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Everything posted by D'Elle

  1. I agree that you are on the right track. Make coming in the door highly rewarding, and don't allow the pup to choose otherwise (- use the long line or leash). And, as Hooper said, do this a lot. One thing that I always try to do is make everything that I ask the dogs to do rewarding in some way for them when they do it. This is of course most important with a dog you are training, but I am mentioning this because it pays to continue this practice for the dog's whole life, constantly reinforcing the good behavior. This doesn't mean a whole play session or great treats every time, might just be a snuggle or a little petting and a few words, but there is always some acknowledgement of what a good dog he or she is.
  2. dumbbird7, be advised this is an old post from August. But you asked how to get your pup used to the car without drooling, and how to stop him pulling. First, what have you tried so far in terms of training your dog to walk nicely on the leash and not pull? this topic has been dealt with extensively on these forums, so if you do a search you will come up with a lot of information. Have you been doing a dedicated program to train him leash manners? This would be the place to start if you have not. As for the car, my guess is you have rushed him too fast with the car and you need to desensitize him carefully. "Calming" tablets are, as you have found, not going to help. You need to back up and start all over, as if he had never been in the car. Do not take him ANYwhere in the car until you have spent at least several weeks desensitizing him to the car. The drooling is a sign of stress, and you need to get him to the point where he is not stressed by the car. Start out with him where he can see the car, but far enough away that he is not starting to show signs of stress. Play with him, feed him, pet him, give him treats. (I know you say he is not a treat sort of dog, but my guess is you just have not found what he loves. Try everything, including people food, until you find something he really likes, and use that). Spend at least a week doing this before you get any closer to the car, then move only 3 feet closer. Take the whole thing in tiny baby steps and as soon as he starts to show stress, back off and go back to a previous point in the process where he no longer shows stress. This may take weeks, may take months. You have to go through this time and be Very Patient. rushing the process will result in stressing him all over again, and undoing all the work you have done so far. I know it sounds like a lot of time and work. But you have 2 choices. Either take this time and do it right now and have a dog who is not stressed out by the car, or don't do it and have a dog who may be car-stressed his whole life, which is no fun for you and is very bad for the dog's health and well being. Best of luck. And don't be embarrassed to admit that this is hard....most of us have been through this and things like it. I have desensitized many border collies in different ways, having been a foster home for years. You just have to take it slowly and be patient.
  3. This is one of my favorite things about dogs. Their acceptance of what is in the moment, their ability to take great joy in small things, their lack of pretense. My dogs are and have been the greatest teachers in my life and my most loyal and steadfast companions. I strive always to be more like them, and I couldn't live without them.
  4. I am so very sorry to hear about this. Every time I hear about the fires in CA, and now about Aus. I feel terrible for all of the people affected by it. Having had my house burn, I know a little bit about how it feels personally, but for it to be happening on such a scale is beyond my experience. Not just your house, the neighbor's, the whole town perhaps. I send kind thoughts to all of those folks and wish there were something more that I could do.
  5. Nice cobblestone street. Where do you live? Such things look downright exotic to someone living in the desert. I wouldn't worry about a collar hurting the dog. I have not known this ever to happen under normal circumstances, using a flat buckle collar. Those gentle leader things (I think that is what they are called) that go around the nose can cause harm by wrenching the dog's neck around suddenly and effectively giving them whiplash. I would never let it pass if my dog put his mouth on me unless we were playing, or it was very, very gentle and being used to, perhaps, get my attention. I wouldn't let my dog decide whether or not we were going to do something, or to tell me to stop something. I am very kind to my dogs, and am never hard on them for anything, but they do not get to make the decisions, nor to tell me to stop something unless it is a yelp to say I accidentally caused pain. So if this were my dog, the dog would immediately get whatever effective correction was being used (I use a time out for just about everything), if he put his mouth on me to tell me to stop something. The problem with allowing that is that the dog them learns that putting his mouth on a person is effective, and if he puts his mouth on someone else, or worse someone else's child, you can find yourself in a variety of worlds of hurt for it and the dog can suffer the most. Now, if you feel that what you are doing to curb this is working, keep doing it. You may not need a behaviorist at all, but I would advise working concertedly on this until the behavior is no longer occurring. Best of luck to you and keep us informed. He is a beauty, for sure, with that one blue eye.
  6. Agree with the above. My best advice - Love the dog you're with. Now, I know you love your dog, I don't mean it literally. But acceptance of who he is, all quirks included, is part of that love. I have learned that lesson, and it makes all of my interactions with all of the animals who come into my life, whether as my own or fosters or client's dogs I am training, so much easier. I know it sounds hokey, but really your (my, anyone's) attitude has a lot to do with how the dog . Think of a dog as bad or aggressive or difficult or stupid or what have you, and that will be the dog you have. Think of the dog as just fine the way he is, even if a certain behavior needs some work, and things are easier. Now, having said that, I don't tolerate biting, and you might want to see a behaviorist on that. But first, quit using a harness. Many dogs don't like it. I have a dog who will just sit down and refuse to go for a walk if I put a harness on him. So try a collar, maybe different kinds, find out what is OK with him. Plus, you can leave the collar on him and then all you have to do is clip on the leash. Maybe that would work for him. I would just experiment.
  7. I am not surprised that he doesn't want to spend the whole day outside all by himself! I would suggest taking him for walks. Go out the front door with him on a leash, and take him for a nice walk away from the house every day and then let him be inside if he wants to. In my opinion, all dogs need to go for walks away from home even if they have a nice big yard, to give them new things to see and smell. I think your dog simply doesn't want to be outside all the time any more, especially now that he no longer has a companion. I personally don't think people should leave their dogs out all the time. Border collies in particular really need human interaction, and leaving them outside all the time without people being with them is not good for them, nor is it nice to the dog. Let him be inside with you and interact with him more. Teach him things, play with him, hang out with him and let him be with you during the day when you are home. You may find that if he gets more attention this anxiety will pass.
  8. Oh, it's too bad you have two such puppies.....but I will take one or both of them off your hands if you like. They are so cute. Thanks for posting the photo. I am also hugely grateful for this forum, and don't know what I'd do without it at this point. I am glad you enjoyed Kelso's story. I am going for a hike with Kelso and his person the first week of December, and will be sure to post photos.
  9. Just my opinion - but that is what you asked for - I probably wouldn't let a pup at that age run free on 2 acres. The main reason being that I would very likely still be working hard on a solid recall cue, and there isn't any way to enforce it if you let the dog free in a fairly large space like that. If I had already a solid recall, I would allow it, but would curtail that activity if the recall started getting mushy. I personally would not worry about poop, because a dog either will or will not eat/roll in poop, and that applies to adult dogs as well; you can't really enforce that the dog's whole life. At 5 or 6 or 8 months old your pup may be more reliable, or may be less so. A lot depends on training and how consistent you are with that, but it is also something that differs among dogs. Aome are pretty reliable at a young age, others take two years to grow up, so I wouldn't base your decisions on his chronological age.
  10. Sue, thank you for writing such a beautiful and very interesting tribute to Celt. He was clearly a special dog, and I love your accounts of how well he could read the cattle and know how to move with them, especially how he was sensitive to the young first-calf heifers. I feel your loss, as I also have lost exceptional dogs, and wish you more days of smiles at the memories and less pain for the loss. I know I will miss both Jes and Kit, my two most recent border collies, for the rest of my life, but I also know there will be others I will love. It's worth it, and I always feel blessed to have had such companions. I can see you feel the same, and my heart goes out to you with both sadness and a smile.
  11. I agree with the above advice, although that doesn't necessarily mean you cannot ever go back to playing inside. The important thing is to impress on the dog that YOU are in control of the toys, when and where and for how long you play, and that pestering never gets positive results. Once that is fully in the dog's mind, you may be able to go back to playing indoors. But even then, you remain in control of the toys, which may or may not mean that they are out of reach of the dog. My Jester was a fetch maniac. He'd rather fetch than eat. I had a toy basket full of stuffed sheep for him to play with indoors, and he could go get one any time he wanted to. But if he brought me one to throw when I had not told him to, he got ignored, and the toys got put away, so he never did. He would sometimes sit several feet away from me and stare, hoping I would tell him "Bring me a sheep" so he could fetch, but I decided that staring was acceptable.
  12. I rarely go to sites showing how to train anything to a dog unless I know the source or someone I trust recommends it to me. So many of them are cruel to the dogs and I can't stand it, so I understand how you feel. I am not one who never says "no" or, for that matter, would never scold if the transgression were especially bad. But I would never hit or cause physical pain in any other way, and don't think that is ever necessary. Or fair.
  13. People in my Freestyle club use a mirror to see what the back paws are doing, and the same for teaching the dog to work behind our backs. We also have practiced with each other -- one person stands behind the handler and does the click when the dog is in the right position, then the handler gives the treat. One thing that really helps is to teach the dog the different places to be: in front, at each side, and behind. These are taught as specific behaviors that get rewarded. If the dog knows a move, and knows the position cue, you can cue the dog into position, and then give the cue for the specific move.
  14. Climate change. All sorts of strange things are happening. Here, we had saguaro cactus trying to bloom in September. Completely wrong.
  15. I endorse the above. Make all the interactions with her count. I LOVE her face.♥♥ And I want to put my face right in that little belly of hers! She is utterly adorable.
  16. If you have learned to tone down your dog-obsessed-enthusiasm, you're better than I! I am one of those "don't get her started" types when it comes to dogs, especially if it is about training. I am an introvert; not good at conversation with people I don't know. But I can carry on a conversation with just about anyone willing to talk dogs. (As long as the sub-topic isn't conformation).
  17. Oh, oops --- forgot! sorry 'bout that! Guess I should say - maybe suggest to the dog's owner that she try not using a harness?
  18. Every one is different, each has his or her own personality. I don't think there's any way to say that Aussies are more or less XYZ than border collies, or the other way around. I have had a number of border collies come through my home as a foster home and I have seen the gamut of personalities. As for off switch - that is a training matter. I have known a number of aussies although have never had one, and have seen a very wide range of personalities in that breed as well. Get your new dog from a rescue and you will have the best chance of getting the personality you seek, of either breed. An adult dog is already showing his or her personality right away and the person who has had the dog as a foster will be able to tell you all about the dog.
  19. In this case, a person shouldn't stop messing with the harness. I would give the yelp and hold onto the harness for a moment, then continue with putting it on or whatever. If this ends up turning into a little battle of repetition, then I'd crate the pup for 5 minutes or 10, and then go at it again. Another thought I have is this: is there a reason the OP is using a harness? Maybe your dog doesn't like harnesses. Neither of my dogs do, and will fight them every time, whereas with a collar they are perfectly behaved. Maybe you should just use a collar with the leash and the problem will be solved. Might be worth a try.
  20. This will not cause aggression. And I am definitely a positive reinforcement trainer. The thing is, positive reinforcement doesn't mean you don't set boundaries and it doesn't mean the dog gets away with what he is not supposed to do. Training is training, and has a purpose and needed result, and you do need to be the boss on this. Setting boundaries and making rules has nothing to do with aggression on either your part or the dog's. Think about how a pack of dogs, or a mother dog, raises a puppy. If the puppy nips or gets too annoying, one of the adult dogs will snap at the pup or hold it down with a paw or drive it away. This is natural. For you to discipline your dog -- always with kindness, not with anger, never with violence -- is natural as well. I have never tried "sit on the dog", and am not so sure I like that technique. I also admit I don't know anything about it, but I don't think I would use it unless I had an extreme example of a frantic pup with whom all other approaches did not work. Patience. Consistency. Persistence. Patience. Insisting on the pup behaving as you wish, and if not there are consequences. Patience. That's it in a nutshell. Oh, and did I mention patience?()
  21. I think I had a bit of a rigid mind set about this topic....that one should always spay and neuter unless breeding on purpose. I am seeing from what you folks are saying that this is not a cut and dried issue and doesn't have one answer that is right for every dog or situation. Since it's always good to be informed of other sides and possibilities to an issue about which I am opinionated, thanks for that info and the more open mind I have about the issue now.
  22. I have found that making a sharp loud high-pitched yelp whenever the pup bites is often the best approach to curbing this. It's immediately understood by the pup that the bite was too much, because they know what that sound means. I yelp, then move away from the dog and ignore for a minute. Repeat as needed.
  23. That is definitely progress! Just remember that no matter what you are training, it will simply take whatever time it takes for that dog. Don't compare times with other puppy-owners, don't let yourself get discouraged, and don't think you are on the wrong track just because it takes longer than you thought it would. Every dog is different. Persistence and patience are key. Some things will go fast, others won't. But whatever time it takes is worth it in the long run.
  24. I guess I shouldn't have said "nutty"....that was overstating and over-simplifying it. It isn't nutty to leave in place what Nature has there, this is certainly true. I only meant, in a world where overpopulation of dogs causes so much suffering for so many millions of dogs, spaying and neutering only makes sense unless you are in a position to be properly breeding your dog. (Or unless you are living somewhere that it is not allowed. I didn't know that some countries don't allow it.)
  25. So you have had a new puppy for a week and think the training isn't working? A week is nothing. Get used to the idea that training a puppy takes time and patience. Don't think it is not working. Just keep doing it. Ruth's advice on training above is good. And make sure that you never, ever call her to you in order to do anything she doesn't like. Including coming inside if she is enjoying playing outside. Go get her if you have to crate her or end the play or do anything else she doesn't want. Make sure that coming to you is always, always rewarded with a Good Thing.
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