Any dog trainers on the forum?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by Moxoftritonytes, Aug 26, 2013.

  1. Moxoftritonytes

    Moxoftritonytes TDPRI Member

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    We have a german and belgian shepherd mix at home. Last week I was with her on a round through the village when a free-running dachshund attacked her and bit her into the nose. She was bleeding and in a state of shock because she had been nearing the dachshund in her usual friendly manner when he attacked without any warning and bit her. I took her home and cared for the wounds. There are holes in her nose now where the teeth of the dachshund have been.
    After caring for the wounds I reported the dachshund`s owner to the authorities because such a dangerous dog should not be allowed to run around free and this guy didn`t even pay the taxes for his dog.
    Now our dog has changed her behaviour completely and has become aggressive against any other dog that appears. She gets stiff, then starts to bark and growl while jumping into the leash. She weights 40 kilos and I can barely handle her when she freaks out. It seems that she has lost her trust in other dogs completely and thinks they are a threat to her.
    Now what can I do to let her learn to ignore other dogs like she did before?
    I`ve tried to play with her, using her favourite chewing toy when another dog came in sight but to no avail. She interrupts the game and gets aggressive until the other dog is out of sight again. Now I`m turning around if another dog appears and walk another way with her but this can`t be the proper solution. It seems to be a vicious circle. Someone in my neighbourhood suggested the use of a pinch collar but this will bring her pain in a situation when pain is the last thing she needs.
    So what can I do?
     
  2. waparker4

    waparker4 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Literally, the lessons I learned from "The Dog Whisperer" , so just food for thought, all my opinions, and don't take this too seriously:

    That could be the moment to correct the behavior.

    Conflating play/reward and aggressive/insecure behavior may only confuse the dog and could make the problem worse

    Those collars probably don't hurt the dog too bad. Dog pain and human pain are different. Dog emotions and human emotions are different. Applying human emotional coping mechanisms probably just confuses the dog. A professional can tell you what kind of collar would be best for your case.

    I think what is happening is that the dog has a sense of insecurity about other dogs, and really, that YOU have a sense of insecurity about other dogs now, and the dog is reading your insecurity and behaving aggressively ("my pack leader doesn't like this dog, I will attack!" ). Also, you are rewarding the aggressive behavior by involving the toy.

    The solution will probably involve (a) you remaining calm when another dog appears. If a dog appears and you tense up, that sends the signal to your dog that an enemy is approaching (b) you correcting the aggressive behavior before it happens, learning the signals in the dog's body language that say that aggressive behavior is about to occur (c) don't conflate praise and play w/ being aggressive.

    I'd suggest seeing a local professional who might have resources to re-teach the dog that other dogs are friends, and take my advice with a grain of salt as I am not a dog psychologist
     
  3. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Then another weenie dog will come along, and well you know. I just carry a cattle prod with me when Toto and I go for a walk, any dog that threatens him gets a dose of the cattle prod. Only one has needed a second dose. Toto does not think of himself as a dog, and it's quite evident, what does he wish? He wishes to be left alone. I share that feeling, and incidences from the past taught me to carry the cattle prod.
     
  4. Boubou

    Boubou Doctor of Teleocity

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    That's why I get mad with out of control off leash dogs. I agree with the fact your dog may sense your insecurity, though she may definitely have problems of her own. Seek a local trainers help,
     
  5. Lostinthe50s

    Lostinthe50s Tele-Afflicted

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    Once bitten, twice shy.
     
  6. Moxoftritonytes

    Moxoftritonytes TDPRI Member

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    Thank you for your answers. I`ve talked to an older gentleman who has been training german shepherds for the army and the police all his life. He said that the most difficult part of correcting the dog`s behaviour was that I get rid of my insecurity and behave like a pack leader and solve the situation for the dog.
    He then took a look at the dog and said that she was very dominant. This because my father, who was her leader, died last November. She then looked for a new leader in the family and because we are all insecure she became dominant and took over the leader role. And now it`s time that I take over the lead to be able to correct her behaviour. It won`t work otherwise. He then showed me a modern pinch collar without sharp pinches and showed me with his dog how to put it around the dog`s neck and operate it correctly. He said that the pinch collar is a very powerful correction tool and necessary in this case because I couldn`t let the months pass while her aggressive behaviour persists. It would be too dangerous for others. Then he showed me how I can block my dog using my body and the pinch collar and make it very clear to her that I`m not aggreeing with her behaviour.
    He also said that I should use no toys when she`s aggressive because the chewing toy then becomes the other dog and is shook dead as her own reward of her behaviour.
    And I have to correct her immedeately as soon as she gets stiff which is the first sign of the following aggression. If she doesn`t start to change her behaviour after 3 to 4 corrections then I`m doing something wrong.
    I thanked the old gentleman for his tips and went home. The pinch collar is ordered and I`m working on my insecurity against other dogs. I hope to be able to help my dog soon.
     
  7. Boubou

    Boubou Doctor of Teleocity

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    Sounds like a good plan.

    Did the trainer offer you to work with some other dogs, to practice yours?
    On the other hand I wonder why your dog did not just eat the dachshund in the first place

    Sent from my iPad using TDPRI
     
  8. DocJay

    DocJay Tele-Meister

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    My dog (Italian Greyhound) was recently bit as well. My wife was walking our two dogs in the neighborhood and a dog ran out of a house where a neighbor had left the door open. The neighbor's dog ran down the street after my wife and our two dogs and bit the smaller of my two dogs. She had to get stitches and it took about a month for her to fully recover.

    The neighbor claimed that her dog was bit when it was young and since then the dog has been aggressive with other dogs. She warned us to watch our dogs behavior.

    Luckily our dog Comet has recovered and has not shown any signs of aggression, which is a huge relief. I definitely encourage you to do all you can to help correct your dog's behavior. It will save you a lot of headaches down the road.
    We used a dog trainer for a while when our dogs were young and it was definitely worth the money.

    I think the $500+ bill I gave my neighbor will help correct their behavior. :)
     
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