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dog training advice- please

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I'd really love any advice anyone has to help with my dog.

 

We have had a baby and we have a 4 year old labrador, who is never growing up. He is an inside dog but he goes out when we are at work or when he is driving me crazy.

 

I am grateful because he is not aggresive to the baby, although of course we watch them like hawks. These are our problems.

 

1) he is very very hyper, he always has been but we thought it might get a bit better, which it hasn't. He gets exercised every day (only 30 or 40 minutes mind you) but it doesn't make any difference. We had to put away all his toys cos he goes too crazy with them.

 

2) he is constantly licking or trying to lick the baby which at first was ok but he is obsessed with it and just never stops.

 

3) He is not aggressive off lead but on a lead he has become so aggressive to other dogs (this is the least of my problems cos I can control him and he'll never get the opportunity to hurt another dog). But I would like to enjoy our walks again. He was attacked by another dog when he was on lead and I guess it could be related but I don't know what to do about it.

 

4)He does not respond to commands anymore. Everything is said about 3 times.

 

I am sick of hearing myself chastise him and he is driving me mad:arghh:

I want to be able to still have him inside most of the time but I am getting to the point where I just can't.

 

Please help if you can.

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Sounds like you need to seek help from a dog behaviour specialist. Try your local vets or kennels for names and numbers.

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Has he been castrated it usually calms them down .. id chat to the vet and see about a behavior specialist .. is he feeling left out since the baby ? negative behavior and all that ..


to much partying to much booze gives you spots and makes you snooze!

sharon.

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http://leerburg.com/dogs-babies.htm

 

This might help a little. I had a quick glance but it may help.


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In order to stand out from the flock one must first be a sheep

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Geez you have all been so helpful. He was a pound dog so he was castrated 3 years ago, and they said we would notice the full effect in 6 months.....we are still waiting, it's been 3 years. It's really tough and I feel really bad for him cos when we had the baby he was definitely a bit left out. We were really struggling at home with her and barely were able to scratch ourselves never mind anything else.

 

He started this on lead aggression thing when I was pregnant but I think that relates to him being attacked (although that did happen quite a bit before I was preggers).

 

I am definitely going to look into a dog behaviour person but I will have to wait til I go back to work, cos it's a bit hand to mouth at the moment.

 

I am always trying to reinforce positive behaviour but I don't know if I am supposed to ignore negative or chastise or what. Cos it's difficult to ignore his incessant licking or stealing things that I need.

 

Anyway I will check out the websites.

 

Thanks a lot. x x

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Can I ask where you live? If it is localish to me then I don't mind helping out FOC, but I have a feeling that you will live miles away lol x


If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.

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I reckon exercise might help a lot. 30-40mins isnt very long for an active dog. I have 2 Jack Russells and they would drive me barmy if they only had a 30min walk. Some days it is only possible to give them a 30 min walk but I pay for it with them been "over excited" dashing about , constantly looking for attention, digging up the garden, jumping the fence etc.. give them a good 1hr+ and they come home relax, sleep, behave sooo much better. They also enjoy running with me and bike riding. If you cant take him out longer can you go a bike to pick up the pace?

Also at home have you tried to give him a toy that makes him think ie you can get a ball you put treats in and he would have to roll it around getting the treats to fall out a small hole or a kong which is a very tough rubber toy you can fill with tasty stuff for him to lick out.

Definitely dont ignore him licking your baby. If he is told to leave the baby alone he must do it other wise he is been dominant over your baby. Make sure you dont just be at the other side of the room shouting at him. walk over confidently and calmly tell him "No" or "A" and stand between him and the baby until he backs of to a good distance and leaves baby alone.

Hope some of this helps, its easier to write down a bit of advice than to actually put it into practice!

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Guest MontyClaude

I really feel for you. Labs have mountains of energy and they really need a lot of attention. I have a retriever with limitless energy, he tended to be a bit destructive when younger (only 20 months now) and left to his own devices. I agree with amy rose about excercise and also games that make him think. If you could bring him somewhere for a swim I find that tires mine out.

 

I brought mine to puppy socialisation classes when they were very small, I have the notes that I could email to you if that would help. I know he's not a pup anymore but it teaches about not rewarding negative behaviour etc...

 

Good luck.

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where are you located ? sounds like he is bored and looking for attention - the kong with treats inside usually keps them occupied but sounds like he needs a lot more than 30 mins walk a day

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Guest grimsbypeeps

do you get the dog whisperer on tv over there, i have tried his techniques witrh lots of dogs with all sorts of problems.... the treatment is the same for most things, ignore him whilst he is excited.... do not chastise... no eye contact etc but remain calm, the baby can become a no go area simply by you calmly claiming him as yours.... you do this by blocking him using a noise and walking towards the dog... only cease blocking him when he has settled down, youll know hes done this as he may sit, ears go down... hell look away and my yawn.... this will all make sense if you watch epesodes on sat tv or cable.... you must stop getting upset with him and remain calm and positive, chastising him is rewarding his bad behavior with attention, take him back to basics with his training, make him sit and wait for his food, feed him after you have all eaten, take his toys away after you have played with him, make him wait at doors, basicly teach him manners.... if he becomes over excited in any situation then stop the interaction.... its hard to be more specific without seeing the dog but above all keep calm positive assertive energy within yourself and the dog will follow, youll all be happier... oh one thing, i take it your a lady.... try to use deeper tones when training your dog... high pitched commands convay feeling of nervousness and fear/excitment to dogs... my dogs are all trained to hand signals which is handy ! hope it helps....

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I live on the Gold Coast, northern end. I will get him out one of those toys with the treats, I forgot about them. I will put in extra effort to gt him exercised more. We took him to the dag park yesterday, which is friggin miles away but he was much better in the afternoon. I suppose I will simply have to take him out longer (which wouldn't be a bad idea for me anyway). It's terrible but cos he has a go at every dog that walks past (except when he is off lead which I can't do in my neighbourhood) I suppose that's what has put me off a bit. My partner is really struglling with the agression to other dogs, it's a bit embarrassing really. I will def keep trying and I will follow your tips. Cheers x

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do you get the dog whisperer on tv over there, i have tried his techniques witrh lots of dogs with all sorts of problems.... the treatment is the same for most things, ignore him whilst he is excited.... do not chastise... no eye contact etc but remain calm, the baby can become a no go area simply by you calmly claiming him as yours.... you do this by blocking him using a noise and walking towards the dog... only cease blocking him when he has settled down, youll know hes done this as he may sit, ears go down... hell look away and my yawn.... this will all make sense if you watch epesodes on sat tv or cable.... you must stop getting upset with him and remain calm and positive, chastising him is rewarding his bad behavior with attention, take him back to basics with his training, make him sit and wait for his food, feed him after you have all eaten, take his toys away after you have played with him, make him wait at doors, basicly teach him manners.... if he becomes over excited in any situation then stop the interaction.... its hard to be more specific without seeing the dog but above all keep calm positive assertive energy within yourself and the dog will follow, youll all be happier... oh one thing, i take it your a lady.... try to use deeper tones when training your dog... high pitched commands convay feeling of nervousness and fear/excitment to dogs... my dogs are all trained to hand signals which is handy ! hope it helps....

 

that is good I will try that x cheers

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Also, just as a point of conversation. I think having a dog is a bit of a science. My family have always had dogs so I love dogs and I guess I thought I could just train him and then it would be easy, but I am clearly not very good at it. I took him to puppy school and all that. But clearly, as I am always saying to my boyfriend, he is the way he is because of something we have done or not done. Before we had the baby I used to take him out for longer,but when she was first born we just couldn't but he was still really hyper anyway. But yes I do think it is very hard. Yu need to be a psycholigist as well with them. I remember telling my boyfriend (when I was trying to convince him to get a dog) that essentially they are simple creatures that are easily understood and trained.:rolleyes: Me da fool. I think if you actually want them to be a part of your family or pack and are going to do more than just leave them lonely you need to put in a lot of effort.

 

Hopefully a lot of effort will pay off and we will have a happier family/pack, everyone included.

 

PS I didn't know why he was licking her all the time. It is good to realise that it is probably domination. So thanks for that.

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have you seen this list http://www.goldcoast.qld.gov.au/t_standard2.aspx?pid=23

its all the off leash exercise areas on the gold coast , does you dog chase a ball ? get one of those "curved" ball launchers saves your arm and will help wear him out. Try the spit dog area once in awhile something different for him to explore. Good luck

 

That is SO good thanks for that. I have been trying to look online but must be useless at searching. Cheers. I am SO grateful. He won't chase a ball when he is out but he does burn plenty of calories playing with the doggies when he's off the lead.

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i am on the goldie too so had to do the search for parks for my gsd to go to - am lucky we have a small park just down the road but use the beaches as a weekly treat :)

http://leerburg.com/corrections.htm ( this links to one page but whole site is accessible from this ) is another site that i have found looking for info on my dog - i have the opposite problem in so much as my dog thinks everyone wants to play and be friends where i want him to be a little bit more aware that strangers are just that until he gets told they are ok LOL i would avoid the prong collar at all costs but the collar they call a dominant collar you can get something similar her in aus which is half a flat leather collar and then has half choke collar which allows you to make the correction but with out the choke aspect - was shown it by a trainer i used a few years back and now use it all the time except for when we are in the surf. You can ge tthem at petstock ashmore or similar places but get a good one not a cheap one from china - sounds like you wil need a good sized and strong one. Again good luck , ps with the ball chase maybe give him a ball to play with at home in the garden after you have had it sitting in some minced meat - roo is great, sticks to the ball and leaves a scent , if he takes to it then see if he will chase it if you roll it , increase the distance, throw it etc you will soon be able to forget the meat but and he should chase the ball. maybe take some treats with you to the park to occasionally reward him when he does chase the ball.

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Guest MontyClaude

Please don't use the prong collars, they'll hurt him and he'll become afraid and possibly more aggressive to other dogs.

I was walking mine the other day and a tibetan terrier ran up and started growling and barking at mine. My GR is a big woos and lay down and rolled over but my Bernese just stood her ground and didn't react. Mine were both on leads and when the owner of the terrior came over and apologised he said his dog reacts badly to other dogs on leads, sort of the opposite of yours. He had a spray can (looked like air freshner) that the vet had given him, when his dog showed aggression he sprayed it and the noise / smell distracted him and stopped. I honestly don't know how effective this was but it might be worth asking your vet.

Maybe bring him to obedience classes, or something like agility to wear him out and put manners on him?

By the way these are just suggestions in my house my dogs are in charge (so I'm no position to offer advice!).....I get pushed off the sofa quite a lot when they want to spread out :)

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Guest grimsbypeeps

if he is aggressive on the lead to other dogs but better off the lead there is a reason.... the same base reason for most problems... he sees himself as hight in the pack standing than you so he is your protector.... as you see other dogs approach you will no doubt tence up, you will hold him back... you will start telling him no etc etc, dogs understand that as a outside dog approaches... you become fearful and upset, there fore reinforcing and driving his instinct to protect you as a weaker member of "his" pack.....

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if he is aggressive on the lead to other dogs but better off the lead there is a reason.... the same base reason for most problems... he sees himself as hight in the pack standing than you so he is your protector.... as you see other dogs approach you will no doubt tence up, you will hold him back... you will start telling him no etc etc, dogs understand that as a outside dog approaches... you become fearful and upset, there fore reinforcing and driving his instinct to protect you as a weaker member of "his" pack.....

 

OMG it is SO hard!!! He is even aggressive when my mr has him, so he must think he's higher than everyone!!

 

Thanks to all of you I found a nearby dog park today where I took him and now he is asleep. Yay!!! I also managed to get him to stop licking the baby and he hasn't done it since I read the posts. So fingerscrossed we are on to something.

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Guest grimsbypeeps
OMG it is SO hard!!! He is even aggressive when my mr has him, so he must think he's higher than everyone!!

 

Thanks to all of you I found a nearby dog park today where I took him and now he is asleep. Yay!!! I also managed to get him to stop licking the baby and he hasn't done it since I read the posts. So fingerscrossed we are on to something.

 

 

 

:biggrin:

 

 

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Hiya, just A little update to all of you dog lovers who gave me some advice. FINALLY at 4and a half years old my labrador has settled down. He is still hyper but not to the same extent and now instead of him hassling the baby it's the other way around. He is still aggressive while on the lead but he is fine off it, just something we will have to deal with for now. He is coming to Scotland with us and will hopefully love it there. x x

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Re: hyperactive. This is just a theory of mine, but... What about a change of diet? Is he getting too many calories? I always wonder if these 'lite and mature' varieties have lower entry levels in them.

 

Id be curious to know what more qualified people think about that.

 

Geoff

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Exercise is the most important thing here; but MENTAL exercise is even more so. Think of it like this; each fifteen minutes of training and mental exercise equates an hour of physical. Each walk should be at least half off lead or on long line so he can get a real run around. Try to aim to meet five dogs each time so that you can really bump up that mental exercise; if he isn't good with dogs on lead, there are a few things you can do.

 

The first is ignore all Caesar's techniques; he is widely doubted in the dog training world as his methods are unsupported and out-dated. You will probably do more harm than good.

Second, take baby steps; each time you see a dog and he's on lead, make it awesome. Carry really nice treats that are ONLY used for when you see another dog; these are called high value treats. The smellier the better; fish, liver, or sausage is great. What you really have to do is make sure YOU see the dog first; otherwise it'll be too late, as when he sees the dog and kicks off, he's passed the threshold; you aren't getting his attention back. When you see the dog, ask for his attention and ask for a sit or a 'watch me'. Try hard to keep him focussed on you; what you really want is for him to ignore the dog as he goes past, but that's a big ask for him, he needs to tell that dog exactly why he shouldn't come near him, and when he's done that and the dog keeps walking off, he will think he's done it! Great, next time he'll just do it again. So focus work tells him 'Daddy has this, just concentrate on me.'. It's difficult, so if he breaks that focus, walk away in the opposite direction, fast. Don't let him stay still enough to concentrate or focus, just walk walk walk. Really important bit here; no chastising. Don't tell him off for barking at the other dog on lead; he's only doing exactly what he needs to to protect himself, and if he learns that bad things happen to him (daddy shouting, a prong collar, a tightened lead, anything like that) when he sees another dog it will only tell him he needs to protect more. When you see that dog, treat treat treat, focus focus focus. Tell him it's great that another dog is there.

 

Regarding mind games, there are lots you can do. Training wise, just give the one word command; if he doesn't respond, retrain it. A treat on top of the nose which you then push back over his head will put him naturally into a sit. You don't need to touch him, just let him figure it out. Once he's sat, treat, and cue to a word. Rinse and repeat. If he's not getting it, try another walk; ideally his breed should be walked twice a day for an hour each, but one good hour long walk and then a shorter one should be fine. Setting him up for success means a lot; only train if you're both in the mood for it and he's had his walk so he can relax and enjoy it. Training is fun!

Playing hide and seek with treats hidden around the house, Kongs with his meals in them, and treat balls can be great for wearing out his mind. Giving him his own toys and showing him where they are should result in less stolen items.

 

Babies are interesting for dogs; he probably got rewarded when you told him how great he was when he reacted well to the baby, either by licking or sniffing. When dogs have less exercise than they need, they can focus inwardly and get obsessions; this can mean licking objects, furniture, and people. To break this, up the exercise and obedience training, and try settling him with one of his mind game toys instead. Teaching him those new habits instead of his old ones can really make a difference. :)

 

Hope that helps!


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