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urge to herd

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  1. Hmm. I took it out and about immediately. I had a very scared & shut down girl. I walked her by herself at a quiet time of day and whenever she looked at something, even sideways, clicked/treated. She was sharp and caught on quickly. Then I added a cue, Look at THAT! That set her back a bit so I lowered the bar, using LAT when she glanced at something that I knew wasn't scary for her. Short hop from there to pointing to The Big Scary Thing that she was turning her head away from, whatever it was. It didn't take her long to look at anything I pointed at and cued. It helped that she'd turn herself inside out for any type of food. Shonie seemed to orient to me just fine, again because she knew that I was gonna give her food immediately. It got comical pretty quick. She'd swing her head towards the BST then back towards me a couple times if I was taking too long with the treat. As far as working w/Kev goes, try reinforcing eye contact when you're not practicing LAT. Then you can add that it to the LAT chain. Hope this helps. Ruth & Gibbs ETA ~ you can also use a pointer stick, either 'paint' the last inch or so of it w/black magic marker or wrap some blue painter's tape around. That makes it stand out visually for the dog. C/T when the dog touches that end of the stick. Segue that to placing the marked end on an object and when the dog accidentally touches the object, throw a party. Then you'd fade the stick and use your arm.
  2. To add a little to what D'Elle posted ~ dogs don't generalize well. Particularly with leash walking in different 'venues' ~ your yard are very well 'researched' areas. On a public street, at a park with so many other dogs and people to greet! and exciting new smells, sounds, etc ~ you need to 'remind' the dog by re-training loose leash walking. Sometimes it doesn't take as long, sometimes it takes longer because there are waaaay more distractions in The Bigger World than there are at home. Socks ~ really, keep them out of her reach entirely. And I have never gotten my boy to roll over either. Some dogs just don't like it. Since it's a fun thing, not any sort of safety issue, it's not important enough for me to worry about. Ruth & Gibbs
  3. Liz P are those test strips still available? Would I simply ask my vet about them ~ can you give me the name? TIA, Ruth & Gibbs
  4. My personal dental experience is that my folks never took me to a dentist. No tooth aches, no dentist. I took myself when I was in my mid-thirties, I think. I had 2 cavities and a lot of tartar build-up. The cavities were very, very small. And I've only produced one more in the ensuing years. When I asked the dentist about it, he said that dental health, like many other things, is vastly influenced by genetics. Somehow, I got the 'healthy dentition' genes. And my 2 siblings got the other kind. Our nutrition was typical 1950s and 60s middle class America . With no information to back up my opinion, that opinion is that it's quite possible that the dogs who've never had their teeth cleaned and have no dental problems are lucky genetically for that particular trait. Ruth & Gibbs
  5. The umbrella thing worked for me once. I had Gibbs on leash and a very large mastiff or mastiff type/mix came barreling towards us. His human shouted, "HE'S FRIENDLY". Gibbs is not. I yelled at the dog and waved my arms around and yelled more. He stopped, looked a little puzzled, but stood still. I walked backwards the whole time back to the car. It worked, thank goodness, but I'm getting that tactical baton. Ruth & Gibbs
  6. Full disclosure: I've never raised a puppy. I think the advice of letting him sniff around a bit, maybe even a brief walk to relieve himself, before settling down is a good idea. I assume he's got a 'settle' cue? Or something that resembles it ~ my boy gets 'blanket' and he goes to the closest dog bed and settles in. If it's possible, bring the mat you're using inside with you when head for the courtyard. I have a dog bed/blanket in 3 spots in my home and G knows those are his places to settle down while I work or clean or whathaveyou. When he was younger I took him on some road trips, along with one of his blankets from home. When staying with friends or at a motel, I could point to the blanket on the floor, say the magic word, and he'd go curl up peacefully. My hosts were always impressed, and it was very very easy to 'install' this behavior in him. Good luck! Ruth & Gibbs
  7. Benny is extremely photogenic. My fave is the pic of him asleep against your head with that little pink tongue sticking out. Thanks for sharing! Ruth & Gibbs
  8. Agree with the above 2 posts. There is your safety and the safety of others around you to consider. IF you have the money and time to commit to working intensively with her, under the guidance of a veterinary behaviorist, then get that vet behaviorist and get their professional informed opinion. And consider that they might have the same advice that either Smalahundur or Journey & D'Elle gave. I took in a dog who had been very badly treated for most of the first 15 months or so of her life. It was very challenging, I had to be on high alert for several months before she was trustworthy. When we moved to a home that had a much smaller yard and we couldn't leave the door open for the critters to have free access to the yard during the day, she got worse. As much as I grieved when she died at around age 13, I also heaved a HUGE sigh of relief. And she never bit a human. I'm sorry that this is what your options are, realistically, and have an inkling of how difficult this must be for you. You must place your own safety and well-being above the your dog's. Bottom line. Ruth & Gibbs
  9. You can also put a old blanket, folded once or twice, on the ground. Take her kibble and scatter it over the different layers so that she has to search for it. Gibbs really likes this one. He gets half of each meal in a kong or kong type device, and I usually fill the kong and then hide it between his living room blanket. The few times I'm in a hurry and just hand him the kong he gives me a WTF look! Glad that the slow feed thing is working for you! Ruth & Gibbs
  10. Really not, for the reasons GL gives above. AND, if you have an exuberantly friendly dog, as I saw one day at a dog park, that dog can do some real damage. Young lab mix, racing around to meet and greet everyone, humans standing by and smiling. Until the lab mix jumped up on an elderly woman and knocked her over. I don't know if she was hurt, the dog's owners did the right thing and literally ran to her side to check with her. But, it could have been too little, too late for that woman who got knocked down. Your dog will possibly have an injury or illness at some point that requires crate rest, and you'll be looking around for some way to keep the dog reasonably content. Most of what you'll find is advice to train behaviors and tricks that the dog can do from a stationary position, or that don't require much movement. Training tires a dog out mentally AND increases the bond between canine and human. It's also a sanity saver for the human when the dog can't do physical stuff for whatever reason. If you google crate rest exercises, you'll find some good stuff. It's good to have those options in your back pocket. And right now, you can incorporate more training of this type to create more focus on you and get that bc brain engaged. Ruth & Gibbs
  11. I've had one like your guy, a couple sort of middle of the road, and one stand-offish guy. The stand-offish guy is currently in residence. If I had to choose between super-friendly and stand-offish, I'd go with super friendly. There are still issues, but my Gibbs has growled at people he doesn't know when they've approached him too quickly. And unfortunately, there have been times when I've had to physically put myself between my dog and an idiot human who is telling me, "I'd love to pet him and I'm really good with dogs." My advice is to work, work, work on his recall. Start at home, ask friends to come over and help. Keep him on a long line. He heads for Friend, you call. If he ignores you, use the long line and gently reel him in. Reinforce w/treat or head scratch or whatever works best. Repeat, repeat, repeat. Jackpot when he turns and trots right back to you without a tug on the long line. Then take it on the road, starting w/him on the longline again, go thru the whole process. Ask a friendly looking stranger to be the 'lure' AND the reward. Lots of people are happy to help. So your pup is on the long line, friendly stranger is standing a bit away, Pup heads for FS, you call, he returns without being tugged back by the longline. JACKPOT! AND, the jackpot is getting to greet the FS! W/my very outgoing Buzz, who loved EVERY human, this worked well. It takes time, but the jackpot being the wonderfulness of getting to greet the FS makes a big difference. AND, always, always ask a potential FS if they would mind helping you train your dog. Don't assume. Good luck! Let us know how you get on. Ruth & Gibbs ETA: Thanks for clarifying that, GL. It was what was in my brain, but it didn't make it to the screen!
  12. Evie, glad you're finding our suggestions helpful. Seeing your dog terrified is very frightening for us humans, too. As far as personal messages go, look at the blue banner at the top of each page. In the upper right of the blue banner, there's an envelope, just to the left of your BC Board name. That's our personal message system. Click on that envelope then put in the user you're wishing to communicate with. Voila! Check the envelope icon for anyone replying or messaging you as well. Ruth & Gibbs
  13. You could also try soaking the kibble, then freezing it in a large kong or something similar. Working on that should slow her down. With large dog biscuits or cookies, try holding it in your fist with just a bit of it protruding so that she can only gnaw off small pieces. Taffy might not like it, or she might be too enthusiastic which would make it unsafe for you, but it's worth a try. Good luck! I use a slow feed bowl just to give my boy something to do, and it takes him longer to eat. Ruth & Gibbs
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