Alpha Roll - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 52 (permalink) Old 07-11-2011, 03:05 PM Thread Starter
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Alpha Roll

After reading a recent thread regarding dominance, it was mentioned and discussed a few times that the OP should "alpha roll" their dog.

What's the point of it? Why do people do it? What are you really trying to accomplish by doing it? Do you think it works?

I guess people are trying to establish dominance over their dog by forcefully putting them on their back, but how is that accomplishing anything? How can you force a dog to submit? Seems like a bit of a paradox when you think about it.

Take for example this youtube video. The wolf doesn't have to pin the other wolf down with his paws. He doesn't flip the other wolf over and hold him down while he squirms. The submissive wolf voluntarily submits to the dominant wolf. There is no force involved at all. This is true dominance and submission - not some outdated training method.

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post #2 of 52 (permalink) Old 07-11-2011, 03:12 PM
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Nice video!

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post #3 of 52 (permalink) Old 07-11-2011, 03:15 PM
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We were told to do that in puppy training class... hm makes me wonder about all those hundreds of dollars now!
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post #4 of 52 (permalink) Old 07-11-2011, 03:18 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Joshherd View Post
We were told to do that in puppy training class... hm makes me wonder about all those hundreds of dollars now!
It's a training method that makes zero sense. There is no dominance/submission when doing it. All it does it rile up the puppy/dog more than he already is and accomplishes nothing.

Any trainer who recommends alpha rolling a puppy is not someone I'd be taking advice from.
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post #5 of 52 (permalink) Old 07-11-2011, 03:22 PM
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yes, some parts I agree with, however others I do not.

I agree that the alpha does not always "dominate" dog/wolves by standing over them and pinning them down. In this case you are dealing with an already submissive member of the pack. In a case where you are dealing with a more dominate member, the alpha and dominate member may need to hash things out to prove that there is a reason the alpha is the alpha. This is when you see a pin style domination.

Same thing goes in the dog world. Some dogs are just submissive and easily dominated, some take more effort, and some you must portray the alpha roll completely and show them who is boss.

This is how a pack works as well. This example does not show the full structure of pack behavior.

HowStuffWorks "What is a wolf pack mentality?"


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post #6 of 52 (permalink) Old 07-11-2011, 03:24 PM
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If you are refering to the thread dominane help i re-read through it and no where in it was it mentioned for the op to actually due the alpha role. but one thing that this video doesnt show is that at some point in time the dominant wolf in it had probably pinned or forcibly made the submissive wolf to submit. that is why the wolf just submitted it knew if it didnt that it could have beeen forcibly submitted. but saying that i dont really think that the alpha roll needs to be used in the training of dogs.
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post #7 of 52 (permalink) Old 07-11-2011, 03:35 PM
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Alpha roll? Don't even MENTION it.

I don't see where anyone told the OP in the other thread to do alpha roll her dog, I think pretty much everyone told her NOT to. It can be dangerous and is a good way to get bitten.

As I described in the other thread: a method which I HAVE used is the "chill". You teach your pup to roll onto his side using food as a lure, then keeping them on their side with praise, petting and repeating the word "chill" (or "relax" or whatever) until they relax. Tummy rubs are optional.
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post #8 of 52 (permalink) Old 07-11-2011, 03:43 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1rockyracoon1 View Post
If you are refering to the thread dominane help i re-read through it and no where in it was it mentioned for the op to actually due the alpha role. but one thing that this video doesnt show is that at some point in time the dominant wolf in it had probably pinned or forcibly made the submissive wolf to submit. that is why the wolf just submitted it knew if it didnt that it could have beeen forcibly submitted. but saying that i dont really think that the alpha roll needs to be used in the training of dogs.
That's just an assumption. You have no idea if there was ever a forceful "alpha roll" by that wolf in the past or not.

I'm not going to pretend to be a wolf behavior expert, but I've never seen a wolf ever forcefully pin down another wolf to make him submit.

With regards to dog training and my experience, dominance is established through hard work by bonding, training, and leading the dog. Not by some stupid 5 second pin to the ground by the owners hand.
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post #9 of 52 (permalink) Old 07-11-2011, 03:54 PM
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Just because you haven't seen it doesn't mean it doesn't happen. The way I was taught to do it is that a dog will naturally squirm and try to break free because they don't like being on their back, in a very comrimising position. Once they stop squirming/trying to break free they have accepted that you are the stronger, alpha, and will not try to challenge you. I did this to my pup when he stepped out of line and after a while they pick up on the fact that the faster they stop moving the faster they are let go. I did it when he was smaller and easier to handle. I can probably still pull one off but he's just too smart now and will stop moving, look at me, and then get let go within seconds.
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post #10 of 52 (permalink) Old 07-11-2011, 04:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Lucy Dog View Post
I'm not going to pretend to be a wolf behavior expert, but I've never seen a wolf ever forcefully pin down another wolf to make him submit.
I have seen dogs do it to each other.
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