Traumatized dog

Discussion in 'Dog Health' started by alee, Nov 12, 2008.

  1. alee New Member

    Ok, well the other day we had planned a private lesson with a trainer who we were told was excellent, and I wanted to try some obedience with Rex, well the class didn't go to well Rex was scared to death of him... He even growled at him, and when he asked me if he normally growled at home, I said no and he was surprised. Rex loves people but he was scared to death of that trainer and the trainer just kept choking him. Now rex is used to a choke chain but¬łnever used like that I feel super bad because now he sticks to me and my mom and dad like crazy and he gets so scared easily). To make it worse the other night my parents were arguing, (he came down like always) to find me and started crying at the bathroom door, then he went to lay under my bed and got stuck and cried, and cried it took us quite a while to get him out. And yesterday we took him to my grandparents house, and he's suposed to stay out in there porch, and my normally happy go lucky I love life husky, was scared to death, he would keep coming in the kitchen and hiding under the table. I did put my sweater for him to lay on and thankfully that quieted him down a bit. Everyone is noticing the difference in his behaviour, what can I do so he goes back to his old self?

  2. Jean Cote Administrator

    Huskies don't respond too well to being choked or hit. I assume that he is a traditional trainer? I suggest you find another location where they teach positive training techniques like luring and clicker training.
  3. alee New Member

    There aren't really any more trainer's around. Rex is very obedient, but I just wanted to see my option if I did need another obedience course for getting rex certified as a therapy dog, which is really getting hard seeing as nobody around here can help me. When I asked the trainer if choking the dog was really necessary he said that huskies could take it.
  4. tx_cowgirl Honored Member

    "Could take it"

    Ugh that's infuriating. Forgive me but whether or not a dog can "take it" is just ridiculous...sounds like this (insert word here) does not know how or when to use a choke chain and misused it with your dog. If you can't find a reputable, positive trainer in your area you may have to travel a little further or keep looking. I would definitely not settle for a trainer that you are your dog are not 100% comfortable with just to get his CGC. Especially if your dog is not comfortable with them.
  5. snooks Experienced Member

    Read Emma Parsons Click to Calm. The first trainer she took her Golden to choked him this way. It's what started her on the huge long painful journey with her traumatized, now aggressive Golden Ben. That single incident was what solidified Ben's occasional growl into an uncontrolled fear aggressive downward spiral. She devoted her life to helping him and did with much time, hardship, sorrow, and finally hope. Don't ever ever let someone else do that again to your dog. I know it's surprising and sometimes you expect a trainer to know what they're doing. I felt the same. But you have to be willing to step in and say NO not with my dog and not now. I have a shy dog and after the first time a trainer tried to force her over the teeter in agility I saw her terrified reaction. She went from unsure to shutdown.

    You didn't do anything wrong other than not expecting what this jerk might do. I wouldn't personally ever let him near my dog again. Esp if the dog growled when first seeing him. Trust your dog. There's no reason he has to endure some human trainer that isn't right for him or hurts him. Sibs don't respond well to this type of force anyway. Pain has no place in training IMHO. We have a choice and a pain-free solution is always available for ANY problem if you look and seek hard enough.

    Do you need references for a behaviorist or positive trainer? What country/state are you in. I'm soooo sorry that happened to you and your dog. I'll try to help if I can and do some searching/ask friends.
  6. alee New Member

    Thank you all. I wont go near that trainer ever again, Rex means a lot to mean he's MY first dog, and he is always there for me, I just feel bad for letting the trainer do that to him, I think I am going to buy a clicker tomorow and begin clicker training.
  7. CollieMan Experienced Member

    To answer your question about getting him back to his old self; I'm from the Silvia Trkman shool of thought.

    When I once asked her about dogs with confidence issues, she gave me the following advice:

    Give the dog lots of opportunities to succeed and when he/she does the right thing, make him/her feel like a million dollars. Never expect more than the dog is prepared to give. As the owner of the world's least confident dog, I can confirm that it works. :)

    As harrowing as the trainer incident possibly was for your dog, it was just one day, which is fortunate. You have many more days to give positive experiences. You need to go on as normal and forget the experience ever happened, which is precisely what you want your dog to to. Lead by example, as they say.

    I have every confidence that you can lead your dog through this and have him come out the other side as good as (if not better) than he was before the experience. Play, training, and lots more play is my prescription. :)
  8. snooks Experienced Member

    CM makes a good point. I didn't mean to imply that all hope is lost or that this one thing ruined your dog. It had the potential to do damage but you have the unending love and ability to help keep your dog healthy and whole. My first reaction was such outrage that his bonehead calling himself a trainer took advantage of you and abused your dog. It's hard to calm me down when someone is mean to a dog especially in the guise of a knowledgeable trainer.

    CM may own the world's least confident but it sounds like also the world's most fortunate. My girl is surely in the running for low confidence. So I'm a little protective of any dog that is scared or hurt. At least you now know that you can jump in and say NO not now not ever not my dog. Or in my case I would suggest, she won't do it that way, how about if we try this. My trainer knew me well enough to know that I wasn't being overprotective but thinking very creatively and getting what I wanted from a dog that just did things in her own way.

    Kathy Sdao said to my Karen Pryor clicker trainer something that impressed me. "Can all dogs be trained with any method? No. Can ALL dogs be trained with a clicker? YES!" So go out there and get yourself a clicker and go for it.
  9. jasperaliceuk Experienced Member

    I go along with all the advice you have been given here and would certainly give the clicker training a go. It really does work.


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