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hmm, Odd..Sup wit dis?

babymomma
July 5th, 2009, 10:36 PM
Okie dokie.. yall know by now keely has her issues with people..

I brought her camping with me this weekend. We had neighbors on both sides of us (Something we are NOT used to) .. She didnt bark at them. Not once. She barked a scattered time when somebody would walk by but that was ok, she seemed to be acting like a NORMAL doggie... I brought her to the play ground where there were alot of kids/parents. She was ok at first. She was a little nervous when somebody would run, but other then that, ok. A little boy came over, and his aunt asked if he could pet/play with her. I agreed, because she is fine if approached in a nice manner. So, after a few minutes, she became comfortable enough to lay down, and totally ignore everything around her. I thought, GREAT. Which, i believe it was. When we were leaving, the little boy she was fine with started leaving to. He ran ahead and she started to bark/lunge. But settled down rather fast, compared to ussual.

now to the beach. When there was nobody on the beach, we let her off (no leash laws).. If i saw somebody enter the beach, i called her back and she would come and i would hook her on.. No problem.. We met a woman, her husband and her little boy , along with there dachsundxyorkie.. I had keely off leash, and she spotted them before me. She ran to them before i got a chance to call her, and she was FINE with them. Absolutely PERFECT. She was running with the boy, Playing with the dog, and greeting the people. Ok. Odd. But i'll take it.

While on the beach, if there were, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, or 10 people. She would bark, growl and LUnge and people.. She wouldnt stop. Some guy approached us, and even when she greeted him she would go after his sneakers. (not biting, but kinda like a wierd warning thing.)

I brought her to the airport. We parked next to a man that had his windo down. He had a little terrier x with him. We started chatting, he gtold me he could tell i was a dog lover, and i told him i could tell he was also a dog lover. She didnt make a peep at that man.. I walked from the truck, into the airport, passing a few people on the way that were standing up, just waitring for something. She was FINE. In the airport, i didnbt hold her, she walked on the floor,i had the leash short and she was by my side at all times, walking like a purrfect lady. there were alot of people. She made a quick little bark at 2 chicldren that were running and took her by surprise. After that we encountered MANY children running around, and she was, yet again. FINE. She was fine with everybody. She seemed relaxed, she walked with her ears back. She sniffed people if they let her. She was, I repeat FINE.

When we are walking. And 1 or a few people are walking towards us. THAT is were the problem arises. i dont get it. Im at a loss. And we are at a stand still in training because i just do not understand. I cant control her if somebody is walking towards us. We can be in a crowded room, and people walk towards us and she is perfect. But out on a street, or walking the boardwalk around a local pond. She is almost demon possesed or something. She wont take treats. She cant be redirected. I make her sit if i see somebody coming, and try to get her to calm down. but she ignors me totally. I stand in front of her to get her attention and she just looks out around me. I taught her the `focus`command but she will NOT focus on me if there is a person... Im just confused. I feel hopless. i just want my dog to be a happy, healthy, stable dog. i dont want her to live in fear. I want to be able to hire a behavourist... I just dont understand her... I think she is trying to protect me. I dont see it as all fear anymore. I think its a protective thing, mixed in with fear or something. Im so confused. I just dont know anymore.

I just had to post hojw wierd this is. I would think she would be more afriad of a crowd of people.. Its wierd...

TwinTails
July 5th, 2009, 11:03 PM
I was just watching the Dog Whisperer, and he said something that caught my attention: you can't go into any situation with preconceptions of the past. Whatever happens today is new, and if you expect bad things (tension, aggrivation, anger, fear, treppidation, etc), then they will happen - basically you need to be calm and assertive, relax and enjoy the company of other people. If she feels your energy is calm and relaxed, then she will reflect that :) You can see it when you engage with other dog lovers - you are calm and happy, so she is too. When you are nervous about rambunctious people and/or situations, she will feel it and react to it. Perhaps you need to calm yourself a bit before you engage in activities/situations, so that she will feel your calm demeanor. She sounds like she's getting so much better though, keep it up and you will soon have a lovely well socialized pupper :D

babymomma
July 5th, 2009, 11:04 PM
Oh, i should add that one of our camping neihbors consisted of like, 30 loud, disruptive, drinking teenagers. :D (Lotsa Good lookin' guys for me to look at.. haha)...

On a side note, Camping was great for both of us. We shared a camp site with Harley (The extremely overweight, very gentle, very beautiful yellow lab), My aunts new dog. A nine week old yellow lab. And i was always taking three of the dogs to the Grey, sandy beach, and to the fresh water for a swim (Salt water wass still too cold, even had ice bergs not to far off shore.. haha) .. We speant hours running around on the beach. My little cousin would watch the dogs and i would run up a very steep hill of sand and hide from keely. When my cuz told her to find me she would track me like a beagle! haha. It was awesome. We met lots of new people, and dogs. And we met to yorkies! They were 2 lbs each. They were sisters and VERY well behaved. I never heard a peep out of them! They had full length tails, and were SOOO beautiful. Funny thing is, keely wasnt fond of them! She tolerated them, but she wasnt fond.. both keely and the sisters were a year old in april! Keely was april 24th and theres was april 26th! how cool is that! lol.. I loved them. And there owner was awesome! Very nice lady!

mollywog
July 6th, 2009, 09:32 AM
TwinTails noted a very vaild point. (Whether Caesar said it or not- it makes sense to me)- you do need to go into new situations with a calm and positive demeanour- because your dog picks up on your energy.
I have been working through a few of the same issues with Molly- isn't it great when they 'pleasantly surprise' you? :thumbs up You have to try to make it so that is the only option. I would suggest no more off leash time until you are certain that she will have a positive reaction if someone were to show up unexpected. I would imagine she gets away with it with some people because she's just a "cute little dog", but other people may not appreciate her lunging at their feet, and imagine how terrible you would feel if she actually did bite.
Also, I am glad that you said you let her walk beside you in the airport instead of carrying her. When you carry her, you just encourage any of her negative behaviours, especially if she is protective of you.
Don't give up, she is still young and is learning about the big world around her. I am sure some other members will have some great advice for you. :goodvibes:

Tundra_Queen
July 6th, 2009, 10:01 AM
Maybe in the crowded airport with all the people walking around she knew it wasn't her territory so she wasn't possessive of it. But when people are walking towards U she is trying to protect u...maybe?


Debbie

bendyfoot
July 6th, 2009, 10:04 AM
what happens when people walk toward you, what do you do? Do you freeze? Call her to you? Tighten the leash? Keep walking towards the oncoming people?

babymomma
July 6th, 2009, 02:04 PM
Thanks guys. Ithought she was being protectivetoo.

When people walk towards us i just keep walking like normal.Im notsure what i should be doing in all honesty:o

yea, mollywog, i knew it was prtty iresponsible to let her off. But she was having a crappy time on eash while the others were allowed to run around...no more off leash time! I wish you the best with molly!I agree with theenergy thing. I try my very very very best to stay calm andwhatnot. Ive tried ignoring the people and the whole situation by talking to my momand just totally notpaying any attention to my surroundings.

Lynne_B
July 6th, 2009, 02:40 PM
Have you ever tried greeting the person as they come towards you? Sometimes that eases the pressure off the dog to greet or acknowledge that there's someone there. Dogs don't react the way they do for no reason, so something is setting her off, you just need to figure out what. What is happening at the first sign of a reaction (stiffening, standing taller, growl, stopping, staring, etc)? Could it be a person's posture, an article of clothing, facial hair, piercings, tattoos, hair color, nationality, hats, type of dog if they have one, etc? For us, we ran into an issue with our dog seemingly at random going up to certain people and barking. Barking loudly and emphatically as if to say, something's not right, or I don't like you. We had NO CLUE for the longest time what it was, until one day it clicked. He only barked at people at the offleash park that either did not have a dog with them, or their dog far away from them. So he was barking to tell us, "this person doesn't belong here". So what we started doing was praising him for letting us know that something was up, then we would greet that person and talk to them a bit, explain why he was barking and then introduce him. At the beginning, sometimes he would repeat the barking, at which point we'd say, that's enough, in a deeper tone, and he would stop, and then get all excited to meet someone new. Go figure :).

When you're walking, focus on your posture. Stand tall, shoulders back. Walk with confidence, no shuffling. Focus on your neck and shoulder area, as that is the area that holds the most tension, keep your shoulders loose and your head up. Enjoy the scenery while you're at it too. If your dog gets extremely fixated and won't stop, first, take a deep breath and don't panic. Then, change directions, and go for a little jog. Then, turn around and go towards the person again. At the first sign of fixation, again, turn around and jog in the other direction. Do a lot of patience training throughout the walk, get her to sit randomly, whether there is someone coming or not. Go for a little run, make it fun by weaving in and out of trees, changing directions, make the world your obstacle course basically. Engage her in play. Get her completely focused on you, and pretty soon she won't care about who's coming towards her.

bendyfoot
July 6th, 2009, 02:46 PM
There is a PROFOUND difference in any of my dogs while on walks, depending on my own state of mind and body language. If I'm at all keyed up, expecting trouble, etc., I get tight leashes, no focus and tangles. If, however, I take a deep breath, carry myself confidently, and EXPECT good behaviour, that's what I get...I can easily walk three dogs on loose leashes (i.e. can hold them with my pinkie fingers).

As you know, Gracie can be agressive to other dogs. I have to be on alert and totally aware of her body language at all times.

When we're walking, I make sure she's on a loose leash (is Keely on a nylon collar? harness?)...harnesses can escalate bad on-leash behaviour IMO...if you think about it, harnesses are designed for pulling (think sledding etc.) and can create tension and excited energy. Tension in the leash translates to tension in the dog and their behaviour.

I'm keenly aware of any shift in her energy/body language...I notice immediately if she starts to get a bit tense, her ear or tail carriage changes from something that is mere "interest" to "dominance" or "aggression", or if her mouth is no longer relaxed. When I see this, THAT'S the time I interrupt her behaviour. If I wait longer than that, it's too late and it will escalate to the point where it's much more difficult to get her focus off the point of interest (i.e. another dog) and back to me or our task (i.e. the walk).

I interrupt the behaviour in a few ways; it depends on her degree of focus on the other dog, how close we are to them, etc. I may start with a verbal correction, a loud, sharp "AH!". I may give her a leash correction, i.e. a brief sharp tug to the side. I may tap her rump/hip with my toe (trying to bend over and reach down not only takes longer but changes the body language I want to convey). These days, that's all I need to de-escalate/interrupt the aggressive posturing immediately.*

I NEVER slow down when a dog is in sight, in fact I may slightly lengthen my stride and move faster (remaining calm however). It's harder for a dog to lunge/act like an @ss when they're walking quickly. As I pass the other dog I ensure that I am between the two dogs. I act as both a physical and mental barrier for both animals.

Take "dog" here and replace it with "human"...you can try the same approach when dealing with humans on walks.


Another question for you: what's Keely doing when she's barking at people? Is she running backwards, standing her ground, lunging forward on the leash? What's her tail carriage like (up high, tucked)...wait does she still have her tail? Ears back or pricked high?

babymomma
July 6th, 2009, 03:03 PM
GREAT advice guys! Thank you SO much!

Bendy, i walk her on a harness, Because of her breed and because they are know for alot of tracheal issues. I tend to worry when she is on her normal nylon collar. The few times ive had her on her collar she seemed to respond better to me. It makes alot of sense. I really should start using the collar more.

I immediantly see her shift too. Her ears prick (Her ears fold back onto her head while walking/trotting) And her little nub of a tail sticks up straight and i can really really see the tension going through her body, she stands tall, as if she thinks she is a huge fila mastiff or something. She is so tense her head/ears shake, if you look closely enough. When she reacts like this, she tends to pull and try to get ahead of me. She barks, growls, and when they walk by us she lunges in their direction.

I am DEFINATLY going to pay much much much more attention to my posture!

I really appreciate this guys! :thumbs up Thanks

EndOfFashion
July 6th, 2009, 03:12 PM
Bendy, i walk her on a harness, Because of her breed and because they are know for alot of tracheal issues.



I was going to say the same thing...I know Yorkies are prone to collapsed tracheas. We have Milo wearing a harness because of the breathing issues, too. Luckily he walks really well...I don't know what I would do in your situation! Do you think you could ask your vet if he/she thinks it would be safe to use a collar, if only for a short period of time? He may be able to tell through a physical exam (maybe, I'm just guessing!) if the collapsed trachea is something you need to worry about in Keely's case...

Longblades
July 6th, 2009, 03:13 PM
Have you ever tried greeting the person as they come towards you?Just want to echo this whole idea. That's what worked best for us when my year old Lab girl got the notion it was her job to intercept all human threats, real or not. I noticed she did not bark at people I knew and, miracle of miracles, was able to deduce it might be because I greeted them. Once I took to yelling out, "hi, great day, how are you?" whether I knew them or not, she stopped barking at them. I also upped the obedience and put her in a sit beside me to let her know I was in charge, not her. She seemed quite relieved.

bendyfoot
July 6th, 2009, 03:14 PM
GREAT advice guys! Thank you SO much!

Bendy, i walk her on a harness, Because of her breed and because they are know for alot of tracheal issues. I tend to worry when she is on her normal nylon collar. The few times ive had her on her collar she seemed to respond better to me. It makes alot of sense. I really should start using the collar more.

I hear this about "tracheal issues" with small dogs a lot...but if she's walking on a loose leash, surely there's no risk of injury???

I immediantly see her shift too. Her ears prick (Her ears fold back onto her head while walking/trotting) And her little nub of a tail sticks up straight and i can really really see the tension going through her body, she stands tall, as if she thinks she is a huge fila mastiff or something. She is so tense her head/ears shake, if you look closely enough. When she reacts like this, she tends to pull and try to get ahead of me. She barks, growls, and when they walk by us she lunges in their direction.

What you're describing is not "fear" at all, it's dominance and aggression, pure and simple. If she was fearful, her ears and tail would be low and her posture would be lower to the ground. She's just a big bossy-pants!!!
You definitely want to stop the behaviour well before she gets to the barking/growling stage.

I am DEFINATLY going to pay much much much more attention to my posture!

I really appreciate this guys! :thumbs up Thanks

Keep in mind, that with a bossy-britches like this (and like my Gracie), you need to exercise the confidence and assertiveness at home, too. It was a whole package deal for us...managing Gracie's behaviour on walks was very closely linked to managing her behaviour at home, which we failed at the time to recognize as her attempt to fill the "pack leader" void at home...things like monitoring the property from windows (not just window-gazing, but actively going from window to window and then alerting if "something" was outside). We vigorously walked the heck out of her, morning and night, practiced basic obedience every day (no treats, just praise), interruped any obsessive or guarding behaviours (like at windows) and practiced NILFF. The difference was (and is) amazing...she started to just relax and let go. She was more restful, less obsessive, less possessive, just relaxed, AND more responsive to us when faced with her biggest challenge: other dogs. Now, IF she needs a reminder from me to relax when she sees another dog, you see all the tension drain away and the focus returns to me...you can pretty well see her say "thanks for keeping this situation under control, now I can relax".

bendyfoot
July 6th, 2009, 03:17 PM
I was going to say the same thing...I know Yorkies are prone to collapsed tracheas. We have Milo wearing a harness because of the breathing issues, too. Luckily he walks really well...I don't know what I would do in your situation! Do you think you could ask your vet if he/she thinks it would be safe to use a collar, if only for a short period of time? He may be able to tell through a physical exam (maybe, I'm just guessing!) if the collapsed trachea is something you need to worry about in Keely's case...

If you keep the collar high on the neck, pretty much right under the chin in front and right behind the base of the skull in the back, there should be little pressure on the neck itself...this is the best place to position a collar on a dog who's pulling or if you're doing leash corrections. Think about it...show dogs, even little yorkies or maltese are on micro-choke collars, which have the potential to be super-dangerous even on a large dog...but they're not because the handler is in control...it's not the collar that's the issue, it's the management of the behaviour.

babymomma
July 6th, 2009, 03:19 PM
I greet people ALL the time.. problem is, she will start her little fits before im close enough to greet them. Even if i greet while shes throwing her fit, it doesnt help. she is relentless.

EOF- Keely will be going to the vet within the next few weeks. They can 'feel' the trachea and see if its strog, or weak or something. I hope she can give me a go ahead with the collar thing.

On a side note, ive seen yorkies that have speant there whole lives being walked/tethored with a collar , because their owners dont know the differance. And I havent seen one yet suffer from it. But, with my luck, she would be the first one around to suffer from the use of a collar:rolleyes:

EndOfFashion
July 6th, 2009, 03:40 PM
That's the thing, Bendy - I'm sure the collar wouldn't cause a problem if the lead is loose, as you said, but if the dog is pulling and the owner is using leash corrections... :shrug: I do think it happens a lot less than Yorkie owners are led to believe, and there are other factors at play - since Keely seems to have come from a very good breeder, and since she isn't (or doesn't seem) overweight, the collapsed trachea thing is probably a non-issue for her. A collar may be the only logical choice to control her! I never thought about the dog show dogs and how high and tight their collars/leads are worn...

We are able to do leash corrections with Milo when he's wearing his harness, BUT he does not have the issues Keely has when on-leash. For him, it's simply a case of making sure he's heeling, so it's not the same situation.

Babymomma, I guess if you're already going to the vet you may just want to check - for your own peace of mind. But I have a feeling it's your best option, especially if you've noticed a difference when Keely is wearing a collar as opposed to a harness.

Good luck!

mollywog
July 6th, 2009, 04:10 PM
Sounds like you've been given some good advice here. :dog:
Just out of curiosity, what is Keely's role in your family? Does she sleep on your bed? Is she allowed on the furniture all the time? Does she always have food available to graze on? She may well see herself as the pack leader... Google "Small Dog Syndrome".
Let us know how things go in the next little while, good luck! :thumbs up

babymomma
July 6th, 2009, 04:31 PM
Bendy- I dont think its fear anymore. I thought it was fear because if people stopped to talk to us she would go into "flight" mode. Totally trying to avoid the people... A big problem with home, is, my parents.. I have been TRYING to do more work with her. When i try to make boundaries for her, they just let her do what ever she wants.Its so aggravating.

***IF i ever have children, nanny and poppy will NEVER be left alone with the children... NEVER.. lol ***


K, Im gonna start with when we are eating, she is no longer allowed to sit up with nany or poppy. She has to lie down and STAY on her blanket on the FLOOR. ..

GAWD, i really think this would be easier if i lived alone.

babymomma
July 6th, 2009, 04:34 PM
Sounds like you've been given some good advice here. :dog:
Just out of curiosity, what is Keely's role in your family? Does she sleep on your bed? Is she allowed on the furniture all the time? Does she always have food available to graze on? She may well see herself as the pack leader... Google "Small Dog Syndrome".
Let us know how things go in the next little while, good luck! :thumbs up

She sleeps with me. She is allowed on the furniture at all times and she has food available at all times (there is a reason for the food being available at all times.).. :o.. Furniture thing, I cant control. I can control her sleeping with me but that would be hard on both of us. But i can make her sleep in her kennell if necassary.

mollywog
July 6th, 2009, 04:40 PM
It sure can be tough when you have non-cooperative family members (especially when they are the ones paying the bills! :o) I would suggest looking into NILFF (Nothing in Life for free) training but I suppose your parents would make that next to impossible to adhere to. Does she sit on their laps at dinner time or something??
It sounds as though Keely has next to no boundaries and thinks she is the "Alpha" of the house. Why can't you feed her at set times??

bendyfoot
July 7th, 2009, 09:46 AM
A big problem with home, is, my parents.. I have been TRYING to do more work with her. When i try to make boundaries for her, they just let her do what ever she wants.

Eeek. Please remind your parents that they are doing Keeley a great disservice by letting her do whatever she wants. They are contributing to the creation of an unbalanced, uncertain, and stressed-out dog. Love and affection alone are not enough...dogs NEED limitations and boundaries.

K, Im gonna start with when we are eating, she is no longer allowed to sit up with nany or poppy. She has to lie down and STAY on her blanket on the FLOOR. ..

Abso-freaking-lootley. No way should she be sitting on someone's lap while they're eating!!!:eek: Expect a battle with the down/stay on the floor. But do. not. give. up. When we first got Gracie she was a holy terror. Getting her to stay in one place when asked could easily turn into a 6 hour battle. I'm not kidding. You have to stick to your guns. Tell her once what to do, then make her do it.
.

She sleeps with me. She is allowed on the furniture at all times and she has food available at all times (there is a reason for the food being available at all times.).. :o.. Furniture thing, I cant control. I can control her sleeping with me but that would be hard on both of us. But i can make her sleep in her kennell if necassary.

The furniture thing you absolutely can control. Put a house line on her. Claim the spaces as yours. If she gets on a peice of furniture, tell her to get off, then use the house line if you have to to remove her. Expect to do this eleventy-million times. This doesn't have to be forever, but with a bossy-britches, you HAVE to establish that the house and everything in it is yours, and she gets to use it only because you say she can. Once things settle down, you can definitely INVITE her up on the furniture.

Dealing with Keeley's issues is not going to be easy, nor is it going to happen overnight. You're going to basically turn the world upsidedown. It's likely to be incredibly frustrating for everyone involved for a while. BUT, once it becomes crystal clear that there are rules, and that your expectations (and the family's) are consistent, you're going to see incredible changes, and a much happier dog.

And why can't you feed her at set times?

babymomma
July 8th, 2009, 08:28 PM
I cant feed her at set times, because she is a finicky eater, we struggle to get her to eat. Ive tried setting food down on a shedual and picking it up 15 minutes later, weather she ate it or not.. She went 2 days without eating, that is dangerous for anydog, especially a small dog. So she nibbles enough kibble throughout the day to keep her at a good weight. She dont eat anymore then a tsp. at a time....

babymomma
July 8th, 2009, 08:42 PM
AND, OMG its working already!

So far we have mastered her staying on her blanket while we arte eating. If she gets on the furniture we mke her get off. She will stay off, until invited (That was the deal, mom said she could deal with making her stay off until invited up.) IF she gets on the couch and she is pushed off. We wait a great deal of time before she invited back up. She isnt allowed to stand up to the counter sniffing out the food around anymore.

Most importantly, I have changed. Its only been what? A day?

We went for 3 walks today. And encountered different things that set her off. Children on bikes set her off worse.

We encountered people. She didnt bark. She pricked her ears and was more aware of there presence, but a quick correction fixed that. She put her ears back and pranced on like a model citizen. I put my shoulders back, relax, and take a deeeeep calming breath, and it works!

We encountered children. She was okay. When i stopped to talk to a little girl in the community she made 1 little bark, but i Can control her so much better!

I was almost home. When i met her WORST enemy. A very sweet man. Whom is mentally 'disabled'. She (and other dogs, who are otherwise fine with all people) HATES him. That situiation, I was the same as in the others, but she still had a fit. I turned and jogged the other way, i made a correction. nothin worked. Maybe its because she can sense he is, "different":confused:
What do I do here? I mean, After her fit? Do i ignor it? Do i make her do somthing? After this incident, I put her in a 'down stay' (mainly for myself to cool down).. Then I pretty much practised some obediance on the side of the road. Sounds dumb but i really didnt know what to do. ME = :loser:

My mom took her for a little walk. And she met 2 girls walking down the road. Keey barked, but mom found it easier to calm her down.. I already told mom I dont want her to be taking her. I know she isnt going to do it right (Ive tried to show her the proper way, but, well.. Mothers:rolleyes:) I dont want her to ruin any progress we make:o I would LOVE for the whole faimly to get involved , but, i dont see it happening. :sad: Im not getting much support.

Still cant bring myself to stop her from sleeping with me. Im sorry, Im weak:o

Animal-Princess
July 8th, 2009, 09:48 PM
Okay, well obviously she loves you more than anything in the world, right? She is definately being protective. She is quite small and when someone so big aproaches, she feels threatened. Think if there were some 8 foot tall guy walking toward you and your mommy, that would be scary, right? You should definately let her know that it's okay. Try greeting people soothingly with a creamy voice, that might help with her nerves. I would also try coconut oil, you can buy some at any health food store. Make sure it is Extra Virgin Coconut Oil, and then put about 1/2 a teaspoon per about 2.5 kg and you just melt it in a mimicrowave and then put it into her food, she will most likely think of it as a treat, but try to continue doing it, the results will be amazing, I can Guarentee. You can also try putting a tiny bit on your hand and then massage it into her head, this often really calms their nerves, and it will take effect very quickly. If you do it every day for a while, you should notice some difference in behavior and such. Hope this Helps!!

Animal-Princess

Lynne_B
July 9th, 2009, 10:17 AM
It's possible that she senses that he's different. Have you ever tried acknowledging her reaction (eg. Thanks for letting me know Gracie, good girl), and then just stopping and introducing yourself to him and talk to him a bit, so she can see that it's ok? That way you are assuming control of the situation instead of her. Also, if you know that he's coming and she hasn't seen him yet, you can also take control by saying Gracie, who's that up there, lets go say hi. So that way you are acknowledging that he is there before she feels the need to tell you that something's up. The only way to really deal with it when they get their back up about something like that, is to desensitize them, and see how it goes.

As for the bed thing, why don't you try a trial period? Try having her sleep on her own bed on the floor for one week, and see if it makes a difference in her behaviour. Then if you find you can't do it, that's fine, but the changes you see may make it worthwhile for you. You can always have cuddle time on the floor before bed too. Same goes with the couch, if your parents want to cuddle with her, they can sit on the floor and cuddle with her. Another exercise to try with her is no talking. Start to teach her hand signals for commands, and show affection through petting her and massaging her, and it helps you to focus more on what your body language is telling her. You'll also be surprised at how much better she'll listen to you afterwards. You've gotta think, dogs don't understand english, so they have to cut through all the words you say to find the one that's telling them to do something, it's no wonder they only listen half the time! We did this exercise with our dog for 2 weeks, and now he listens to hand signals more than words, it's pretty cool.

mollywog
July 9th, 2009, 05:45 PM
Animal Princess- this is the first I have ever heard of coconut oil being "calming" to dogs. Where did you hear that, and how exactly does it work? Call me a skeptic, I've just never heard of that. :shrug:

babymomma
July 9th, 2009, 10:41 PM
Okay guys.. This is fricken REDICULOUS!

Ive been working with this dog for MONTHS... Suddenly i enforce some very very SMALL rules. And I have a totally different dog! My mom is absolutely stunned. As am I really. Honestly, I think what is making the differance is my body language. Shoulders back, relaxed, take a calming breath and BAM, new dog. Not barking, growling OR lunging at people! We passed by alot of people today with no fuss. Although we passed 2 different mentally challenged people and she made 1 or 2 barks at each of them. So much easier to control ..


THANK YOU! Im kinda kickin' myself in the a$$ for not doing these things before (even though i didnt know it before).. Ack! I have an almost normal dog . (we obviously still need some work, but the frickin improvment in the last two days. Its just. Un-fricken-believable!


I feel like running around randomly, and crying, and doing a happy dance all at once. :crazy:

TwinTails
July 9th, 2009, 10:49 PM
:thumbs up :grouphug: :highfive: :lovestruck: :cloud9: :flirt: :2huggers: :laugh: :angel2: :party: :D:pawprint:

babymomma
July 9th, 2009, 10:53 PM
TT- That pretty much sums it all up:D:laughing::p

TwinTails
July 9th, 2009, 10:54 PM
Congrats! That is just simply awesome! You will loving your time with her even more now :D :grouphug: :highfive:

Lynne_B
July 10th, 2009, 09:23 AM
I'm so proud of you guys!! A year and a half ago, I was you, except instead of barking and growling, my dog was just pulling like crazy to the point that he was choking himself, and barking at random people. It's definitely empowering when you realize that a few small changes can make all the difference in the world. If they respond so quickly to body language like that, it makes you wonder what else you're telling them on a daily basis just by the way you're standing. I wish you guys the best, sounds like you're on the right track for sure.

:highfive::goodvibes:

bendyfoot
July 10th, 2009, 09:29 AM
:thumbs up :grouphug: :highfive: :lovestruck: :cloud9: :flirt: :2huggers: :laugh: :angel2: :party: :D:pawprint:


:clap: Yeah, that!!!

bendyfoot
July 10th, 2009, 09:37 AM
Wow, what amazing progress!!!! :D Sounds like your family is doing their best, it really is a big adjustment for everybody...

now with that person who really freaks her out...I would NOT talk all soothy-lovey-dovey at her to calm her down...IMO that's rewarding the behaviour, and her acting all "I've got to take charge and protect mommy" is NOT ok, since you're the one in charge and responsible for any "protecting".

I would work on desensitizing her to this man...when you see him nearby, walk towards him just close enough that you see her start to do those aggressive postures...interrupt it, then have her sit or lie down. Calm pats to praise calm behaviour. Maybe even give a little treat. Every time you see him, try to get a little closer...always end it on a positive note where she is calm and relaxed, even if it's from 50 ft away at first, and she's getting praise/affection for her good behaviour. Over time, hopefully, you'll be able to get closer and closer to him. Ultimately, my goal would be to have him able to hand her a treat, or even pet her, but I suspect that will probably take a while...it's a definitely a good goal, though. I also suspect that as you continue to restablish your role as the boss in the family, these kind of difficult situations will gradually become a little easier to manage.