Kevin Pushing and Pulling with Hessian

Kevin Pushing and Pulling with Hessian

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Published February 17, 2010 by Kevin Behan
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59 responses to “Kevin Pushing and Pulling with Hessian”

  1. Christine says:

    Hi Sylvia, Kindred Spirit here so I can appreciate your comments. I’ve only seen that kind of fear response once in my dogs. We were out for a bit of Cani Cross around town and we ran through a group of people gathered on the sidewalk (I called out to let them know we were coming and they graciously made room). On running through them Diva immediately went down in a flat and she looked terrified but we kept on moving so it didn’t become a problem. I don’t like being afraid so I’ll confront my fears until I rise above it. My nana always said I was obstreperous and contrary enough to float upstream! lol

  2. Heather says:

    Usually if the cattle are in the fields and they are lying down too close to the fence Happy will hesitate to walk by. If they are standing up he doesn’t hesitate. Maybe because lying down they look different than he is used to so he doesn’t perceive them as being the same animals? BUT no matter what the cattle are doing, if the farmer is at the end of the driveway, he will go to greet the farmer.

    Happy could’ve been frightened, but he would take a treat, which he doesn’t do when he’s uneasy. I thought perhaps he injured himself, but didn’t see any evidence of that either.

    Maybe he was simply waiting for the farmer and wasn’t bothered by the bulls. I am bothered by bulls regardless of what they are doing. Cows don’t bother me, I know that they are very curious and will come to investigate what piques their curiousity.

    I am trying to decide whether I should walk that way again, or if it is putting us in danger. If I knew that Happy would react to a bull’s threat by leaving it alone, I would feel more comfortable.

    We walk that way so often that I think the bulls and cows are pretty used to us, they don’t even bother looking at us most of the time, but that doesn’t mean I want to stop and socialize with them.

  3. kbehan says:

    Happy sounds to me like the proverbial “moose dog.” As we’ve discussed before he has a high prey threshold, and he loves water, and so feels resonance with bulls even though they are path of such high resistance. He lays down to the ground in order to “ground” his heart, to push his heart to the ground in order to feel stabilized given that he has projected his “self” into the form of the bull, and so when they move, he feels movement in his chest and doesn’t know yet how to go with that. Good thing to do is to teach him to bark on command to you so that he projects his “self” into you, then do pushing and heeling as you go away and thus you can become path of HIGHER resistance relative to the bull; as well as the negative-of-bull-energy-to-which-he-can-make-contact, the farmer.

  4. Heather says:

    Thank you, I will try that! (when the bulls are not so close, just in case the barking gets them mad.) Luckily the farmer is very nice.

    We went to the vet this week – I tried to keep him focused on staying on the table, but I got the feeling that Happy was going to jump right off unless he was leaning into me on the edge of the table. I sometimes feel the same way on bridges, that he is thinking about jumping off. I don’t think he has a good sense of height. He was good at the vet, though, he didn’t seem to be too worried.

  5. christine randolph says:

    my vet examines even my mid size dog on the ground, not on the table.

    too dangerous.

    my friend has a papillon who jumps off any height, broke his leg multiple times.

    she lost her pet health insurance plan from too many claims for him for broken legs.

    last time he broke his leg, it would not heal and they had to have it amputated. sigh .

    …curious if he still jumps like he did before…probably…

  6. Natasha says:


    Just found your site recently while working to train my new dog, who is a teenager. Searching for information on how to eliminate her jumping on myself and the two small children when we return home. While I have started teaching her to push…watching this video confuses me as the dog seems to be doing the same behaviour I am hoping to avoid? Can you clarify how to teach her to push, while eliminating the jumping on us for greeting??

  7. kbehan says:

    Thanks for checking in. Actually this speaks to the core distinction and the paradox of how the human intellect perceives the nature of the animal mind. By encouraging the dog to have active contacting with handler when I want it, Hessian NEVER jumps when I don’t want him to. So what I have is a jumping up “problem” to solve when there are deer about (and additionally which I am prompting) that then becomes extremely easy to solve if I want to, rather than a jumping up PROBLEM when strangers visit, or children are running around excitedly, or an elderly person reaches out to pat his head and so on. Here’s a simple axiom, before you teach “NO,” make sure you teach “GO.” Once your dog knows where its energy can go, it becomes very easy for it to learn where it doesn’t go.

  8. Christine says:

    I like this: “…before you teach “NO,” make sure you teach “GO.” Once your dog knows where its energy can go, it becomes very easy for it to learn where it doesn’t go.” It LOOKS like cart-before-horse but in fact is the right way round and is SOOOO much easier to implement than No -> Go. Makes good sense in child-rearing as well♥

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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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