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Rat Terrier "job" needed.

dogmelissa
July 17th, 2006, 01:17 PM
I don't know if there's even anything I can do in this situation, but the lady I work with, her son has a rat terrier. The dog is obviously bored as he will jump out the 2nd floor window after chewing through the screen to try to get next door to spend the day with his friend, Cole (the lady I work with's dog). Zeke is 4 yrs old and has already broken his leg in his "adventures". I don't think he's gone to training classes, but even if he did, not sure if it would do any good. His guardians don't have a lot of time for him. He has lots of patience with kids, but at a recent farm-based wedding, he snapped at a small child (snapped & missed) and was generally a giant pest, getting into trouble, rolling in things, etc etc etc. They love him and don't want to give him up, but they can't afford agility classes or flyball or things like that.

Does anyone else have one of these dogs? Is there anything I can recommend they do with him to keep him happier?
Is there anything cheap I can make/build for them to recreate agility or flyball or some other activities?

Please don't suggest re-homing the dog. It's not my call, and I don't necessarily think it's the right thing to do. I just want to help them find some easy-to-incorporate-into-their-lives things for the dog to do. Can he be taught things like fetch the laundry, find the keys, etc?

Thanks in advance,
Melissa

Lissa
July 18th, 2006, 08:46 AM
The best thing for this dog would be more exercise! I doubt trainnig will be too succesful if he doesn't get more physical activity. I would suggest clicker training since its an easy, fast and fun way of training. With a clicker you can quickly shape a variety of behaviours - it teaches the dog how to think.

Since the dog is smaller, she can use cardboard boxes as tunnels, a hoola-hoop as a tire, simple jumps can be made with a broom stick and a couple of cans...But being in an apartment, I am not sure they'd have room and I think the dog would need to know basic commands first. Perhaps incorporating basic commands with trick training will help.
Also - they'd want to make sure that they wouldn't be doing any damage to his broken leg.

dtbmnec
July 18th, 2006, 12:14 PM
I just want to help them find some easy-to-incorporate-into-their-lives things for the dog to do. Can he be taught things like fetch the laundry, find the keys, etc?

You know I would never have thought of that for dogs.....I apparently have no actual imagination....

Psssh should have known anyway, I mean there is Nana from Peter Pan....:p

Megan

dogmelissa
July 18th, 2006, 01:13 PM
The dog doesn't live in an apartment.. he's in a house with a yard. He jumped out the second floor window of the house and ran next door. I don't even know how he broke the leg--it was on a different adventure. I'm not sure if his guardian-mom is home all day everyday, but I think she is. Not sure about the ages of the kids.

I will recommend basic training for the doggie. I did some clicker training with my dog, so perhaps I can even "borrow" Zeke for a day and do some really quick clicker training on him to get him started. If I lived closer to him (I'm across the city), I'd get him to play with my dog, or take both of them to agility. I bet Zeke would be *great* at agility, or flyball. I agree that activities that could possibly affect the previously-broken leg should be avoided, but I don't know at what age he broke the leg or what leg it was. As far as I know he's totally healed and showing no after-effects, so perhaps it's not a concern.

Megan: To be honest, I didn't think of this, either. I was searching the internet for cute tricks I could teach my dog, and came across a website that mentioned a dog who was trained to find keys & metal objects, and who once even retrieved a spring that had popped out from a car which was being worked on in the driveway at night. Pretty cool. But some of the basic "helpful" things are things that trainers teach assistance dogs, and I've also looked into fostering puppies for an assistance dog program, so it makes sense. Not sure if a little dog can help with the laundry without falling in the washer, though. :P

Thanks and any more ideas, feel free to add them!!
Melissa

dtbmnec
July 18th, 2006, 03:00 PM
Megan: To be honest, I didn't think of this, either. I was searching the internet for cute tricks I could teach my dog, and came across a website that mentioned a dog who was trained to find keys & metal objects, and who once even retrieved a spring that had popped out from a car which was being worked on in the driveway at night. Pretty cool. But some of the basic "helpful" things are things that trainers teach assistance dogs, and I've also looked into fostering puppies for an assistance dog program, so it makes sense. Not sure if a little dog can help with the laundry without falling in the washer, though. :P

Mmmm washed Puppy. To top it off he'd smell Lemon Fresh too! :)

hehehe

Now that I think of it yeah it would make sense. Maybe that's all he'd need? Just a little job or two to "do" around the house? I shall have to ponder some more.

Random thought/brainwave: Maybe she could make a game where the dog has to "find" stuff? Like start with his favourite ball and she hides it (maybe sticks him in the backyard/elsewhere for a minute or two while she does this) and he has to go find his ball? Like a hunting expedition perhaps. Not sure how well it would work but I'm sure she could expand upon the idea (or someone else)? Scavenger Hunt a la Terrier? :)

Megan

dogmelissa
July 19th, 2006, 03:59 PM
But what if they use Lavendar-scented laundry soap, then he'd smell like flowers, and we can't have a *boy* smelling all flowery. He'd be likely to go find the biggest, stinkiest pile of something to roll in. :P

On a more serious note, I will suggest a Terrier Scavenger Hunt to them and see what happens. I'm not sure if the dog gets much attention during the day, so I don't know if it'll make a big difference. If he's ignored for 8 hours, adding in 5 minutes of attention isn't going to make much difference. But if he gets lots of attention already, then more interaction might help.

Any further ideas, please feel free to post them!

Melissa

gomez
July 20th, 2006, 06:11 AM
Get him a pet rat or two...





KIDDING ! ! ! ! ! :evil:

OntarioGreys
July 22nd, 2006, 02:38 AM
http://users.planetc.com/garrett/lurepole.htm

dogmelissa
July 22nd, 2006, 01:39 PM
Thanks, I will try that!