, your dog must be calm;

Three – you must wait until your dog is calm before you invite your dog into the car. When your dog is calm, invite it to get into the car…or if the dog is small, you can then pick your dog up and put it in the car;

Four – if your dog runs about in the car, you should get it a harness and seat belt tether…or crate your dog. Your dog must learn that it cannot pace or dash about in the car.

Five – as long as your dog has gotten into the car in a relaxed state and you remain positive and relaxed in the car you should see your dog’s behaviour start to change, become more relaxed.

Six – you can also use rescue remedies or flower essences in combination with the methodology above.

Lastly, be patient and persistent, many people give-in and give-up too soon.

Your ability to effect change in your dog is dependent on your leadership skills and your awareness of how you and your dog communicate. As your skill grows, your ability to effect change will too!



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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Utter Mindlessness

The Eaton Centre was full of shoppers well into the evening on Monday as bargain hunters flocked to Boxing Day sales. CARLOS OSORIO/TORONTO STAR

Smile! You're a shopping maniac. Well, perhaps not you, if you're a sensible, ordinary individual who wouldn't think of emerging from your nice warm house on a miserably cold winter's day in the wee hours of the morning to establish yourself in a waiting group patiently awaiting the five hours it will take for the store you're anxious to rush into to grab all those bargains, at ten in the morning.

Seems it's the electronic gadgetry emporiums that manage to entice the majority of people into these mindless goods-consumption highjinks. People who are prepared to bring along sleeping bags, tents, hot thermoses full of coffee, and good cheer, to await daylight and the opening of the front doors to the stores that have advertised "Boxing Day Specials" at knock-down prices.

"I have been here since 1:30 a.m. this morning", said one young man, brimming over with glee, standing beside his father. It's a family affair. Two grown-up men happy to stamp their feet in the cold and determined not to succumb to the misery of an overnight camping plan that will end with their acquiring a 42-inch flat screen television, a laptop computer, a personal video recorder.

Now that's quality-of-life. That's value for time spent mindlessly anticipating the "savings" to be had for patiently standing about and eagerly awaiting the opportunity to flow into a store whose inventory will be slipping out that same front door in the satisfied arms of customers who have already depleted their bank accounts buying Christmas gifts the weeks before.

Doesn't take long as shoppers grab shopping carts in their eagerness to grasp all those attractive bargains before someone else manages to grab the last one. For the determined buyer who had waited for hours for the Santa-and-elves-clad sales staff to unlock the doors, a fast prowl down the aisles, dumping merchandise into the carts and wheeling them directly to the cash takes five minutes.

And the queue that had gathered outside gradually diminishes, while newcomers begin to re-establish a newer line of eagerly anticipating customers. The stores are "crazy-busy", and tempers sometimes run short when people take too long to load up their purchases in car trunks a little too small to hold them, while others waiting to take their parking spots lose their patience.

It's just so much fun and, according to one shopper "family-oriented".

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Canine Motion Sickness - Ottawa Valley Dog Whisperer

Guest writer - Karen Rosenfeld, Ottawa Valley Dog Whisperer

Thursday, 22 December, 2011

TO CURE YOUR DOG'S MOTION SICKNESS

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Monday, December 26, 2011

Sub-Prime Lives On...

There's one victory for the Obama administration, reflecting concern and a modicum of relief for the true victims of the sub-prime mortgage chaos. Bad enough that people who could not financially qualify for those mortgages were encouraged to own a house of their own, no down payment, low interest rates, and no payments required for the time being; be a homeowner, it's the American dream.

But now it is revealed that Hispanics and Blacks who had jobs and were capable of responsibly managing their financial affairs and who truly did qualify for home ownership were thrown into the pile - deliberately - by those who made the decisions at Countrywide Financial - since bought out by Bank of America Corp.

African-Americans and Hispanics were disproportionately represented by those unhappy home-owners who lost their homes in the financial meltdown accelerated by the sub-prime mortgage debacle. Unknown to those Blacks and Hispanics who were able to qualify and were happy to have approval, they were ushered into those faulty mortgages in their zeal to own a home.

Countrywide was a specialist in sub-prime mortgages, their focus on would-be homeowners who had a record of low credit ratings. And these were the people who were charged higher interest rates; make sense? Non-minority Americans were excused from paying higher fees and interest rates; Hispanics and Blacks were targeted.

Those in the category of responsible homeowner-material with fair credit rating and incomes required to pay mortgages were channelled toward sub-prime mortgages even though they qualified for traditional mortgages. If they were Black, if they were Hispanic. None of this was divulged to them, they thought that everything was conducted conventionally.

"The victims had no idea they were being victimized. They were thrilled to have gotten a loan and realize the American dream. This is discrimination with a smile", said Thomas Perez, head of the Justice Department's civil-rights division. It was clearly unspeakably racist.

Although Countrywide's former chief executive Angelo Mozilo has been excused of criminal wrongdoing. Not illegal, simply immoral and unethical. An excess of enthusiasm for the wide range of possibilities available in the free enterprise capitalist system that encourages profit with little thought to the ethics of guiding people down the garden path of ruination to achieve it.

Government investigators undertook reviews of two-and-a-half million loans to discover that African Americans and Hispanics were over three times more likely to receive high-cost sub-prime loans than non-minorities. That's quite an inadvertence.

It smells rather rank, somewhat like the Countrywide decision to illegally foreclose on members of the U.S. military without court orders. Like the decision by the same Countrywide to over-charge homeowners for loan servicing fees, both of which events required the company to face huge fines in civil charges.

This latest, a record $335-million in recognition of its institutionalized gouging of innocent home buyers, leading them to be the recipients of hugely flawed mortgages, risking their investments, while charging them considerably more than should have been done for fees and higher interest rates, reveals the cancerous underbelly of unrestrained capitalism.

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Sunday, December 25, 2011

Forced To Beg

In such indescribably poor countries of the world as those existing in East Asia, India and Africa many are forced to beg. There are those who know no other way of life. The few scraps of food, the tiny bits of currency they earn through the pity and charity of those among them who are more fortunate prolongs their lives, though they live in squalor and deprivation and ill health.

This is no way for any human being to live, but it is the way that countless human beings are forced to live. For the alternative is to not live. Without sustenance of even the most inadequate kind that may accrue to these beggars, the flotsam and jetsam of humanity, they would die. It is an indignity to the human spirit to be forced by circumstances one cannot control, to be a beggar.

It is an offence to nature not to make attempts - any attempts, however futile they seem - to somehow persevere, to endure the unendurable, and to eke out a life by begging, by eliciting the pity of those whose own level of poverty is slightly above their own, to share whatever they can conceivably spare. For the greatest offence is the waste of a life.

The poor, it is often said, are more generous of nature than are those who have more than they require. They are less loathe, despite their own parlous condition, to proffer some form and some level of help to others. Even the good charity of kindliness, of a warm word, a gesture, an effort at recognition of their shared humanity.

So when Mary Yuranda was swept away by the ferocious force of the tsunami that hit the Indian Ocean on Boxing Day 2004, one of 168,000 in hardest-hit Aceh alone that the tidal wave picked up and pulled into the great wide, raging seas, it was nothing less than a miracle that she survived. And that a woman, herself indigent, took in the child whom her mother was unable to save.

She has now been reunited with her family, telling them the story of her survival and adoption. She was named Wati by the woman who took her in. And with whom she lived for seven years, but never forgetting her family. Although she said she had forgotten other relatives' names, though not that of her grandfather.

Whom an acquaintance of her grandfather had brought her to, after having found her sitting, mute, in a coffee bar. She had somehow made a long journey from where she had been found, to her home. It is entirely possible that 14-year-old Mary Yuranda left her adoptive mother because she was being used as a child prostitute, not a street beggar.

Her parents, good Muslims, would far prefer she be seen as a child beggar. But they love her, and are themselves grateful to have her with them once more. The honour is theirs, in welcoming her back with love and pride at her survival.

Irrespective of what use that little girl was put to by those who saw advantage in saving her from death, she is alive, she is well, she is grateful to be reunited with her family, and they with her. What more, in the face of that indescribable natural disaster, could anyone ask for?

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Helping Dogs In Need - Ottawa Valley Dog Whisperer

Guest writer - Karen Rosenfeld, Ottawa Valley Dog Whisperer

HELP DOGS IN NEED - ITS FREE

YOU CAN MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE BY SIGNING ANIMAL WELFARE PETITIONS
If you would like to inform yourself of what really goes on in the world of dogs you can visit the CARE 2 site and other such informative sites. You can make a difference by signing petitions to stop the neglect, abuse and make the world a better place for man’s best friend. I sign many petitions on a daily basis to help bring change to how dogs are treated around the world. Signing does make a difference. Many cases are won because enough caring people took the seconds it takes to sign. Making a difference takes minutes!

Here is the link to the animal welfare petitions on CARE 2
Petitions for Animal Welfare

Change.Org is another excellent site
Petitions for Animal Welfare

The Animal Rescue.com
Petitions for Animal Welfare

Go Petition International
Petitions for Animal Welfare


YOU CAN MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE BY CLICKING DAILY TO HELP DOGS IN NEED
If you would also like to help feed rescued dogs in need, you can go to this link and click once daily - its a free way for you to donate, as the site sponsor picks up the tab!

CARE 2 Click to Donate Free, you click and CARE 2 corporate sponsors donate.


The Animal Rescue Site, you click and Animal Rescue Site corporate sponsors donate.

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Saturday, December 24, 2011

Dog/Food Problem Behaviour, Part III, Ottawa Valley Dog Whisperer

Guest writer - Karen Rosenfeld, Ottawa Valley Dog Whisperer

SO, NOW YOU ARE READY TO COACH AND MENTOR YOUR DOG


Your dog does not require training, it requires coaching and mentoring! These words are important as they speak to responsibility, leadership & confidence. This is perspective.

OK, so you now should understand more about how our state of being, our expectations, our thoughts can have an enormous impact on outcomes, so put that calm, confident working mode in place and lets go!


And Just before we start too more very important points...

ONE - DON’T ENGAGE IN AN ARGUMENT WITH YOUR DOG AND DON'T WHINE!

If you expect trouble you will get trouble…your dog can feel if you are anticipating an argument, instead remember to think: I direct, my dog listens and that is it! Be 100% committed - your dog knows when you are not. Your dog knows when he has an edge to manipulate and control. Be fair, but be determined.

Yelling, frustration, anger - it’s all an argument. This is a psychological test of wills - make sure your will is greater and comes from a place of confidence and strength of commitment.

And please do not say to your dog ‘would you just stop that!’ or I wish you would stop doing that’, or ‘you are bothering me, quit it!’ If you do this you are not providing direction, nor are you embracing the role of leader. You are whining and complaining not providing direction! When we whine instead of direct, we give our dog a choice - you can listen to me or not. Just like humans, most will choose the ‘not’ option.

PROVIDE A COMPLETE DIRECTION TO YOUR DOG

Be prepared to provide a full instruction. A full instruction consists of:
1. Getting your dog's attention;
2. Telling him what you do not want him to do;
3. Telling him what you do want him to do instead, and;
4. Following through to correct him if he backslides into the unwanted behaviour.
The leadership role is one of coaching and mentoring with fair, firm, clear direction. Never match your dog’s state but you do have to match the intensity of his behaviour. I see a lot of people doing only step 2. Then the poor dog gets in trouble as it goes back to doing the unwanted behaviour as its human has not provided a full set of instructions! Blame yourself, not your dog!

OK, LET'S START...

The framework for correction includes the space in which you prepare food, feed the dogs and the food bowls…
ONE - Claim the space around which you prepare food. By this I mean that the space should be yours alone to occupy (we will call it 'working zone'), have your dog sit just outside of your working zone (this can be just in the doorway to the space or 6' ft away from you as you choose) - this then becomes your dog's 'waiting zone'.

TWO - Get him to sit in the 'waiting zone'; the second he gets up and starts to move forward (without your invitation) into the waiting zone' immediately stop what your are doing and walk into his space with the right 'energy' (meaning confidently, calmly {without emotion} and with complete commitment), back him up by putting your body in front of his and then move forward, until he is back in the waiting zone - then get him to sit. Repeat this with the same energy if he encroaches into your 'working zone'. This is a test of wills. To win his respect for your leadership you must calmly, confidently and persistently show your will to be even stronger than his. If he is accustomed to challenging you - this will take some time and persistence the first few times, but will get exponentially better if you follow through and stick to this methodology.

THREE
- When you are finished preparing his food, invite him to come over to the 'eating zone' (the space that you designate to be his place to eat). If he moves into the eating zone in a hasty/excited/domineering state get him to go back to the 'waiting zone'. Again, through every step of this process you must set the framework - if his behaviour is not calm, stop the process and go back - have him sit, be calm and then invite him back.


FOUR - Once he is in the ‘feeding zone' have him sit, and you keep ownership of the food bowl until he settles down. Meaning that:

1- His bum stays firmly planted on the ground, regardless of where you stand with the bowl;

2 - He does not nose you or the bowl;

3 - Growl, bare his teeth or snap at you or his pack mates etc. In your mind you must understand that the food is yours until you give it to him. You need to stand your ground (calmly, confidently). If he gets a little pushy just move your body forward a little - he will understand he needs to back off;

4 -
When he is calm, with that feeling of ownership in your mind, place the bowl down a foot or two in front of him with your foot against/in front of the bowl and stand your ground in mind and body;

5 -
He should not touch the bowl yet - then move your foot away and invite him to eat;

6 -
If he growls, snarls, bares his teeth or snaps at any of his pack mates…


The split second your dog shows any signs of guarding, dominating, reactive behaviour - disagree!
If you wait to react 30 seconds after your dog has displayed the behaviour, it is very difficult for your dog to understand what you are disagreeing with. It also gives your dog time to escalate to more intense behaviour - disagree instantly!

Do not disagree with an excited voice, in a nervous state, etc...do not yell, do not match the dog's state; be the opposite! Calm, in-control-confident;

To disagree - be calm, confident, and touch your dog quickly, firmly with the tips of your fingers at its waist or neck (this is giving the dog a quick nip or bite) and is intended to get your dog's full attention. Then say ‘hey’, or ‘no’, or ‘shh’. Make sure the intensity of the ‘bite’ and your voice matches the intensity of the dog – but do not match its state…be calm, confident. Never touch with nervous, fearful or angry energy; touch only with calm, confident energy.

If your dog is also reactive to you as well as pack mates, follow through - use your body to claim the space and the food bowl.
When you put his food bowl down, and invite him to eat, keep your foot touching the bowl - this will say to him that I am allowing you to eat, but I still own the food.

Never, ever try to stop reactivity (aggressive behaviour) from an angry or tense state of being – you just reinforce the aggression in your dog as you are in the same state as the dog.

Learn to observe and read your dog – don’t anticipate, but you must strategically address when behaviour starts. If you anticipate you will spark the incident. Instead just observe your dog’s body language. If you see that your dog is starting to fixate, or about to growl – disagree before the behaviour escalates.

You must coach and mentor consistently as noted above, every time, and your dog will start to back down, and desist, but remember to be consistent and never ever let an incident go unaddressed. Depending on the dog, this may take a day, several days, a week, a month.

If your dog’s behaviour has reached a point where you do not feel confident to intervene on your own as you feel you will place yourself, other people or other dogs at risk of harm, please do not attempt any of the techniques described above on your own - seek the help of a professional. Please know that your dog’s behaviour is correctable - just not by you! At this point you and your dog(s) have psychological trauma. It must be reversed correctly or further damage will occur.


Engage a professional who works with the psychology of people and the psychology of dogs to correct the situation. The approach should be holistic - meaning that it will address all behavioural issues - yours and your dog’s. Do not engage a professional who uses only treats to ‘train’, who uses pinch collars or domination techniques - this will only make your dog(s) more confused, and traumatized. To understand more about how I address such situations you can read this article - What is a Dog Whisperer and how do I work to achieve success for my clients and their dogs.

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Mountaineering



But then, with the Donjek not yet in sight, they heard the ominous roar of its flooding current. Over the next two days, there followed one setback after another: the futile attempt to build a driftwood raft; the crossing without crampons of the snout of the Donjek Glacier; the wretched bivouac on the ice under the tent with no pole; the shock of the discovery that the true source of the Donjek was not that glacier, but another one twenty-two impossible miles farther south; the dicey rappel off the carved bollard just to get off the glacial snout.

And then, the nearly hopeless effort to ford the river where it braided into some fifty channels, the last one proving the deepest and most treacherous. With their rope improvised from pack cordage, Bob had staggered into that last channel and lost his footing, only to be held by Brad's stationary belay. But then, as Bob forged on, he had lost his footing again, and the taut rope pulled Brad loose. Both men careened out of control, the muddy flood carrying them around one bend after another. Both men had time to think This is it....

Then, with a genius born of desperation, Bob improvised a technique; he would let the current carry him twenty or thirty yards, then touch bottom with his feet, only to spring upward in a mad leap. Brad caught on and imitated his friend.

At last Bob eddied out on the far shore. Brad, too, crawled up into the bushes. Shivering uncontrollably, the two stripped off all their clothes and pulled their single sleeping bag around them.

Two days later, among the willows and alders, Brad and Bob ran by chance into some Indian horsepackers from the Burwash Landing trading post, out rounding up stray steeds. The men were utterly dumbfounded to discover the climbers - no one in the Yukon suspecting that any human being was abroad in the vast wilderness between Kluane Lake and the Saint Elias Range.

The crossing of the Donjek River was the closest Brad would come to dying in the mountains. For Bob, it was one of the two close calls of his life - the other coming on K2 in 1953. From: The Last of His Kind, by David Roberts
For those who are, like me, fascinated by detailed stories of Arctic survival, Antarctic weather and humankind's stubborn persistence in maintaining research stations at both, along with the indomitable will of strong minds geared to adventure and exploration, this book was yet another treat in armchair adventure.

The writer, an intrepidly successful mountaineer in his own right, has documented in this biography the life of his mentor in the climbing world, the former director of the Boston Science Museum.

Before Bradford Washburn became involved with the Boston museum he was involved with the National Geographic Society, which sponsored several of his mountaineering expeditions and published his descriptions of those expeditions, along with breath-taking mountain photography, another area the man pioneered.

Bradford Washburn, who began his climbing career as a teen in the Alps on family vacations in the 1930s, went on to become the premier mountaineer of his era. He was a true polymath, among other attributes; a geologist, author, photographer, cartographer and mountaineer extraordinaire. He excelled in leading expeditions in the Yukon and Alaska's Saint Elias Range; up to then areas of North America, remote and weather-bound that were largely unexplored territory.

As a surveyor and cartographer he produced maps of then-unknown areas of the Grand Canyon, Mt. McKinley and Mt. Everest; his maps and aerial photographs are still in use today, never having been surpassed.

Exploration of Earth's isolated and forbidding surfaces has become fairly routine now, with wealthy amateurs paying hefty sums for expert mountaineers leading commercial expeditions enabling them to view for themselves stupendous heights of nature. The original explorers, whose exploits this book describes, faced the unknown.

They did it with determination, perseverance and dignity. And many lost their lives in the process.
At last we got a spell of six consecutive days of perfect weather. Pushing as hard as we could, we arrived all four together on the summit at 3:30 a.m. on July 30, 1965. A few hours later, we collapsed in our highest camp, all four crammed into a two-man tent pitched narrow on an ice ledge. We fished out our bottle of "victory brandy" - a pint of blackberry-flavored Hiram Walker. Our first and heartiest toast was to Brad Washburn.

The west face of Huntington remains the finest climb of my life. It would have been a perfect expedition, except that it ended in tragedy. In the middle of the night of July 31, as the youngest member of our team. Ed Bernd, and I descended in semidarkness, we paused to set up a rappel. Suddenly, as soon as he leaned back on the rope, Ed was flying through the air away from me. He never uttered a word.

Somehow the anchor had failed - and to this day, I do not know why. It was obvious, however, that Ed had fallen 4,500 feet to his death. The "perfect expedition" turned into a survival ordeal, as I had to climb without a rope down to the next camp, then wait two days for my other two partners to join me.

Ed had fallen to a glacial basin so inaccessible that we never had a chance to search for his body.

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