What To Do First!?!

Discussion in 'General Dog Training' started by reveuse, Mar 22, 2011.

  1. reveuse Well-Known Member

    So I have the entire day tomorrow to devote to making the crate fun, some name association, bonding, and a bit of walking skills.

    She has an obed. class @ the shelter Sat am. and her beginners class sat afternoon. Wondering if thurs/fri I should start introducing her to clicker or just wait ? And what else to do with her between now and then.

    Of course getting her settled in is my first priority but she is like 7 months old and definetly needs some exercise/ mild stimulation too! (without going so far as to invite the entire block over for a massive party of course!)

  2. jackienmutts Honored Member

    Oh I'm just so happy for you!!! (and Whisper and Romeo too!!) You know, the first few days are such a huge adjustment, I wouldn't worry a lot about trying to make sure she gets enough exercise or stimulation. I'd mostly make it bonding time, petting time - time to get to know each other. You could take her out for a walk, intro her to her new neighborhood, and you also could start intro'ing her to the clicker, it certainly wouldn't hurt - but I wouldn't worry about any of that. Don't rush anything. She'll be studying you - she's now got to learn a new human, your movements, what it means when you pick up your keys or put on your shoes (and which shoes) - as opposed to anything she may have figured out in the past with other people (or maybe she's so young she never really learned much, depending on previous situations. Don't overwhelm her with too much - her world just changed in a big big way - give her time to really settle in, especially since she's a quiet girl. She may appreciate time to be by herself in a little corner she finds (and just watch you guys) - as opposed to going for a walk (just for now). I'd kind of see how it goes, almost let her be your guide as far as how much (or little) you do for the next few days.

    Congrats again on your new baby girl! I'm sure Romeo will be a great brother - can't wait to hear all about it!!
  3. sara Moderator

    Personally, I start with any new dog or foster, by hand-feeding them at meal time... using a clicker. I find if I start as I mean to go on, things work well for us. Boo's first meal, I rolled a peice of food towards him, then "clicked" as he picked it up... did that for half his meal, then I waited for eye contact, "clicked" then rolled the food at him... he got used to what the "clicker" meant, and he couldn't resource guard the dish... I went on from there.. teaching him sit, nose to palm target, and down in his first week with me. Btw, Boo is deaf and nearsighted, so I use a little LED Click-light... not a clicker, which is why "Click" is in quotes! LOL

    Honestly, yes, you want her to get used to routines and such, but with an obed. class on Sat, it may be best if you get her used to the idea of clicker training, and start her on the road... that way, she'll have something familiar when you take her to a strange place, with strange people and dogs, when she may not trust you 100% yet.

    You are so lucky! having a new dog to play with!!!
  4. reveuse Well-Known Member

    Yesterday she learned to get in and out of the car which is very helpful (her fosters used to lift her in and out)... we also worked a bit on the crate (she still hates it but I can get her in now)....... and lastly we took about four walks to petsmart bc she seemed to enjoy watching the dogs that were in camp. And she got her nails done because they were way to long and probably bothering her a bit.

    Today She and Ro both went to camp together and she did play a little bit. When I came she was watching over the other campers like a good little Border Collie. LOL. Tonight she is going for a mini lesson, Tomorrow she has her first real lesson followed by her group classes on Saturday. ( I dont think i'm going to much like the one they are holding at the shelter but hey its free , so why not).

    She walkes pretty well , I might even return the EZ walk I bought for her since we haven't used it yet. Now if I could just get her to eat a decent meal we would be doing pretty darn good. She seems to be a LOT more particular than Ro is.

    Looking forward to having a whole three days with both of them!
  5. jackienmutts Honored Member

    Aww, it sounds like things are really going well - I'm so happy for you!

    Do keep in mind that when dogs are stressed, they don't eat - maybe once she's all settled in and feeling really comfortable she'll eat better. I can remember when I first fostered (and then adopted) Alfie, he was a horrible eater (he was around a yr old). It took several weeks, he'd nibble, I'd have to babysit his dish while he doddled around, he'd only eat a little, he'd pick at his food and it didn't matter what I gave him, he was so skinny, etc. As he got more comfortable and really settled in, he started eating better and better - and finally one day just got down to business and never looked back. Whew! (I was so glad, cuz I had two other really big eaters and didn't want to face that battle every mealtime).

    Have fun these next three days with 'your kids'. :)
  6. fly30 Experienced Member

  7. tx_cowgirl Honored Member

    I've been so busy this week I'm behind.

    So happy to you got to bring Whisper home. I'm excited for you. :) Can't wait to hear how things are going.
    I mostly let them relax and get used to things the first day, but do load the clicker and also do some touch practice(touching nose to my palm).
    Mudflap ate just fine when I brought her home, but she was severely food aggressive. She ate very fast but was so edgey and nervous I don't know how she actually digested any of it. She was terrified someone was going to steal her food. :(

    Fortunately we worked through that. ^^
    Zeke on the other hand has never cared about food, until I switched to Blue Buffalo Wilderness + Taste of the Wild + either Nature's Variety raw or canned foods once in a while. He loves loves loooooves raw.

    Sorry for the minor derailing. ^^
  8. reveuse Well-Known Member

    UPDATE time:

    Thurs mini lesson was mostly useless (which I figured it would be). Yesterday we worked on a few things and she did ok. - She also ate some sweet potato fries and grilled chicken (leftoverso from my dinner @ Cheesecake Factory) as well as some puppy food. (but still not all that much) - she took some of it during the lesson and then ate the rest outside by the lake when I was walking her. She did greet a few of the girls she had met @ the store the day before with a little mini nose touch which was very very good.

    She also layed on her bed (in middle of living room in front of tv) for a while when i gave Ro a bath (usually she prefers to block the bathroom door haha). ANDDDDDDDDDDDD she went out for a 10 min playtime with the puppy downstairs and when she came back she JUMPED! onto the couch !!!!!!! And she stayed there for an hour or so or til whenever it was bedtime. I came and sat down next to her (and got up and down a few times) and Ro did the same and she didn't move. I was soooooooooooooosososososooooooooooooooooo proud of her!

    Ro is mostly doing well with the change. Unfortunately the fact that he is SO intensely food motivated makes it hard to try feeding her as often as I want to and he doesn't love being left home when I take her out separately for stuff. But he tries to get her to play and is content to lounge next to her or at least near her sometimes so thats pretty good for him. And of course he is sitting on me while I type this !

    Plans for today include a trip to the park. Her beginners class starts this afternoon. And if I can continue to get her to eat more (i can't decide on what expensive holistic organic or raw type food product to try her on yet but she seems clearly
    unimpressed by traditional high end puppy foods so thats probably my next stop lol) I would be very happy.
  9. reveuse Well-Known Member

    i promise to put a picture up today too my net is just being really slow .....
  10. sara Moderator

    Instead of trying an expensive raw product, maybe try Raw Feeding? basically, you feed only raw meat. (80% muscle meat, 10% bone, 10% organ) there is a yahoo group called Raw Feeding, I do believe. couldn't hurt to do some research... though I dont agree with not feeding any fruits and veggies.

    I dont feed raw, but high end grain-free kibble... though I just switched again, so far, I'm liking it. Orijen was too high in protein, Acana was better, but we had some issues with weight gain, and was mixing in different light foods for certain dogs... now all 5 are on the same food again, and it's a bigh hit... we'll see what the next month or 2 bring.

    Maybe try a different protein, like fish? Some dogs aren't interested in chicken or lamb. and I'd get her off puppy food, she's old enough for adult food. you could also try adding in some extra's like canned salmon water, or yoghurt, or unseasoned, unsalted beef drippings. Personally, I dont like doing that. I put the dish down for 5 mins, then pick it up and try again at the next meal time... It's only ever taken 2 days for the pickiest dog to learn to eat all their food right away. and that's more than a few fosters, plus my own 5... works for us (I cant have a dog in my house that I have to leave food down for or cater to)
  11. reveuse Well-Known Member

    Which food are you currently using Sara?

    She could care less when i put the food down,..... been doing it for the past few days. (while my ravenous food obsessed morkie whines pathetically in his crate or in my room or wherever he is being detained during the food process)....
    She seems to be a lot less nervous but still just is super duper picky ..... Ill hit on the right formula eventually. In the mean time its something to the extent of - detain morkie , put down food , dog ignores food , repeat several hours later at next meal, feed bits of grilled chicken when desperate or in need for training....... lol

    She did AMAZING at her group beginners class today. I was totally prepared for her to do absolutely nothing but be the shy dog in the corner . She did EVERYTHING perfectly and I can even get her to watch me when she is distracted by something else (like a very bouncy Rotti puppy!).......... My super good girl!

    Going to start working on Sit with her later today ! :) *happy dance*
  12. sara Moderator

    I'm feeding Natural Balence limited ingredient fish and sweet potato. 21% protein, 10% fat, grain-free. But because she's a puppy, I might go with something a bit higher in fat & protein. Acana is a great food, with 3 different types of grain-free food. Which is what I was feeding before, but it was a tad too much fat and protein, and Scout, Zoe and Boo were gaining some weight.

    Something you could do: het her excited, "it's supper time!!! yayyyy!!!" take her food to her crate, put it, and the dog in the crate. SHe may be nervous to eat infront of you. give her 20 mins, then let her out and pick up her food. You could feed crazy Morkie near the crate, so she sees her eating, it could bring out some competitive feelings.

    I'm glad you had such a sucessful training session! that's great!
  13. reveuse Well-Known Member


    cuddling on the couch :
    Isi Havanese, abby_someone and Ina like this.
  14. reveuse Well-Known Member

    sorry these are soooooooo late in posting but the weather has made my internet even less cooperative than it usually is.

    Also she ate her breakfast today - i fed her a handful at a time while bribing Ro to Stay! by offering him a treat for each of her handfuls she ate (so three for him and a whole meal for her) ........... It was a great test of his impulse control at the same time lol!

    They also played very nicely for about half an hr this am. She is definetly getting more settled each day. Learned Sit in no time at all over the weekend and does it about 90% of time when asked now.

    time to take her on her outing. have a few more pics to post later if i get the chance!
  15. Ina Well-Known Member

    What a BEAUTY !
    reveuse likes this.
  16. tx_cowgirl Honored Member

    She's so cute. ^^ Gorgeous little girl.
    reveuse likes this.
  17. sara Moderator

    Oh she's gorgeous!!! I LOVE her ears! LOL I'm glad your getting the feeding thing, I use handfeeding with all my new dogs.
    reveuse likes this.
  18. reveuse Well-Known Member

    Picked them up from 1/2 day of camp today individually, took Ro home first then got her so we could have some lesson time. She learned Touch (FINALLY) as she ate her entire container of dinner mix and a few snacks LOL. She seems to mostly have the hang of it we will work on generalizing it more tomorrow when I finish work. SIT is getting awesome.......Her Wait time has gone downhill a bit somehow but since its still a more in progress type of command i'm not really bothered by that.

    She and Ro have been playing on and off since we came home (about half an hour). Time to see if i can get her into the crate. Last night she went as far as the door on command but then realised what she was doing and turned around and I had to coax her back as usual. Making very very very slow progress with the crate.

    OMG woahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh as I'm typing this she just play barked!!!!!!!!!!! she has the most adorable deep wooooof !!! I think i'm in love .......... (Ro has an absolutely fierce bark for being such a little guy !) . AND they are playing chase and tug of war! *faints of happiness*
    tx_cowgirl likes this.
  19. tx_cowgirl Honored Member

    Aww. ^^ I'm so jealous! I miss having a new pup to start all the way from the beginning with. :D I bet you two are having lots of fun. Can't wait to "hear"/see her grow. ^^
  20. jackienmutts Honored Member

    I'm so happy for you that things are working out so well - we're still happy dancin' at my house!! :p She's absolutely adorable, she does have great ears, and I just love that pic of them on the couch together! I know what you mean when you hear those happy play barks come out, she's getting all relaxed and feeling at home now, etc. I'm sooo glad you feel like you do about her - no doubt you made the right decision. See, your heart always knows. :) I bet a month from now, she'll be eating and relaxed, and have you well-trained in her likes and dislikes. ;)

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