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My Collie's Behaviour

GoodKayla
August 20th, 2004, 08:38 AM
We have an 11 month old purebred female sable rough collie. She has been with us since a pup at 8 wks. and has been showing signs of timidness and nervousness lately as she grows older. She cowards away from anything new and lately she spooks from any sudden move by us or noise in/out or around the house. She will no longer go outside alone, and will not accept food or treats by hand anymore. She has shown a lack of interest with her toys and when we try to initiate play with her toys, she cowards away. Last night really concerned me, as she would not leave the livingroom when called, and displayed signs of stress and nervousness. We have noticed this trend over the past couple of months which coincides with the start of her heartworm and flea medications and occassional short stays at a local kennel. Can anyone give advice on this subject.

heeler's rock!
August 20th, 2004, 09:15 AM
Hi! It seems like your dog is behaving this way because of her short kennel stays. Collies are usually timid dogs to begin with, but leaving her at a kennel probably scared the living crap out of her! Kennels are noisy and LOUD. She probably just wasn't used to the noises and being cooped up in a dog run all day, and all night long. Most collies are generally quite meek and leaving her in an unfamiliar place, with dogs barking, things falling, etc., etc., makes me think that that's is what is causing her sudden change. Just a thought. Maybe look into someone who does in home boarding, rather than a kennel, or even a house sitter while you are away.

LavenderRott
August 20th, 2004, 09:23 AM
I had a collie several years ago and she was anything but timid. Even flew her halfway around the world with no problems what so ever.

I would take her to the vet and have a complete workup done. Drastic changes in temperment can be caused by illness.

Lucky Rescue
August 20th, 2004, 09:27 AM
There's a few possibilities.

Where did you get your dog? Have you spoken to the breeder? This kind of fear can be genetic.

The kennel stays could be the problem. Is this a kennel you are familiar with and have used with other dogs? Did you get references and thoroughly check it out? I know I took my last dog (part collie) to one kennel, and he came home anxious and nervous. I feel the kennel owner was abusive, even if only verbally.
I found another kennel, and he was just fine.

What kind of heartworm preventative is she on? Collies are extremely sensitive to some medications, and Ivermectin is one of them.

GoodKayla
August 20th, 2004, 09:51 AM
Thanks so much for the replies. My collie's kennel stays have never been any longer than 4-6 hours at a time and I believe she has been there 3 times now. I do agree about the noise; when I have dropped her off, the noise in the kennel is even scary to me. I don't really want to leave her there anymore, in case this has been the cause of her behaviour change. I knew about the danger with collies and Ivermectin, so we put her on Interceptor. I am going to contact the breeder for his input, and agree that a complete workup at the Vet should be done. It breaks my heart to see her act this way, and hope we can overcome her problems. If anyone else has any suggestions, please don't hesitate to let me know.

MIA
August 20th, 2004, 11:22 AM
I would suggest some obedience training, agility, fly ball something that will help her confidence, go to a positive reinforcement trainer as she's already timid, she won't need any correction, just motivation, by the sounds of it! Do talk to the breeder. Also don't baby her, build her up when she does somthing good. If she goes in the yard alone, throw a party! Ignore the timid behaviour and reward the brave behaviour!

Good luck!!!! :o

Luba
August 20th, 2004, 11:23 AM
Welcome to the world of timid collies!!

First of all you MUST show me a picture, I have a sable rough 8.5 months old myself :D from a rescue!

Female collies can tend to be more timid then the males and sometimes for very unusual reasons.

Has anything changed in the house or can you remember a specific incident that really upset her?

My girl Sadie has had some rather unusual fears that I"m working on and for the most part a lot of them have passed but there are a few that hold on.

Is your household loud? If people are shouting and upset or even talking loudly to one another this can affect your dog a great deal.

Sadie gets used to it now but sometimes just having a loud discussion used to upset her say if someone was downstairs and you're upstairs shouting so they can hear you...she would get upset, bark and want to scratch at your mouth to get you to stop.

You're going to have to be gentle with your girl through desensitizing her of her fears. Don't force her too much into situations she doesn't like or it will have the reverse affect.

You may have to think of something that triggered this behaviour. Then that will help you to guide her.

Right now I'm working on her fear of basketballs lol!

Here's my girl pleaaaaaaase let me see yours, whats her name?

boris
August 20th, 2004, 11:39 AM
Thanks so much for the replies. My collie's kennel stays have never been any longer than 4-6 hours at a time and I believe she has been there 3 times now. I do agree about the noise; when I have dropped her off, the noise in the kennel is even scary to me. I don't really want to leave her there anymore, in case this has been the cause of her behaviour change. I knew about the danger with collies and Ivermectin, so we put her on Interceptor. I am going to contact the breeder for his input, and agree that a complete workup at the Vet should be done. It breaks my heart to see her act this way, and hope we can overcome her problems. If anyone else has any suggestions, please don't hesitate to let me know.

The problem is not medical. The problem is the breed of dog you chose. It is what it is. As a general rule, for lack of a better term, collies are complete cowards. Except maybe for Lassie, who once pulled me out of a well back in the summer of 1965. Thank you, Lassie.

Your dog is getting older and now is starting to show its true colors. The only chance you have is to immediately take your dog to training classes where there will be a lot of commotion, people and animals, and never stop the intense training and exposure to people, animals and total chaos. But it's still going to be a collie, so I wouldn't get my hopes too high. A pack animal it's not. For the next 10 years, expect a lot of diving under the bed.

Luba
August 20th, 2004, 11:46 AM
Whoa now Boris thats quite the exaggerated version of the truth!!

Collies are not cowards generally speaking. I had another before Sadie that was the complete opposite AND have belonged to collie groups where this timidity behaviour is seen moreso in the females then the males.

These dogs need jobs to build their confidence level, they are a herding breed. I can't imagine a breed able to herd hundreds of sheep and cows for well over 150 years to be catagorized at cowards. :(

LavenderRott
August 20th, 2004, 12:25 PM
If this new behavior is a complete opposite of earlier puppy behavior then it could have a medical basis. To dismiss that possiblity completely with a dog you have never met is one of the irresponsible things I have seen posted in a while.

Luba
August 20th, 2004, 12:27 PM
Agree w/u LavR

Writing4Fun
August 20th, 2004, 12:30 PM
Boris? Are you back again?

Ignore him, folks. We don't need another hijacked thread for his amusement (and I'm sorry that I ever contributed to the last one).

Lucky Rescue
August 20th, 2004, 12:35 PM
The problem is not medical. The problem is the breed of dog you chose. It is what it is. As a general rule, for lack of a better term, collies are complete cowards.

On what experiences do you base that? In fact, timidity is considered a fault in this breed, and is NOT characteristic.

I consider these remarks to be deliberately inflammatory, and therefore trollish.

If you are not trolling, but merely ignorant, please educate yourself before making such sweeping generalizations and ridiculous remarks.

Luba
August 20th, 2004, 01:03 PM
Oh my bad this is a Troll I'll ignore him, tx for the heads up folks!!

glasslass
August 20th, 2004, 01:12 PM
Den-Den was exhibiting this behavior for awhile. We finally realized he was sensitive to the noise from the videos we were watching. At the time, we had a friend living with us and he and my hubby would watch guy-type videos with lots of shoot-em-up, bang-bang, loud chase scenes, screaming, violence, etc. The loud violence was frightening Den-Den! I said enough! Den-Den has been fine ever since!

pattycakes
August 20th, 2004, 02:17 PM
My puppy is mixed shep/collie(border collie, regular collie who knows?), when we got her at 4 mos. from a shelter she was scared of everything. With patience she has become alot better but still goes nuts when she hears a siren or bells whether from the TV or outside. I don't think they are cowards just very sensitive to noises and new things. At first Abbey wouldn't walk towards a lady with an umbrella, then a guy threw out a couch for garbage and she wouldn't walk past it because it was not there before. She barks at wooden dogs :D , and a ceramic cat my neighbour has on her porch. What a silly girl!!!! I guess
time and patience - it used to take 30 minutes to walk past 5 or 6 houses, now Abbey is very confident and very little on the street scares her ( as long as they
aren't using a siren anyway :D )

GoodKayla
August 20th, 2004, 02:43 PM
Here you go Luba; this is my girl Kayla. I spoil and baby her a great deal which I can't help, and she is praised and rewarded for her good behaviour at playtime and obedience. I will have to work on building her self-confidence with issues that appear to stress her. I have taken note of all the comments and plan to investigate them all further. Thanks so much everyone....

GsdDiamond
August 20th, 2004, 02:45 PM
She's adoreable!!!!! I'm sure things will get better! It's amazing what love and patience can overcome.

Writing4Fun
August 20th, 2004, 02:54 PM
Stunning! (There goes my soft spot for Collies again!) :D

Just make sure that, when she does behave fearfully, you don't reassure her (petting her, telling her it's ok to be scared). When she makes progress towards acting brave, then you can love her up and give her treats. ;)

Good luck!

Luba
August 20th, 2004, 03:24 PM
Tear in my eye!! Kayla is BEAUTIFUL omg what a sweet girl she is

I have the same post opposite direction here u go LOL

Edited to add:
Does she play with other dogs very often? This can really help her out a lot! It has helped my Sadie a great deal. I make an effort to give her time to play off lead with other dogs. She loves it.

GoodKayla
August 20th, 2004, 05:59 PM
Stunning! (There goes my soft spot for Collies again!) :D

Just make sure that, when she does behave fearfully, you don't reassure her (petting her, telling her it's ok to be scared). When she makes progress towards acting brave, then you can love her up and give her treats. ;)

Good luck!

Very good point, thank you. I have been doing just that, petting her and telling her its OK. I keep forgetting how a dogs mind works. This has been quite an education for me, as Kayla is my first dog. I have always been a cat person in the past, but was encouraged to get a dog for protection and as a companion, due to our isolated location in cottage country, Ontario.

goldenblaze
August 20th, 2004, 06:17 PM
Both girls are adoreable :D
My boss owns a male Teddy, he is a blue merle what a sweet child he is. Teddy is large and a big baby you take kisses from Teddy until he has had enough :p not the other way around. I love him a bunch.

Luba
August 20th, 2004, 06:42 PM
The best thing to do when she is afriad is to distract her.

Lets wait and see how things go with her leg, that could be the whole cause of this, she is afraid to hurt it or slip on the floor.

I bet she'll be better in no time :D

boris
August 20th, 2004, 07:08 PM
Whoa now Boris thats quite the exaggerated version of the truth!!

Collies are not cowards generally speaking. I had another before Sadie that was the complete opposite AND have belonged to collie groups where this timidity behaviour is seen moreso in the females then the males.

These dogs need jobs to build their confidence level, they are a herding breed. I can't imagine a breed able to herd hundreds of sheep and cows for well over 150 years to be catagorized at cowards. :(


A collie herding a sheep and a cow is not exactly the canine version of Dirty Harry. Pretending that most collies are not cowardly and timid is like saying pit bulls make terrific service dogs for the blind. Not exactly true. Whenever there's a clap of thunder, millions of collies simultaneously dive underneath the nearest couch.

boris
August 20th, 2004, 07:19 PM
I would suggest some obedience training, agility, fly ball something that will help her confidence, go to a positive reinforcement trainer as she's already timid, she won't need any correction, just motivation, by the sounds of it! Do talk to the breeder. Also don't baby her, build her up when she does somthing good. If she goes in the yard alone, throw a party! Ignore the timid behaviour and reward the brave behaviour!

Good luck!!!! :o

Finally, somebody with common sense. Why are people so gung-ho to poke and prod an animal with tons of expensive medical tests when it's simply the tendency of a breed that is to blame? A collie is a collie. A battery of medical tests? Please.

My Siberian Huskies have gotten almost out of puppyhood. They're starting to howl more often. Oh, no. This means it's obviously a serious medical problem. It obviously has absolutely nothing to do with the fact a Siberian Husky starts to howl as it gets out of the puppy stage. Somebody call the veterinary emergency squad.

boris
August 20th, 2004, 07:31 PM
On what experiences do you base that? In fact, timidity is considered a fault in this breed, and is NOT characteristic.

I consider these remarks to be deliberately inflammatory, and therefore trollish.

If you are not trolling, but merely ignorant, please educate yourself before making such sweeping generalizations and ridiculous remarks.


Give me a break. Show me a collie that isn't suspicious of everything, and I'll show you a nine-foot midget. Their timid and suspicious nature is why collies make good watchdogs. It's also why collies make lousy watchdogs. They yap at every suspicious sound under the sun. It's certainly not a valid reason to stick a dog under a medical microscope. If you're going to advise somebody to waste their money on a worthless vet visit, then why don't you also pay their vet bill? Seems fair enough to me.

Luba
August 20th, 2004, 07:42 PM
Hey Boris come on over to my house and let my dog herd your MOUTH! :D

glasslass
August 20th, 2004, 07:54 PM
LUBA!! We don't let Sadie associate with that sort!!!

Lucky Rescue
August 20th, 2004, 08:11 PM
Boris I suggest you tone down your anger and lose the sarcasm and snideness. Maybe then people may be willing to have a discussion with you.

This is a PET board, and someone who shows the contempt for animals that you do is not really welcome.

Luba
August 20th, 2004, 08:14 PM
Belly sore from lauging @ that 'lass

You have a real good sense of humour!! ;)

Wouldn't want her to catch hoof and mouth disease!! :eek:

boris
August 20th, 2004, 08:15 PM
Boris I suggest you tone down your anger and lose the sarcasm and snideness. Maybe then people may be willing to have a discussion with you.

This is a PET board, and someone who shows the contempt for animals that you do is not really welcome.

Contempt for animals? What in the world are you talking about?

Lady_Eleven
August 21st, 2004, 02:23 AM
GoodKayla,

I'm sure you've already gotten many good responses, but I just wanted to mention one thing (I don't know if someone else has mentioned this), that puppies can go through a "fear stage" of being afraid of objects or noises (etc.) they previously wern't afraid of. My dog was fine about my rollerblades sitting on the shoe rack, up until about 7 months old or so when she was spooked to go anywhere near them. Or she became frightened of the bicycle outside chained up to the fence, and would bark at it madly while hiding behind me. If I tried to get her to check it out by going near it, she would try to drag me away from the area. She grew out of this with time though.

Good luck with figuring this out. By the way, very nice picture - she's a beautiful dog!

Cactus Flower
August 21st, 2004, 11:41 AM
Contempt for animals? What in the world are you talking about?


I'm guessing that your comments (in the "declawing" thread) stating that you were eating cat while posting might have helped people arrive at this conclusion.

Lucky Rescue
August 21st, 2004, 11:58 AM
I'm guessing that your comments (in the "declawing" thread) stating that you were eating cat

That, plus sneeringly labelling an entire breed as "cowards"(isn't that a rather subjective and overly emotional view??) and categorizing another species as "worthless" does make someone seem contemptuous in my books.

Of course, that's just MY opinion.;)

GoodKayla
August 21st, 2004, 12:12 PM
GoodKayla,

I'm sure you've already gotten many good responses, but I just wanted to mention one thing (I don't know if someone else has mentioned this), that puppies can go through a "fear stage" of being afraid of objects or noises (etc.) they previously wern't afraid of. My dog was fine about my rollerblades sitting on the shoe rack, up until about 7 months old or so when she was spooked to go anywhere near them. Or she became frightened of the bicycle outside chained up to the fence, and would bark at it madly while hiding behind me. If I tried to get her to check it out by going near it, she would try to drag me away from the area. She grew out of this with time though.

Good luck with figuring this out. By the way, very nice picture - she's a beautiful dog!

Thanks for your input. I can relate to what you are saying cause my collie has only just started these wierd 'fear' obstacles over the past month or so. She is now 11 months and was just fine a couple of months ago. I am hoping time will see them thru as just part of puppyhood.

GsdDiamond
August 23rd, 2004, 07:50 AM
My little girl (6 1/2 months) is starting to go through the second fear stage too. A flat of soda cans, not where they were last night....needs to be barked at. The neighbour put his trash out last night....needs to be barked at this morning. We're not just talking "what's that mom?" type of barking. We're talking hackles up, growling type of barking. Looks funny, especially when she's barking at a fallen tree branch or something.