It’s been rather quiet on this blog during the last couple of months and one reason is that I have been totally immersed in a 900-page book about Malamutes, dog care and canine education and can’t stop reading! Happy Dogs with Benevolent Leaders is an impressive tome written by Canadian breeder and canine instructor Ruth I. Kellogg. Published as an e-book on CD it contains more than 1300 photos and illustrations and, as a wonderful surprise for me personally, our own Malamute family is represented in the book through Hilary’s handsome and accomplished sire Jake. In addition to the written book the disc set contains three DVDs with instructional videos featuring Malamutes of different ages displaying their skills. Well, you can imagine I have been busy! While I have not yet finished reading the entire book, I can say with confidence that this work is different from anything you have seen before.
Ruth Kellogg has been involved with Alaskan Malamutes since the 1970’s and has written numerous articles for different dog magazines, as well as published two books about different aspects of canine education; Happy Dog! Canine Behavior and Basic Training in 1989 and Educating the Happy Dog in 1994. She has also been writing a column for the Alaskan Malamute Club of Canada’s newsletter, Malamute Review, for many years. Based in British Columbia, Ruth breeds Alaskan Malamutes under the prefix Inharmony. Some of you may have read her insightful articles in The Malamute Quarterly and The Alaskan Malamute Annual, many of which are based around her experiences of maintaining a group of ten Alaskan Malamutes “in harmony” together.
The new book, Happy Dogs with Benevolent Leaders: Understanding dogs, their care, and Canine Education, came out this fall and is based on 35 years of experience of breeding, educating and living with Alaskan Malamutes. It is aimed at both the novice dog owner (of any breed, but particularly Malamutes) and the more “seasoned” Mal owner who is looking for a better understanding of the canine psyche and nature, life passages, pack life, language, health and development. At the core of this work is the principle of benevolent leadership. Ruth wants us to develop a deeper and happier relationship with our dogs, through a better understanding of their needs and nature, and through better training techniques.
“The philosophy behind all my writing and teaching is: As a dog’s owner becomes more knowledgeable and understands him more, the better the chances are for the dog to become and remain a Happy Dog”.
Ruth I. Kellogg
The largest section of the book is dedicated to Canine Education and covers all aspects of educating a dog, including a detailed step-by-step educational program starting from the new born puppy and ending with the skills that a two-year-old dog should be able to master.
I will post more comments about this very unique and inspirational work when I have finished reading it. Right now we’re having fun trying to teach our dogs some of the fun tricks that are included in the Inharmony Alaskan Malamutes’ Foundational Skills List. Realizing the scope and level of skills that Malamutes can be taught, Fredrik and I are starting to wonder what we have been doing with our time??
If you want to explore this book yourself and begin 2013 with a whole new set of ideas for training and educating your dogs, Happy Dogs with Benevolent Leaders is currently available for purchase on Ruth’s website www.inharmonymalamutes.com