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Old October 7th, 2009, 10:51 PM
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Lyrical44 Lyrical44 is offline
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Help...Trainer.

Ok. So I wont post again asking a question for an entire WEEK if you guys can help me now....

I got the final ultimatum today, Bennie gets trained, or he goes.

Tonight he decided to tear up a piece of the floor in our RENTAL, who didnt want him here in the first place, but said he could come, because I really didnt want to have to give him away.

Dont go into me about how "this is your fault, you werent watching" I know this, I turned around to make Bennies dinner, and he just...pulled up a piece of the floor!! I cant tie him to me, I cant do it, I watch him, I pay attention to him, I cant tie him to me, because I have school work to do, and I have other animals that he is hazardous to.

Im so broke I forego food for Bennie to have food, so its not like I dont love him, or try my hardest for him, because I have had him a year, and I have been trying to train him for a year, I admit, the first little while I was lax, because I had alot going on in my life, and he kept me really happy and was pretty well behaved as a puppy, but now I cant get him to stop...He was really good for 3 days or so, but today, he misbehaved soooo badly, I dont know what went wrong today, we started the day like usual, he went outside, and then I put him in his area, and went about my usual daily tasks, and he just started, he whined for no reason, he wasnt in pain, he isnt in pain, there isnt anything wrong with him, he just stared at me whining, like he knows something I dont, and I dont know whats going on.

I cant even take him to the vet until my money comes, and it isnt coming!! I dont know where it is, and im going crazy!!

Im so frickin upset, I dont know what to do, I have been taking your suggestions, Im being firm, Im praising him when he does good. I dont know what to do anymore...

Im not looking for someone to rag on me about my responsibility, thats why I am here, I want REALLY badly to keep Bennie, I dont want to get rid of him and now I am BEGGING for help to find a solution, I NEED a trainer, really badly.

I just dont have what it takes, he has seen me as the "momma" since he could walk around on his own, only Im the REALLY nice sweet never give the dog trouble because I dont want him to cry kind of momma. Sadly, if I had children I would be more strict with THEM than I am with the darn DOG, but he is so helpless...he cant talk, and tell me his problem and I just dont know what to do anymore.

Like I said, I need help finding a trainer, BADLY or my landlord will evict me if I dont get rid of Bennie, and its not Bennies fault, I need a trainer who is willing to either work for free, or get paid when I have money (I dont even know when that will be) Mom pays the rent, so really its her call what happens with the dog, because really she cant afford to be evicted either, and they CAN do that for destruction of the premisis....I dont know what to do, and now I am just lost...

Im Begging For help here....
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Old October 7th, 2009, 11:03 PM
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luckypenny luckypenny is offline
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Let's take this really slow. I want you to be totally honest....with yourself Lyrical44. Just how much exercise is Benny getting daily? Honestly?
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Old October 7th, 2009, 11:06 PM
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Bennie gets exercise...we play in the yard i play with him in the house, things are hectic right now, and maybe he could use a little more play time but i cant even control him on a lead or keep him from knocking me down or dragging me I try really hard to give him what he needs :'(
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Old October 7th, 2009, 11:09 PM
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Lyrical,

Why can't Bennie be tied to you when you're doing schoolwork? When I trained my dogs and introduced them to my house, I did umbillical with them when I folded laundry, when I made & ate dinner, when I was getting ready to go out, when I was reading a book or watching tv. It didn't matter if I was moving or not, they were with me. The point of umbillical isn't JUST to keep an eye on your dog. It's also to teach your dog to understand that YOU decide where it goes, when it goes, and how long it stays in one place for.

Why are your other dogs a problem here to keeping Bennie on umbillical?

I have to second LP's question. It sounds like you are very busy and have your hands full. Excercise is KEY to avoid boredom with your dogs.
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Old October 7th, 2009, 11:10 PM
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luckypenny luckypenny is offline
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Ok, that doesn't answer my question.

Most destructive behavior from dogs, especially young ones, are from boredom and lack of exercise. For free or not, that's the first thing a trainer will tell you.

How much exercise is he getting daily? In terms of actual time. 10 minutes? 30? 1 hour? how much?
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Old October 7th, 2009, 11:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lyrical44 View Post
Bennie gets exercise...we play in the yard i play with him in the house, things are hectic right now, and maybe he could use a little more play time but i cant even control him on a lead or keep him from knocking me down or dragging me I try really hard to give him what he needs :'(
First things first. Bennie needs more excercise, period. You cannot expect him to be satsified without more mental stimulation.

He knocks you down? This is insane! He needs to learn manners, and NOW. He needs more structure, more consistancy from the sounds of it.

What kind of collar are you using on Bennie, and when you take him for a walk, describe what it is like. How long you go for, where you go, what he does on leash.
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Old October 7th, 2009, 11:20 PM
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Ok I take Bennie out twice a day for play time, when we wake up we go out for 30 - 45 mins, and we play, he drags me around, jumps all over me, and knocks me down, not often I'm pretty tough, and usually I am ready for his jumping, but we do that again in the evening around 8, but I take him for 10-15 minutes a couple times in between that. He has either the living room or the hallway to play and interact with me and the dogs.

The reason the little dogs are a problem when Bennie is tied to me is because he stomps on them and I dont want them to get hurt.

Im trying to train him to stop draggin me around and jumping on me but its not working.
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Old October 7th, 2009, 11:22 PM
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I dont mean to get snarky...Its not intended, Im crying and I get a little flustered..please excuse me if I seem rude...Im not meaning to..
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Old October 7th, 2009, 11:24 PM
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my dad is going to bring Bennie's rope in tomorrow so that maybe he can get a little more exercise.
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Old October 7th, 2009, 11:25 PM
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First, going out in your backyard and playing with Bennie is good, but it doesn't sound like it is currently structured OR safe for you. The statement "I am usually ready for it" sounds like you're tolerating it which is unacceptable.

This dog should not be allowed or encouraged to jump. If that means you stop playing with him in the backyard, then you need to stop playing with him in the backyard. Bracing yourself for a dog to jump on you only encourages, and continues to teach him to do this.

You mentioned a lot of playing in the backyard but when does he get WALKS? Around your neighborhood?

If Bennie is on his leash, I would assume that he would be easier to control his movement around the little dogs compared to if he is off leash. Why does he stomp on them on leash but not off? I'm confused....
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Old October 7th, 2009, 11:39 PM
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no, I am not encouraging him, I watch for him jumping so I can correct him, put him back on all four feet on the ground, and then we walk to a different section of the yard so he gets that it was wrong.

I live in a new neighbourhood, and I dont know the other dogs here, at the moment Bennie doesnt leave the yard, I need him to a) know our yard and its boundrys, and b) not get hurt by the other dogs around here. He is afraid of other dogs outside the house. I know he needs to leave the yard for actual walks, but I keep hearing that this dog, and that dog on the road arent nice, and I worry for Bennie. He is afraid of dogs and people, and I dont know why..

Inside the house he tramples the little dogs and cats whether he is or isnt on a leash, so I keep them separated until I train him better. I have been working on training him really hard, it doesnt stop, I am talking to him all the time. I know, everyone says they are trying, but I really am I do the best I can for him with what I have.

Oh, Bennies collar is a nylon with two hoops, one is a choker and the other doesnt cut of his air supply. I use the one that doesnt cut off his air supply, Mom and I are looking into an anti-pull harness though.
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Old October 7th, 2009, 11:58 PM
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Are these other dogs 'strays', or in fenced areas? Is your yard fenced?

Part of your problem is that your dog is extremley bored and taking this out on you, your other pets, and your home. You NEED to walk him on leash out of your neighborhood, and keeping him at home will absolutley not do anything but hinder his socialization progress with other dogs, especially if he tends to be more fearful. Isolating him will not help.

Can you take a walk by yourself and find a great route for you and Bennie that doesn't involve running into any off-leash dogs?

Quote:
I am talking to him all the time
Stop talking to him, and your other dogs, period. Dogs tend to block us out when we do too much of this. (Mentally note how many times you have to ask him to sit, etc.) Give your dog his command once - twice - but no more. If he doesn't listen, physically MOVE him to make him do whatever it is you have asked without saying another word. Don't 'fluff' talk him while you are trying to train him either (no more telling him he's so handsome, so cute, etc.)

An anti-pull halter would be a good start, but also look into the martingale collars in replace of the collars. Chokes are certainly not the way to go to discourage your dog to pull, and without a trainer to show you how, can do more damage than good.
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Old October 8th, 2009, 12:08 AM
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I dont use the choke collar at all. I dont think asphixiating my dog will make him learn, period.

A martingale? I will do anything if it will help Bennie stop pulling. I want to be ABLE to walk him around the neighbourhood.

Bennie has met one of the neighbours dogs, she roams free all the time, which is why I dont want him outside unsupervised, but I think he needs time outside without me to play so he doesnt get annoyed with my constant presence and stop listening to me completely.

I usually only have to tell Bennie to sit once or twice, making him stay sitting is a totally different question.

There are only two directions I can go from my house, left or right, and both ways, many people let their dogs run loose, some are small dogs, and others are big. There arent any stray dogs on the road, just that the owners dont tie theirs up at all. I need to get Bennie leash trained before I can put him in a situation with other dogs, dont I? It seems to me unreasonable to walk a dog around other unpredictable dogs when I cant control him on his leash...How can I leash train him, because I wont be able to pick up the Martingale right away, i will have to wait till the end of the week at least.
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Old October 8th, 2009, 12:18 AM
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Quote:
Bennie has met one of the neighbours dogs, she roams free all the time, which is why I dont want him outside unsupervised, but I think he needs time outside without me to play so he doesnt get annoyed with my constant presence and stop listening to me completely.
I'm sorry Lyrical, I don't really understand this comment. Why would your dog be annoyed by your constant presence? You do not need to 'play' with your dog to keep him listening to you. In this way, it makes me think that you're viewing your dog as more of a 'friend' and a 'person' instead of an animal first. Dogs look to their owners for direction, and if you aren't providing it, they will not respect you. You may have a great bond with him, and he may love you, but respect is a different matter.

'Playing' with your dog in your backyard, is simply not giving him needed structure that it sounds like he's lacking. I understand why you're doing it, your intentions are great, but unfortunatley it could be making this situation worse.

Instead of taking him to your backyard to play, why not set out with a very serious intention of training in mind. Start practicing his sit/stay instead of 'playtime'. Working Bennies mind is going to exhausting for him instead of just getting him out to burn off physical energy. This should be saved for your walks.

Martingales are very safe collars, and they are great for innteruption based training, while still being very forgiving.
When you take Bennie outside, have you ever tried to change direction on him suddenly (running backwards and forwards) instead of just heading straight which is quite predictable for him? Make the walk interesting and fun, don't just plod forward down the sidewalk and expect that Bennie will focus on you. You have to teach him to look at you, and you can do this by changing YOUR movement and speed. (ie: Walk, stop. Run. Stop. Walk, run, stop. etc.) Teaching Bennie to stop pulling won't just come by your training tool. Showing him that you require his attention is a much more effective way to change this behavior instead of just supressing it.

And how are you ever going to teach him how to walk properly on the leash if you never go on a walk?
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Old October 8th, 2009, 12:30 AM
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How do you correct him when he jumps on you? Pushing a dog off of you, even if you do it right away and scold him, tells him "yeah let's play! Do that again!" Dogs are about body language just as much as tone of voice.

I'm no trainer but if a dog jumps on me and doesn't understand the word "no", then I'll take a hold of his paws, and I hold them while he goes through the phases:
1. This is fun!
2. Ok what are we doing now?
3. Hey uhhh this isn't fun anymore.
4. Let me go!
5. Really now, let me go! Don't make me bite you because I don't want to!

If it doesn't work a first time, I let it get to a point where he's got his teeth around my hand but I know he doesn't have the balls to actually bite me. He knows who's boss now.

You can actually watch the gears turning in his head the next time he gets ready to jump. The whole process is visible, from excitement to anticipated regret. Alternatively, I'll take a hold of the dog by the scruff of the neck, push him down and scold him as if we were both dogs and he was pissing me off.

I'm glad you have the kind of collar that you do! I'm rather fond of that one. When it's on the "choker" rings, it doesn't harm the dog as much as traditional chokers do. It tightens very slightly and the chain is almost never over the windpipe when the leash is taught; it's off to the side. It also releases a lot better than other chokers! The anti-pull harnesses are great too but that's a gimmick that should only be used on dogs that are past the point of training and yours is not! Don't give up!

His whining is probably because he wants attention and he doesn't need a trip to the vet. When you leave him by himself, you're punishing him. Dogs are pack animals and when you put him in his alone space, you're making him vulnerable to prey (to him, at least) so he whines to say "I'm sorry! Please come love me!" I'd start using that space as a punishment and otherwise let him be around you but let him know where your personal boundaries are! It's not too late to be tough momma from now on.

My brother let his two dogs go and they both got up over 100lbs each in under 2 years. Wasn't his idea, it was his ex's. Anyway, I remember watching my brother trying to get the older one to go in the house. The dog didn't listen. I don't even think he knew the command. So my brother grabbed his collar and started leading him to the house. They got about 10' from the door and now the 150lbs beast is being stubborn, so he pulls harder. Then the dog jumps and snaps at my brother's neck/head area. That's because the dog thought he was the boss of my brother and he was letting my brother know that what he was doing wasn't cool and if he wanted to be in his pack, he'd have to stop this kind of behaviour. But at the end of the day, no matter how strict that dog was with my brother, he still let him sleep in the bed and cuddle in front of the TV . Backwards, but you get the idea!
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Old October 8th, 2009, 12:43 AM
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Bennie cant freeroam the house, he is used to his space, he is Kenneled at night, so his space in the house is not punishment, it is so he can interact with me, and not try to stomp/eat my smaller animals. I DONT like choke collars, it is asphixiation, like putting a plastic bag over my own head and suffocating, not cool, I like the collar because it is sturdy, nylon and has a metal clip instead of like the belt clasp.

I will try taking Bennie for a walk tomorrow, he has alot of issues I dont know where they came from, so I cant take him to high traffic areas, where there are lots of cars cause they scare him and so do people and dogs, but I will talk him for a walk down our road for a good long while tomorrow and try what you say Bailey...that sounds like a great suggestion Thanks. You guys are giving me hope, I really REALLY dont want to have to find Ben a new home...
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Old October 8th, 2009, 12:45 AM
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I will try all the suggestions you guys are giving me, I really need him and I to be trained..i need to go to sleep now....Thanks, and I will look for more advice tomorrow, and let you know how our walk goes..
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Old October 8th, 2009, 10:42 AM
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Good Morning Lyrical, keep up the good work, we all know how difficult and frustrating it is to try and train your dog. You have been given some great advise here. I have been working with Sasha on targeting, holding my left hand low and asking her to touch my palm, when she touches she gets a treat, slowly raising my hand to almost shoulder height by the end of the "game". This has helped greatly in her paying attention to me and what I want her to do and works on her brain.

When I walk her I walk on the street so she does not stop and smell every 5 feet, I also make her heel and criss cross the road so she needs to pay attention to what I am doing or she gets stepped on... not really but I think you get the idea.

The best advise you have received is to walk, walk, walk, burn off some of his energy..from what you say your neighborhood is not the best place as there are so many roaming dogs, is there a field that you can drive to and walk Bennie there? pbp
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Old October 8th, 2009, 11:06 AM
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I dont drive at all, and my walk plans were interupted this morning by the arrival of people who are attaching a well to my house go figure they would come back not only 3 weeks!! after they were supposed to, but also when Bennie is having a good, calm day, where I could get through to him a little better, now because they are in and out of the house, I have to kennel him because he is scared and I dont want him running away when they are opening and closing the door (although he might burn some energy with me chasing him down the road HAHA joking of course, I would be totally miserable if he got away, and him being too scared of people he wouldnt come to anyone but me so no one else would be able to catch him for me :S I have been working on this problem too, he just really doesnt like people, not even when they stranger has a really tasty treat, and its kind of a godsend because I would hate for someone to be able to pick him up on the street or something, because they have treats, but it sure makes for some interesting walks and having company over, with my 110-115 pound dog acting like a skittish horse!) So now I have to wait for them to be finished with out well/pump/electric box no idea whats going on lol, not my area of expertise, before I can take the dog out for a walk, and by then he will be so bored its not even funny, there are strange men walking in and out of my room, and Bennie is in his kennel in there...the dog is going to be miserable. Walking though, I can do that, just....later now.

Of course if these people take too long here, that might not even happen, because not only are they here, but I have to wait for dad to come around....goodness I feel completely over-run today....

(Side note, and not about the dog, but I also have a lady who might take one of my itty bittie kitties to its furever home Im pretty happy about that, but i am corresponding through email right now, and have to wait for her to call my house. So much stuff today.) BUT I did take Bennie out this morning, and aside from strong interest in a cat (Stray Kitty I think) in the bushes, he was pretty well behaved, I almost have him trained to "go poop" on command Pretty proud of myself on that one, and he never responds to it in the house, so that makes it all the better, but I cant help thinking I should have chosen a better set of words, that I might not say accidently to one of my neices or my nephew haha..Oh well after thought right? But he was really good this morning, like a completely different dog, because after he pulled a piece off the floor I showed him whos boss by taking the piece away and making him sit and then lie down, then I removed hiim from the area of action, because I really cant have him eating more floor...

Dont worry, I'm not going to ease my training because he is being good today, I saw how that went, and I cant allow another yesterday to happen :S Not enough floor in this place.

I am still open to suggestions. because any bit of information is different, and since every dog is different I suppose they all require different training methods. I really appreciate all the help, I love Bennie ALOT, he is honestly a really good dog, and he learns something every day, I dont want to have to give him up, because he has some issues. Mom and I talked last night, and we are going to work with him, and NOT mention that he pulled a peice of floor up, to our landlord for now. She saw how upset I was at the idea of maybe getting rid of Ben, and realizes it might be a better idea for the house, but almost deffinately not for me.

Thats the update of the mid-morning though. Feel free to throw some input, I know I need it
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Old October 8th, 2009, 02:46 PM
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Ok So, my dad brought me Bennies outside rope, but I am wondering where I can put it out there lol, but as it turns out that is only a temp solution because we also had a roll of fencing, and we are going to make Bennie a dog run, but I dont know if it should be long, or square? Does it matter? I should think that if it was long, he could run and play more, but he could do that in a square one too... I dont know lol, any suggestions?
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Old October 8th, 2009, 02:47 PM
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Go for long as opposed to short this will give him a little more running room
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Old October 8th, 2009, 03:02 PM
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Yeah I kind of thought that would be a better way to build it. Thanks I hope we can build it soon, but in the meantime I am going to hook Bennie to our clothes line. I just wonder if it would be safe because it goes into the bush a little?
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Old October 8th, 2009, 03:09 PM
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Lyrical44, first let me say I commend you for wanting to train your dog. And for asking for help.

I know with my dog, we had other issues than what you are going through. I did trainers, advice, behaviourists, read books, watched programs, everything. The thing I had to learn is that I had to TRAIN MYSELF first. I had to get rid of the anxiety, the nervousness, the denial.......I had to say to myself do I really want to do this and keep my dog?? It's a very tough question to ask yourself, lots of emotions, anger, sadness. I had to ask myself to I have the time to take to do my dog right? My girl was extremely agressive, to the point I was told to put her to sleep by a behaviourist. I choose to do the work, take the time and invest it in my dog.

My girl walks twice a day for an hour and a half. She goes biking once a day for 30 minutes at a full out run. On a good day 4 hours of my time is put into excersing. I have a full time and a part time job, I also have things I want and need to do, BUT I want my dog.

When we play there are no games of tug of war, chase, or jumping...all get her excited and over stimulated. We do mental stimulating games like find it (tracking). We do basic obediance everyday, I do the sit,stay, come, wait....every single day.

When you mean NO you mean NO. It doesn't have to be abusive to the dog, your tone of voice is the key. If you say no no no no no no no.....constantly, the dog doesn't get it. NO is NO.

There are simple steps to start taking if you can't afford obediance right now. But the change has to start with you, not the dog.
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Old October 8th, 2009, 03:22 PM
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I ask myself every day if I am doing whats right for Bennie, but I honestly know that, with the issues he has, it would be wrong for me to give him to some stranger, considering he is afraid of them.

I have been working on training myself too, I dont "fluff" talk him nearly as much anymore, I do talk to him alot though, which is probably bad. I am working on being more frim, but I was scared off of alot of things by hearing horror stories of dogs gone wrong, I dont listen to them anymore, because of all the dogs you guys have turned around. Its a big help to see success stories for dogs who were once agressive, and who were abused.

Chloe was an abused dog when we get her at 6 months, and that was hard.
Bennie is just spoiled, and it seems harder lol, it got a little harder when his momma went to a new home though.

I am very much willing to change myself in order to be able to work with Bennie and make this a pack, instead of me being a play toy to him, so I dont play tug of war anymore, I havent in about...a week. We play running games, in the yard, but even those are getting him excited to the point of jumping on me.

I think I am going to train Bennie to find things by smell, he has a GREAT sense of smell, and it would give him a job to do as well, keep him focused.

Does anyone know how I can go about starting this job for Bennie? Should I choose a toy, or an object? Maybe start with a food object, allow him to sniff it, and then find it in an obvious place, and then slowly start making finding it more difficult maybe?
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  #25  
Old October 8th, 2009, 03:30 PM
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mastifflover mastifflover is offline
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You can also play hide and seek with him. Use one of his toys to hide then let him find it. It is also a good chance to practice sit and stay while you are hiding it
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Old October 8th, 2009, 03:44 PM
kandy kandy is offline
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There are books and articles about teaching scent detection for fun. The Whole Dog Journal had an article in the August issue that gave information on what you'd need in a starter kit.

Here's a link to some resources on 'nose work for fun':
http://dogplay.com/Activities/tracking.html
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Old October 8th, 2009, 04:01 PM
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Lyrical44 Lyrical44 is offline
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Thanks guys I think this would be helpful for Bennie, to have a task to do, like you are always suggesting to the other dog owners. It would be fun for him as well
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Old October 8th, 2009, 04:26 PM
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dogcatharmony dogcatharmony is offline
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When I first started scent training with my girl it was very very simple. Take two peices of hotdog or chicken or something your dog likes very much. Put it down, step on it, put the next peice down step on it and pick the first peice up and repeat a few steps. ONLY a few steps. Leave on peice at the end for a reward.

You may need the second peice to put infront of your dogs nose and say find it. You may need that second peice to lead your dog to the steps you took, each time saying find it...upbeat voice. When they find the reward..PARTY!!!

You can go a few more steps each time, or if you have a fast learner....you can take more steps. Then start hiding the reward, once they get the hang of it you can use different objects. I have a ducky my dog just loves, I show it to her, tell her sit stay. I run around the house and hide it somewhere. I come back to where she is, wait till she settles and then tell her "FIND IT".......she goes nuts. You can also scent an object say with mint, and then hide it. When they find it PARTY!!!

Small mental stimulation that you can play while you need to do schoolwork. Helps in a big big way.
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Old October 8th, 2009, 06:21 PM
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Lyrical44 Lyrical44 is offline
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So, I took Bennie for a nice.....slow walk lol, I was trying to train him "come here" which seems to be going well.

I gave in, treats help alot, it gets his attention and he comes right to me and sits in front of me, like I want him to. I am pretty happy with him actually, the walk was slow and a little jumpy, but all in all it went well.

The cat outside is a taunter, and runs up to Ben and runs away, which I could probably do without, but I made him sit, and put his attention on me, instead of the cat, which is better than a normal cat encounter.

His fear of cars seems to be less as well. He doesnt drag me away from them, but sits like I originally trained him to


I posted this elsewhere as well, lol, I accidently posted it in the wrong place, but I put it here too, because this is where we were talking about the walk.


At first I was like "why am i mutilating a hotdog with my foot?" but then I understood, the scent trail, GREAT idea. I am going to try that as soon as I get hotdogs lol. I did treats today, like I said higher in the post, but I didnt treat him every time he did it right, just when he seemed to be getting bored, then I would say "come here" and he would come, sit, and I would "good boy" and give him a treat.
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Old October 8th, 2009, 07:12 PM
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So, Bennie has *apparently* taken a step in the right direction. He listens to "Sit" even when its a 5 year old holding the cookie, he listens when I say it, without the cookie, but its a good step for him in front of a bouncing, loud 5 year old lol. He is much better today, we tried a 10 am outside outing, and he seemed to like that very much, calmed him for the day.
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