Clever dog. Dog sign language

What does smart dog mean? What makes them smart? Probably a rather controversial issue. First of all, these are the abilities of the dog, the predisposition of the breed, intuition and, most importantly, training. Much has been written and said about breeds. Here we will talk about the importance of human understanding of natural abilities in dogs, as well as the importance of applying the right methods for training dogs.

How does a dog understand a person?

It is not uncommon for a dog to anticipate a person's actions. She knows how to read, understand the emotions of a person, his words, gestures and facial expressions, the timbre of his voice. Many say that the intelligence of a dog is equal to the intelligence of a child at the age of 2-3 years. And this means that a dog can understand and perceive several thousand or more words, intonations and gestures. There are examples when a dog easily remembers more than a hundred names and objects. Can find them among others.

The natural foundations of the mind in dogs

The very first teacher in dogs is the mother who gave birth to them, as well as the instincts laid down genetically (natural instincts). Developing in a small pack among brothers, the puppies also develop and establish rules and techniques for influencing each other, such as stroking, biting, pressing, bowing, turning over, voice sounds (growling, barking), etc. This is all - the language of communication. First of all, this all happens in the form of a game and further determines the dominance and status in the pack, which means submission, access and order of receiving food, choice of a partner, and so on. That is, the survival of the fittest, the so-called natural selection.

smart dog and man

Since we take a puppy from a canine family, usually around 2 months old, the puppy has already absorbed all the knowledge that was passed down from his family. And we do not need to “reinvent the wheel”, but skillfully use this canine communication language for training and further training and acquiring skills that are useful and pleasing to a person in interaction with a dog.

Click on the picture to enlarge:

Canine language translation

In most cases, dog owners do not know, do not suspect that their pet is not a tabula rasa - a blank slate. And the dog does not understand many of the manipulations done by man, the so-called initial steps of an incompetent trainer. This adversely affects not only the quality of training, but also the psyche of the animal.

In proper training, correcting the behavior of a dog, a cynologist or zoopsychologist correctly selects methods to obtain the desired behavior. In addition to the sign language of dogs, which I wrote about above, there are methods of reinforcement and punishment (carrot and stick), methods that are built on the food instinct, game methods, etc. But, more on that another time. Usually, for effective training, many methods are used simultaneously, and not separately.

What makes dogs smart is people's understanding of the dog's language and the right training methods, to a lesser extent the ability of the breed and upbringing (environment).

author - Konstantin Markin
(animal psychologist, animal trainer)

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  1. Motya
    15.12.2013 at 10: 03 Reply

    Cool, I've been wanting to learn sign language from dogs for a long time! Super!

    • Natalia
      26.12.2013 at 16: 14 Reply

      Yes, it's very funny to read and understand their gestures))

  2. fields
    31.07.2014 at 23: 18 Reply

    I wonder if there is a dog language spelled alphabetically?

    • Natalia
      01.08.2014 at 01: 35 Reply

      There is something more interesting - zoopsychology!
      Start with the book "King Solomon's Ring")))

  3. Natalia
    01.08.2014 at 01: 41 Reply

    By the way, about the last two pictures “High” and “I love you, don’t stop”:
    If your dog reacts strongly to your touch in the area of ​​​​the back above the tail, this may be a sign of inflammation of the paraanal glands. I advise you to take the dog to the vet, just in case. This also includes:
    - catches and gnaws the tail;
    - scratches and gnaws sides;
    - small wounds covered with a crust;
    - actively scratches the chin;
    - inflammation of the ears.