About Yuma And Me...


Experienced Member
Amateur - i would say thats good. Eye-contact, and rewarding for walking next to you is all i can see, though i would try and see if you could progress to treats in pockets (obviously easy access), so you don't have to have your hands gobbered - unless you like it i guess :ROFLMAO:O_o. Oka walks well on lead as i have never given in to her ....it's only taken ummmm ....about 12months :LOL: (LOL at myself) to get to the point now where sometimes i wonder why i have a lead....she's not brilliant every time but 95% she is. DP and I together and we are back to 40% of the time but thats work in progress! The getting in right position and then back to pulling is "yo-yo" dog, i think its where they think the treats come *just* from being by your side....by pulling and coming back, pulling and coming back: she gets more treats = smart doggie ;), so rewarding for more steps is good!
Pulling s such a hard thing to crack!! I started from scratch with Oka at about 7/8months. I did heeling in teh garden - that the most bestest thing he loves (Oka= boiled chicken, tug, ham, cheese,) go out inthe garden (or room in the house if he ignores you outside) and walk around, pretend to be interested in stuff - if her comes to you give him a treat and walk away (slowly) hopefully he will follow you, treat him again, when he is next to your leg, if he goes ahead turn around and walk away. This way he is following you because he wants to not becuase your making him. Aftre a few treats play a game with him, then do the treating over again. do it for 5 - 10 minutes (as you have play inthere and your not "training as such" ) then carry on as normal. If you find he comes into a "heel" position treat him with something not so fantastic (kibble, normal treats) and then just go on your day - Hopefully making the "heel" position rewarding. When you get to the stage that in the garden/room he will just come to your side then withhold the treat for 1 or 2 steps if he walks with you treat and continue. soon he will do a few steps. Now for me i found building up the steps here actually ruined it for Oka - she cottoned on tht i was 'bribing' her, so next i attached a lead but didn't hold it, and repeated as before.
I also found rewarding her in the real world was as simple as letting her sniff a lamp post or a bush. I now have "go sniff" as a reward that gives a bit of free rein so she can do the dog thing and be ready to step back into the human thing (heeling). If you'd like i can try to make a bit of a video of our game i the garden so you can see what i mean.


Experienced Member
The treats in the hands is for this initial phase.. if they go ahead of me I open my hands and when they move back to position I want them to think " Holy crap how long has that treat been there waiting for me". I do walk along with no treats for a while and let them see my hands in that same position - almost like a hand touch command where they nose my open palm wherever I put it -- usually there is no treat but then suddenly next time there might be one.. hopefully we can wean her off the treats. If she goes too far ahead and pulls I just stop, and she must move backwards. But my last walk there was very little pulling -- hungry dogs !

This pup has excellent recall and walks better off lead at my husbands side when they go to the field. Its just something about that leash ....

I just thought what I was doing might help with yuma too ....


Experienced Member
We are using the head harness ( which I even had her wear in the house sometimes for awhile as it calmed her down during her defiant phase). But she even pulls on that ... and I mean pulls ! We stop using it for a time and are back using it... not great but better than just a flat collar. I did look into a few body harnesses but they just didnt seem to fit her shape right. I will try again in future once she puts on a few pounds.

Someone posted a video recently about leash pulling and using a long lead as a made up harness that looks promising ... silky ? method ? and will go back to look.

Its been really busy here but I may just have to bite the bullet and walk her separately to get this fixed ... I am thinking part of my problem is in walking both dogs at the same time (even though Hank is excellent on lead)

I'm thinking some of this started when she was a pup and we rushed her outside to pee. She would always be on leash and really wanted her to make it to her spot so we always ran to it. She was housebroken in 2 days :love: ( at 8 weeks of age ) so I think we were over enthusiastic about getting her to her spot. And as strong willed as she was seemed to continue with it.


Experienced Member
Amateur - we have a perfect fit harness, which is brilliant, we had trouble with other harness slipping off of Oka's chest, never fitting right. The Perfect fit one is great as the different parts can be different sizes to better fit your dog (then adjusted even more!), they are a UK company (not sure where in the world you are), in the UK you can exchange the pieces for free to get the best fit. They do post all over the world. I don't know if there is one like this in the USA.
We found that Oka was instantly calmer in this harness as it wraps around her body. After passing a dog it takes 2 minutes to calm instead of 5-10 minutes. She doesn't act like she needs another walk after we get home, she has a drink and a wee then sleeps v.s before when she would run around and be naughty for 1hour after a walk!


Experienced Member
I was reading up on the harnesses last night from the site you posted
In Canada but with the internet I may just look into it. Thanks


Well-Known Member
I'm thinking some of this started when she was a pup and we rushed her outside to pee. She would always be on leash and really wanted her to make it to her spot so we always ran to it. She was housebroken in 2 days :love: ( at 8 weeks of age ) so I think we were over enthusiastic about getting her to her spot. And as strong willed as she was seemed to continue with it.
THAT is probably where this all began. Yuma was house trained within 3 or so days. (such a smart boy) But like you, I rushed him out to his spot and then praised him. Kinda shot myself in the foot with that one I think....
Walking with the treat-- I've tried that a couple of times. He seems to be good until he gets bored with it. He will look to me for the treat and I will ignore him and keep walking until he looks straight ahead and walks like I want. Then I stop, stoop down, and treat/praise him. Works great until he decides he is sick of the treats or finds something better to do (which leads to pulling all over again)
I can't afford to give him chicken as a treat... I can barely feed myself such things! :ROFLMAO: College takes a toll.
However, there are puppy classes here in the summer/spring that one of my Vet Tech instructors puts on so I might take him to that if the problem persists.

And now to the peeing thing...the DREADED peeing I might add.
Ignoring him. Doesn't work. He doesn't care that you are looking at him or speaking. He just wants to jump and pee.:cautious:
I have put him up when people come over, allow them to peek in so he can see who it is, and then have them ignore him. He is calm in his crate, but as soon as I let him out....peeing.
I know he is a puppy still, but c'mon. He has bladder control -- I've seen him hold it for a long time when needed.
He plots I tell ya! :confused:


Experienced Member
I think excitement peeing and bladder control arent really related if its a behavioural thing.
The video someone posted recently about calming your dog was really good in principal. Perhaps you are moving too fast.
Maybe it would be better when company is over to first crate the dog like you are doing, but then the next step is to move him to an adjacent room with a barrier, so that he has no direct access to the people. Still everyone ignoring him except you rewarding him for calm behaviour. Next work up to someone greeting him but then walking away at the slightest hint of over excitement. I forget your dogs age but I for one am guilty of going to fast for the dog whereby he is doomed to fail. Who cares if the dog never makes it into the room for months ... as long as you make progress thats the key ... even if its slow


Experienced Member
With the pulling, i think if it works for a while then stops maybe you are expecting too much too soon. Reinforcement (treating) should be rapid at first...every step - remember you have to be 1000% more interesting than the enviroment - then every 2 steps and then 3, if it quits being rewarding then he will go back to pulling... Does he like to sniff lampposts? maybe make that a reward, bins?, hedges? Rewards don't have to be food - they just have to be things the dog finds rewarding! Susan Garrett really changed my thinking about what a "reward" is, This is a great article ... here.
Chicken would be cheaper than puppy classes!! :ROFLMAO: Change your rewards every walk/day. I also added in chances for Oka to 'be a dog' saying "go sniff" so she could sniff a tree, post, whatever. Now she sniffs and does her dog thing and comes back to my side when she's done.
Also don't forget as Yuma is about 7 months(?) he is starting to hit adolesance and will start to ignore you more! Stick to rules! I get the way they ignore you and that they give an air of not caring.... and i bet it's all a front. If you get out of a chair and go in another room, i bet he follows you - i consoled myself with this fact for months. Oka whined when i went upstairs to pee, and she is litterally my shadow. She is not an affectionate dog, but she does care about what i do and think even though she tries to put on a front that says she doesn't.
I'm going to pose your question to my dog trainer friend see what she says. xx


Honored Member
hot dogs are low cost, some brands are only $1 or two, for a full pack of hotdogs....and chicken bought in large bags, is not that costly. Treats only have to be RAISEN SIZED, not like, a whole chicken wing, just a small bit of meat. One scrap of chicken can last a long time if you only give raisen-sized bits of it.

and mewzard is so right, about how much dogs appreciate having the treat changed up.:) Peanut butter or cheese, (even low cost fake cheeses, like "American Cheese" or CheezWhiz) are interesting to dogs!:ROFLMAO:not too handy for on walks, i guess, but for other types of training, dogs DO enjoy new types of treats. A squeak toy might be a good alternative as well?

Here is low cost, HEALTHY super easy to make dog treat, that so far, all dogs (and some cats) love:

^Great^ recipe for a dog lover on a budget--costs $6 to whip up a few weeks worth of dog treats. That is like, a few cents per day for dog treats!!!!:D
Only takes about 20 minutes to get them into the oven,:) about the same amt of time as a batch of cookies takes.


Honored Member
//"I think excitement peeing and bladder control arent really related if its a behavioural thing."//

so true, so true. When dog uriniate on floors, when they greet a human,
a common reason is fear/submission.
could be some other reason causing this,
but those are pretty common reasons.
at any rate,
i just wantedt to speak up for Yuma,
to point out,
dogs don't "store" urine to use later to honk us off.

dogs DO often need to pee many times in a row to get their bladders empty, is why walks are so great at helping dogs get as close to empty as a dog bladder can get.
of all the possible reasons Yuma urinates on the floor when a visitor arrives,
doing this to honk you off:cautious: is NOT one of the possibilities.:ROFLMAO:

Probably you were kidding. dogs may indeed explore boundaries, or what gets them att'n or not but Puppies do not sit around and plot ways to drive their humans mad.
Dogs, even puppies, DO want to do what their human wants,
if they can't,
is cuz they haven't yet had anyone train them to,
or are too chockful of unspent energy to pay att'n, (like puppies who hang out indoors all day long, etc with only a short walk here or there as their excercise, can become handfuls that day, )
or they don't truly understand what is a better way to act,

anyway, such great advice on this thread, so many great dog lovers here
trying to honestly help you, posting such thoughtful replies--(just all of these replies are so so awesome!) for you, Sarah D, to help your dog. I hope you are open to exploring some of the great ideas they have posted for you.
Re: the floor puddles, i think Laramie's advice in post #76 was brilliant, and sounded easy enough for you to at least attempt. Worth a try anyway. GOOD LUCK!!!:)


Well-Known Member
Gonna try the low cost doggie treats that are made in the oven. ^_^
I didn't know it was that low cost and easy~
And yes, tigerlily, I WAS kidding about him plotting and storing pee. :ROFLMAO: I know he doesn't. I guess I just have an odd humor...?
Anyway, thank you all for your input! I am going to try several of these things mentioned and hopefully by the time I post again, things will be better! ;)


Honored Member
Best of luck , Sarah D!! I know you can help Yuma become his best self! I think that Laramie's idea in post #76
might really be a great way to start to tackle the puddles problem!!?? Hope it works out for you!:)

HOpe your dog likes the treats, it IS such a money $aver! RunningDog adds in garlic as well, says her dog likes the recipe even more with a bit of garlic in it, said all the other dogs around follow her if she has the treats with garlic in them, ha ha!


Well-Known Member
GLORIOUS update!

Yuma is now almost a year old and has come SO far. (with the help of you all educating his momma)
He now can sit, stay, down, shake with both paws, wait until I say go when playing fetch, balance a treat on his nose, back up, and can go outside without a leash to potty!! :D
The leash walking has become less of a hassle. He still gets excited and pulls when we start out for our 1 1/2 mile jog/walk but he soon calms down and I can get him to not yank my poor arm out of socket. I've been working on the "heel" command to have him walk beside me instead of out in front of me.
He rides in the back of my truck, tied in of course for his safety, and is becoming such an excellent guard dog. Any strange noise or foreign person/object/animal gets an immediate "big boy" growl and menacing bark. Hackles raised and all.
We plan on enrolling him in a basic obedience class this summer just to reinforce what we have and start ground rules for other things. Exciting!

We have even started to tackle the peeing on guests from excitement problem.(y)

Now that the good news is out of the way, a few concerns and questions...
1st: I seemed to have failed my boy in properly socializing him with other, bigger dogs. (by that I mean bigger than a Yorkie. He is fine with those) I took him for a play date with his brother (from the liter before him) and he was terrified. Ran around, tail tucked, and, what I call, screamed whenever Jeb(his brother) got anywhere near him. No aggression came from his sibling, just wanted to romp and play. Tail wagging and all. But Yuma would have none of it. He wouldn't start running full speed away and crying with his tail between his legs looking for means of escape. :cautious:
Could this be from no socialization? Or maybe I pushed him into something too soon? His brother and he are the same size give or take some fluffiness.
I've noticed that while on walks as well he doesn't quite know how to handle a loose dog. He can't decide whether to bite and attack or to greet. Mixed signals indeed for the visiting pooch.
2nd: Anybody know of any good, liquid supplements I can pour on his food for him? He had been getting some shed relief stuff to help cut back a little on the amount of hair I vacuumed up weekly. Didn't seem to help and it made him sick.
Any "best brands" I can try? I know it won't stop the shedding since GSDs are year round shedders, but might aid in my housecleaning. He is beginning to "blow" his coat now since it is warmer weather, so my weekly brushings have turned to daily.
3rd: Any tips on how to deter fleas and ticks that is not so costly? Bought some stuff from Wal*Mart not long ago and it made him lose his fur. Never again. My instructors recommend Advantage-Multi, but holy mother of cheese is that EXPENSIVE. My broke, college self can't afford that quite yet.
Home remedies are welcome as well.

Thanks again, everyone, for being such a help in my young Yuma's development!


Honored Member

Re: cheapo flea products, i might get slammed for saying this, and honestly, i don't know a lot about the safety of such things, but the cheapo FLEA and TICK COLLARS sold for $1 at the Dollar Store work just fine. I have used them, and my dog got no fleas, no ticks, even in infested woods. My dog wears one in the spring during tick season.

The shedding, i'd investigate his dog food, true, true, he probably IS a year round shedder, BUT excessive shedding can sometimes indicate his dog food is crappy, or he is being fed crappy dog treats.

I did not know this, and my last dog, was fed popular brand name, expensive,
BUT CRAPPY dog food, and he shed like Niagara Falls of hair. :( I just had no idea back then, of how CRAPPY most dog food IS, even if your vet's office has pictures of it all over, even if it costs a lot, if you buy it in a human grocery store, it IS crappy dog food.

Now i feed this dog "chicken soup for the dog lovers soul" dog food, it is only $1 a pound.
It costs way way less than my old brand, and it quality dog food. Not the top best dog food, but, is quality dog food. This current dog barely sheds:D , except during shedding season.(spring and fall)
I make all his dog treats, to save money, and to keep him healthier. Store bought treats are often crappy.

There are several threads on dog food around here.
and adding fish oil capsule might help, you bust it open, and squirt it onto kibble.

also, daily brushing helps, and giving dogs a bath during shedding season wow, that really knocks it all off at once. Several new kinds of shedding brushes too.


Honored Member
RE: your shy dog now reacting to other dogs, (this can happen)
i do not know if THIS thread, (link below)
might have anything to help you?? or not?

cuz the link below is really for dog-aggressive dogs,
but maybe something in it might help, but i am not sure, as it is for dog-aggression, not shy dogs,
but there is a section in it, on how to desensitize a dog-aggressive dog to unknown dogs, that section *might* help Yuma(?)

so look for "Reply #4" (the reply number is in bottom right hand corner of each post)

Have hope.for now, to prevent this idea from getting "firm" in Yuma's mind, (that dogs are scarey, too), til you get super-adept at managing the situation,
i'd limit Yuma's playmates to those Yuma DOES like, for now, to help give Yuma the idea that dogs are fun.

This "dogs are scarey" thing in Yuma's mind CAN escalate,
which is LAST thing you want,
so if i were you, i'd limit Yuma's contact with dogs that Yuma does not like, and i'd read the words in "reply #4" in that link above....

also, it is my own personal opinion, and i could be wrong, i could be full of baloney,
but i think
that helping better manage and reduce Yuma's fear of humans,
will also help prevent any "spillover" fear onto dogs.


Well-Known Member
Thanks for the advice! I use "ShedMonster" as my shedding tool of choice. And he is currently being fed Iams Smart Puppy Proactive Health for large breeds, which is not the best by any means, but it is the only large breed food I can get my hands on for over 50 miles. (I live in the middle of nowhere)
I might try the Chicken Soup brand food! Sounds like it wouldn't be too expensive.

He does NOT excessively shed, thank God. He just has so much hair! I vacuum and then when I empty the bag, it is completely full. :eek: Bad thing is, my house isn't that big...That's a lot of hair for my size home.
I am going to try to make some homemade dog treats since the ones from the store are horrible. It's bad when one can tell from merely the packaging how cheap it is.

The flea and tick product that I used was supposed to be okay, but the vet said that some dogs have an allergic reaction to the ingredients. (hence Yuma losing his pretty fur!) So now I will stick with the collars until I find a good, affordable product to use on my sweet boy.


Experienced Member
I'm having some problems with flea and tick medicine too. I've used the cheaper kind and it's not working at all; there are ticks everywhere. Today I stopped at Petsmart and looked into the generic for Frontline TopSpot. It was on sale for $37 for my weight (23-44 lb), and it also came with 6 months instead of just 3. It's a lot cheaper than Frontline but it has the same active ingredient which is called Fipronil. This stuff just recently started being sold because the company's patent for Frontline expired. It's called Sentry FiproGuard and it's $10 off at Petsmart right now.

As for the treats, if you need any recipes just hit me up. I have a few doggie cookbooks with some great ones in it. Be careful if you go looking online thought. Some websites will have ingredients like nutmeg, which is toxic to dogs, listed in their recipes. I suggest looking into a list of toxic foods for dogs before you begin cooking for him, just to be safe. I have a pretty good list that explains what each substance does to the dog, so I will try to post it now and people can add to it.