Monday, March 7, 2011

Training Dogs and Children

My Dad spent three months in the mountains herding sheep when I was two years old.  He spent the summer training a sheep dog.  That dog could round up a whole herd of bulls and push them down the field with one voice command from my Dad.

I had to chuckle when I read this months Readers Digest article "Sit, Stay,Whoa!"  Certainly dog trainers have more consistency than the crowd offering child rearing advice.  My favorite grains of wisdom were to leave the pup with its mother for at least 28 days or the equivalent of 6 months in human years.  To remove a pup from its mom sooner spells "disaster."  Commands need to be short and start early.  In an interesting study pups trained to be Guide Dogs for the Blind when started at one year 20% were successfully trained.  When the age of training started at 5 weeks the success rate went up 90%.

Come to think about it, my Dad employed one command in rearing children that may have had it's origin in dog training.  I personally think it quite effective - no long reasoning sessions, no reverse psychology, no threats, just a command that meant "No, Stop That, Danger!"  His command was SSSST!  We learned, almost subconsciously, to obey immediately.

Breakfast today:
Oatmeal/Cinnamon Bread
left over Rice Pudding, Ham Scram, and Chicken Supreme

Lunch:  Leftover Stew from Sunday's Pot Luck Social (Chunks of pork tenderloin, potatoes, carrots, onions, celery and hamburger - precooked and frozen.  Simmer together until vegetables are tender.  Season with salt, pepper, onion salt, herbs de provence or Italian flavoring.)

Dinner: Chicken breasts with Bow tie Pasta and Pesto, Steamed Cauliflower and Broccoli, Cabbage/ Ramen Noodle Salad.

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