Glossary Of Terms From “Cesar’s Way”

Calm-assertive energy – This is the energy you project to show your dog you are the calm and assertive pack leader. Note: assertive does not mean angry or aggressive. Calm-assertive means always compassionate, but quietly in control.

Calm-submissive energy – In nature, this is the appropriate energy for a “follower” in a dog pack, and thus the ideal energy for a dog to project when living in a household with humans. Signs of calm-submissive energy include a relaxed posture, ears held back, and a nearly instinctual response to the “pack leader’s” commands.

Exercise, discipline, and affection… in that order – These are the three ingredients for creating a happy, balanced dog. Most dog owners give only affection, or don’t provide these three necessities in the correct order.

  • Exercise – walking a dog at least one hour every day, and in the correct way.
  • Discipline – giving a dog rules, boundaries, and limitations in a nonabusive manner.
  • Affection – a reward we give to our dogs and to ourselves, but only after the dog has achieved calm submission in our “pack”.

Master the walk – The walk is an extremely important ritual for a dog. It needs to take place a minimum of twice a day, for at least thirty to forty-five minute each time, so that both the dog’s mind and its body are given a workout. This means the dog walks next to the owner or behind him/her – not pulling ahead. If a dog is “walking” a human, the dog perceives itself as pack leader at that moment, and the human is not in control.

Rules, boundaries, and limitations – Dogs need to know that their pack leader is clearly setting the rules, boundaries and limitations for their life both inside and outside the house. – Anger, aggression, or abuse toward the dog will not establish you as pack leader; an angry, aggressive leader is not in control. Calm-assertive energy and daily, consistent leadership behavior will make enforcing the rules easier.

Issues – If a dog doesn’t trust its owner to be a strong, stable pack leader, it becomes unclear about its correct role within the pack. A dog that is confused about who is in charge is actually concerned about the ability of the pack to survive, so it attempts to fill in the missing leadership elements, often erratically. This can cause aggression, anxiety, fear, obsessions, or phobias – what I call “issues”.

Balance – A balanced dog is in the state Mother Nature wants it to be in – as a calm-submissive pack follower, who is fulfilled physically with exercise; psychologically with rules, boundaries, and limitations; and emotionally with affection from its owner.

Dog training – Conditioning a dog to human commands – sit, stay, come, heel – isn’t what I do.

Dog rehabilitation – This is what I do: help a dog with issues to return to a balanced state of calm submission. Sometimes it may appear that I can “fix” a dog instantly, but as I’ve said, “a dog is not an appliance that can be sent out for repairs.” Permanent dog rehabilitation can occur only with a calm, assertive, stable, and consistent owner.

Nose, eyes, ears… in that order! – I remind dog owners that dogs see the world differently from the way we do. We communicate using our ears first, then our eyes, and lastly our nose. Dogs begin with the nose, then the eyes, and lastly the ears. Allowing a dog to experience our scent before we engage it in eye contact or speak to it is one way to establish trust early on.

Humanizing a dog – Many owners make the well-intentioned mistake of thinking of their dogs as children. I advise people to try to see the world through a dog’s eyes. Cute outfits, fancy dog food, and a millionaire’s mansion will not make for a happy dog. Regular exercise, a strong stable pack leader, and affection that’s earned will result in a dog that’s calm and balanced.

People training – When I am called in on a job, many owners assume it’s their dog that is the problem. I try to help people understand that their own behavior has a powerful affect on their dog, and I offer them suggestions for “retraining” themselves to be calm-assertive pack leaders.


Comment on the Story Below

Related Posts

July 4, 2015

Dog Bite Prevention

This week is National Dog Bite Prevention Week®, sponsored by a coalition including the United

September 24, 2020

Man Hesitantly Asks Hotel If He Can Bring His Dog And They Go All Out

As dog owners, we’ve probably travelled around with our dogs at least once. Most of

October 12, 2019

My Dog Bit Me — Now What?

  No matter how close you are to your dogs, sometimes the unexpected can happen

Comments – Rules , Boundaries & Limitations

At Cesar’s Way , we strive to be a single pack, and packs have rules, and limitations. Here are ours for the comments:

  •  No bullying or harassment of fellow commenters. Keep it civil!
  • No foul language or obscenities, please.
  • No posting of external links

Also, please note that because of volume , we are unable to respond to individual comments, although we do watch them in order to learn what issues and questions are most common so that we can produce content that fulfills your needs. You are welcome to share your own dog tips and behavior solutions among yourselves, however Thank you for reading our articles and sharing your thoughts with the pack!

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Get Tips From Cesar & The Pack

Don’t get left out of the doghouse! Sign up now to make sure you’re up to date on the latest happenings!

Trending Today

Trending This Week

Get a Free e-Book:
5 Essential Commands
to Teach Your Dog