From Publishers Weekly
Clearly an animal lover, Clothier opens this training manual by recalling her childhood, when she pretended she was a dog. Rather than simply trying to "train" animals to behave in a certain way, Clothier focuses on improving the existing relationship between pet and owner. To help readers gain some insights into more effective training, Clothier offers anecdotes about her clients. Particularly important is the dog's connection to the owner and the ability of the two to communicate effectively: "In each moment that you are with the dog, you must be aware, gently and persistently shifting the balance toward one of mutual agreement and cooperation. This is not easy, and it requires some thought. Most of all, it requires a desire to create-over and over again-the event of quality, which in turn creates a heartfelt commitment to truly being with the dog." Usually Clothier begins by observing her clients interact with their pets: after one owner complained about her dog being disruptive and overly playful, Clothier concluded that the owner's way of physically stopping her dog was in fact causing the dog to be more playful. Clothier is a capable writer, and her descriptive style livens up the subject matter.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
SUZANNE CLOTHIER A lifelong animal lover, I learned to speak in order to ask for a horse for Christmas. That request not granted, I moved on to become well known in my very early childhood for a propensity for stealing the neighborhood dogs. No evil intent, just an unquenchable desire to be in the company of animals. ANY animal, whether my pet frog who lived in a Dixie cup or a cherished bug or the horse who drew the cart driven down our block each week by the fruit & vegetable man. One of the most thrilling memories of my early years was being at the neighbors' house (a heavenly madness of children and pets and, as my mother informed me later, loose morals) when the mother matter of factly announced that we should all be careful where we walked since the hamster had gotten loose again. It was almost unbearably exciting, this possibility that at any moment, a hamster might waltz out from behind the refrigerator or scurry from under the table. (Now an adult, such scenarios are not infrequent, though larger creatures are often involved, and outdoors, not under the table. Houseguests learn to be careful on early morning strolls around the farm not to startle any of our shaggy, well horned cattle who may have escaped overnight.) With the exception of a frightening two day stint as a temporary secretary, I have always worked with animals in some capacity. Consequently, I've considerable skills with pitchforks, wheelbarrows, pooper scoopers and other tools of the trade, and can be woken from a dead sleep by the sound of an animal preparing to play show & tell with their stomach contents. I also own more medication, medical supplies and veterinary equipment than human oriented supplies. Some of the people I love best in this world are veterinarians, and at times, I wish I could take myself to a veterinarian; the treatment would be far better than my current HMO allows! My husband and I live on a lovely farm in upstate New York, sharing our lives with 8 dogs (7 German Shepherds and 1 Lab/Chow cross), 5 cats, 2 horses, a donkey, three pigs, various turkeys/chickens/quail, a Blue Front Amazon parrot, an African spur thigh tortoise, a Jersey/Holstein steer, and a herd of approximately 25 Scottish Highland cattle. When the barking, meowing, cackling, squealing, whinnying, crowing, braying and mooing come to a halt, it's a quiet, peaceful life. Inspired at an early age by Dr. Doolittle and Rin Tin Tin, I've never quite given up my early impressions that animals DO have something to say and that a good German Shepherd is an extraordinary pal to have around the fort. As a result, I've earned international recognition in the dog training community for a rather eclectic but sensible, balanced approach to the dog/human relationship and to dog training and behavior. My 30 plus years of experience as a horsewoman include numerous educational but painful falls that have taught me: a) I don't bounce the way I used to in my 20's; b) an animal who has physical limitations and/or lacks confidence can be dangerous to ride (this understanding has translated into my reputation as an expert in assessing canine athletic function in performance dogs); c) it's impossible to fall off a dog, though absolutely likely that I will meet my death by falling over a dog or dog toy. As a kid, I methodically (though not in any particular order) read through the entire Animal/Nature section of the local library, prompting concern on the part of the sweet librarian who kindly tried to point out that other types of books were available. Thanks to her, I was able to broaden my horizons past the likes of Walter Farley (The Black Stallion and so many others!), Marguerite Henry (Misty of Chincoteague & others), Albert Payson Terhune (Lad of Sunnybank and countless others), Ernest Thompson Seton (an indescribably wonderful hero in my childhood for his skill as a naturalist, a storyteller and an artist), and so on. Later, when my tastes had matured though my d