Cj sent me something to read about dogs sensibility
to stress. A university in Hungary had made research on selected police service
dogs of different age. Their "natural" level of the stress hormone cortisol was
measured in a relaxed state and then 20 minutes after they had been subjected to
a threat in different ways. The results of this scientific stuff was then
treated in a statistical way that I understand only a little of, but I
understood some graphs and the final discussion about the test.
Old dogs developed higher levels of the hormone
than younger dogs when subjected to the same stimuli. This is also something
that I have noticed with our dogs. They are less prepared to meat social threats
when they grow old.
The dogs that answered the challenge in a
courageous way, with no fear shown, had a lesser increase in the cortisol level.
It coincides with my observations that courageous dogs are the calmest and,
using a modern word: Coolest!
Some other conclusions were also drawn, like
perhaps taking some older dogs out of service in the name of their welfare. I
draw a direct parallel to human behaviour. When you meet a threat or challenge,
the best thing to do is to work with it immediately. That will give you the
smallest amount of stress. The problem is that not all of us dare and hence some
of us will develop all kind of nervous symptoms. Maybe some of us should be
taken out of service at some stage before retirement?
This is true with dogs also and again I can only
say that the best we can do to our dogs is to breed them as courageous as
Borta Med Vindens Kennel
"Ask not what your dog can do for you.
what you can do for your dog."www.rospigan.net