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Everything posted by sandysfarm

  1. I think 14-16 weeks is when the bladder muscles are fully developed and so the pup is able to be consistently reliable within a reasonable length of time. So if I'm smart, I have that pup out every X amount of time during his waking hours, crated at night to sleep, and tethered to (me) on an 8 ft line the time that he's awake and in the house. I'm waiting for it to dawn on him that his house is his crate - clean. Until then, he's not making any mistakes on my watch. I always do it the same way with greyhounds, collies, retrievers, etc and it's never failed me. The only terribly behaved exceptions I hear about consistently are the very small breeds: IG's, yorkshire terriers, Lhasas and the like but I would never own anything under 30 pounds or so.
  2. Or the white tail top. I have one who likes to make unauthorized visits right out to the end of each neighbouring cottage dock up north when I'm not looking. from my dock I can see the white tip progressing counter-clockwise away from me, which I find annoying. When I call her name, the tail tip stops, does a slow 360, and hustles back my way.
  3. I like this last bit better too. For one thing, on the off chance that she's tough enough to blow you off even if you do stand her up, you haven't used all your options. I have a very tough-minded girl who is quite willing to slip away from her recall in favour of enjoying some alone time for herself...but she knows that if she does, I'm always going to walk her down, clip her to a light line and walk her back in full view of her friends. I don't say a word; I just do. It works very well. She still has the thought pattern but can't take the chance on being humiliated. It hasn't damaged her relationship with me; there's no anger, but she does treat me with more respect now that she knows I'm on to her.
  4. eh, good boy, Gibbs! This is so close to home. I have a golden who is officially "mine" but her heart so belongs to my adult son it's pathetic. When he's leaving after an evening, she curls into a tight ball and turns away from us, miserable. When I mention he's close to arriving she gets herself to the front porch and fidgets while she watches the bus stop down the street. When she recognizes his silhouette headed her way it's as if her whole body melts. And interestingly, my son's been out of the house 10 years - longer than I've had the dog. So Rudy might be very miserable indeed now and it might be more than just a while before he realizes that his kid has just changed schedule. In the meantime I've found that my dog copes better when she has her kid's undivided attention for a good half hour every time he drops in. He hoists her into the air on arrival, teases her, plays "their" games with her, and snuggles her; the more physicality the better. But It's ok, Rudy...you've found a buddy to help you.
  5. that was my comment too. Get your air checked stat and open up everything you can until someone tells you you're safe.
  6. Sid taught me that a dog that has been beaten knows the difference between that life and this life.
  7. or, better, tether her to you. you take a soft light 12 foot line, tie one end to her and the other to your belt loop. all the time. Now she's in view, she learns to stay around you, and you learn to watch her signals. Every hour or so you announce cheerfully that it's "time to go out!", and out you both go. Just stand in one spot and do nothing till one of you pees (haha sorry). Then it's play time for a bit and then in. She'll get it and the accidents can get stopped.
  8. Apologies! I'm having an off day! This is a highjack and I should have used my brain before I typed. I'm not sure of the protocol now...
  9. As of very recently I have a client who has a big black collie mix shelter dog that's about 18 mos old. They tell me that their dog is fixating on their overhead fans and before that he was hunting flies 24/7. He gets enough exercise and is in a house where the owners work from home. My question is, if they can't curb the CCDs, what is their progression like, and will the dog potentially be unreachable? In my world, clients jump on this kind of problem the minute we offer them assistance. In this case however, I think the owners are going to prove to be totally incapable - but I don't want to just 'wing it' as I explain why they need to help me help their dog. Does anyone have first hand experience they wouldn't mind relating?
  10. YOU felt stupid!!? I had four Shelties back in the 80's and it never once occurred to me to try to train away the noise. Not that there was such a thing as +P training then, but jeez, if I'd only been smarter about it. As it was, although I loved my girls dearly, as attrition and personal deafness set in I switched breeds.
  11. I tested my black and white collie, aged 4, after she came to me just out of curiosity. The paperwork asked for a pic of the dog as well as my guess as to what the majority of the "mix" was. I declined to include the pic and didn't offer anything on the other question; why would I, when they are the DNA experts? It came back 70% JRT, and 30% made up of other things invluding huskie and spaniel. When I called to chat about the results, they apologized and offered me a retake freebie. I declined.
  12. agree. Sid would boss the burglar into hugging her right after she announced that we'd been broken into.
  13. my Sid's the same. Her favourite spot for the night is curled into a big soft chair at my front door, which is all french-paned and overlooks the whole front right to the road. She raises the alarm in the night sometimes and I know she's telling me -"human", and, she thinks, not in a good way. That wakes my others up, who will sleepily come to back her but she's my girl who stays on duty for us during the wee hours and I love her for it.
  14. I have had greyhounds too. Every one of them crate-trained from their track days. What an anxious greyhound can do to a room when it's left all alone to worry is truly awesome, and not in a good way. Add a nice crate and a blanket and life is good.
  15. that's the beauty of this amazing site; so many varied discussions among respectful and intelligent owners. I've been a trainer for a long time but often I log in here just to read quietly for an hour; I consider it a form of continuing education.
  16. Why would you recommend any breeder just because you found it online?
  17. Yes, ok. As a trainer I agree with you that the pairing of a primary and praise is a possibility but individual dog dependent for sure.
  18. Im curious as to whether you begin with food reward and match the food with the praise and then occasionally replace the food with praise - until the dog gets it that the praise = the food....then back off on the food almost altogether to end up with a dog who's as reliable with praise as with food...(that's a question lol) Because it strikes me that you'd have to make a tight association at the beginning that you can move forward from, no? My question is because food is a primary reinforcer and praise is somewhere south of it. That's really why food is the +r trainer's method of choice. Technically we could use the other primaries sex or fear as motivators instead but we don't for obvious reasons. I know that there are people starting with appreciation but it's pretty far from the premise.
  19. you're not missing the point. Working for the possibility of a treat, i e gambling that he's going to get one, is called random reinforcement. If's the same principle that a one-armed bandit works on at the casino to "addict" people to the game - maybe now! no? maybe now! no? now!! if you stagger the payout, (randomize it), you're killing the predictability and appealing to your dog's natural inclination to gamble on finding sustenance. (Buried in here also is the presumption that your animal is reward motivated). It's right on the cusp of operant behaviour, in which the dog (is coerced into) decides for himself how to proceed
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