Too many mind

“Too many mind” is a favorite quote I often share with students.  It’s from “The Last Samurai”, a 2003 movie directed and co-produced by Edward Zwick.   The quote is about mental control, maintaining a mental state free of distraction, it’s about performance, focus, being in the moment.  Being truly and utterly IN the moment. The storyline takes place in 19th century Japan during the Meiji Restoration, details on the movie here.  Captain Nathan Algren (played by Tom Cruise) is taken captive by Samurai and held in their village.  They treat him very well and he is free to walk around Continue Reading →

“stay” + distraction of Baby Rabbit

As posted many times in pics on SMART DOGS facebook page, “wait” and “stay” are skills the Posse and I use multiple times a day.  I couldn’t imagine our lives without these skills.  Skills essential for a happy, safe, harmonious family – regardless of the number of dogs in said family. Last evening in the field, I heard a high pitched cry and recognized it as a baby rabbit.  Piglet had found one.  A few minutes earlier in the same general area, Penelope had excitedly jumped at a rabbit outside the fence as he raced off to a safer place. Continue Reading →

Letting Dogs be Dogs

          I think many of us have heard or used a phrase like “letting a dog be a dog.”  I myself have used the phrase “dogs being dogs” in reference to pics and clips of the Posse enjoying miscellaneous activities of daily life (running in the yard and/or our field, digging for moles, picking apples off our tree, playing with each other, tracking rabbits/deer/critters, etc.).  Students sometimes ask questions relating to “when should I let my dog be a dog?” The last few times I’ve heard this phrase it struck me in a different way… What Continue Reading →

Each Interaction Matters

Each interaction you have with your dog matters, none is trivial.  Each interaction either enhances your relationship, or damages it.  Each interaction either builds cooperation or causes resistance, builds trust or destroys it, creates harmony or conflict. Consider how many times a day you interact with your dog.  Be aware that each look, each word, each touch, each action and, yes, each thought contributes to and impacts your relationship. Think about all the interactions you have had with your dog today alone and consider each one’s effect.  With each interaction, were you enhancing or damaging your relationship? What type of looks Continue Reading →

Waiting your Turn

In the photo above, Geronimo and Rocky wait in the background while Piglet practices a tunnel. Being able to calmly, pleasantly, patiently “wait” is a crucial skill for Life in the SMART Zone where health, safety, harmony, and low stress levels prevail.  This skill is important not only for your health & stress level but also your dog’s health & stress level. Whether you share your home with 1 dog, or 2 or more dogs, there are numerous situations in your everyday life where a wait is useful.  The dog’s position while waiting might be a stand, a sit or Continue Reading →