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Old August 1st, 2011, 07:24 AM
Teeko Teeko is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2010
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Doberman puppies - training problems

I visited a friend yesterday who has two 4-month 40 pound old sister dobermans and was concerned with some of the things I saw. Please give me some advice on how to handle these subjects with them or perhaps a good dog training book I can give them.

Is it ok to allow the pups to play fight to the point that they become extremely aggressive and occasionally draw blood (it only lasts for a few minutues)?

They want the dogs to defecate in a fenced off corner of the yard yet allow them to urinate anywhere. If the dogs take too long to defecate, they are chained to the fence in that area for a short time until they do their business.

When the dog defecates in the wrong area of the yard, the husband puts the dog in the crate for 30 minutes (makes it small so he doesn't have much room to move).

They do not walk the dogs on leash yet so I asked to take them out - we each had one dog with a choke chains on. They were pulling with all their strength and were totally out of control. It was a dangerous situation as they can almost knock me over at their current size.

At night, both dogs are put in one large crate to sleep. In my opinion, although the crate it is quite large, is not large enough for two dogs as it barely give them enough room to move around or stetch out.

Needless to say, I am appalled at what I saw especially being a dog owner myself. I am all about positive reinforcement when training and it breaks my heart to see how they are handling these beautiful dogs. I want to help them as quickly as possible and need your advice. Thank you.
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Old August 1st, 2011, 10:22 AM
cell cell is offline
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Location: Montreal, QC
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Sounds like there is more wrong with the owners then the dogs. Unfortunately they may be creating a liability waiting to happen with their methods. Humans are harder to change then dogs, point out their short comings and prepare to be blown off.
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Old August 1st, 2011, 11:58 AM
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marko marko is offline
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Location: Montreal Quebec Canada
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Cell makes a good point, people have to want to change...and there's no changing some people.

That said, if these people are changeable, and if you were extra diplomatic, perhaps you could get them good referrals to obedience training in your area. These dogs SO need obedience training. Once there, trainers can tell them what they are doing wrong...which is um...tons. There's so many basic errors here but here are my few word opinions to the questions in order of the 5 paws:
- Uh no, this is bad and an obedience trainer will confirm this
- I'd defer here to trainers for the answer
- The dogs can't make this connection, all this punishment does is confuse the dogs, it teaches them nothing.
- Obedience training will teach proper walking techniques
- each dog should have its own cage (den) imo. It should never be used as punishment.

They also need to read some basic articles on dog training and preferably a book. Puppies For Dummies or any of many basic puppy books should do the trick....

Here's just a couple of short articles on this site that may help

good luck!
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Old August 2nd, 2011, 08:12 AM
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Melinda Melinda is offline
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to not ruin a friendship, why don't you buy a good book on dog training, tell them you "picked it up cheap at a garage sale" and thought maybe it might be helpful to them??
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Old August 17th, 2011, 08:48 AM
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MIA MIA is offline
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Location: BC Canada
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I would like to smack the breeder that sold them siblings..... That being said you are kind for being concerned. marko has given you great answers and I would go with that. As well I agree with cell they are creating two big liabilities at the moment, if they continue as they are. Shame I am sure they are lovely dogs.
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Old August 18th, 2011, 11:44 AM
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tenderfoot tenderfoot is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Boulder, Colorado
Posts: 1,249
This trainers answers...
1. Adults must teach dogs and kids how to play properly. No punching below the belt, no biting, and definately no drawing blood. They are encouraging these dogs to play like this with with other dogs if they dont teach them good manners now. Other dogs wont like it and either not play or get aggressive back and now we have a growing problem.
2. I dont like their methods but it is not out of line to teach dogs to soil in specific areas.
3. I know what line of thought he is going down, it just isn't neccessary. It sounds like he is being punitive when he does this and being punitive isnt going to get results.
4. NO to choke chains. They are dangerous and do not teach a thing. Proper handling of a flat collar and good leash are all they need. These people seem like they have been watching too much TV and need to be enlightened.
5. NEVER place more than one dog in a crate. If one dog decides to get snarky the other dog is trapped. And I can almost promise you that as these sisters grow and begin to challenge each other this will happen. Now we have a severely injured dog, who has been trapped in a cage with another aggressive dog and it is mentally and emotionally injured as well.

My best advice is to get them our DVD (hi Marko ), but there are plenty of other options out there as well. Better yet, give them our phone number and we can have a good chat. They have to believe they need help first and then it will go smoothly from there. If that is unlikely, then tell them that you are all excited about some great information you found on the internet about raising sibling pups and thought they might find it interesting too and then direct them where ever you see fit.

Thanks for being such a good friend to the dogs and trying to be to the people.
Love Them & Lead Them,
~Elizabeth & Doug
Dog Training the Way Nature Intended
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