ST LOUIS- Nationally known dog expert and author Bryan Bailey came to St. Louis this week with a new book and a somewhat provocative message about man's best friend.
Your beloved pooch is not a furry human. Your dog is a domesticated wolf and, Bailey argues, it's important to know the difference.
"When we treat our dogs like little human beings in fur coats we expect them to behave like that," Bailey said. "We expect them to have the same moral compass and sense of altruism as we do. And they don't."
Bailey's newest book is "Embracing the Wild in Your Dog".
Bailey believes that too many dog owners assume their beloved pet is so much a part of the family that they can expect it to behave as a human would.
Bailey worked with Today in St. Louis anchor Pat McGonigle's dog, 'Harvey'. A 10-month-old pup who still clings to a habit of jumping up on people.
"First of all he's trying to greet you at head level," Bailey said. "Wolves and dogs want to greet you at head level. Watch any two wolves or dogs. The problem is you're (Pat) tall. You are a vertical wolf, so he wants to use his athletic ability to achieve head level."
Bailey's advice for curing that problem is to gently push the dog away and say, "Off!"
Bailey says it's then best to continue on with whatever you were doing at the time. Do not reward the dog or give it any feedback. Also, never turn your back on a dog leaping onto you, Bailey advises.
"That shows submission to the dog and will only make it worse."