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The Case of the Skiddish Doberman.

May 2nd, 2012, 11:42 AM
Hey everyone. The younger of my two dobermans, Logan, is reacting negativley to training. Logan has a history of people not wanting him (this is his 3 home:(). There is nothing wrong with Logans disposition, he is the perfect family dog. But he is an intact adolescent doberman with the energy level to prove it :evil:. When it came time for Logan to begin more advanced training (speaking, rolling over, show standing) he will freeze up go tense, and become immeadiatley skiddish. I have taken a critical look at my behavior during these sessions and found no obvious explination. I use high value foods and I am sure to mark the occasion with either a clicker and high pitched praise. However Logan seems stressed; Logans ears are down, he gets excited but it seems restrained. I guess I am questioning wether I am the right person to train this dog. I trained my other dog Capone with great ease and good results. Just looking for some feedback.

Dog Dancer
May 2nd, 2012, 12:26 PM
Welcome dobeownerx2. Are you training Logan for show or just for a family pet? How old is Logan exactly since this is his 3rd home? Just a couple questions to get a bit more info. Tks.

May 2nd, 2012, 12:46 PM
Do you have good engagement with him? It sounds like he needs to find the fun in what he is doing.

May 2nd, 2012, 12:46 PM
How long are your training sessions usually?

May 2nd, 2012, 01:13 PM
Logan is 2 years and 3 months old. I am hoping to train him for show and agility. The last home he was at he was being developed for Schuntzhund (?).

May 2nd, 2012, 01:20 PM
I would have to say that I have a good engagement with Logan. I only adopted him about 8 months ago, so. Our training sessions are short about 7-10 minutes. Before training he goes on a long walk with Capone and then I separate them for training.
Logan gets excited for just about everything, if you act excited he goes all silly (we call him wiggles). But when it comes down to training, he is very reserved almost scared to have fun. I try to get very upbeat before and during our training sessions.

May 4th, 2012, 09:46 AM
Poor guy.
If he was trained aversively for shutzhound, it may be that he has come to associate training sessions with punishment. I think the best thing you can do is stay the course. Pay attention to his body language and work at his pace, the PR training should really give him confidence in you and himself.

For the stand for show, are you molding him? You could also throw in some general counter conditioning to handling and your hands coming over his body just to help him relax.

Honestly though, I think time will sort this out :)

May 4th, 2012, 09:52 AM
I don't know if I am moulding him. But I do stroke him gently from neck to tail. I try to talk gently to him to reassure him but maybe you are right, time heals all wounds. I don't know much about Shuntzhound but I am positive this had something to do with his skiddish attitude towards training. What body language should I look for? All he does is tense up, I keep calm and gentle but it doesn't seem to matter. Should I not show collar him or what am I doing wrong.

May 4th, 2012, 09:56 AM
Just to share with you. I had 2 dobies and a manchester (part of the dobie line) and both the males were skiddish. No problems with the female. I did agility with my manchester, much more relaxed and more fun.

May 4th, 2012, 09:59 AM
So are they just skiddish? I don't know; these dogs have fearless disposition genetically programed into them. This is the first doberman that I have encountered that reacted in a negative fashion when it came time for training.