The Bubble Problem

I mentioned earlier that the sable GSD was overly stimulated in its prey instinct and so it can’t give its energy to its handler when stimulated. This is directly related to an aggressive issue because when a dog is in this state, there’s a bubble around him and the energy isn’t flowing smoothly with the handler, who therefore can’t serve as a filter by being able to absorb and refine the energy into a smooth wave function. The dog focuses on the sensations related to compression, and this is the number one defining feature of a negative experience and so these will be the physical memories summoned up from the emotional battery. Thus when another dog comes into his space, he will begin to bristle and overload. Whereas we can think of this bubble as a semi-permeable membrane so that it lets in that which is “nutritious” and keeps out that which is perceived as toxic. When the membrane is open other dogs can gain entry into the dog’s perception of its group. Instincts related to compression function as a load/overload means of energy transfer and the individual becomes like an electrically charged particle and so his body gets tense and it doesn’t feel good to be the object of another dog’s attention. So in this video I’m working on the bubble problem to see where I stand. There is only one energy, if I help the dog with the bubble issue relative to me, by making his body supple via rub-a-dubs, making contact, and smoothing it out with a fluid gate, I’m helping his bubble problem with other dogs as well, not to mention that it will prove incredibly easy to control him if I can fit inside his bubble. I also will be in position to help him let other dogs into his bubble since I’m already in. What the owner didn’t realize is that every ball playing session no matter how much fun it looked like the dog was having, in reality it was increasing the dog’s bubble problem, and since the dog has an incredible prey instinct, it is a very big bubble problem indeed. So what I am working toward in this video is for the dog to be able to convert the pressure of being the object of my attention, into arousal rather than excitement and we can see here the dog going in and out of successfully dealing with the bubble. The stimulation of the ball emotionally paralyzes him and his instinct is to shake it relentlessly, and so I was able to interrupt him a few times for food, and he successfully ran around me in a circle and looked at me in a state of arousal and then approached closely, and so ultimately this will all position me to induce him to push the toy into me.

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Published September 7, 2011 by Kevin Behan
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12 responses to “The Bubble Problem”

  1. john says:

    is pushing the toy in to you, the ultimate goal in a case like this,
    how important is the dog being able to reference his gut while in drive,
    read the squirrel dog article yesterday again,i can understand the big brain in the head causing balance upset in the dog at the sight of a squirrel and the dog wanting movement to stabilize,,but not sure about the image of a dog referencing his gut, what practically speaking would that look like ,what effect/actions would be different,,thanks,

  2. kbehan says:

    When a dog is in drive, he’s referencing his heart, so he has high, focused energy but can pivot on a dime and resistance makes him more aroused. To get to the heart, have to go through the gut, dog feels connected, so when GSD first meets Huuney, he references his gut and we can see how that looks, then when they’re in drive to each other, they’re referencing their heart and we can see how they actually want to touch chest to chest.

  3. Christine says:

    Some clarification on the difference between arousal and excitement? I understand the sensual aspect of arousal…so would assume that visually this would be seen in the supple, fluid body movements. Vocalizations would be the deep, metered bark coming from the gut. Excitement would visually present as hackles up and stiff body movements and shrill barking that emanates from the head. Am I getting the right read on this?

  4. Christine says:

    Also, what’s the purpose of all the shushing, chucking and noise-making coming from you…or is that just you enjoying yourself? lol…just curious

  5. kbehan says:

    I don’t know, it just feels right but it does seem to give the dog a read out on me and thus something to ping/pong against.

  6. kbehan says:

    Arousal is when the brain energy is grounded into the deep gut and thus the hunger circuitry is the basis of the individual’s perception. Excitement is when output can’t fully conduct input and therefore the individual vibrates intensely as it’s trying to rectify the balance circuitry.

  7. Christine says:

    Quick question: when I’m working with one of my woofers in the backyard, is it okay if the other 3 are in the kennel? The backyard is a fenced-in area that includes the kennel. So the others would be, not only watching us, but making a lot of noise as well. Is that too much a distraction or could it possibly act as an enhancement?

  8. kbehan says:

    You will most likely be frying the ones that are barking and carrying on, whereas it won’t matter for the dog being worked if its energy is being grounded, in that case it raises his emotional capacity so it’s a good thing. The best way to deal with it, is one dog is working, another dog is staying on its box and you go round and round so that they’re learning patience until its their turn to work. But you have to go according to each dog’s capacity for where they are at in their training. Good luck!

  9. Joel says:

    Janie signals that she wants to start a new activity by shaking her ears. She has no medical problems. Its just one of the ways that she communicates. What is this about? Can she do a brain reset in way? thanks.

  10. kbehan says:

    It sounds like a mini-shake-it-off and clear-out-the-static to pick-up-a-signal kind of thing. I like your term “brain reset.”

    I should add that when a dog is cocking its head, it’s scanning its physical memory bank (emotional battery) in which various memories are organized around the physical center-of-gravity and how it has moved through the body during any given experience. So the physical memory of an experience begins with a point in the body wherein the p-cog was in that instant housed before action was taken, and then a point in the body where the p-cog made contact with the object of attraction, and with some degree of grounding or unresolved emotion. This is why when dogs are given electric collar stimulation in absence of “grounding into prey” they are instantly worried about their footing, since their symmetrical stance is configured around their p-cog and this frame of reference was completely scrambled by the electrical shock. Depending on the level of excitation when the shock was applied, when that stimulation subsides later on, only then will you see the ill effects of the bad training that made the dog unsure of its frame of reference. For some dogs it will surface as a fear of cracks in the floor, or for others it will be a fear of a stranger because that was the most intense variable in their frame of reference when the shock was applied. This happens a lot with underground electrical boundary wires.

  11. Christine says:

    Just curious…can an e-collar be used effectively (not the e-boundaries)? Wasn’t that addressed in your book “Natural Dog Training”? I seem to remember something about timing the shock to coincide with rechanneling the flow of energy into something positive (not the actual correction). Pardon my use of antiquated jargon — :-O

  12. kbehan says:

    Yes, if the dog’s hunger for something is strong enough, then the electric shock is merely energy that is being channeled toward that object. This in fact is what dogs that have been mis-trained to invisible fencing and have a strong enough hunting drive learn when they inadvertently come to associate the shock of the collar with the prey animal that at some point shows up and was never factored into the training protocol since the exercise was approached wholly from the human conceptual style of learning. Such dogs running through the hot zone after the prey don’t perceive the shock as something “bad” (interrupt flow of energy) but as something wholly good because it adds to the flow of energy. And furthermore, since within the animal mind stimuli are rated according to hunger/balance ratio, and since hunger and balance make the animal feel as if it’s magnetically or electrically charged by a stimulus, even when one isn’t using an electric collar, a stern word or a jerk on a leash is the same from the dog’s point of view as an electrical shock, so as you can see, the discussion is pretty muddied up the way it is typically approach. I have used an electric collar for boundary training but only on an emotionally mature dog and I did the conditioning process on a hand held unit not the built in one, and my method is 180 degree different from the way it is currently being done. Furthermore I would eliminate the tone in the underground installations once the dog was successfully channeled. Other than boundary training, I don’t find the need for electric training in everyday family dog training.

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Books about Natural Dog Training by Kevin Behan

In Your Dog Is Your Mirror, dog trainer Kevin Behan proposes a radical new model for understanding canine behavior: a dog’s behavior and emotion, indeed its very cognition, are driven by our emotion. The dog doesn’t respond to what the owner thinks, says, or does; it responds to what the owner feels. And in this way, dogs can actually put people back in touch with their own emotions. Behan demonstrates that dogs and humans are connected more profoundly than has ever been imagined — by heart — and that this approach to dog cognition can help us understand many of dogs’ most inscrutable behaviors. This groundbreaking, provocative book opens the door to a whole new understanding between species, and perhaps a whole new understanding of ourselves.
  Natural Dog Training is about how dogs see the world and what this means in regards to training. The first part of this book presents a new theory for the social behavior of canines, featuring the drive to hunt, not the pack instincts, as seminal to canine behavior. The second part reinterprets how dogs actually learn. The third section presents exercises and handling techniques to put this theory into practice with a puppy. The final section sets forth a training program with a special emphasis on coming when called.
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