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About GentleLake

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  1. That usually requires very slow introductions (or re-introductions) beginning with just approaching the car with lots of treats to create positive associations, then getting into the car with out turning the engine, then just sitting in the car idling and gradually working up to 1 minute, 2 minutes in a moving car, etc. all the time will lots of treats and play and not moving on to the next step until she's showing no anxiety with the stage you're at. Sadly, it's highly unlikely you'll be able to achieve that in just 2 or 3 days. You might want to ask your vet for something to settle her stomach for this upcoming trip. Not only will it make this trip less unpleasant for her (and you) but the more negative associations she has with the car, the harder it will be to undo them.
  2. Thanks for adding that very important difference that I neglected to mention. Rather than the dog feeling guilty and knowing he's done something wrong, what he's actually doing is asking you not be angry with him or to attack him. It's a big difference.
  3. I know this isn't exactly what you're asking about, but I was rather surprised to read these articles (below) recently. I know lots of people who leave their dogs 9-10 hours a day while they work. I used to too, though for the most part there were multiple dogs in my home. One with pretty severe separation anxiety was fine as long as he was with another dog. Separated by even a baby gate he'd destroy things. What really caught my attention was that adult dogs shouldn't have to go without relieving themselves for more than 6 hours. I know that most dogs with working owners routinely spend those 9-10 hours without getting a potty break. https://www.whole-dog-journal.com/issues/21_5/features/Leaving-the-Dog-Home-Alone_21832-1.html Based on previous article: https://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2018/06/27/how-long-can-you-leave-a-dog-alone.aspx Puppies will obviously require both more attention/interaction and more frequent potty breaks. How long will be dependent on the puppy's age and how long the puppy can reasonable and comfortably go between breaks, and that wo't be the same for all puppies of the same age. Some take much longer than others to be able to reduce the frequency of potty breaks. I'm not sure there's really on easy answer to your question, but I think you made the right decision to reschedule your app't. Hopefully you can arrange for a friend or pet sitter to come in and give your puppy a break and some attention once or twice while you're gone.
  4. Actually there's no evidence that dogs understand that they've done wrong or experience guilt. In fact, some fairly recent studies have demonstrated that dogs will react in that same guilty-looking way even when they've done nothing to deserve the scolding. What they're reacting to, most likely fearfully, is their owners' obvious displeasure even if they don't understand what caused it. All they know is that something's wrong, their people are angry and that they'd better be cautious around them. I see this all the time when I'm correcting one dog when caught in the act of something inappropriate that the other will look just as guilty, if not more so, as the one who was doing something wrong. There could have been something he perceived as threatening in the behavior of both the people he bit, even if it wasn't obvious to you or to them. For example, many dogs find it threatening for someone to reach to pet them on the tops of their heads, or to make direct eye contact, especially if it's prolonged. The latter is a threat or challenge in dogs' body language. I also notice that both of the people he bit were on the floor with him. No sure just what this might signify, but there's a good chance it has something to do with it. Still recommend a thorough vet check and behavioral consult.
  5. It seems to me there was a recent thread addressing something similar. You might want to search for it. Look for things that may have changed in his environment. See the vet for a check to see if there's something going on with him. Pain or thyroid issues could be possible causes. If you have his thyroid checked be sure they run a full panel. I only send blood for thyroid testing the Hemopet. I sincerely doubt his being intact has anything to do with it. There's actually some evidence that neutering can cause or increase aggression, contrary to popular belief. I would recommend consulting a veterinary behaviorist or a certified behavior consultant ASAP. In the meantime be sure to keep him on a leash when out and limit his time with other people. Though you didn't mention how severe the bites were, he now has a bite history and could be considered a dangerous dog by authorities. Wishing you the best.
  6. @Ezrydr, I am so very sorry for your loss. It's always too soon to loose one of our beloved friends. I understand that there's no way to put a monetary value on a dog's life. As much as I love and have loved all my dogs, especially one of my current ones, I don't think I could have made a different decision in your circumstances. While I understand it, guilt is a fruitless emotion. It can't change what's been done and it doesn't help in the least to move on from grief. In fact, I believe in situations like this it's more a manifestation of our grief than anything else. Ben wouldn't want you to be beating yourself up over decisions you made when you were already overcome with a very painful choice. No new dog will ever take place of another one. And no one should ever expect them to. But they can give you new focus for that empty place in your heart that needs something to soothe it. Giving an older dog a loving home is as a beautiful and poignant tribute to Ben's memory as I can think of. Dogspeed, Ben. You were loved.
  7. Every dog's an individual, and even one dog's needs can change at different periods in their lives. I've had a couple of dogs whose metabolisms changed fairly quickly with no medical issues and I had to start feeding either less or more to accommodate for it. I hope that's all this is with your guy. You may just be able to call your vet to see if s/he's concerned enough to take him in. S/he may just advise upping his food to see if that makes a difference. Oh, I don't know what your worming protocol was but another thing to consider is that some parasites need more than one round of worming to eliminate. With the exception of fresh ground pumpkin seeds or diatomaceous earth, I don't use chemical wormers unless there's been an intractable infestation with confirmation through fecal samples. You could probably take a sample in without an office visit. And remember, not all the worms shed eggs all the time so sometimes repeat samples are necessary. Good luck.
  8. First thought is that I'd ask my vet about it before looking elsewhere for advice. Many dogs will require less food as they mature rather than more, unless there's also been a significant increase in activity level. There are a number of things that could be leading to unexplained weight loss, such as certain parasites, thyroid imbalance, cancer, liver disease to name a few. Plummeting weight isn't something that should be ignored. And his seeming "happy for an even quieter life than normal" could be a medical symptom or maturity or, IMO least likely the result of lowered hormones post-neutering. Or it could be a symptom of not getting enough to eat; insufficient input results in lowered energy. Second is that I don't worry about calories or recommended portions of food. I pay attention to my dogs' body conditions and adjust accordingly to achieve and maintain the desired result. I judge this by paying attention to the feel of their ribs, spine and hips. Since I'm petting them every day and paying attention to their condition, it's a constant and immediate gauge of when they need more or less food. So, yeah, call your vet ASAP and (not meaning to be snarky) pay attention to what's going on with your dog before it becomes an issue.
  9. ^^^ Ditto these. I've even read cautions against allowing puppies to do stairs because of the potential for damaging joints, especially hips. They have no idea the havoc they're wreaking on their little bodies. They need us humans to look out for them.
  10. All he knows from this is that you take him to the place where he's already been stressed to the point that he felt the need to bite. Then, while he's doing absolutely nothing -- actually he's already telling you by his body language that he's already frightened -- he gets zapped again. Now the location and any memories associated with it make it an even more fearful place. It is, as I said before, one of the most egregious misuses of an already extreme and punitive training method I've ever heard of. Nothing you've said in your follow up changes my previous assessment. You created this dog with your aggressive treatment and now you -- well, actually your dog -- have to face the consequences.
  11. As they said, this isn't "herding" behavior. It's predatory behavior, upon which herding behavior is based, but truncated so it doesn't present as full blown predation. No shepherd wants a dog that's going to run amok with their livestock and the dog that does it will end up with a bullet in his head. If it's as severe as it sounds in a 14 week old pup, you'll have to take some serious steps to get it under control before it becomes full blown predation with serious consequences. I wholeheartedly second removing her from her triggers, i.e. the other dogs, until she's learned self control and is responding to well proofed behavioral cues including recall and "leave it." Yes, you'll have to make sure the puppy doesn't have interactions with the other dogs, especially the Chis. She's probably honed in on the weakest dog, which again is a predatory instinct. And remember, every time she gets to practice that barrier aggression in her x-pen, it's self rewarding and cementing this behavioral pattern in her brain. She simple can't be anywhere where she can do this. I agree that this pup is gong to require a lot of serious individual training. I'd work with a good positive reinforcement trainer. If any of this escalates once you've been working with her own her own, I'd consider consulting either a veterinary behaviorist or a certified applied behavior consultant sooner rather than later. I don't know if a pup that young can be diagnosed as obsessive/compulsive yet, but it sure looks like it could be headed in that direction without immediate intervention. And I don't know if a vet will give a puppy that young psychiatric medications. As young as she is I think there's a good chance that with early intervention she can learn appropriate ways to interact with other dogs. But until that happens, you've got to consider the safety of the little guys especially.
  12. Like others, I really feel for you in this situation. You say this started about 10 months ago -- before you got the full time job and than later moved away, right? The first question then is what changed or happened 10 months ago? Among other things, did he get any vaccinations, especially rabies, at that time? By "zapper collar" do you mean a shock collar? If so, when did this begin? Shock collar training can cause aggression all on it's own. But the way you're using it is almost guaranteed to create an aggressive dog. Ruth's post came in as I was writing and I can't stress enough how correct her remarks are. This of this what things look like from the dog's point of view: Dog does something "bad" (I say this because the pattern most likely started well before there was any biting involved). Then there's a pause while you assess the situation -- IOW there are no immediate consequences for the dog. Following that, while the dog is doing nothing wrong, you leash him up, force him to approach the person he just had an issue with, and then attack him with a "bite" from the collar . . . not once, but several times? You've effectively taught him that people are unpredictably vicious and he has to defend himself from them by biting first. You've just demonstrated exactly why shock collars in the hands of people who don't know how to use them can become a death sentence for the poor dog. IMO, there are very few instances of appropriate uses of shock collars to begin with and this is perhaps the most egregious example of their misuse I've ever seen. So, where do you go from here? You've got a badly traumatized and damaged dog with a serious bite history living with people who don't know how to handle him. Hell, there wouldn't be many people who would be capable of safely handling him. For a number of reasons you can't take him out of the situation, and even if you did with your training methods you'd almost certainly make him worse and not better. If you take him to a shelter he'll be euthanized because of his bite history. Very, very few rescues (if any) would be able to take him in for liability reasons. And there's no way that you can conscientiously give him to someone else and risk their ending up being hurt, maimed or worse (and if you knowingly give the dog to someone else without disclosing his history you'll be legally responsible when -- not if -- he hurts someone else). That leaves you with one alternative. You said you want blunt. From where I sit it looks like your family took a very nice dog in and ruined him. You created his triggers and as you put it, now he's going to have to pay the price. My heart goes out to this poor boy.
  13. Welcome to the Boards. Beautiful pup. I'll refrain from saying what I think of the ^#&^%$^#&*)&*^ former owner and foster home. As someone who has a fear reactive dog, I'll warn you that the class will, initially at least, be a challenge. Have you spoken to the instructor about this? If not, I'd call and have a frank discussion about this and find out exactly how s/he work with dog like this. If there's ever even a hint of any kind of aversive methods, steer way clear of that trainer. Positive reinforcement only, and a specific plan in place before you walk in the door. Ideally there'll be a separate room where Winter can hear and smell the other dogs but not see them. At the bare minimum there should be solid barriers that you can be behind but will obstruct her view of other dogs. I'd suggest 3 mg. of melatonin or some kind of calming treat before you go. You may have to experiment with several formulas before you find one that works for her. Do a search her for LAT or "Look at That." It's something you can start working in with her even before the class begins. Your instructor should be familiar with it and even use it or something similar. Don't set yourself up with expectations about learning much in the realm of actual obedience during this class. Again, this is something the trainer should be explaining to you too. Your first lessons should be about learning how to keep her under threshold (something else to do a search for here if you're not familiar with it) because until you can clear that hurdle you won't be able to do any training for other behaviors anyway. As far as setting up playdates w/ your friend's dog, you may want to familiarize yourself w/ LAT and start by introducing the dogs at enough of a distance where Winter doesn't react. Time, patience and baby steps are going to be your biggest friends. There are others here who've worked with this kind of fear reactivity. I'm sure you'll get some great advice. Good luck.
  14. Welcome to the Boards. Good response from Hooper2. Many, many constantly hyped up dogs are created by too much stimulation, not from lack of it. Thank your lucky stars you've got a more laid back pup. They're so much easier than the ones who need constant attention. I'm guessing you're in the UK. Too bad because otherwise I'd be asking you for the breeders' contact info. The most important period for socialization is between 4 to 16 weeks. IIRC I remember reading that the most critical age was something like between 8-12 weeks old. So don't short shift her in this this very important developmental stage. The risk of having an undersocialized puppy growing into a dog with behavioral issues is every bit as important as that of a puppy getting sick. Be careful, yes, but don't fall for all the overblown hype about risk of infection. Some good info here: https://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2014/01/06/puppy-socialization-class.aspx Quoting from this, "These study results indicate that puppies 16 weeks of age or younger that were vaccinated at least once and attended socialization classes were at no greater risk of developing a parvovirus infection than puppies that did not attend classes. "
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