Saturday, January 14, 2012

A Seminar With Colleen Pelar

Today I was fortunate enough to attend a seminar by Colleen Pelar, author of Living With Kids and Dogs...Without Losing Your Mind . It was educational, and Colleen is a delight :). Much of her information was useful and innovative, but there was only one part of it that bothered me; She said that all dogs shake and stretch after any unpleasant event, and it is an involuntary behavior (though with training, you could make it voluntary). dogs do this ALL the time!!! Every time we get up in the morning, like clockwork, the hounds will stretch, shake, and run down the stairs when all they were previously doing was laying on their beds all comfy...what's stressful about that? They also do it: After running, after playing, when I get home (for Ferg, this does make sense), after eating, after peeing, etc. Because I have a hard time believing that all of these things are stressful, I am going to take the word of the book Inside of a Dog that says that dogs shake/stretch to start/end activities of any kind. For my dogs at least, this sounds far more plausible.

Nonetheless, I'd recommend her book to anyone and everyone who has children, and will certainly apply said guidelines if/when I have my own children. It explains clearly how to manage your environment to avoid any incidents that could occur. Definitely worth the read:


Never Say Never Greyhounds said...

Yeah mine stretch and shake a lot too. Can't imagine it is all stress.

Declan said...

I shake and stretch a lot - Mum says I look like Pluto! You can almost see me giggling sometimes when I do it! Deccy x

Sara said...

My two do this all the time, especially when they have just woken up. How stressful is sleeping?

Never Say Never Greyhounds said...

Its probably like tail wagging... it can have many meanings. Wagging can mean "hey, I'm happy and friendly". Or it can mean "I'm tense and not sure about you." So I would imagine the stretching is the same thing. Maybe the stretching is a very comfortable thing to do and they do it often... but maybe after a stressful event they do it to try and bring themselves back to a comfortable place.