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rambunctious malamute

July 12th, 2007, 11:48 AM
my dog was out at lunch today, when i go home to get him out to pee. sometimes when we are out he gets riled up and starts chewing on his collar and tugging on it. today he pulled and tugged and flipped over so hard that he came out of his collar entirely. i didnt know what to do; he wouldnt let me put his collar back on, and he kept jumping around. i eventually had to put him on his side and hold him down, he struggled to get up but i would not let him. is this going to make him hate me or something? i didnt know what to do to get him to relax and to let me put his collar on. and he was so riled up i was afraid he would run off. i think i may have made a mistake but he is my first dog and i did not know what to do!!! i feel pretty bad about it


ps. he is 6 months and an alaskan malamute

July 12th, 2007, 12:14 PM
You say you were afraid he would run off so I am assuming this means he is not in a fenced area? This is a big mistake. Nordic breeds in general should not be trusted outside of a fenced area if they are not on leash.

Also it sounds llike this guy has a lot of pent up energy and has not been taught manners or obedience yet. These guys are stubborn and independent as well as dominant so training is a must! It takes a little more time and patience to train one fully as they are not like a Golden Retriever but it can be done!

How often is he getting walked? How long are the walks? Does he get any other forms of excercise? Have you done any sort of traiing with him?

In that specific situation it would be important for you to remain calm. Call him to you and when he comes give him a treat. Tehn give him a cookie while you put the collar back on so he associates the collar being put on with good things. If he is being rambunctious and jumping all over and refuses to settle down, pay no attention to him!!! Just shut the door and leave him outside for a bit (providing he will be safe in a fenced yard). Try again a little while later. He will learn that if he doesn not mind his manners he does not get attention.

July 12th, 2007, 12:21 PM
right. our backyard is not fenced in. problem is it is my parents house, so i cant just put up a fence because i bought a puppy.

i walk him 2 times a day, once early in the morning (6 am) and once after work. each walk is about 30 minutes each.

sometimes, in lieu of the second walk he goes to play with the neighbors dog for a bit (30-40 minutes).

i have done training with him with treats; he responds VERY well when i have a treat reward to, sit, stay, down and come. with no treats, he decides maybe he doesnt have to listen.

i didnt have treats with me when i went outside, but i suppose i should have them with me whenever i go somewhere with him right now. (is this a good idea?)

i have tried turning around when he is tugging on his leash, but he continues to pull and tug and jump. maybe i am not waiting long enough?

i am really hoping to not damage our relationship by being an inexperience dog owner, but i have done a lot of reading about training and i am doing my best to be informed.

any more advice?

note: he WAS on his leash when i took him out, he pulled himself out of it.

July 12th, 2007, 12:45 PM
Sounds like he has LOADS of energy ~ he needs much more exercise than you are giving him. And I agree obedience training is a good idea ~ it's helpful to have a profressional when you are just learning yourself no ? it also sounds like his collar is too loose if he can back out of it.

July 12th, 2007, 12:48 PM
i will try increasingthe morning walk to an hour and see if that helps

if the problem is just excess energy i will deal with that by exercising.

i want to be a good dog owner, and i want my puppy to trust me.

i am also going to go to petco after work and sign up for formal obedience today.


July 12th, 2007, 12:55 PM
Hey there is nothing to be sorry about! You are here asking the right questions and that is more than I can say for most people....It is a tragedy when people go out and get a puppy because it is cute! knowing nthing about raising a dog! I applaud you for asking....

I can say that I have a large dog! Excercise is the key to a happy doggy of that size. Formal training was the best money I ever spent!! is for you more so than the dog! I found that it provided me with a way to socialize my dog as well..which is very important. You know I even had fun doing the training!

There will be many here to offer more advise ! Can we see a picture of your furbaby?


Jim Hall
July 12th, 2007, 12:55 PM
no reason to be sorry
you sound like you are going to do just fine
lots of exercise for you and the dog and some obidiance triang and you will both be fine .:highfive:

July 13th, 2007, 07:41 AM
Here he is

July 13th, 2007, 10:31 AM
Awww...he's lovely...he's got an impish catch-me-if-you-can twinkle in his eye...yup, you've got yourself a handful there! I hope the training and extra exercise works out!
Our GSD Jaida puts up a fuss when we try to put her collar on...9 times out of 10 it starts off in her mouth rather than around her neck...once it's on it's not too bad. We let her run around with her colar AND leash on a lot (supervised of course), especially when she was younger, just to get used to having them on...she doesn't mind having the leash at all now. It took us a while to get her to tolerate walking on leash though...lots of pulling and fighting...we just stuck with it, lots of patience and praise for nice's gotten much better (gradually) over the past few months....

July 13th, 2007, 11:26 AM
He is gorgeous! Yup, I would think this tyke will need lots of running to burn him out. How do you feel about taking up jogging:D ?

I don't know very much about dog training, but I think you did the right thing about ensuring the collar is on, even if he didn't. He won't hate you for forcing him, he is probably playing, thinking this is a game:laughing: !

July 13th, 2007, 11:53 AM
he is quite the handful...i am going to do obedience training at petco after labor day when the next session starts; and between now and then i continue to train with treats for; sit, stay, down, up, and come. which he does very well at suprisingly.

i also made the switch to a harness yesterday, so that even if he pulled and i had to tug him back it wouldnt be on his neck.

it was quite the adventure getting him to let me put on the harness, i used probably 6 or 7 treats taking it on and off, and i repeated the process several times with treats and petting to make sure he would know it was a good thing to have on.

i knew a puppy would be a lot of work, so i had been walking him twice a day. in the mornings i usually bike downstairs (indoor bike obviously) for 35 minutes and then walk him for 30. today i took him down to the local high school track and walked him for about an hour.

hopefully this will help. i would play fetch with him more, but our yard isnt fenced in and i dont want him to run off!

maybe i will try with the long lead we have today...

any other tips to tire him out?

July 13th, 2007, 04:49 PM
Its tricky because you have a high-energy pup, but it is also hot and he is young so too much walking or forced jogging on hard surfaces is bad as well LOL A long line is fantastic because then you can walk along and he can go every which way he wants (so long as you are away from vehicles of course) and at the speed he wants so no forced jogging. and then in the yard you can have him tied up using the long line so he cant run off.

Remember, yes getting a harness is good to portect his neck, but now you have tailored to him being able to pull you around easier should he choose to.

Training at Petco is hit and miss if it is anything like the training at Petsmart. Sometimes you can get a fabulous trainer who really knows their stuff and can help you out, other times you wind up with some teen who hardly knows dogs who is just trying to make some money over the summer. If possible you are better off to try to find a person who specializaes in training dogs and not a pet store trainer. If you are willing to tell me what area you are from, I may be able to locate a great trainer for you.

If you think the energy level is bad now, wait until he hits a year old because this is when he begins thinking a little more like an adult (more stubborn, more dominant and more independent), his size is bigger so his excercise requirements will be heightened (you'd be better off to do 1hr a day rather than 2 1/2 hours) and he will also be wanting a job, something challenging him both mentally and physically. Basically he will be coming into his own rather than being just the cute puppy he is now.

Him listening when there are treats and ignoring when there arent is him starting to show some independency and not respecting your commands. He is only doing something when there is an obvious benefit to him, not because you asked him to do it. This will only increase as he ages if proper training doesnt start now.

I'm not sure if you ever purposefully let him offleash but be very careful with it!!! Right now being he is a puppy he is quite dependent on you and is still a little timid to explore the world on his own. But as he matures he will gain confidence and independency (like I already mentioned) and before you know it he will have no problem taking off from you to run or chase a bunny with no looks back. It doesnt have anything to do with lack of training or lack of respect but simply the breed. These instincts are what helped the breed thrive in what they were prignially bred for (sledding).

If he can slip this collar and you dont want to tighten it anymore then I would suggest looking into getting him a martingale collar. when he isnt pulling the collar stays loose but if he starts jumping around and pulling it tightens up to a certain point (so it will only tighten and not choke) so it is a lot harder for him to slip out of.

July 16th, 2007, 07:12 AM
OC Thank you for the helpful replies

I thought that him ignoring my commands without a treat was a sign of disrespect; although every bleeding heart i talked to insisted he didnt know the commands yet.



i went out and got one of those chain link collars. now i train him in the backyard as well, and if he doesnt do the command, he gets a correction and a NO!.

i repeat the comply? correction again!

today he started doing the command without waiting to be corrected for not obeying.

i feel bad about doing it this way, but the dog needs to learn to respect me and my commands right?

i cant be walking around with him with treats all day so he will sit at the corner when we are going to cross the street right?

i NEVER let him purposely off leash except when he is playing with the neighbors dog -- who will not leave his yard -- cassius is glued to his side at all times, and the dog is glued to his owners side so i feel comfortable there.
although after your advice about when he hits a year i am a bit unsure about what to do at that age; maybe i will have a fenced in yard by then and the neighbor can bring his dog by.

is the chain collar the correct way to correct him? (that sounds funny)

for a while i was just picking his front paws up from his "sit" position to put him in the "down", but it didnt seem to make him want to do it.

any more tips?

youve been a great help

July 16th, 2007, 07:14 AM

we have this wheelbarrow with 4 wheels on it (my dad has back problems) so when he was older, i was thinking of loading that up with rocks and putting his harness on and having him pull that for a "job". simulates sledding a little no??

is that a good idea?

July 16th, 2007, 08:10 AM
didnt notice the question about area

i am from boston, mass area. north of the city near lowell.

i would rather do the training myself, so that the bond of respect comes between me and him, and not he and the trainer.

know what i mean?

also today i went to grab his collar to get him out of his crate and he turned his head and my hand so i gave him a tap on the nose and said no.

is that ok?

July 16th, 2007, 08:43 AM
No, the trainer shows YOU how to work with your dog, if anything it will increase the bond between you. I really think you should think about not doing this on your own. Even the most experienced dog owners consult trainers when they are looking for fresh ideas or have a dog with specific problems. You want your dog to respect you and think tapping him on the nose (not major violence, admittedly, but maybe a trend) will do the trick? IMO it's exactly the opposite. You gain his respect by showing him that the right way (your way) is in his interest. Nothing wrong with having treats in all your pockets to speed the process ;) .

He's a gorgeous boy. Is he neutered yet :) ?

July 16th, 2007, 08:46 AM
not yet

he is scheduled for august 2nd

July 16th, 2007, 11:47 AM
also, i think in comparison to a prong collar -- a tap on the head or nose is nothing in terms of a correction.

so please dont preach to me about tapping him on the nose when thousands of dog owners have loving pets that have been corrected countless times by a prong collar.

i also see it as OC does -- a sign of disrespect for me and my commands. he knows what "go to bed" means, and sometimes he runs to the door. so i block his way and push him back to his bed -- you can call it cruelty if you want but it certainly isnt. i am following through on my commands, the only way to get respect. i dont think a dog will respect you if you give a command, he refuses and then you pull out a treat.

July 16th, 2007, 12:02 PM
There are some very good trainers in Massachusetts. I must admit that, having only been to your lovely airport, I don't know much about the area so I am not sure how close some of them are. I will get some names together for you.

When you take a training class - the instructor doesn't teach your dog. He/She teaches YOU and you teach your dog.

The discription of the fit your dog through in your first post makes me very concerned about your having a chain choker on him. They don't have any give and with a dog that is out of control, twisting and pulling like you describe, there can be damage to the trachea.

Since you sound like you are against the use of a prong collar - you might want to look around and see if you can find a martingale collar.

FYI - the "correction" method of training that you are using (if I am reading your post right) is about as common anymore as the ever popular zap 'em method used by some crackpots with e-collars. Since you want to build a bond with your pup - might I suggest you get a couple of books and read about positive methods of training so that your pup will trust you.

July 16th, 2007, 12:08 PM
well just to clarify, he has a regular buckle collar that he wears when we go out for a casual stroll.

when its training time i put the chain collar on.

and i tried the positive methods with treats and praise -- but like i have said -- he then decides he only has to listen when i have treats. and to me this is not acceptable.

and i did buy a book, and in it was the chain collar you are against using. maybe its just that people who use positive only methods have 12 hours a day to train their dog. i do not. how will your dog know its unacceptable to not obey a command if you just give him a treat constantly when he refuses.

July 16th, 2007, 12:28 PM
First off - are you really looking for help with this or are you hell bent on what this book tells you to do?

Look at how you put that chain collar together. You feed part of the chain through a ring to make a loop. Now - put that loop around the calf of your leg and pull as hard as you can. (BTW - you will want to remember that the breed of dog you have was bred for pulling heavy carts so his neck and chest muscles are about 100 times stronger then your arms.) At what point of discomfort will you no longer be able to pull this chain and make the loop stop getting smaller?

If you look at either a martingale collar or a prong collar - they are made entirely different and can only tighten so far. When properly fitted, they barely tighten at all, making it impossible to harm or strangle your dog.

Training your dog with "pop" corrections with a choke collar is like teaching a two year old child with a punch in the face.

July 16th, 2007, 01:18 PM
Most trainers and people I've talked to recommend a prong collar over a choke collar any day. Choke collars can actually do much more long term damage than a prong collar- and I definitely like the idea of the martingale collar.

Helix, our 8 month old Alaskan Klee Kai, is a northern breed (aka husky/ spitz type). They do require a firm owner and a lot of training because they are independent. Unlike breeds like collies and shepherds, they were bred to think on their own for their required job (pulling sleds). So they don't always think they need to listen to their owner. That's why a husky or a malamute is not recommended as a first dog for an inexperienced owner :)

Training classes are SO helpful. You may think you can learn how to teach your dog from a book, but a trainer can teach you first hand how to properly train. There are so many small details that can be overlooked in a book, but you can pinpoint with a trainer in a class to learn faster and more consistently.

You don't need to train your dog 12 hours a day! Huskies/ mals get bored really fast of long training sessions. What you need to do is several short sessions with really really yummy treats (less than 5 minutes each). Find something your dog LOVES more than anything and won't take his eyes off you when he knows you have it (for Helix, cheese is the only thing that works). For example, we do recall training everyday with Helix but 5 times a week we go to a park and put him on a 50 foot rope and practice. He will be really really reliable at first, but at about recall #10, he stops caring. So we stop- we always need to set him up for success, not failure. The same thing happens with sit/down stay training- we can only do it maybe 5 times for 20-30 seconds each time before he gets bored and refuses to stay for any length of time. We are building him up to the point where he will do what we ask, but it takes time and effort and patience on our part and maturity on his part.

Negative reinforcement or punishment-based training has really become a thing of the past. Only really experienced trainers will use these methods in rare cases where positive training just isn't working for a dog with "issues". And not letting your dog do what it wants is not bad, just don't hit or yell when it does something you don't want. Nothing in Life is Free (NILIF) is a great way to show your dog that you are in charge and he must look to you for anything he wants. Google it for more information!

July 17th, 2007, 07:22 AM
Training your dog with "pop" corrections with a choke collar is like teaching a two year old child with a punch in the face.

this is a moronic comparison if i may say so myself; it almost shows ignorance to me

and for the last time

i DO train with treats sometimes, and without other times

i was simply asking about how to get him to calm down when he gets riled up

NOT how to/WHERE to train him

i have planned on taking classes, i said that before


July 19th, 2007, 11:29 PM
Hi! Not attacking here, just offering a couple of suggestions that worked pretty well with my dog (which we think is a mal mix).
I used the choke chain, but fastened it so that it wouldn't choke. Hooking the leash clip through a couple of the links. That way you can get it tight enough that they can't slip out, yet don't have to worry about it causing damage if she should throw another fit. The correction still seems to work because when you give it, the collar will clang, and get there attention (it took me a few tries to learn to get it to clang, "pop" down, or to the side, so you don't damage the wind pipe).
Doing it this way, you can use the "choke" chain even for your regular walks, and reinforce the idea that you are the boss at all times.
My girl just turned 1, and is very active we try to get in at least 2 hours of exercise a day. You might want to see if there is an off leash park in your area, the one here is great for exercise and socialization.
You probably don't want to have her pulling much weight at this point, but you may want to start looking into dry land mushing (using carts, scooters or bikes) to start some of that training (once you have some basic ob) until you get snow for her to pull on. Also on that note (and you may already know this), they need a special harness for pulling, not a regular walking harness.

July 20th, 2007, 12:33 AM
Training your dog with "pop" corrections with a choke collar is like teaching a two year old child with a punch in the face.

This is EXACTLY what it's like.

this is a moronic comparison if i may say so myself; it almost shows ignorance to me

Ignorance? Who's the experienced dog owner/trainer here? Certainly not you.

Put the choke collar around your arm & pop it with the same strength as you do to your puppy for the same number of times per day & see how sore your arm is.

Cally was rescued by me when he was 6 yrs old & his previous owners (while not bad people just not experience enough to have a large dominant dog & they didn't socialize him properly) used a choke collar on him & everytime I took it out of the drawer he would growl, obviously his reaction to being corrected with it {I never used a choker on him}.

A choke chain is not something that should be used by inexperience/first time dog owners. More often than not it is put on improperly, and a book can not give you feedback if you have it wrong.

If your dog doesn't obey your every command the first time it does not mean he is disrespecting you, he is testing to see what he can get away with - he is after all still a puppy. The dog does not need to be pop corrected with you saying NO everytime, HE WILL TUNE YOU OUT & NEVER LISTEN TO ANOTHER THING YOU SAY. The No command is over used by most people & then they wonder why the dog doesn't listen.

If he doesn't obey the first time wait ten seconds to let him make up his mind & used the command again if he doesn't do it then, after that you can gently correct him.

When you correct him & say NO! You are confusing him because he doesn't understand what the NO! was for - you've corrected him already- he didn't DO something wrong (ie digging, jumping etc).

For example
You tell him Sit, he doesn't, then you correct him Tell him to Sit (don't say NO!) No is a command for when they have done something they shouldn't have, not for when they did nothing - that will only confuse him leading him to think he is smarter than you & therefore why should he listen to you.

I'd be very careful about the tap on the nose as a correction too, often times dogs will get fed up with that & turn around & bite your finger.

As for trainers your best place is a group obedience class where he can also get socialized with other dogs at the same time.

Dog lovers live in harmony with their dogs they do not rule over them like tyrants.

July 20th, 2007, 08:23 AM
Dog lovers live in harmony with their dogs they do not rule over them like tyrants.

dog lovers also have problem dogs; dog leaders and owners have well behaved dogs.

i refuse to have a dog that views me as ANYTHING but its alpha/master. when i say lay down, my dog is going to go lay down because that is what i need him to do at that time. there is no negotiation about it.

im sorry that you think correcting a dog is cruel; but since correcting him with the choke collar for ONE SESSION of training he listens to every command on the FIRST request.

he IS trying to see what he can get away with; and i am showing him the answer... NOTHING

all i wanted was an asnwer to how to calm him down without alpha rolling him; instead i got 45,000 bleeding heart answers about how cruel i am to my dog. you people are out of control.

all of the dog owners (at least 5 or 6) in my town i have spoken with used choke collars; and they have extremely well behaved dogs that do not hate or resent them, they show constant affection to them -- and by the way putting it around my arm and popping it is another ignorant response, maybe my thigh would be more appropriate; the dogs neck/shoulder muscles are extremely strong; he is a sled dog.

stop humanizing a dog; they need to be taught what is expected of them

the useful responses i got were OC Spirits, HP, and the NILIF training response(which i have been doing unknowingly, i make him sit/stay before he comes in the house, before he eats, before i pet him etc) some of you just felt like berating me for no reason.

July 20th, 2007, 09:00 AM
dog lovers also have problem dogs; dog leaders and owners have well behaved dogs.

THAT is an ignorant statement from someone who has never had a dog.

My dog had dominance issues because his first owners were inexperienced & not open to alternative suggestions, they brought in a personal trainer & he never was socialized properly.

The main problem here is you are not willing to think that maybe your way is not the right way and will not accept suggestions that contradict what you have firmly planted in mind as what is right.

im sorry that you think correcting a dog is cruel

I never said to correct a dog is cruel I said an inexperience/first time dog owner should not be using a choke collar because more often than not it is not used properly - there are kinder alternatives

-- and by the way putting it around my arm and popping it is another ignorant response, maybe my thigh would be more appropriate; the dogs neck/shoulder muscles are extremely strong; he is a sled dog.

It does not matter what kind of dog (I know what a sled dog is I had 2 Sibes) it is or where you place the choker on you the force & number of times of correction is what counts

I pity the dog that has to live with you

July 20th, 2007, 09:10 AM


[edited by Carnac]

July 20th, 2007, 09:18 AM
refuse to have a dog that views me as ANYTHING but its alpha/master. when i say lay down, my dog is going to go lay down because that is what i need him to do at that time. there is no negotiation about it.

It sounds to me you've got a problem getting respect from other people, Kigndano, and you're taking it out on your dog. THIS is one situation you're gonna control, right? I'd like to take a bite out of you myself (and not the good kind).

July 20th, 2007, 09:22 AM


[edited by Carnac]

ARe you serious or a troll? :eek:

You have a puppy for goodness sake! You really expect it to learn something the first time you try to teach it!?! I certainly hope you never try to shop in a foriegn country.

I have just one more thing to say before I finish posting to you.

From reading your posts and about your methods of "training" your dog, I predict that at some point you will be here looking for advice on how to deal with a dog that is so afraid of you that it a) just shuts down or b) has become a fear biter.

Honestly - I know several people who live in Ma. that could teach you how to teach your dog without being an abusive bully.

Dog Dancer
July 20th, 2007, 11:26 AM
Wow, interesting thread here. I am not going to offer any advice to Kigndano, as she doesn't really want any. All I can say is it's a shame she's taken this agressive attitude because while it may not be what she wants to hear, Kigndano, the people on this board have sooo much knowledge and experience to offer you help. I don't know who's being more stubborn the pup or the owner. Good luck and definitely try to find a better training situation than the pet store. If you do go pet store ask them what qualifications their trainers have - do they do obedience trials with dogs of their own or are they just store staff who get extra $$ for doing classes?

July 22nd, 2007, 09:05 AM
i think its beyond funny that you try to read into the type of life i have, and if i get respect from people based on an internet thread.

"sounds to me like you don't get respect"

sounds to me like you're a wannabe shrink

honestly, get over yourselves.

i will use a chain collar on walks to teach my dog to walk properly.
i will train him with treats sometimes, and without treats other times.

by the way, im a he. and to the internet tough guy who wants to fight, all i can do is laugh inside; because --
1. you're probably a woman who is half my size, and 2. you're an internet thug on a pet message board.

i wanted one piece of advice, now i have everyone thinking i'm choking my dog to death. get a clue, get a life and drop it.

no wonder that guy who posted about the shelter dog felt attacked; you all act holier than thou and its extremely condescending and obnoxious. my dog sits/stays/downs/comes on command now.

i will take those results thanks. and he still comes to greet me and lick my face and wag his tail, so im pretty sure he doesn't hate me or fear me.

you guys are a joke sometimes

July 22nd, 2007, 09:11 AM
You really expect it to learn something the first time you try to teach it!?! I certainly hope you never try to shop in a foriegn country.

From reading your posts and about your methods of "training" your dog, I predict that at some point you will be here looking for advice on how to deal with a dog that is so afraid of you that it a) just shuts down or b) has become a fear biter.

Honestly - I know several people who live in Ma. that could teach you how to teach your dog without being an abusive bully.

holy crap,
did you read the post?

the dog knows the commands, he refused to do them unless i had a treat; so i didn't put a choke collar on him, say sit and then jerk his neck around 15 times. you're an idiot that jumped to a conclusion.

i have been to a foreign country and bought things, and that was a stupid attempt at dry humor

finally, if my dog puts teeth on me, i tap him on the nose, say no and ignore him...god im such a bully

July 22nd, 2007, 09:52 AM
This thread has run its course.

Thanks to all the members that gave EXCELLENT advice to the OP that will be appreciated by future members and guests. :thumbs up