Using the Y Pole to Catch a Wolf

People can get very upset when they hear the word “dominance” used.   I will NEVER promote punitive or demeaning actions towards a dog or wolf.   Call it leadership with confidence.  In this video I call it “compassionate dominance”.  Whatever we wish to call it, here is a video demonstrating the use of the Y pole which is much more humane and safe for the wolf than catching them with nets.

Catching a Mexican Wolf Using Y Poles

For an awesome article on the Y Pole and how to make them – visit our Free Training Library.

I would love your comments!


Capturing Dogs with Boxtraps, Part 2. Baiting the Trap

A new training video for how  to boxtrap dogs is now available!!!

– visit our website at GWR Products.

Once we have a good place chosen for placing our boxtrap, we then set it up in a way that it is stable and a welcome sight for the dog to enter! (See Part 1)

Now it’s time to bait the trap.

Baiting the trap is a strategy like playing a chess game.   You are not just placing something stinky in the trap so they walk in!   You want to use bait to guide them right down to how they trigger the trap.  Checkmate! Be sure the environment is set up so the dogs are hungry (How much garbage and food is around and where is it?), create ways to bring them to the trap and then into the trap, and then guide them to place their foot where it triggers the trap the best.

The Hungry Environment

Be sure your surrounding environment is not competing with your baits.

Street dog in Ladakh, India

When we were trapping dogs in the Caribbean, it was hard working around the resorts because of so much garbage and food scraps laying around.  Fortunately we often worked with resort managers who locked up the garbage and who told their staff to clean the grounds.  When working with island governments we had to ask them to improve their scheduled dumpster pick-ups.

Food in the surrounding area can also help you catch dogs.   Hopefully you are setting traps along the dog travel routes.   Or you can modify their travel routine by creating bait stations.  Bait stations are simply spots where you leave food every day to attract the dogs and soon they may be adding your feeding stations to their daily routine.  Once they are visiting alot, start reducing the food at the station and put bait in and around the nearby traps. Continue reading

Capturing Dogs with Boxtraps, Part 1. How to Set the Trap

Capturing Street Dogs in Ladakh, India

For a detailed training video on on how to box trap dogs – visit our GWR Products page.

Sometimes the most efficient way to capture dogs is with a box trap.  In disaster response, the first dogs are caught by hand, but there gets a point when the fearful dogs cannot be approached.  Then box  traps will bring the dogs out of the rubble.  In animal control or dog rescue, people may need to capture specific dogs. Box traps can be placed along their travel route or favorite spots.  And in trap/neuter/release programs such as the work I did in India and Caribbean, box traps are an efficient way to gather many dogs.

But few people know how to successfully use box trap.  Attend to the details…..and here is one way to do it.

You can download a free handout on box trapping from Global Wildlife Resources by visiting our free Training Library.

Which type of boxtrap?

Without any doubt, my favorite trap is the Tru Catch 48F Folding Dog trap.  I have used them in Montana, New Orleans, the Caribbean and have even taken them to India (with great difficulty).    I like the Tru Catch 48F Folding Dog trap because it is very rugged, strong and lasts for years even with ocean salt..  It is compact so many traps can me moved together.   It is very versatile to use in many ways because both ends open so dogs can be shifted to a varikennel or to another trap.

The best source for purchasing the Tru Catch trap is to contact Wanda or her family at  Heart of the Earth Animal Equipment.

Setting the trap

1) Most important – choose a location that is cozy for the dog and hidden from the public.   Dogs have a denning instinct which can be used to our advantage.  And people and traps do not mix.  People will either steal the traps, release the dogs, or harm the dogs. Continue reading

Meat and Potatoes

In this blog I have spent quite a bit of time talking about attitudes, behavior, and things like dominance and the energy of conflict.  I am really enjoying your comments about his – Thank You!  Please send more!

I will continue to write about these topics, especially when there are comments generating discussion, but it is time to also give you some “meat and potatoes” stuff like more techniques and equipment.

Keep watching for a NEW VIDEO on Using a Y pole to capture a Mexican Wolf.  I am currently working on the technology to show this on my blog and website.

Up next is Capturing Dogs with Boxtraps – Part 1.  Setting the Trap

Why Explore Types of Dominance with Dog Handling?

Thank you, Brad, and to everyone for the wonderful comments.  Wonderful exploration.  You all help me clarify several goals and hopes from this discussion.

First, I hope we will honor each person’s choice for how they wish to address this challenging concept of dominance.  Brad, your suggestions for other types of words such as respect and seniority are great.  Yes indeed use them!   (Can we practice as much compassion and respect for each other as we can towards our animals?)

Visit my website for more philosophy and discussion.

Continue reading

Is Dominance Always Bad?

I am seeing a lot of  blogs about how how horrible dominance is and how there is no need for dominance when working with domestic dogs.   They say the use of dominance is now considered ineffective and, worse, it is unethical and inhumane.    Those critical of using any forms of dominance are describing what wolves and feral dogs do and do not do and I am seeing so many incorrect statements.

I work with wild and captive wolves, and have handled over 2,000 feral dogs.  I was also the Project Veterinarian for the 1995-96 Yellowstone Wolf Reintroduction program and had the privilege of working with Dr. Dave Mech, one of the founders of wolf research, when we captured wolves in Canada and brought them into the US.  Many people condemning dominance are referring to Dave’s comments . Continue reading