Question for BC owners

Discussion in 'Off-Topic & Chit Chat' started by chessiesrule, Jan 1, 2008.

  1. chessiesrule New Member

    Never having a BC before, how do you stop the nipping at the heels of the other dogs when they run? I have just started training our puppy but her focus is on the other dogs. It is hard trying to seperate them when you have four dogs and they all want attention. And of course, they are all inside dogs.

  2. tx_cowgirl Honored Member

    I don't have this problem, but...hmmm....
    Well, as far as distractions go, train your puppy either inside or outside with the other dogs in the opposite place if she doesn't seem to be handling distractions well. Some do just fine when beginning training in a distracting environment, some don't.
    As far as the nipping...
    How does she greet other dogs?
    Does she nip as soon as the others start running, or after a while?
    How do the other dogs react to the nipping?
    What do you do when she nips, if anything?
  3. chessiesrule New Member

    Hi there, I will take all four dogs outside and my male Chessie is ball crazy and when I throw the ball, "Cindy" the BC will do her squat down thing and start nipping at him in his heels or now she started nipping at his side as soon as I throw the ball. He is 90+ lbs so he is pretty big but it doesn't bother him. I throw the ball into the snow, it's about two feet deep and with his long legs, he can get away from her. She doesn't bother the other Chessie or Golden because they don't run or chase balls like "Rudy" does. I also find that out on a walk, she would rather be with her pals then us which is different from the Chessies, who seem to be more dependent on me. We have only had Cindy for two months and she was quite sick for the first 5 weeks we had her. She has now gained weight and her energy level is growing. It's also -25C right now and it is a little cool for her to be out for to long so the training hasn't been as much as I would like.
  4. tx_cowgirl Honored Member

    You could train her in a separate, quiet room and just close the door so her buddies don't distract her. Watch for the pre-nipping behavior---like the "squatting" as you call it(I'm assuming you mean something like a stalking position, as if she were after a herd of cattle). When she does this, say "Ah-ah!" in a firm voice. This should distract her and startle her. When she takes her attention away from Rudy, praise and pet her. (You can substitute whatever word you, hey, etc.) Also, randomly carry the ball around the house. For instance, pick it up like you would any other time, but don't throw it. Do something else with the dogs while carrying it around. Maybe even pick it up just to walk to their food bowl and feed them. She currently knows that when you pick up the ball, playtime begins, and your big Chessie turns into a sheep. If you randomly carry the ball around, she won't associate it with the beginning of her nipping. Her herding instincts are kicking in, and she's learned to use them when you pick up the ball. She remembers what she's done every other time you picked up the ball, and she gets excited, preparing to "play" with Rudy. I would also recommend teaching her "stay" or "wait." Work on getting her to stay when you throw the ball(you can also teach her "get it," or "fetch" so that she still will retrieve the ball). You should do this without Rudy, as his play will entice her to break the stay. Once she will consistently stay put while you throw the ball, bring in Rudy. Keep her leashed just in case, and tell her stay. Toss the ball a short distance.
    Is this the only time she nips him? You should take care of this as soon as possible, as it could escalate to herding all the dogs around constantly. As far as not sticking around on walks, Border Collies can be very independent. Since she's still a pup, she's probably just curious to see what her buddies are up to. Through training and play, she will develop a special bond with you. Don't take it personally. She's not shunning you, she's just checking out her canine companions. =) DTA has a lesson on stay that you should find helpful if you aren't sure how to teach it. Good luck, and I hope this helps you!

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