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Principle 4 For Achieving Balance: Work With Mother Nature

A dog sees itself in this order: animal, species, breed, and then name. The first two are a part of what a dog is by nature; the last two were created by humans. We run into difficulties with our dogs when we try to treat them primarily as breed and name. Working with Mother Nature means relating to our dogs first as animal and species.

Animals live in and deal with nature every day. To be successful and survive, all animals ‘ from rats to whales ‘ must follow the laws of nature. In nature, a dog’s life is very simple. Because their realities are formed primarily by the senses, they live moment by moment, and everything is focused on what they need to survive ‘ shelter, food, water, and mating. They roam their territory with their pack in search of fulfilling those needs.

As a species, dogs are a specific kind of animal that engages with nature in particular ways. Their needs revolve around the pack’s needs, and the pack only follows a calm, balanced leader. The need for leadership is programmed in a dog’s genes, and exists at a primal, instinctual level.

Through the historic process of domestication, we have removed dogs from their place in nature ‘ but that doesn’t mean that Mother Nature has been removed from dogs! They remain creatures of nature first. That means we have a responsibility to ensure that their nature-endowed needs ‘ physical and psychological ‘ are fulfilled. If we don’t feed a dog, it will starve to death. If we don’t fulfill a dog’s need for leadership and direction, it will experience the canine equivalent of human neurosis and develop behavior issues.

The best way to work with Mother Nature is to follow the 5 Natural Dog Laws. These are the blueprint for how dogs behave in the wild, and how we have to approach dogs in order for them to find balance when they are living in the human world.

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