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Thermodynamics and Cooperation Jun 23, 2017

Thermodynamics and Cooperation “Rewriting Life” “New Model of Evolution Finally Reveals How Cooperation Evolves By treating evolution as a thermodynamic process, theorists have solved one of the great problems in biology.” In this study the thermodynamics of how atoms in a material coordinate their spin states so that the same spin sweeps through the […]

The Nature of Information Mar 13, 2016

  There are two possible views of nature. One is as a system of disconnected parts in competition with each other. In this view, bacteria and viruses are seen solely as infectious agents of disease. Or, we can see nature as a system of information processing. Raw, sheer energy becoming information. In this view, bacteria […]

Seeing Through the Lens of the Immediate-Moment Jan 24, 2016

I’m honored that my immediate-moment manner of analysis has found a receptive audience in the tracking community. For sure this community is well practiced in studying the most minute fluctuations in the natural order. I can’t think of a more profound or fascinating way to engage with nature. Below Willem Larsen offers a very helpful […]

Why Dogs Play Jan 23, 2016

I have been expecting that “How Dogs Work” would spur a great debate throughout Dogdom. Yet the only discussion I’ve found is a review posted by Dr. Bekoff on his Psychology Today blog. Beckoff challenges Coppinger and Feinstein’s thesis that play, specifically the play bow, represents a state of conflict, i.e. an emergent behavior […]

“How Dogs Work” Part Two Jan 07, 2016

Whenever Coppinger inquires into the nature of the dog, conventional thinking and cherished romantic notions are quick to fall by the wayside. In “Work”  Coppinger has pushed the limits of the current paradigm to its breaking point, which is why it is a seminal book. Yet at the same time, the power of his argument […]

What Emotion Is, And Isn’t Aug 04, 2015

“Most people, including many scientists, believe that emotions are distinct, locatable entities inside us — but they’re not.” Lisa Feldman Barrett   Professor of Psychology Northeastern University If you have been following NDT theory then you are not among the “most people” referenced above. My study of dogs through the lens of the immediate-moment […]

The Homunculus Fallacy Jul 14, 2015

When a dog is looking out, what’s going on within? Modern behaviorism and ethology claims it leaves that question aside and only considers observable behavior, but a close study of their terminology and usage shows that not to be the case. A discussion of a dominance hierarchy in dogs brings this into view.         In […]

Connection between Emotion and Hunting Jun 06, 2015

Which doesn’t belong and why? Emotion, Love, Affection, Bonding, Altruism, Cooperation, Prey-Predator dynamic. Actually it’s a trick question, in my model they all belong although admittedly the final term seems jarring relative to the warm, fuzzy, comforting feeling we get from the others. I have argued, and I invite argument to the contrary, that the oldest […]

Fruit Flies and Fear May 19, 2015   “Despite these observations, it was not possible to conclude the flies were experiencing fear, Dr. Anderson said.” “We can only know that by verbal report,” he said. “So we can’t scientifically study feelings in any creature but a human.” Or, we could simply observe behavior without injecting human thoughts into the minds of […]

“The Invaders” Apr 06, 2015   The hunt made the dog, not the hand of man. In all of Dogdom there is only one theory, model and training system predicated on the above belief; Natural Dog Training. For thirty five years this fundamental tenet of Natural Dog Training has been running against the grain of conventional thinking […]

Body Language as a Function of Thermodynamics and the Laws of Motion Mar 13, 2015

What is body language? I’ve been working on an e-book concerning body language and came across this video which purportedly debunks Monty Roberts’ “Join Up” method of horse training. I’ve written about this video before but want to revisit the topic as an exercise in critical thinking. This article demonstrates how interpreting behavior in […]

Biocentrism, Light Eating Sea Slugs, and Emotion Feb 07, 2015

Two items in the news from science are of special interest. One is about Biocentrism: From Wikipedia: “Biocentric universe (from Greek: βίος, bios, “life”; and κέντρον, kentron, “center”) — also known as biocentrism — is a concept proposed in 2007 by American doctor of medicine Robert Lanza, a scientist in the fields of regenerative medicine and biology,[1][2][3] which sees biology as the central […]

What is the How in the “Play Bow?” Jan 20, 2015

The why of dog play has been the subject of some recent research. Yet the fundamental question is not being asked: How does a “play bow” indicate an invitation to play? Yes dogs often play thereafter, but not always. In fact, fearful and aggressive dogs misconstrue the enthusiasm invested in a play bow as a […]

Theory is Replicable Jan 14, 2015

I converted this to a post for two reasons. 1) b.. ‘s synthesis represents an achievement of replicability. The good news is that one can learn to understand the internal processes of the animal mind, we do all have one after all. However the bad news is you might end up thinking like me. 2) […]

Infinitesimals and the Self Oct 27, 2014

In my immediate-moment theory of animal behavior, the physical center-of-gravity of an animals’ body is how an animal becomes aware of its Self. I believe this is substantiated by the discovery that animals have an inherent sense of calculus, which is how they compute an efficient manner of movement. This is also substantiated by Dr. […]

Dogs, Jealousy and the New Speciesism Aug 08, 2014

The recent experiment interpreted by mainstream science to support the notion that dogs experience jealousy brings a new and especially pernicious form of speciesism to the forefront. The old form of speciesism was considering human beings as a superior form of life and therefore humane treatment need not be extended to lower forms of life […]

More On Canine Muzzle Grab May 28, 2014

Occasionally the Unknown Scientist puts down the pipettes, quells the bunsen burners and graciously takes the time to critique my work. Recently the US has questioned the linkage I’ve drawn between emotion and stress as an explanation for why dogs muzzle grab. The US has employed the technique of interchanging equivalencies to see if my […]

Why Do Dogs Muzzle Grab? May 13, 2014

Answer:  Because IT can only get out the way IT went in.   Hexie and Hessian, my two German shepherds, one day suddenly started muzzle grabbing Cousy, my neighbors’ rambunctious and incessantly playful lab. I’ve never seen them do it to each other or to any other dog. In fact, you rarely see dogs do […]

Making Waves Mar 19, 2014

Thanks for collectively straining over the puzzle as to what flocks of birds cavorting aloft, Orcas porpoising alongside boats, Orcas collectively knocking a seal off an ice flow, a horse and dog playing, and in fact we could extend it to all the things that animals do, have in common. Below is a compilation of […]

Physical Memory Is Transferable Mar 09, 2014

Can the stress that an animal experiences in its lifetime be inherited by its progeny? Yes “What explains this pattern? Does trauma lead to suboptimal parenting, which leads to abnormal behavior in children, which later affects their own parenting style? Or can you biologically inherit the effects of your parents’ stress, after all?” “It […]

Thermodynamics and the Mind Jan 15, 2014

In regards to a discussion on stress as a form of emotional “heat” Lee found a study that seeks to objectively quantify the experience of stress. “Human Psychophysiological Stress Indices Using Thermodynamics” (ARPN Journal of Engineering and Applied Sciences Vol. 7, No. 6 June 2012) My theory is that stress, or Unresolved Emotion, forms when […]

What Is Energy? Dec 03, 2013

Have you ever heard a dog owner observe, usually plaintively, that their dog has a lot of energy? Do they mean their dog is mysteriously plugged into an invisible power grid, or it’s in the beam of an astral projection filling them with some kind of cosmic radiation, are they speaking gibberish? Throughout this site […]

Reptiles and Emotional Projection Nov 26, 2013 The Neo-Darwinian theory holds that a process of natural selection sifted through a huge genetic pool of slightly variable traits and eventually complex social behavior and the capacity to learn emerged in higher species. Driving this evolutionary process is said to be the need, or “urge” of genes to replicate. In the Neo-Darwinian model […]

NDT and the Science of Collective Behavior Nov 01, 2013 The core tenets of NDT theory—– (1) Emotion acts on the body/mind as a virtual “force” of attraction (2) Emotion always moves from the predator to prey polarity (3) Complex canine behavior emerges as a function of the prey drive —– might initially seem to be radical, outside of the mainstream ideas. But science […]

Babies and Feeling Weightless, Guilt and Feeling Weighted Oct 10, 2013

The science in support of the NDT model comes in faster than I have time to post, and while I’m still trying to catch up on emails, however thanks to Nellie and Lee, some interesting findings bear immediate mention and so I’ve decided not to add these to the queue and trust this brief treatment […]

Be The Owner Oct 06, 2013

“Dogs Are People, Too”   Resist the siren song. It sounds benevolent on the surface, but once dogs are granted personhood, and once you accept the designation as a dog’s guardian rather than its owner, then someone else will eventually be in control of how you raise and train a dog. In fact, even […]

New Paradigm for Modern Behaviorism? Oct 04, 2013

“Testosterone Promotes Reciprocity in the Absence of Competition” “Boosting testosterone can promote generosity, but only when there is no threat of competition, according to new research published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science. The findings show that testosterone is implicated in behaviors that help to foster and maintain social relationships, […]

Why We Like Sad Music Sep 23, 2013

From the New York Times “Why We Like Sad Music”   The emotional experience of listening to music is an excellent way to separate thoughts from feelings and emotion from instinct because as a pure wave form music is principally apprehended and processed by the heart. Understanding how the heart works is vital […]

Indiana Conference Note Two Sep 01, 2013

During the NDT Conference many questions came up which begged further explanations but time was short and everything couldn’t be pursued to its logical conclusion. So in order to tie up some loose ends, and because it can prove difficult to correlate the hands on practical work with the schematics of the model, I offer […]

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.