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Older Doggie Socialization in Toronto

mummummum
January 31st, 2006, 07:36 PM
I've checked all the websites of daycare and training centres in downtown Toronto looking for a place I can Declan (my 8 yr old Newf/ Border Collie newest addition). He has come along way in getting used to being on a lead and we have been practicing Tenderfoot's suggested intervention technique's when meeting other doggies (Declan is of the lunging, barking, whinnying, snapping etiquette school). It is working very well (except for the other night when it was so icy, we did 360's instead of 180's) but the problem is we don't meet enough dogs and we tend to meet most of them at night. So I'm thinking we need a regular opportunity for structured socialization before we can even consider obedience classes (I was only half joking when I suggested to Schwinn that we of the dawgs with on-leash issues all meet to practice on each other !). A couple of the centre's offer behavioural consults - which is fine but, that doesn't give us an opportunity to practice. I don't drive which complicates things immensely. Any thoughts or :evil: volunteers ?

Joey.E.CockersMommy
January 31st, 2006, 10:24 PM
what an awesome idea I so do wish Joey and I lived closer. He could really benifit from something like this.

Daisy_Mae
February 2nd, 2006, 11:56 AM
how long have you had your boy? Our dog had the same etiquette. I believe she was a outdoor farm dog that did not have much contact or stimulation so when I brought her home I think everything was very overwhelming. We have had her since August and just over the last month she has stopped the whining and freaking and pulling to see other dogs. I talked to my trainer she thinks it partly my training, rewarding her good behaviour, scoulding for bad behaviour and partly her starting to adjust to her new lifestyle. We still have issues with meet and greets on leash so I took her to daycare fully expecting they would not allow her to come back OR she would have to do a slow introduction program. Her first day was this week and they said she was great with all the dogs and had no issues. They said she could come back anytime:D

My trainer told me it's typical leash aggression which I don't fall for as she can be good sometimes and bad other times. I believe my actions contribute to the issue too. It was also suggested she behaved so well because I wasn't there and some dogs behave better when their owners aren't around:mad:

I am really starting to think patience, perseverance, research and trying different things is the only thing that helps these older dogs with issues. After all, they are your dog and unless a trainer spends a great deal of time with you and your dog or has seen all the interactions I donít think they have all the answers.

Maybe try daycare. I know at the one I go to in Kitchener they will keep the dog separate if they donít feel they can interact appropriately and they can watch the other dogs.

mummummum
February 2nd, 2006, 10:49 PM
Thanks to you both! I think I will call one of the training centre/ daycares downtown and see if we can come by for an evaluation. But, first we have to get Declan on the subway & bus !! Poor guy - even after two months he's still afraid of the elevator.

SnowDancer
February 3rd, 2006, 12:00 PM
What area of downtown Toronto are you looking at. These days "downtown" seems far spread. Also are you looking for a facility where you would take your dog on the bus/subway to work with you and pick him up at night? If so, that might be the devil during rush hour.

mummummum
February 3rd, 2006, 07:40 PM
Declan has been with us for just two months and I don't know much about his background other than the fact he was adopted once and returned then spent another six months in shelter. It's been a learning curve for all of us. He is very, very clever just doesn't seem to have been exposed to much of the world. He REALLY REALLY REALLY wants to meet some dogs but doesn't know not to approach them so POW-IN-YOUR-FACE. He will respond to a dog who does the bark/lunge first with a bark-lunge and dogs off-lead on the street seem to set him off on the bark-lunge routine as well. We are smack dab at Yonge and Bloor so taking TTC at rush hour isn't an option cuz it isn't permitted. I was thinking about Urban Dog on a Saturday, we could head down before the subway gets crazy or walk down to Front and skip the subway entirely. I would actually like to get Bridie back into a refresher course as well. And given that she is The Bossy Cow who hates Declan I thought a training regime would do her some good. They couldn't go together of course and with all these unexpected Vet bills of late there's no more cookies in the cookie jar for extended private training...ugh, life can be so complicated. Urban Dog also seems to offer some sports stuff as well which would help with all this energy. There is no daycare nearby my work and the local one (Tirebiters) won't take him because of his lack of training/ behaviour. We have a dogwalker (our third actually...) who comes in mid-day strictly for a "utility" walk. Oops, I think I'm sinking into whining - sorry. Do you know of anything in the core? Any experience with Urban Dog?

SnowDancer
February 4th, 2006, 09:59 AM
Sorry, I don't know of anywhere right in the downtown core. I take my dog on Thursdays to socialization in the Bayview Eglinton area - his groomer runs it in a facility located directly behind our vet's - and he gets a long walk from a professional dog walker/boarder associated with the groomer - and who also used to work for our vet. So one stop shopper - and should there be a health emergency vet is there. Certainly I agree that getting on subway at Yonge/Bloor at rush hour with a dog would be impossible - can hardly get on yourself. Price wise it can get very expensive depending on where you go. We pay 2 prices - one for the socialization and one for the dog walking. This lady also boards our dog when we go away - he loves her. He is very comfortable at his socialization - it is a controlled environment - feels accepted. As far as dogs on the street go or in the park - we just don't go there. Park across from us is not off-leash - wish the dog police would deal with that - as I lay across my dog's body protecting him. He struts his stuff and it just too tantalizing I guess. One thing he has learned is that the Boxers, Rottis, Weims, etc. that he meets at socialization are most definitely not the ones he meets on the streets - he wanted to play - thought they were his friends. Surprise! He is a little barker of course being an Eskie, but that is all - have never seen the gum line or nose pursed like a prune - lots of dogs look at him that way - well heck so do the "neighbours".