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Still Chasing Cars...

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So, I have been working with Kaiser quite a lot lately, but nothing has worked. I have tried distracting, getting someone to scare him from the car, throwing cans, shock collar, and martingale/ choke. I put on the shock collar and it works, but when I take it off, he pretty much goes straight back to chasing ( I have to give the collar back to my friend soon). It is pretty disappointing...

 

I have ordered " Control Unleashed" from the library, but they don't have it yet..so I'll just have to wait :)

 

Anymore suggestions?

 

Also, how do I get him to look at me more for direction etc?....he seems a bit too independent in my opinion..

 

Thanks

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Persistence worked for me with Dex, I would always keep an eye on him outside and call him back a soon as I could see him even think about chasing.

After awhile he just started ignoring cars when they drove by. Mind you I have to remind him every now and again as like most Border Collies he relearns bad habits.

 

Dex always wants direction from me so may have made it easier in my case.

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It`s a different story when my wife leaves in the car. I have to hold him or put him in the house. He can`t stand it when his MOM leaves.

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Echo, part of it may be an issue of timing. If you're correcting him when he's already engaged in being bad, he may feel the gratification of the act - chasing cars - is worth suffering the correction.

 

Possibly you need to be a little faster on your setup. Watch him and catch him when he's just thinking about chasing. Rather than waiting until he's locked in and launched, wait only until he exhibits the first tell - begins to look towards the car, change of posture, whatever - and correct him then.

 

Catch him in the thought. Don't wait to catch him in the act.

 

This is just an idea, of course, since I can't be there to see what's actually happening. But a lot of training problems, whether it's on livestock or at home, can be because the correction is mis-timed and comes just a second too late. That does make a difference! Best of luck!

 

~ Gloria

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P.S.

How old is Kaiser? If he's being a little too independent, maybe he just needs some more one-on-one time with you. Lots of walking on leash, making him go by your rules while on leash, make him sit/stay/lie down for his meals, lots of brief basic obedience lessons during the day. Heck, find a book of dog tricks and teach him some! Pretty much anything you can think of that equates to you exerting gentle, quiet control his world, and don't be afraid of using treats (like string cheese) to make you a more interesting thing. :)

 

~ Gloria

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How long are sticking to any one method and how consistent are you in your criteria?

 

I think that's the hardest part in training dogs, sometimes we just expect to see results quickly, instead of really seeing the baby steps towards the end game destination.

 

Maybe take two steps backwards so that he truly understands what is expected of him in those situations?

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Dear Doggers,

 

Ms. Echo writes: "So, I have been working with Kaiser quite a lot lately, but nothing has worked."

 

Find a trainer.http://canineprofessionals.com/FindAProfessional. Write a check. Learn how to train your dog.

 

Donald McCaig

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Thank you so much for the replies everyone!

 

Gloria, that's probably what it is, though, even when I try to correct him while he is starting to crouch down, he is just so in the chasing mode that he ignores me..Should I correct him for just looking at the cars? He is eight months old today, and I'll be sure to do more trick training etc. ( 'cause it's fun anyway).

 

Brady's Mom, good point, I definitely did expect to see results quickly with things like this....though I'm a bit different now that it has taken a long time :rolleyes:

 

Mr. McCaig, I will definitely take a look at that!

 

Thanks again everyone!

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Until you can get the problem under control or solved, you may find you need to manage better - in other words, do something to avoid the situation entirely.

 

Do you have a crate? Can he be crated before your wife leaves, so he does not see her leaving (he will be well aware she is going but he won't be able to do more than fuss in his crate, hopefully).

 

I have a problem with two dogs here, that I have not been able to solve with training - at least not completely. So, sometimes, I have to resort to management because training isn't solving the problem.

 

Hopefully, you will find a training method (either with "Control Unleashed" or the help of a qualified trainer or on your own) that works to solve the problem. But, if you don't or until you do, be pro-active and manage to avoid the problem.

 

Gloria's comments about timing are spot on - for many situations and issues, it is often a matter of poor timing rather than what you are doing per se, that means you don't get the sort of results you are hoping for.

 

Very best wishes!

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Possibly you need to be a little faster on your setup. Watch him and catch him when he's just thinking about chasing. Rather than waiting until he's locked in and launched,

 

If you choose the CU approach, which I think is very much worth a good try, this is key in LAT, as well. If you wait until the dog has gone over threshold (the dog is locked in and launched), it is too late to use the game to begin to change his response to the trigger.

 

I figure you know this, but it bears repeating - the game must be taught in a context where there are no cars. Once you teach the foundation game, the dog should practice playing with moving things that he or she does not really care about - like a well known person just walking by until he or she is good at it. Generally that doesn't take very long. Once the dog is whipping toward you immediately upon hearing the click in those setups, you are ready to take the game "on the road". One of the biggest mistakes that I see people make is to skip the foundation, or move on before it really is solid enough. This doesn't mean that the foundation has to take a long, drawn out time. It just means that there is foundation work to be done and it needs to be attended to before moving on. For some dogs, the foundation can be accomplished very quickly. Others do need more time with it.

 

Another thing that would probably be beneficial with this when working with car chasing - although I did not know to do this when I started doing this with Dean is to have the dog able to play the game on cue. So, when you say something like, "what's that?", the dog knows you are playing LAT. Again, this must be taught first away from cars.

 

When you take the game "on the road", distance is going to be critical at first. Once your dog starts to get the hang of the game - which should not really take very long at all, you can move closer and closer. If you have LAT on cue and can say something like "What's That" to start the game before your dog even sees a car at a distance, it is best. But in cases where the dog sees the car first, you need to be ready to jump into this well before the "lock and launch" starts.

 

This is not a "quick fix", but I have had success with it with two dogs.

 

Since you are finding that nothing else is working, it is very much worth a try. If you do try it and have questions, please feel free to PM me.

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This is not a "quick fix", but I have had success with it with two dogs.

 

Since you are finding that nothing else is working, it is very much worth a try.

 

I'm kind of guessing that nothing else is working because of handler error or the desire for a quick fix (which would also be handler error). I can't imagine going through all those different methods and looking for yet another by the time your pup is 8 m/o. No offense intended to the OP, but at that point in time it's probably the trainer, not the method, that is ineffective.

 

Not saying that CU won't work (and it's very possible that it will help), but it sure won't work unless owner mentality is changed.

 

I think that Mr McCaig's advice is spot on about getting a good local trainer - someone that an help the OP learn some of the subtle nuances of training a dog. Because to get the most out of training, you need to learn how to effectively communicate with your dog!

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Not saying that CU won't work (and it's very possible that it will help), but it sure won't work unless owner mentality is changed.

 

At the heart of CU is an owner mentality change. :)

 

That's not to say that a good trainer cannot be of help. There are few trainers, though, who really understand the CU approach. So, if the OP wishes to try that - and I would say that doing so could be helpful in ways that extend beyond car chasing - working though the exercises one step at a time may well be the best education possible.

 

If the OP would like to try CU and is interested in an instructor familiar with the program and has had this very kind of success with the program, I would be happy to see if I could find a reference for such a trainer in the area. Just let me know by PM. :)

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There are few trainers, though, who really understand the CU approach.

 

Interesting. I've seen several people use very similar methods to ones in the CU book. With very good results. Not called CU but many of the basic ideas are the same - baby steps, counter-conditioning, removing the conflict, ignoring what you don't want and highly rewarding what you do.

 

It seemed to me that CU puts it in a formula that is laid out for the owner can follow. They're breaking down and labeling a sequence of behaviors. Some of these things were helpful to me because I'm not always sure how to break things down. Kind of like a "Ah, that's how I can do it" moment. But, for instance, after I went through the mat exercises with Kipp I saw how others were using the same concept only in a different way.

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It seemed to me that CU puts it in a formula that is laid out for the owner can follow. They're breaking down and labeling a sequence of behaviors. Some of these things were helpful to me because I'm not always sure how to break things down. Kind of like a "Ah, that's how I can do it" moment. But, for instance, after I went through the mat exercises with Kipp I saw how others were using the same concept only in a different way.

 

I am quite certain that there are many trainers who do CU type things that they have come up with without CU, I know for example Shirley Chong has advocated some of the same ideas in a slightly different format for many years.

 

But, that said, there are things about several of the CU exercises that are actually unique and may seem counter intuitive even if you are experienced training dogs...like clicking the dog for looking at the scary/overwhelming thing...not for looking back at the handler (what I have always done), but for engaging with the thing you don't want them to engage with which eventually becomes the cue to have them engage with you. Or, setting up a situation where the dog gets to to choose to engage with you when distracted and allowing them to go be distracted. Its pretty neat, imo.

 

Good luck to the OP and I will agree with the idea that she would benefit from an in person trainer to help.

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Mara,

I think you made a very important point, one that might get lost in the context of the whole CU discussion. If an owner has tried numerous things over a short period of time, say 6 months, then it's likely that the owner has not been persistent enough with any one technique to see results before giving up and hopping to the next technique. If anyone offers the perfect solution to solving the problem, the OP needs to understand that there are no quick fixes and that no matter what method she tries next, she will need to commit to seeing it through over the longer term, or she will have no greater success than she did with any of the other techniques already tried and discarded.

 

J.

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.....Dex always wants direction from me so may have made it easier in my case.

 

 

In addition to the other important advice others have said ( especially that the problem cannot be solved in a fairly short amount of time) this is a significant remark - the pup has to want to look to the OP for guidance and consistency. Whether it is natural biddiblity, or earned respect or a combination of the two, that partnership needs to be developed. If a dog is by nature or nurture not particularly interested in pleasing you, then you've got a larger problem.

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But, that said, there are things about several of the CU exercises that are actually unique and may seem counter intuitive even if you are experienced training dogs...like clicking the dog for looking at the scary/overwhelming thing...not for looking back at the handler (what I have always done), but for engaging with the thing you don't want them to engage with which eventually becomes the cue to have them engage with you. Or, setting up a situation where the dog gets to to choose to engage with you when distracted and allowing them to go be distracted. Its pretty neat, imo.

 

Exactly! Often I find that when people hear about CU and say "I'm already doing all of that", upon further inquiry, CU offers something quite different from what they are already doing.

 

And a lot of it is counter intuitive. I know that before I started to play Look at That for the first time I thought "No way! This is the opposite of what I want!"

 

In my classes, when I teach the foundation Give Me a Break, I tell the students that we are going to play a game where they will try to get their dogs to not pay attention to them. The ones who have easily distractable dogs are always like, "oh this will be easy!" They are always very surprised when they can't get their dogs to disengage within minutes, sometimes seconds, after starting the game. I always ask them to share how they felt about not being able to get their dogs to disengage when they often expend so much energy trying to get them to pay attention and it is always very interesting to hear their response. From there, they learn the Give Me a Break game proper.

 

So, some of it is the same as just plain old ordinary reinforcement based training, but there are several very distinct techniques that I have never seen or heard of anywhere else.

 

I wish there were a specific "CU Based Protocol" for helping car chasers. In the book, there is a section on helping motion triggered dogs, but the specific context of that is the motion of other dogs. Working with cars is the same principle, but obviously you have to do it safely. You can't just set up a barrier in a training building and slowly drive a car through the room!! So, it does take some thought and adaptation. But the basic progression of the training is the same.

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Echo ... do you have a way to videotape the behavior and post it so we can see what's happening? Maybe videotaping what happens with no correction and when correct him. I, personally, am not interested in seeing him in a shock collar, pinch collar or a choke chain, but I think it would help us get a better idea of where the problem might be.

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So, I have been working with Kaiser quite a lot lately, but nothing has worked. I have tried distracting, getting someone to scare him from the car, throwing cans, shock collar, and martingale/ choke. I put on the shock collar and it works, but when I take it off, he pretty much goes straight back to chasing ( I have to give the collar back to my friend soon). It is pretty disappointing...

 

I have ordered " Control Unleashed" from the library, but they don't have it yet..so I'll just have to wait :)

 

Anymore suggestions?

 

Also, how do I get him to look at me more for direction etc?....he seems a bit too independent in my opinion..

 

Thanks

 

So I'm rereading the OP.

 

It seems like everything that has been tried has little to do with actual training. More like scare the dog away from chasing. This only works for as long as you can scare them, or until the drive overrides the fear.

 

So instead you teach them self control as a lifestyle. Before the dog gets what it wants, it does what you want. It sits before going outside. It gives you eye contact before eating dinner. It downs before you throw the next ball. You're incorporating the idea that Nothing In Life Is Free. I can take my dogs up to the neighbors to exercise their dog, open the tailgate/kennels in the back of the car and tell them to wait. And they wait while I go let the neighbor's dog out and start walking toward the field. They only leave when I say "free". They're waiting with baited breath, but they're staying put until I say they can come out.

 

You watch your dogs body language and learn to read it. When they first start to getting amped up, then you ask for the calm behavior you've been teaching (all those downs, sits, eye contact) you get it, reward the dog and take them away from the situation. This should be an everyday exercise. You should be able to get a dog to chill pretty quickly (provided it's basic physical/mental exercise needs are being met) in a situation where they start to get hyper. My dogs have a "go lay down" that I can use and they'll go lay down and chill.

 

Then you keep the dog away from cars until it's able to demonstrate good self control in other situations. Try to keep them out of sight, but at least keep the dog leashed/on a long line so there is no way that they can chase.

 

FWIW, at eight months old many, many dogs push boundaries and get a bit more independent. It's a teenage thing. Setting clear boundaries/expectations, being consistent and having patience is a must.

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Thank you so much for the replies everyone!

 

Gloria, that's probably what it is, though, even when I try to correct him while he is starting to crouch down, he is just so in the chasing mode that he ignores me..Should I correct him for just looking at the cars? He is eight months old today, and I'll be sure to do more trick training etc. ( 'cause it's fun anyway).

 

Echo, if you correct him while he's starting to crouch down, you're already too late. He's already locked in, has already chosen his target. You must catch him when he's *thinking* about it - when he first glimpses the car - and do your distraction/correction that very instant.

 

That's what I mean about timing. If he's already seen the car and is thinking, "Ooh, wanna chase that," you've missed the moment by just that fraction of a moment. If you watch his body and eyes, you'll see when he first forms the thought. Maybe his eyes lock on, maybe his ears prick up, but your timing has to be in that same split-second he spots the car, and before he has the chance to crouch. Catch him in the thought, not the act.

 

Ideally, he learns to not look at cars at all. That's your goal.

 

But really, you've got some wonderful advice here, from people who know a great dea; more about correcting behavioral problems than me. I've heard lots of good things about "Control Unleashed," and Maralynn and others have some excellent things to say. The single most important thing in training a young pup is consistency. Pick a teaching system and stick with hit. For weeks and months. For example, sure, you can teach a pup to sit for a cookie in 3 tries. But "sit" won't become an ingrained response for every situation in which you may ask it, until you've perfected and proofed the behavior over time and in various situations.

 

And you can't just teach him to exert self control when he would rather chase a car. He has to learn self-control about everything, whether it's waiting for you to let him in or out a door, or waiting before he gets a treat or is allowed to his supper dish, or allowed to get out of the car, (despite the door being open) or whatever. You must firmly and patiently teach him that acting on his first impulse isn't the way life works.

 

He's a very young guy, at 8 months, so now is the time to make sure you are consistent and patient with everything you do, for and with him. Nothing happens over night, and a motion-activated behavior is going to take a good while to overcome.

 

Best of luck, and do read the advice others are giving you, here. These folks know their stuff. :)

 

~ Gloria

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All very interesting..

 

I have always heard of people saying that problems with dogs are usually caused by their owners, but I never really of that with myself, though, after reading all of this I am positive that I am the problem. It probably didn't help that all I pretty much did when he was younger was let him run around the farm, barely walking him....oops. If only time travel were real :rolleyes:

 

What's the "process" of teaching self control? Is it as simple as NILIF?

 

I see border collies around my neighborhood house once in a while, and they are always really well behaved, and looking to their owners for (and following) direction...how do I achieve this? Does it come more with age?

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What's the "process" of teaching self control? Is it as simple as NILIF?

 

I see border collies around my neighborhood house once in a while, and they are always really well behaved, and looking to their owners for (and following) direction...how do I achieve this? Does it come more with age?

 

Does it come with age? Heck no!! It takes consistent and considerate training. NILIF helps, but it is not the only answer. You need to set a goal for your dog and then work to achieve it. Good manners or specific skills do not happen without forethought and do not happen overnight. Some people make it look easy because they are constantly attuned to the dog's behavior and have integrated training into their lifestyle.

 

This forum has a lot of excellent advice. Research past topics or ask specific questions here.

 

Good Luck,

 

Jovi

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Echo, to teach self-control to your dog, Nothing In Life Is Free is a great place to start. If you think you've already done NILIF, and your boy reliably sits/downs/waits politely, then it's simply a matter of raising the level of distractions sloooowwwwlllly, so that your dog understands that you are In Charge Everywhere, not just in the house.

 

Go back and read some descriptions of NILIF, (Shirly Chong comes to mind)and make sure you're doing the program consistently. If you need to tighten up, then do so. Get very clear in your own mind what your goals for your boy are. Then discipline yourself to help him get there. Yes, all this does help as you work on car chasing.

 

Search for youtube videos of dog aggression, (Trish King has some, I think). Watch and look for the signs of stiffness and focus. I'm not saying Kaiser is aggressive, but the focus/intensity signals in the build-up to aggression are pretty similar to what dogs do whenever they're intent on chasing, etc. You'll need to learn to recognize the very, very beginning of this process in Kaiser, and stop him at that point. As some one said earlier, if he's crouching and focused when you correct him, it's already too late.

 

Working with a good trainer is an excellent idea. We can't see what we're doing wrong, we're too much a part of the process.

 

While you're looking for a trainer, dust off NILIF.

 

Good luck,

 

Ruth

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One suggestion about setting goals:

 

It's great to have the end result in mind, just make sure you understand every step/milestone in the process. All to often, I find people in general get so fixated on the end result that they completely miss the steps along the way. For example, if I have a new dog that I want to teach how to roll over, I first need the lie down. Break it down. This might seem simplistic advice, but, like I said, I find it is the one thing people often forget.

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