Jump to content
BC Boards
Sign in to follow this  
jami74

One year old

Recommended Posts

Our boy is now one!

I was thinking about it last week and was planning to post about the changes and what a lovely dog he's growing into. I was going to say about how he now settles and sleeps during the day, about how he automatically sits at a door and waits to go through it, how he has stopped nicking socks and even lets me brush him a little bit. He is still very excitable and struggles to focus when we're out, but can now do actual walking on the lead next to me, albeit only for a few minutes at a time. Where he used to bark and lunge and lose it if he saw someone in the distance, now they can be quite close and it's more a little self contained hop and a cough. I was going to talk about how good his whistle recall is (used selectively for ball play and super nice treats) and even voice call brings him enthusiastically back.

But then this week happened. We were out having off lead fun and I called him, treats at the ready (I do quite a bit of recall for a treat and fuss before releasing him again) and he got half way to me and then changed his mind :o, like he literally decided that he wouldn't come and he'd go off and sniff something instead. And then he was deaf as a post and no amount of noise or movement from me caught his attention. It was a bit unnerving. When I did get him I gave him a fuss and threw the ball for him a couple of times before putting him on the lead and going home. I thought it was a one off, but then a similar thing happened a couple of days later. The whistle really is a special signal and he usually runs as fast as he can towards us when he hears it, but this time I blew it and he ran as fast as he could in a different direction. I blew it again and he about turned and ran in a different direction (but not towards me). It was a bit windy so I wondered if the wind carried the sound and he got confused about where it was coming from. The third time I blew he came, skidding into a sit position at my feet and looking really pleased. I didn't really feel as enthusiastic as I usually do when he comes first time but we did some fun tricks and he went back on the lead and home. I thought the whistle was fool proof, used only when I think it can't fail and when I've got a high value reward in the hope that if I ever need to use it in an emergency it would work.

Now I'm feeling a bit nervous about taking him for off lead exercise. The places we go tend to be safe enough that it's not the end of the world if he doesn't come first time, and I don't think he'd just run and never come back, he always comes back he's just wanting to do it on his own terms now. Lead walking is improving, we have been working really hard on it for months, but it still requires lots of treats and concentration from us both so lead walking for an hour isn't really practical. I do have a long line and there are places I keep it on him and let it trail, but as he doesn't walk or potter when off lead if I was to hold it he would just go to the end of it and if he did decide to go for a run by the time he got to the end of it the force would either pull me over. Once he's had a good run off lead he does slow down and stay closer. I almost think that if I took him for an off lead jaunt twice a day it might tire him out/calm him down enough that he wouldn't be bothered to run off and not listen. But, I've been careful not to create a dog that needs two big outings a day (he gets ball play at home as well as tricks and games during the day) and I'm not convinced that he would suddenly be more responsive if he had more freedom. I've found in the past that he gets less responsive when he gets tired. Or, do we do less off lead stuff so he doesn't get into the habit of ignoring me? He likes to have a good run and always seems relaxed and content when we get home afterwards.

Any ideas? He is due at some point to be castrated. I know it is a controversial issue but I'm wondering if opting for sooner rather than later would be a good idea.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Meh, it's adolescent testing of boundaries. Keep up the training and this too shall pass.

Neutering's unlikely to make much of a difference in the behavior at any time, so no reason to do it earlier than planned.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi, my boy will be one year old in two weeks and this sounds all too familiar. He is saintly at home ( most of the time) but outdoors on walks i cannot trust him to come back in face of distractions. If we are alone in the park no problem but all bets are off if there is a distraction.

I fully accept this is my fault and i really need to work on training. 

Good luck and keep up the good work

He was neutered 4 weeks ago and really i do not see any difference.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Our boy is nearly 11 months old. We had a scare with him at 6 months old in that in a park near us, something scared him and he ran away fast and made his way home, leaving my husband shouting for him to come back. Since then we are very weary about letting him off leash and now only in a secure park or short spells on farm land. His recall is good now, but occasionally it takes a few attempts to get him back to us. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Probably good not to let him off leash until this time period is past and you have done more reinforcement of the come-to-a-whistle training. Not that he doesn't know it, but he is as GL said, just being a teenager. this too shall pass. Sounds to me as if you have done good training with him, just keep up the good work and you and he will be fine.

 It does sound to me as if the whistle event might have been the wind blowing the sound around.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank-you for the reassurances, I'll be extra careful about if/where we let him off and aim for longer walks on a long line so he can wander and sniff but not run off or ignore us.

He's just started a new thing. He likes to take his Kong outside to eat for a little while and then he'll bring it with him and come back inside. I don't mind that at all, but now he asks to come back inside and when I open the door he runs off down the garden. So I close the door and a few minutes later he asks again and I open the door and again he runs off down the garden. I'm sure he thinks this is hilarious. It's not quite warm enough to leave the door open yet and if I don't open the door he starts barking.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, jami74 said:

Thank-you for the reassurances, I'll be extra careful about if/where we let him off and aim for longer walks on a long line so he can wander and sniff but not run off or ignore us.

He's just started a new thing. He likes to take his Kong outside to eat for a little while and then he'll bring it with him and come back inside. I don't mind that at all, but now he asks to come back inside and when I open the door he runs off down the garden. So I close the door and a few minutes later he asks again and I open the door and again he runs off down the garden. I'm sure he thinks this is hilarious. It's not quite warm enough to leave the door open yet and if I don't open the door he starts barking.

Same with ours. In the evening, when he is not giving my husband the ‘lets go for a walk’ look, he will run through house into garden, then run back in and look out the lounge window. We live on a corner, so he hears anything and everything nearby  Also barks like mad if we don’t jump up and let him out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...