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Seeing with New Eyes

Learning not Obedience

11 Dec 2022.  19 Feb 2023

Although we make claims about how progressive modern dog training is in its methods, much of what we do with our dogs is rooted in traditional ways of viewing the dog-human relationship. Paradigms of dominance, although we reject them in practice, have a tendency to seep into how we relate to dogs: what we deem to be a “good dog”; how we think of their learning; what we train.

This Live Presentation and 7-day discussion can investigate the origins of “obedience” and explore how its legacy still persists in even the most seemingly benign training protocols.


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Seeing with New Eyes Learning not obedience

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Our SEEING WITH NEW EYES Live Presentation and 7-day forum are a unique opportunity to explore understanding to a new level. Learning will revolve around the Live Presentation with recommended reading and a closed Forum for the next 7 days where questions and further discussion can be stretched.


Presentations will be at 1700 GMT/UTC on 19 Feb 2023. Participants can join at 1650 to familiarise with the technology. A camera is not necessary, but please join with your mic muted. This will NOT be recorded but taking notes is definitely encouraged.

The room will be closed at 1705 late arrivals will not be able to join.

Recommended reading before the Presentation will benefit all participants.

Attendance to the Presentation is required for attendance to the Discussions Forum. Slides used in the Presentation will be available to view in the Forum.

Details of the Presentation and recommended reading will be posted in the Forum. This opens 24 hours before the presentation when you will receive an email invitation.


The Presenters are Kay Laurence and Frances McCormack experienced at living and learning with all sorts of collies.

Tighearnan with a few of his best friends. One of the happiest collies alive.

The Discussion Forum

This will be hosted on our Voyage of Discovery: a Discourse Forum.

Very often we need more time to absorb the material and let the important questions rise to the top over a few days. Learning to see with new eyes is often about revisiting our current thinking, listening to alternate voices and measuring it against new ideas. Inevitably doubts will arise and we may need to make adjustment or realise we did not need glasses at all and our view was right on track. 

The Forum will be open for 7 days after the presentation. It will then be closed and all posts deleted.

Both Kay and Frances will be attending the forum to continue the discussions, add more material and recommended resources.

This is not an opportunity for private tuition although individual issues can be discussed.

Recommended Reading

Wondering if this is for you? More REading: 

In Praise of Naughty Dogs

Cultural expectations of how we live with dogs can burden us and them with pressure that they will conform. How do we begin to alleviate the weight of this, and what are the potential benefits to the partnership if we do?

Chasm Opening Up

Even in this era of modern training, there is still a focus on compliance and obedience, even if differently packaged. This blog post argues, instead, for learning to be underpinned by connection, mutual reward, and a focus on lifeskills.

Heartbeat of Living with Dogs

A blog post that seeks to shift the paradigm from the mindset of adapting dogs to fit our lives and towards  attentiveness to the individual dogs themselves.

Ethical Questions

What to teach is our choice. Here is some guidance on how to decide.

A Teaching Plan

Our responsibilities to our dogs are entirely dependent on the relationship we have with them, and our learning design should be measured by success and not “shoulds.”

Should You Teach a Dog Eye Contact? (Podcast)

For years, trainers were told to teach “Watch Me” as a way to make sure the dog was paying attention to the handler. This forced focus comes at a cost. Are there other ways to know if your dog is ready and able to receive a cue?


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