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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
One of the banner ads on THIS site, leads you here:

<span style="color: #3366FF">Dr. Dare Miller's site</span>

Last fall, I viewed sounded familiar... I emailed the company. I got a call from the good Dr himself,
we spoke on his dime for over 2 hours. I searched the net and found a used copy of his original book for $9.

I am SO convinced this guy is the basis for Jerry Howe's Wit's End Method. It is too similar to be coincidental.
Way too much the same...only Howe uses coins in a can, and Miller is selling chains with tuning forks, but the fact
of the matter is both use sound to interrupt thought, and praise to redirect and effectively "hypnotize" the mutt into
believing he is Rin Tin Tin...after which, before long, he starts acting like it!

I know it works, because I've used it. On mine, on my neighbor's dogs.
Ever try to get your neighbor's dog to listen to you? Irks the neighbors, and/or amazes them, but whatever, it works,
pretty quickly too, all things considered. It's not that hard to outsmart the dog!

Good to know where the science came from because it sure as heck didn't come from Howe! As we all know,
it takes one to know one, so I'll spare us all repeating what he must therefore be!

Too bad Miller didn't get on the net until 2006, he could have saved usenet from Howe's maniacal rantings,
maybe usenet would even be useful!

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I'm not familiar with the people you're talking about, but the method you mention sounds very much like a method touted by the English behaviorist John Fisher. He had books out on this some 20+ years ago, and he sold what he called "training disks", I believe.

Also common in training way back in the old days were throw chains, which were simply a couple sections of chain (maybe 6" long) attached together at both ends so that they rattled. When I started training back in the '80's we used these as a "boogie man" kind of distraction (throwing them near the feet of the dog when the dog wasn't looking at us, to break concentration on whatever they shouldn't be doing).

So I don't think that the method described is original to either Miller or Howe. They may have tweaked it to fit their training but the concept has been around for many decades.

I've used sound aversion very successfully with some dogs, to the point of changing unwanted behaviors in a single session. But it does have a risk - there are dogs that become very sound sensitive and fearful, even though the sound isn't linked with any physical correction. I remember a big malemute who just fell apart when we used this for his dog-to-dog aggression problems. It stopped him thinking about the other dogs in class, but he became very nervous and that lasted for weeks.

It's not a technique I encourage people to use without fully understanding how to do it properly and the risks involved.

Melanie and the gang in Alaska

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902 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Miller was published in the 60's...the pictures on his site, many of them are that old...
<span style="color: #3366FF">History</span>
<span style="color: #3366FF">Method</span>
He is now in his 80's.

Much can be accomplished w/o any sounding, and simply praise, without compliance. This is so "positive only" many can't get their head around it, and want to depend upon "No!" and compulsion, even with "Come" and set themselves up for miserable failure with a pup in the first days trying to teach a recall.

I agree the devices are pricey...which is why in addition to googling
around and verifying that Miller was indeed on several TV shows in the early 60's, I found his first book used for $9.

But any consistent sounding will work. Tossing your keys will work.
What's important is to be able to change the direction from where the sound comes, once from here where you are, and if needed again later from over there, on the other side of the dog, or nearer the dog, but not from your hand.

<span style="color: #3366FF">example</span>

The sounding can be overused and detrimental, as anything can, and become aversive and harmful, as can any correction, or hollering "No!"...but it doesn't physically hurt or shock, and it stops the thought, so for interrupting misbehaviors, is invaluable.

That you don't know who Howe is a blessing...but his blatant plagiarism of Miller's techniques aside, this does explain why it works,
and how, without the e.

My hope was someone here had actually ordered the system, with the CD's and chains, and might be able to discuss it with us as to what they thought of it.

Myself, I too think it's too pricey, but have found thru the original book and an older text of Howe's what's useful and what's not, and
added those tools to my bag of tricks.
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