Donna Chicone's talk involves what it means to be a "super pet parent." After introducing the figures on dog surrender to shelter (astonishingly high), she discusses research on dog training, because nearly all of surrenders are blamed on lack of training. Super pet parents are parents, not owners -- they recognize their lifelong role in guiding their dogs and training them how to live in the human world. This training, Chicone says, should not be dominant, as research has revealed that dogs' wild cousins wolves do not actually live in packs and have no "alpha" pack leader. They live in families. If a person loves her dog, she ought to train him positively, making that training into a "job" to which the dog should look forward. Finally, she said, a super pet parent recognizes her dog's sentience. She does not refer to "it", but speaks for him.
Donna Chicone is an award-winning author, professional speaker and advocate for dogs. She is a former nurse, family and addictions counselor, 23-year corporate America professional, and host of Jazz and Jive’s TV Show. She is a devoted pet parent to her two Portuguese water dogs, Jazz and Jive, and is an advocate for the humane treatment of animals. She lives in Minnesota with her husband. When she is not writing or speaking about dogs, you will find her engaged in pet assisted therapy work and K9 Nosework with her dogs Jazz and Jive.
This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at http://ted.com/tedx