Tamar Geller Dog Training Tip #1

Uploaded by officialpeta on 18.10.2011

Hello, we are Tamar and Cricket Geller for PETA, and we would like to share with you
what I call “a dog’s seven basic needs.”
The first need is “Sense of Security.” Just like us, dogs have the same need for
security and certainty, and that means a lot more than just food, water, and shelter. They
need to know that they can rely on us, that we will behave consistently. For example,
if you guide your dog not to jump today, be sure to do that every time he jumps so he
knows what is expected of him.
The second need is “Companionship.” Our dogs have an instinctive need for companionship,
and I’m talking about active companionship. Allowing your dog to lie nearby while you
work from home isn’t enough, just as a husband or wife’s physical presence isn’t enough
to fill a marriage. You have to be there emotionally, engaging and playing with your dog. They need
to know that they are a valued part of your pack.
The third basic need is “Understanding the Hierarchy.” Dogs live in a pack just like
wolves. In your home, for your dog, you are the leader of the family. Instead of leading
like a tyrant, you can choose to lead with benevolence. Your dog needs you to provide
clear guidance, feedback, boundaries, and tons of love.
The fourth basic need is “Excitement and Surprises.” Just like people, dogs need
surprises and variation to their routines. Otherwise they may look for ways to entertain
themselves by chewing, barking, digging, stealing, or running away. A good rule of thumb is to
try and surprise your dog at least once a day with an activity or outing.
The fifth basic need is “Physical Stimulation.” From a dog’s point of view, exercise is
a reward. When dogs don’t get the opportunity to expend some of their energy exercising,
they’re going to find some other place to direct that energy, which usually leads to
being overly hyper and behavior problems.
The sixth basic need is “Mental Stimulation.” Most people feel great about themselves when
they are being mentally challenged. We are exhilarated by the feeling of growth?learning
new things. Dogs feel the same. I’ve found the best way to stimulate a dog’s brain
is to narrate behaviors to him. For example, when your dog sits, say, “Good sit,” even
when he’s sitting all on his own. Or while he is drinking, say, “Drink, drink, drink.”
Dogs can learn up to 150 words, so naming aloud the objects your dog comes into contact
with or narrating the behaviors he’s performing can keep him feeling mentally fulfilled.
The seventh need is “Love and Connection.” Studies confirm that most dogs have a mental
capacity similar to that of an 18-month-old toddler, so it shouldn’t be surprising that,
like children, dogs find it essential to be loved, to be touched, to be talked to?they
need that connection. Your dog does not need you to be there every single moment of the
day, but as long as you give them a lot of attention and strive to fill your time together
with love, bonding, and mental stimulation, the connection will endure even when you are
This is Tamar Geller for PETA, and regardless of age, breed, or size, these are your dog’s
seven basic needs, which he would like you to know.