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Discussion 9 to Ask the Patriarch 93
Get yourself a good dog training manual.

by Sandy (screen name)

From the UCTAA Discussion board

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I am the mother of 3 adults and the grandmother of two adult kids. I also worried about training my children to learn to survive with certain behavior qualities and manners.

Don't laugh if I suggest that when your child starts to walk, talk and show the first signs of independence, get yourself a good dog training manual. I raised dogs and kids all with the same rules. I would no more expect God to watch over my dogs or kids so I had to train them to expect certain disasters in their lives.

I lived in the Santa Monica mountains with constant earthquakes, fires, floods and an occasional rattlesnake or black widow wandering around our lives. They all learned to STOP! SIT! STAY! LOOK! SMELL! and all the other things a child would have to obey to save their lives. When the disaster stuff was learned we went into behavior modification of all living things.

I had an advantage because we had no television in the mountains. I had my children with 100% attention prior to, during and after dinner when we discussed manners and social graces. We all read to each other and even wrote our own stories for each other. This developed into writing plays and songs. I soon found myself with all the kids in the neighborhood wanting to join us and I was thrilled. We had formal tea parties, beach parties, volleyball games and then we added horses to the family. The kids loved to help train our dogs, horses and even our chickens.

I put all the kids in the neighborhood through disaster training so they would know what to do if separated from their families or school mates. We put much of what we learned to good use during a couple of close forest fires where 100 horses had to be let loose from the mountain and my kids were driven down to the local market where they roped off the parking lot and brought the horses under control.

When anyone asks me about this training I always suggest Bill Koehler's Dog Training book. Add to that a mother's intuition and your kids will grow up to be worthy adults. I ended up with a Hollywood Studio owner, a Doctor and an Attorney. I often wonder if they still 'SIT' on command.