Methods of Stimulation
guide to what works. In an effort to improve the performance of dogs used for military
purposes, a program called "Bio Sensor" was developed. Later, it became known to the
public as the "Super Dog" Program. Based on years of research, the military learned
that early neurological stimulation exercises could have important and lasting effects.
Their studies confirmed that there are specific time periods early in life when
neurological stimulation has optimum results.
The first period involves a window of time that begins at the third day of life and lasts until the sixteenth day. It is believed that because this interval of time is a period of rapid neurological growth and
development, and therefore is of great importance to the individual.
The "Bio Sensor" program was also concerned with early neurological stimulation in
order to give the dog a superior advantage. Its development utilized six exercises which
were designed to stimulate the neurological system. Each workout involved handling
puppies once each day. The workouts required handling them one at a time while
performing a series of five exercises. Listed in order of preference, the handler starts
with one pup and stimulates it using each of the five exercises. The handler completes
the series from beginning to end before starting with the next pup.
The handling of each pup once per day involves the following exercises:
1. Tactical stimulation (between toes)
2. Head held erect
3. Head pointed down
4. Supine position
5. Thermal stimulation.
1. Tactile stimulation - holding the pup in one hand, the handler gently stimulates
(tickles) the pup between the toes on any one foot using a Q-tip. It is not necessary to
see that the pup is feeling the tickle. Time of stimulation 3 - 5 seconds. (Figure 1)
2. Head held erect - using both hands, the pup is held perpendicular to the ground,
(straight up), so that its head is directly above its tail. This is an upwards position.
Time of stimulation 3 - 5 seconds (Figure 2).
3. Head pointed down - holding the pup firmly with both hands the head is reversed
and is pointed downward so that it is pointing towards the ground. Time of stimulation
3 - 5 seconds (Figure 3).
4. Supine position - hold the pup so that its back is resting in the palm of both hands
with its muzzle facing the ceiling. The pup while on its back is allowed to sleep. Time of
stimulation 3-5 seconds. (Figure 4)
5. Thermal stimulation—use a damp towel that has been cooled in a refrigerator for at
least five minutes. Place the pup on the towel, feet down. Do not restrain it from
moving. Time of stimulation 3-5 seconds. (Figure 5)
These five exercises will produce neurological stimulations, none of which naturally
occur during this early period of life. Experience shows that sometimes pups will resist
these exercises, others will appear unconcerned. In either case a caution is offered to
those who plan to use them. Do not repeat them more than once per day and do not
extend the time beyond that recommended for each exercise. Over stimulation of the
neurological system can have adverse and detrimental results. These exercises impact
the neurological system by kicking it into action earlier than would be normally
expected, the result being an increased capacity that later will help to make the
difference in its performance. Those who play with their pups and routinely handle
them should continue to do so because the neurological exercises are not substitutions
for routine handling, play socialization or bonding.
Benefits of StimulationFive benefits have been observed in canines that were exposed to the Bio Sensor
stimulation exercises. The benefits noted were:
1. Improved cardio vascular performance (heart rate)
2. Stronger heart beats,
3. Stronger adrenal glands,
4. More tolerance to stress, and
5. Greater resistance to disease.
In tests of learning, stimulated pups were found to be more active and were more
exploratory than their non- stimulated littermates over which they were dominant in
Secondary effects were also noted regarding test performance. In simple problem
solving tests using detours in a maze, the non-stimulated pups became extremely
aroused, whined a great deal, and made many errors. Their stimulated littermates were
less disturbed or upset by test conditions and when comparisons were made, the
stimulated littermates were more calm in the test environment, made fewer errors and
gave only an occasional distress sound when stressed.