Team Dog by Mike Ritland

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Owned-By-Hendrix
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Team Dog by Mike Ritland

Post by Owned-By-Hendrix » Tue May 19, 2015 6:37 pm

Anyone who is familiar with Trikkos or Warrior Dog Foundation are probably familiar with Mike Ritland. I have followed his seminars and he's a super down to earth guy that just GETS working dogs. He has that perfect balance of reading dogs, positive training, structure, and poise when training dogs. I picked up this book because I'm basically starting a collection and I wanted to see how different it would be form his other works and his own lectures.

First off this is NOT A TRAINING MANUAL. There are a few "how-to"s but it is mainly what I would consider an opinion piece of how to raise a dog with a very strong bond. For anyone who has owned a DS you've probably figured out some of his points, and will find yourself nodding as you're reading, but he does a really good job of capturing what is required to own a DS, how to have that relationship with them, and how to work with them. There are certain points where I found myself saying "not true of my dog" but then I stopped and realized I did actually know a dog like that. He talks about body language, drives, nutrition, getting a dog that is what you need not what you think you want, and being responsible owner.

He does go into dominance theory, however, he does not agree with intimidation, punishment, or forced alpha roles. He more thinks of it as "I'm replacing the mom and dad my puppy left. I must be in "control" (as in contained) and I must LEAD my dog to help him fit into the world. I am his teacher, his mentor, and his friend." His whole point is to have a good connection with your dog, you must be "in charge", you must be aware of how the dog communicates and how you are influencing/communicating to him, you must be respectful, you must put boundaries on him and enforce them, and you must maintain the structure of the life your dog needs and wants. He ABSOLUTELY USES clicker methods and is a big fan of Karen Pryor. He's also mostly positive and talks about negative reinforcement, positive reinforcement, and a whole lotta other ways to work a dog and how he uses them. While I wish he went into more detail on certain aspects, as it's a book for a wide and "pet" audience, I can see why he can't, but I HIGHLY recommend it for anyone thinking about owning a DS or anyone who may be wondering "why doesn't my dog listen to me?" I think all of us can agree with our brindled beasts, positive and leading our dogs in fair and respectful ways get the best results an the deepest bonds.
Kay
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hubcap
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Re: Team Dog by Mike Ritland

Post by hubcap » Thu Jun 18, 2015 4:42 am

I know Mike personally and purchased my DS from him. I read both of Mike's books before I brought my DS home and I continue to use Mike as a resource when anything comes up that I'm not sure about. Mike is a huge proponent of positive reinforcement and his dogs are simply outstanding in performance. I strive every day to be worthy of my DS and Mike has helped me to be the handler that I need to be. I have used the clicker training while teaching my DS some additional skills and he picks them up so frickin fast its uncanny. In two minutes he will know EXACTLY what I want him to do and he just does it.

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Re: Team Dog by Mike Ritland

Post by Raven » Thu Jun 18, 2015 9:13 pm

hubcap wrote:I strive every day to be worthy of my DS
Awesome mindset.

Glad you have someone trustworthy to help you.
Though I can only hope to become the person who my animals believe I am, the things that they have taught me have made me a better human being. ~~~Sharon~~~

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Re: Team Dog by Mike Ritland

Post by Owly » Tue Jun 23, 2015 1:01 am

I've seen quite a few people (Dog trainers and K9 partners) recommend this book on IG. It has certainly caught my interest. The next time I went in for a load of school books(*cry*), I'd planned on picking it up!
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Owly
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Tell us about yourself: I'm a student, I work at a zoo, and I work at a veterinarian's office. I'm an active person who doesn't mind playing the occasional video game or vegging out on the sofa while holding a netflix marathon.
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Re: Team Dog by Mike Ritland

Post by Owly » Tue Sep 08, 2015 4:21 am

I finished off this book and because I liked it so much, I've gotten his other book Trident K9 Warriors.
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Re: Team Dog by Mike Ritland

Post by Owned-By-Hendrix » Wed Sep 09, 2015 4:04 am

I never finished Trident - never really engaged with it - but let me know how you like it. May be worth another pick up and try.
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Re: Team Dog by Mike Ritland

Post by TimL_168 » Mon Jul 18, 2016 3:00 am

Totally realize this is an old post, but I wanted to chime in. I picked up Team Dog after seeing it here. I'm not finished it yet, but I totally agree with Kira. It's very reassuring to hear that so much of my mindset and approach to getting what I want out of my dogs is congruent with the author's. Two points I'd like to make:
1) my teenager saw me reading the book and snarkly said "team DOG? what, so you want to pretend your a dog?". Without thinking first, I told him that the emphasis is supposed to be on the "TEAM" part. I think, in many ways, that could sum up the main goal of this book.
2) I recommended the book to my co-worker. The book really has way more to offer that just helping you relate to your dog.
Tim L.
Aurora(Shiloh) Endeavor

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