The Canine Commandments written by Kendal Shepherd and illustrated by Victor Ambrus
The Canine Commandments was first published by Broadcast Books in Bristol in 2007. It contains an illustrated version of the Canine Ladder of
Aggression, devised by me in 2001, and first published in the British Small Animal Veterinary Association 'Canine and Feline Manual of Behavoiural Medicine' in
2002. The Ladder as puplished in 2002 and text from the 2nd edition of the manual published in 2010, is available to download below.
The Ladder of Aggression was devised as an alternative explanation and counter-argument to the historical labelling of the body language (and minds) of dogs as either
'submissive' or 'dominant'. It is now, 12 years later, recognised that dogs are highly unlikely to have an awareness of any such concepts, instead simply using whatever behaviour
appears to work in achieving results favourable to them.
Most importantly, even simply from the human safety perspective, is the elimination of any dogs' perception that being aggressive is the only thing we humans seem
to understand. But by behaving in a threatening, aggressive or 'dominant' manner towards dogs, as some trainers persist in recommending, all any dog can learn is that aggression
is what humans both use and expect. Nothing could be further from the truth when the gestures of dogs are interpreted as they ought to be - as appeasing and peace-keeping signals,
aggression only being used if all else fails.
The Canine Commandments will help everyone of any age to understand, in very simple terms, how dogs feel and how similar they are to us in how they would like to be understood
Copies are available directly from me at a cost of £8.50 per copy including postage and packing. Please send a cheque for this amount to
Kendal Shepherd, 48a High Street Woodford Kettering Northants NN14 4HF
Discount is available on orders of 10 and over.
For further information and to obtain a copy, please contact me