Me, Jenny, Bella & Zara

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by TiflovesBCs, Jan 18, 2012.

  1. TiflovesBCs Experienced Member

    For now, i would not take either dog to a park which contains other dogs or ppl, not just yet. I wouldn't, as every minute they spend re-establishing their habitual reactions to either other dogs, or ppl, is one more strengthening of their current attitude. I would not do this at this time.

    Especially since it is unfenced (?) and your dog got hit by car by that park.(if i read your post correctly)
    We take them to a few different parks. They tend to be fine if the owners or dogs keep a distance. They tend to stay away from any roads (one we take them too is road access to a golf course) another one we take them to though not s often is a small park down the road that has two enclosed tennis courts. We don't go there as often as the dogs pws tend to get sw or cut from the rough ground of the tennis courts. The park where Zara got hit by the car is big and not directly near a road the dog chsed her ll the way out the park and into a panic so she just kept running. Was so angry at the owner, didn't even stop to help mum look for her. Luckily she only hd raw pds and a sore leg no serious injuries but she reacts worse to german shepherds now. This park is usually a good one to take them too as if you time it right its not always busy.
    Near us alot of the parks i know of are used alot by people and dog owners (loads of dog owner around here) and I dont know of any that have a fence around. Do you think if i took just Bella and Jenny (the older better behaved one that loves other dogs) that would help or just Bella on her own. I tihnk Bella and Zara do feed each others nervousness when they are out together.

    Another problem I have with Bella is she barks all the time in the car even if her view is blocked. She can't be destracted.

  2. TiflovesBCs Experienced Member

    There's many types of head halters, but, i see you said you've tried them but dog still pulls?

    Bella wears a head halti and a half chocker collor that more for security if she gets off the halti than anything and her pulling is much less than on her collor. Plus she responds to stopping and starting so I don't have any real proble when it comes to walking her.

    Now Zara is another matter when she goes for a walk she wears a head halter and a harness and has a double ended leash attached to both and she really pulls, like i'm pulling a sledge kind of pull and if you stop and str she lunges forward as if its a race. We've tried different types individually but nothing. And directly onto her collar is impossible. I often sy just get some skates and she can pull you round how shes puling.

    Jenny just wears a halti when on a walk.

    As for peanut butter I dont think it agrees with her she tends to after having a little have a drink then throw up but she does like liver.
  3. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

  4. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    Still, until you have either a plan to prevent, or interrupt your dogs reacting at the parks, if it were me, i would not take them there.
    Unless you are doing desensitization work there, i would not take them around unknown ppl or unknown dogs, to just allow them to go off on whoever.
    But, it's your dogs, not mine!

    A trainer once told me, "Every minute your dog spends reacting, he is strengthening that mental loop in his mind." I have spent much much time, preventing and interrupting every reaction my dog has. I never ever scold him for them, but i do prevent them altogether, if i can, (i can't always do that:rolleyes: )
    or interrupt them. My dog hasn't been able to have a full blown reaction, for a long long time now.

    I do think, if you bring one dog at a time, you might have better luck helping the dogs behave at the park, or bring Jenny plus 1 other dog. Tif, i think that is a good plan, if since you are going to continue to take the dogs to parks which are filled with creatures the dogs are afraid of, like unknown ppl and unknown dogs.

    Now if you were taking the dogs there, to stay at distances your dogs were comfortable with, it'd be okay, if you were purposely doing desensitization work with the dogs. And if you are staying at distances your dogs are comfy at, that is better than i was picturing it.:)

    I'm against choke collars, if that is what you are using. (?) They do damage, they do. On dog autopsies, they can tell which dogs had choke collars---their inner throats, thyroids, and neck musculature are all damaged.

    Choke collars add to a dog's overall fear and upsetness. Dogs who wear choke collars have increased adrenaline in their blood. (that is the chemical that makes your hands tremble, after you've just had a car accident, Tif, it's adrenaline....... choke collars increase adrenaline in dogs)

    if you were deathly afraid of spiders, okay? Just you reeeeeeally freak out if you even see a spider, that kind of thing. Then, everytime you see a spider, someone chokes you. It would not help you learn to be calm around spiders, and it might make you feel worse about seeing spiders.

    Plus, choke collars do not work, at all.
    The dog will wear the choke collar til he is elderly, as choke collars do not teach a dog what it is you DO want him to do instead.

    However, on another thread, Sara, who knows a lot about dogs, is saying this here head halter works very well. I've never tried it, or even seen one, but Sara says it great:

  5. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    HOw is the progress with helping your dogs be calm while looking at a leash coming along?
  6. Dogster Honored Member

    Welcome to DTA!!! I hope you'll have a great time here. Your dogs are gorgeous! Perscription for Bella: get her used to people, dogs and other animals SLOWLY. You don't want to overwhelm her. Praise her when she doesn't run away or hide from others. As for the eating problem, my dog had it too. I went through 10 types of food before she liked one. Now I give her food called LOTUS. Perscription for Zara: Like tigerlily said, TIRE HER OUT. Rollerblading, taking her to the dog park, thaking her for a really long walk are all great.
  7. TiflovesBCs Experienced Member

    Well Bella this morning was fine with the leash approaching and touching it with her nose and then i clicked then rewardsed her, brought out the halti and half choke collar out she hid at first this morning but with only 10 - 20 minutes into trying I can easily lure her to put them on her self with a treat. So far no more hiding when I got them out which will hopefully be the same tomorrow. Shes not jumping for joy yet but atleast shes not running for the hills.

    We are taking it more slowly with zara as you are having to reward her for the opposite in a way lol not paying attention to the leash. So far so good but maybe its because when I did her first lesson tody I was in my pjs lol so she wasn't taking me seriously although she did get a bit excited at first.

    With Bella I try to go to the park when there is less traffic as she enjoys it. Unlike on a walk she is more focused with playing fetch than whats around the corner. If she sees someone and goes towards them I can interrupt her behaviour as I can judge when she is going to start and try to prevent her from doing it. The ball makes a great deterrant as she sees them as her comfort blanket or ball rather.

    That head collar looks different to any we have tried it sounds like a good idea to see about getting one to try at least.
  8. TiflovesBCs Experienced Member

    Thanks for the welcome.
    I think they are gorgeous too, Jenny looks young for her age *looks over shoulder - yay she didn't hear me mention her age*, Bella has baby gorilla eyes - me and my mum argue about that I say she has the puppy dog look. And Zara has the startling look she's very expressive, infact as I'm typing this she is nudging my cheek with her nose and trying to pull my arm towards her with her paw lol that's her signal for pay attention to ME! lol

    Zara doesn't know the meaning of the word relax lol even when she goes out for hours on a run she fights sleep her head drops her eyes droop and she blinks herself awake again and again till she just drifts off so funny to watch. She runs rings round the other two. She isnt interested in playing fetch like Bella and Jenny (they are Obsessed with a capital O) she's much more interested in running round, eating leaves, hunting out and finding the mud puddle to roll in - infact a funny story the other day we took her to the park early when everything was still frosty and hard, she runs to her usual mud hole and lies down then realise it was still frozen so she started digging lol was funny she had this disgruntled look on her face as if she was thinking why is it hard?? lol
  9. TiflovesBCs Experienced Member

    Now if you were taking the dogs there, to stay at distances your dogs were comfortable with, it'd be okay, if you were purposely doing desensitization work with the dogs. And if you are staying at distances your dogs are comfy at, that is better than i was picturing it.:)

    I'm against choke collars, if that is what you are using. (?) They do damage, they do. On dog autopsies, they can tell which dogs had choke collars---their inner throats, thyroids, and neck musculature are all damaged.

    When I see a person coming in our direction I do tend to move Bella away from them so she feels more comfortable when shes at the park.

    Its not a choke collar as such its more a collar with a little bit of chain and its more for security as it tightens a little if she got of the halti otherwise it doesnt do anything. Its actually called a half check collar.


    That's what she has on with the halti.
  10. Dogster Honored Member

    LOL! Maybe Zara will relax with age!:LOL: How are your dogs with toys? I'm asking because if you can't physically drain them of energy, maybe you can mentally drain them.:rolleyes: For your food loving dogs, you can buy a toy that dogs have to work at to get the food out. I have something like that for my dog, and it helps! I feel so sorry for Bella!:( Why is she so fearful? I hate choke collars too! I've heard of a dog that had it stuck in its neck!:cry: The collar you have for Bella is good, it doesn't hurt the dog. Here's a pic of my beauty, Shivon.
  11. Dogster Honored Member

    By the way, I saw your facebook account. OMG, you like Michael Buble too?! AWESOME!!!:LOL: I thought I'd never find a fellow Michael Buble fan!
  12. TiflovesBCs Experienced Member

    Bella loves playing fetch and is perfect with it, she will fetch, bring back and drop in your hand on your feet. Jenny Loves fetch too but with age shes being awkward now lol she brings it back and drops it about 3 feet away then when I say closer nudges it about a millimeter closer with her nose lol. These two love games. I do sometimes give them a kong too filled with stuff but it never lasts them long. At the park Bella loves fetch and at the beach she likes the frisby. We do have a football that thhey use lol that i need to replace it use to have rope either end to make it easier to pick up. Got that because Jenny sometimes likes rolling balls with her nose.

    Zara. Well in the house she plays fetch of a sort. It's the giving it back she has trouble with and when she does she makes a game of trying to get it when you reach for it. Outside the house ie at the park she has no interest in playing with any toy. Zara is the food hound she eats anything and I do mean anything - leaves, mud, paper you name it she'll eat it so you need to keep an eye on her. lol.

    I think Bella is basically just afraid of the unknown. She can overcome it she jusst needs a little guidence to realise that people and other dogs arent so scary.

    And yes I do like michael buble. I have loads of pics of my dogs on facebook.
  13. TiflovesBCs Experienced Member

  14. TiflovesBCs Experienced Member

    Poor Bella is now nursing poorly paws. Took her for a walk and stopped in at the tennis court for some fetch. After about half hour this guy brought his dog to the area and it was ignoring him and kept going up to other dogs and chasing them round. Next thing I know the dog has gotten into the tennis court and she was chasing Bella around, which caused her to hurt her paws as she kept running around the court away from it. Got her home and cleaned her paws up and thankfully it wasn't as bad as we feared. Definately gonna look for doggie boots if shes gonna run on rough tarmac anytime soon. Turns out theres this hole in the tennis court that wasn't there last time I went.
    Although before that on the walk she did really well, did bark a couple of times at people but I think thats a] because mum went with me which if i take Bella on her own she doesn't normally do, and b] she's in season so she's probably more stressed as it is. But after the first 5 minutes she stopped barking at people and was ok on the leash hardly any pulling which was easily corrected by stopping and starting. And when we actually passed someone she went towards them a little when the had just passed which for her is great as she used to pull backwards if you even approached someone.
    She is now snoozing next to me on the couch where I'm keeping an eye on her. After washing her paws and checking them I gave her a couple of little sausage rolls for comfort food, poor girl. She's relax now though thankfully.
  15. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    //"Why is she so fearful?"//

    Is a good chance that Bella is a "shy" dog, also called "fearful" dogs. As soon as the puppy can duck away from human hands, he will. It's often seen as "charming" in a puppy, and these pups are often first ones snatched up by ppl who don't realize what a lot of work a shy dog can be as an adult. The ppl think, "If i am nice to my dog, he will become brave".
    And to some extent, that is true, we can make a shy dog better,
    or worse, depending on how they are managed. But they are shy for life, to some extent. Some are severe, some are mild.

    This shows up in the litter box, one can point at the litter box and say, "That one puppy, he ducks away if you reach for him." These dogs will be shy for life, on some level. We can make these shy dogs
    but it's an ongoing, lifelong issue on some level.

    These dogs are born this way, it's genetic. It's called "inherently shy".

    It's a recessive gene, often, the parents are 'normal'.
    I know a breeder whose stud dog always produces at least one shy pup, in every litter, no matter what bitch he is mated with...although, his stud dog is very outgoing, happy go lucky dog.

    IF you met a 'shy' dog as an adult,
    and had no background, you'd think the dog was abused, when the dog ducks away
    or growls at an unknown human reaching for the dog.

    STill, we can work to help these dogs become their best possible selves. Dogster is right, we don't want to force a shy dog to tolerate unwanted contact, this makes the shy dog worse, not better.

    It'd be like,
    if you were deathly afraid of spiders,
    and someone threw spiders all over you, to "cure" you,
    well, it would not cure you of your spider-phobia, and it'd probably make you worse. It'd also probably make you LESS trusting of those who allowed that to happen to you. If those around you squeezed your neck every time you saw spiders, even if your neck was squeezed by a strap, rather than a chain, that would not help you have a better impression of being around spiders, either.
    (squeezing dog necks increases their adrenaline level in their blood, like i said above. Having large amounts of adrenaline in our bloodsteams makes up feel MORE nervous, MORE excited, not calm)


    if every time you saw a spider--------twenty dollar bills fell outa the sky,
    that might help you develop a new association to seeing spiders.

    It's worth a shot. Desensitizing dogs to things they are deeply fearful of, can be challenging, which is why i thought,
    working on the leash would be easier first step.
    to practice on,
    to encourage you to note, you can indeed help your dogs learn calm behaviors.

    but yeah,
    the dogs need way more exercise,too, on ongoing regular basis, too, than what you listed as their routine so far. Still, i do understand the challenges you face in accomplishing exercising your dogs, too, it does sound difficult.

    but, i bet it will get easier the more things you learn about managing aggressive dogs.

    Have you tried the "capturing calmness" video exercises yet?

    I think you want to desensitize them to the leash,
    separately from walking them,
    as well as right before you leash them.
    Off/on, all day long,
    for a few minutes each time,
    you'd be rewarding all calm behavior when they are in same room with leash, slowly increasing the time, the closeness, luring them over over time, (not right away, but later on) to learn how to become calm around a leash.

    by your note, i guess, once the dogs have mastered being calm next to leash, when you do not have your coat on,
    you'd slowly want to elevate the challenge there, so that dog stays calm even if you do have coat on, and then, later,
    two dogs together being calm, while you have coat on, and leash is out,
    to 3 dogs, etc etc.

    til you are able to have coat on, with 3 tail-wagging dogs seeing their leashes come out.

    then we can work on the stairway thing, so you don't get bitten, if you want to.

    Helping dogs become calm around a leash
    is good first step, towards learning how to help dogs become calm around other ppl or other dogs.
  16. TiflovesBCs Experienced Member

    Bella is becoming use to being around the leash. I'm also leaving them in the room rather than putting them away - the out of sight out of mind thing. And I have been doing quick sessions with it anad her halti. Although I am thinking of getting the new trix halti a try though as if that works I wont have to use the half check collar on bella - and i find haltis where you control from the front can pull under the eye abit. That one doesnt seem to and it seems like its worth trying especially with Bella.
    tigerlily46514 likes this.
  17. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    forgot to say, i think this part is great, Tif! about the ball/distraction method:

    //"With Bella I try to go to the park when there is less traffic as she enjoys it. Unlike on a walk she is more focused with playing fetch than whats around the corner. If she sees someone and goes towards them I can interrupt her behaviour as I can judge when she is going to start and try to prevent her from doing it. The ball makes a great deterrant as she sees them as her comfort blanket or ball rather"//:D

    and this part, also great:
    //"So far no more hiding when I got them out which will hopefully be the same tomorrow. Shes not jumping for joy yet but atleast shes not running for the hills"//:D
    GO, TIF, GO!! WAY TO GO, TIF! YAY!! YESssssssss, you are heading in right direction there!!

    i really believe, in time, with much effort on your part, you can help these dogs become tail-waggers when they see the leash.

    How goes it with tracking down a good behaviorist, who is experienced with shy dogs, and with dog-aggressive dogs? (not that we know for sure that is your dogs' issue, but in case it is the issue. Zara might be just frustrated, hard to evaluate a dog via email, but, a professional eval might be a good idea, since you do have an overwhelming number of multiple issues going on here, a good "positive only" behaviorist could help encourage you, and help you continue in right direction.)
  18. TiflovesBCs Experienced Member

  19. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    I like the first one better, as he/she emphasizes he/she is not using any aversive methods, no yanking, etc. Still, i'd go watch this trainer prior to letting them near your dog. I"ve had trainers say they are "positve only" but they went OFF on my dog, yanking him around, yelling at him, scaring him. They didn't "DO" what they said they'd do.
    It was a set back for my dog to get over.

    But, this was before i realized,
    not all trainers realize how difficult aggressive dogs's not like teaching them tricks or agility, it's whollllllle other ballgame.
    Many of them may just read books or blogs, and *think* they know what to do....but haven't really worked with tons of aggressive or shy dogs to really develop skills and insight and PATIENCE req'd for such work.

    The second link,
    has many remarks i disagree with, like this:
    //"When aggression is directed at people, suggests a lack of ‘social-leadership’ in his owners."//

    i wonder, if that person has actually been around many inherently shy dogs.
    It doesn't even matter who owns the dog,
    they'll still be shy dogs. We can make them better, or worse, but the dog will always be shy on some level, for life.
    It has a neurobiological disorder, visible in MRI scans of his brain.

    and the giant letters, "A happy dog is not aggressive".

    There are decades and decades of research,
    identifying the genes which cause the shy dog,
    and the dog-aggressive dog, too.

    I think the person writing up that 2nd link, may fill you up with wrong ideas.

    it's not really about keeping the dog "happy". Wish it WAS!!:ROFLMAO: My dog can be in doggie nirvana,:D absolute joy,:D all day long,:D for an entire week, of uninterrupted joy........
    but, bring in an unknown german sheperd, and my dog will become aggressive...although he'd been kept in state of joy for 7 days straight. My dog has neurobiological disorder, like "dog autism" in a way. There's tons of research on this.

    yeah, the 2nd link has a lot of info i'm not sure will helpful, or is anywhere near fact-based understanding of aggressive dogs, at all.......

    but the top link seems good !!

    the top link, because they DO emphasize the no-punishment method, sounds more like what you might be looking for. Don't be shy to ask them questions, write your questions down,
    such as
    "How much experience have you had with shy dogs? Like how many dogs? How many years?also HOw much experience have you had working with dog-aggressive dogs? How much success have you had with either type of dog?"
    (in fact, if he can claim no "cures", but instead, many dogs who now have reduced, or easier to manage levels of aggression, that seems reasonable goal imo, vs. a "cure")

    "May i have any contact or references from previous clients whose dogs had aggresssion problems?"
    "May i observe you working with an aggressive dog, prior to signing up for your class?"
    "Who exactly will be working with my dogs?" (sometimes the person you meeet, is NOT the person you get assigned to..)

    etc etc. don't be shy! you can ask them questions! don't be surprised, if most trainers have not read any actual scientific research on the genetics and physical differences found in all shy dogs (scientists call them "anxious" dogs) and in all dog-aggressive dogs. PUBMED is great resource for this. I have tons of links on the research isolating the multiple genes at play in inherent dog aggression.

    most ppl see "blogs" on dog aggression as the same thing as "research" by actual geneticists.

    .:rolleyes: and, almost all blogs say lifelong, persistent aggression is "caused" by human error, lack of socialization, improper socialization, neglect/abuse, whatever.
    even if they know nothing about the genetics of aggressive dogs,
    they still could help you learn how to better manage your dogs.

    Ensure they will not be scaring your dog as part of their treatment, let them know you do not want that type of thing done on your dogs.



    Of course, it's still up to YOU to help your dogs, to do the bulk of the work,
    but, with so many issues, with multiple dogs,
    i'd think having a pro help you is good way to get started.
  20. TiflovesBCs Experienced Member

    I also may have found someone who sells the new trix collar in the uk. says out of stock at the moment but i've still emailed her asking about if shes gonna get anymore or if she knows anyone else in the uk who sells it. Will see what she says.
    tigerlily46514 likes this.

Share This Page

Real Time Analytics