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Solo33

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  1. I had a few times where I was watching my puppy and he urinated right in front of me. Once was immediately after a hyper playing session where he was having so much fun and then suddenly started to go! Even though I'd just taken him out, all of that activity caused him to need to go much sooner. Another time he went on the rug in front of the door ... just walked over to it and went. After that I removed the rug and got mad at myself for not being more aware of his signs. Sometimes it happens. Just try harder to pay attention to what the puppy is doing, and crate him when you cannot pay attention. Even if you make a few mistakes, your puppy will learn. It seemed like it didn't take too much time for Solo to learn. He never did poop in the house, and ever since the snow melted and he saw the difference between our yard and the field with weeds, he poops in the field and I never have to clean it up! I planned on teaching him that, but he did it on his own. Edited to add: I would praise ALL outside elimination!
  2. I thought about this! I also thought about Rey. Mom was exactly like that, too. She did a great job. Lex is a name that I considered, because I was thinking of the name Galaxy. Mom is named Star (she was born on Christmas day), Solo is from Star Wars ... Galaxy shortened to Lex. Maybe!
  3. I can hardly believe it, but I am lucky enough to be getting another border collie in my life. Solo's breeder and one of my best friends had another litter of pups, and I was able to be there for the whelping (which about a week and a half ago), which was so cool. These pups are cousins to Solo. His dad (not owned by my friend but bred by her) is the brother to the mom of these pups. I was on the list for a girl, and what do you know, Star (mom) had 2 girls and 4 boys. My friend is keeping the other girl, so I won't know which I am getting until the puppies get older and she decides who will be the best choice for her. It doesn't matter to me - both puppies are amazing! The first is a split face black and white, and the other is too I guess but with a patch over the left eye and it's a tricolor. Last pic is of me with the girls while Star was outside stretching her legs and going potty. They were 2 days old in the picture. Name ideas welcome! The latest one I like is Luna, and since the mom is named Star, I thought it was a neat connection. The only thing that stops me is that I like to watch Kristin Crestejo and she has a Luna.
  4. She's beautiful! As I read your first post, I remembered how my border collie was at that age. He's almost 1 year old now, and he definitely went through so much of what your Kira is going through. I was really worried! Thankfully I am friends with his breeder and she talked me through it - that it really was a puppy phase and he'd be just fine. So much of what you wrote sounds like I could have written it, even the part with the trainer who encouraged prong collars. The advice from people here is priceless. Good luck with your girl!
  5. Solo learned that when we walk kennels of barking dogs, he can trust my voice when I tell him, "It's okay, let's go" and nothing bad will happen to him. At the first class, he was understandably afraid (and started lunging back at them in fear) when we had to walk past the kennels of barking GSDs. By the end, he learned that if I kept walking and told him it was okay, he was okay. Solo learned that if other dogs in the group get into a scuffle, he didn't need to join in. Each time we were in the waiting room, at least one dog would have an issue with another dog. At first he wanted to get right in there and see what was up. At the end, he just raised an ear and looked at me. I told him it's okay and he was fine. Solo was introducted to a few different things that I don't have at home, like an agility tunnel (more like a short culvert), a wheelchair (she would push it around as we walked past), etc. His reactions to things were never extreme but I could tell with each class, he wouldn't give those items much thought if I asked him to walk through them or walk by them. In those ways, I think it was good for him.
  6. I understand what you are saying. Because I decided not to use the prong collar, overall the class was positive for Solo except for the fact that the environment was obviously stressful to him at times. I did glean some good info from the class that I will keep using, but after a lot of reflection, it isn't the place for us.
  7. One time Solo, about 10.5 months old at the time, was sleeping at the foot of a recliner. My 8 year old daughter got up and walked by him. I'm not sure if she bumped him or what, but he woke up and absolutely freaked out at my daughter, barking, hackles up, acting like she was an intruder. We were all shocked. He didn't attack her, but you could tell he was incredibly fearful and might have snapped at her if she went after him. She talked to him and it's like he couldn't see through his panic. The next day he was still a little leery of her, and then it's like he forgot all about it! Solo's breeder thinks that he is a hard sleeper and might have been having a bad dream and woke up and associated it with her. Who knows what is going on in their heads sometimes.
  8. I could talk to her, but I do not think she would want me to deviate from the class. I have talked with her after a class about Solo and some of his behaviors and what they might mean, and I just didn't get the sense that she was understanding what I was saying. I was already breaking tradition by not having him wear the prong collar like every single other dog. I will look into other trainers, though I am certain I would be looking at places an hour and a half away. I would not be opposed to traveling if the class was worth it for him. I have looked into Fenzi Academy and will do so again to see what is coming up! Solo was bored, too. He would master something quickly and then look around as if to say ... why are we waiting? But I want him to learn that he needs to focus on me no matter what, so I figured it was okay. Maybe he's too young even though he acts older. Thank you all for your input.
  9. I wouldn't be able to do that in this class. If I deviate from what is supposed to be happening, I get talked to, and then my anxiety goes up and then ... no, I can't see how I could work on my own goals while taking the class. Oh don't I know it. Lately he cannot stop staring at shadows in the house. I know when he's overwhelmed, though everyone else sees it as tired. I have decided not to enroll in this next round. It's hard for ME because I'd wanted to continue. However, there are many opportunities I can take advantage of without the class. We are in a rural area, but I can take him to Tractor Supply (35 minutes away) when I have to go there. I can try to set up some meetings with people and their dogs. I just got 23 runner ducks to teach him to herd, so that will also occupy his mind. He's only 11 months old, but he seems so much older. People remark about how much older he acts. Now that I have been around enough working border collies, I realize how different they are from other dogs!
  10. We didn't dress the dogs up because they didn't need to be. My friend (and breeder to Solo) and I were shepherdesses, my one daughter was a sheep, and her daughter was a dog. Solo is the black and white prick eared one on the right front. His mother is behind him.
  11. I am going because I wanted to train Solo in a different environment, with the distractions that I just can't provide here at home. Looking back from the beginning class to now, I can see how it has helped Solo not be as reactive with strange dogs. He wasn't bad, but he would get more whiney and pay attention to me less. He isn't happy about it, no. I would be unhappy to put him through something that will harm him more than help him, and that is my problem. I just want to do the right thing for him.
  12. Generally we'd arrive, dogs would be barking outside like crazy, he'd whine about it while I encouraged him to keep moving with me. This trainer also breeds GSDs and Labs so there are dogs in kennels outside. We get inside a waiting room with the other people in the class and wait our turn. He meets the other dogs nicely and we sit down. Often another dog will have an issue with someone else and there will be a bark fest, and one owner brings their dog outside. Solo's ears go back and he looks worried when this happens, and I reassure him that he's okay. We go inside and start going in an oval shape, loose leash walking, with hot dogs given when he does good things like look at me, staying by me, etc. It usually takes him a few trips around the room before he'll even take a treat. He walks and does what is expected but looks downward. Eventually he stops being mopey and starts taking treats. If I teach a new thing, he is alert and engaged. A half hour goes by and we take a half hour break for potty and water. Then we go back into the waiting room to socialize. This is usually where Solo sniffs other dogs and then he settles down. Another dog altercation usually happens between the same two dogs that did it before. He used to get really bothered by it, but after awhile he just ignored it. Now we finish the last half hour. He usually gets right into the routine again and it goes well until the end. I can tell he's not LOVING it but he tolerated it pretty well until the last class of the course. He was just DOWN. Could this be because I left him with his breeder that day when I took my car to the cities so it could have work done on it? Was he upset with me for being gone all day? He'd spent the day inside and outside with dogs he knows very well, but I could tell he was ready to go home. It was like his original mopey attitude that happens every time for the first 5 to 10 minutes lasted the entire class last time. I read your posts about Molly and that is what prompted me to post my own. I want to do the right thing for him. I can see that it's stressful. But is it the kind that is good for him to help him grow OR will I push him too hard and cause him to have struggles. This is possible. If I go back, I will definitely work on noticing any differences and trying to be consistent.
  13. Her method doesn't have a name as far as I know, and on her site she discusses studying many different methods and coming up with her own method. She also trains SAR dogs. Lots of hot dogs, walking around in an oval, learning things by repetition and small steps. She recommends the use of a prong collar, but we didn't use it. Overall it was positive training. I am in a very rural community, and I have to travel about 30 minutes to get to this facility. If I were to look into others, they would be at least an hour and a half away. I can train him at home but also wanted the benefit of the different environment and distractions. I'm sure the environment had something to do with it. Barking dogs in the background, other dogs in the waiting room area that had issues with each other, etc. I just wonder if it's a good thing to work through this kind of stuff or not.
  14. It was just an 8-week basic obedience class, but we had the last class yesterday and he got a nice litte certificate. The intermediate class starts next week. As I expected, he learned everything just fine. He already knew how to some of the commands, but I went specifically to train him alongside the distractions of other dogs. He did learn a few new things, too. Here's what I didn't expect: He acted so down and mopey while we were there. Not every time, but especially at this last class, he was just depressed. Yes he did what was expected, but he was just so down about it. When I train him at home in the basement, doing the same stuff, he is his normal happy self. When we are at this place, you'd think he had the worst life ever. In the class there are happy Labs, chatty GSDs, a BC mix, and they were all seemingly happy to be there. My gut says not to enroll him the next time. Then I am second guessing myself, wondering if we need to perservere so he learns something ... what, I don't know. It's not that he is untrainable or that he has problems with other dogs, but learning in that environment is just no fun for him. He's 11 months old today, by the way. I've had him since he was 8 weeks old and have known him since he was born. Ideas or advice?
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