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  • Writer's picturecaissiecanineinstr

Caissie Canine Instruction: Can Dogs Smell Fear?

We begin this week’s “RUFF TAILS” featuring a beautiful Labrador Retriever mix named Bruce.

My mom and dad said they stumbled upon my adoption profile through the Toronto Humane Society. I have been in and out of many rescues. My mom says I am smart and have a colourful personality.

My mom and dad say I have an abundance of energy, work well with structure, love playing tug of war with my braided rope, and in my down time, my older rescue pal Hank and I sit by the front window and watch the day go by. Our family loves us very much.



Endorsed E-collar systems have advanced dramatically over the past few decades. Technology is a wonderful thing. E-collars are the most advanced technological K9 training tool on the market. If you are looking for advanced behaviour modification, off and on leash control, this is a GAME CHANGER.

There are many dog owners that actually use the term “SHOCK” and this is not acceptable. In-fact it should be the opposite. I use a combination of vibration/sound/and gentle e-stimulus for praise and behaviour modification. To help clients understand the gentle e-stimulus they self-test it to appreciate the minimum efforts needed to react a behaviour change.

However, here are the perils for most people, that experiment on their own with this type of training. Most people buy systems that are low costs and are not reliable. Another common error is they buy a system that is not best suited for their dog’s temperament or size. I only work with three endorsed systems, and they are costly. This is an investment with long term results.

Many dog owners try to navigate the use of e-collar themselves by trial and error on their own dog. Do you want to practice on your own dog? I would hope NOT! Some people have used internet assistance, reading material, or videos to assist their journey with this type of training, and the difficulty with this is there is no set of rules.

Our clients E-collar training sessions are personalized and unique. The reason for this is that each dog represents a different set of k-9 behaviours and drives. Electronic messages may be received differently with each dog, and this will change how you move forward from one session to the next.

The most gratifying E-collar training sessions I have had is with dogs with disabilities. Taylor and Tara from Uxbridge, their K9 Hammi has congenital deafness. Taylor and Tara can send electronic messages to Hammi to replace vocal commands.

With timely electronic messaging to Hammi this helps him to relieve his anxiety, rehabilitate and praise him with good behaviour modification.

My only recommendations for anyone using this form of training are that you seek out a proven and experienced professional trainer. Ensure that you invest in a reliable and efficient system that is suited for your K9.

Welcome to Doggie Dialogue:

Dogs, like us, rely on the 5 senses, sight, smell, hearing, taste, and touch. However, smell is their strongest tool.

For many years, this was a myth or a theory, but studies, data, and science back up this claim, that dogs can detect fear. We have often talked about the incredible olfactory superpowers of dogs.

Dogs have an organ in their nasal cavity named the Jacobson organ (vomeronasal organ).

This organ contains nerves that responds to chemicals, pheromones and other “undetectable smells.” This organ sends signals to the brain, giving your dog enough information about what and who they are sniffing.

Paul has been asked this question many times, regarding the police dogs, detecting fear. Paul’s answer to this question is that police dogs will detect fear through 3 different cues.

First, through loud voices, or screaming, secondly by physical body posturing, such as stepping back, or running. Lastly, the human body releases “rafts of scents” through their sweat glands, which release a chemical signal that the police dogs will pick up on. Therefore, this allows the police dogs to find you, much quicker.

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