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border aggression to teen age granddaughter


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Thanks for the input. I do realize what a huge job this will be. And I will be honest in that I think my husband is in denial. I have read so much and keep relaying this info to him, but it is going to take us going all the way with this for him to realize how much work there will be and the restrictions this will place on us. Right now, I don't like the odds, but there you go.

 

Neutering him was a decision and I am not sure it was the right one. The behaviorist meets us on the 18th. We remeet in 4 weeks. Then we have 1 month of phone/email support.

 

I was concerned that getting him neutered during that time would take away from the training. If we did it after the 3 months, would it set us back. So we decided neutering him soon enough so that he would be well, going into the training would be our best shot. If we have to put Logan down, I will be sorry for causing him undue pain.

 

I sure appreciate the input on this forum. You guys are great. Soon I will post a picture of this handsome guy so you can see who is causing all this commotion.

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Hi, I tried posting a few days ago, and it wouldn't take. Anyway, the behaviorist has rescheduled to a later date later in March. I've tried finding another in the area, but haven't found much. One that has high recommendations will work with us, but we can't afford him ($3,000). He takes him for 3 weeks, fixes the engine, and returns. We can't do this as we 1. cant afford it, and 2 have no idea what he is doing to the dog in those three weeks.

 

Logan has been great. He seems happy, is not giving us problems and seems to be coming around. I have had no more snarls. He plays outside with us 3 times a day or more, plays inside with his toys. He goes for car rides and gets along with the little dogs. They don't encourage him to play, but are not afraid of him. He is doing great around my granddaughter, altho we watch very closely and she doesn't encourage him to be around her. We have had one stranger come to the back yard (a friend), and Logan was very happy to see her.

 

There is a place nearby that does training, and training in sheep herding and agility. I wondered about taking him there to see if he would like either and see how he would do with the trainer. I may call and ask them, letting them know he has bitten. I want to be upfront with anyone who might work with him.

 

So, there we are. I tried to post a picture, but it didn't work, and I lost my post.

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Well, it sounds like tensions are lessening and things are going much better! Wow $3000 for a behaviorist?!! Crazy! Anyway is sounds the way things are going waiting until March may not be too terrible to see the behaviorist at UC Davis.

 

So it sounds like good news

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That sounds like a lot of good progress!

 

I'm rather glad that you are not choosing that approach with the behaviorist. Just because someone else "fixes the engine" and sends him back, doesn't mean the engine is fixed. Many, many dogs (and other animals) can be quite different in one environment and with one individual, and quite different back home again. I think that if you work with someone, it is best if you can work with them in your own home environment.

 

With regards to livestock, you might not want to expose him to or turn him on to stock if that's not going to be something you would really pursue with him. Sort of like letting a kid try basketball and then telling him he can't do it anymore. It might not provide any benefit and why get his interest up if you aren't going to continue?

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Sue R, that is probably good advice. We are just trying to find different outlets for him so we can keep him happy. Right now the soccer ball and chuck it are keeping him tired and happy. He plays a game in the back yard. When he is tired of my husband kicking the soccer ball (we hit it with a golf club), he takes the ball and hides it in the leaves behind a tree trunk by the fence, then he tries to get it out from the other side of the tree. It is funny to watch him. He goes to different places in the yard and does this. I'm trying to figure out how to play hide/seek with him with the different toys.

 

It is going well. I wonder if Logan is just trying to find his place. He has been shunted around so much. As he get's more comfortable with us, maybe the aggression will become less and less. I'm waiting for a stranger to come to the door. We've been so busy we haven't "arranged" this. So, I will see if I can find someone in the family he has not met yet to assist us. He still barks when someone comes, but when we tell him to sit and wait, he does. When he see's it is someone he knows, he gets all wiggly.

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I doubt that trainer charging $3000 is a real behaviorist. If that person was one, s/he would know that the problem needs to be fixed in the home. Sounds like a rip off to me. Real behaviorists work with the owners to change the environment and train the owners how to work with the dog.

 

Go to UC Davis to see a board certified behaviorist. Get the real deal.

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Regarding sending him off for 3 weeks: A lot of dog training is really human training - so that is not something you would get by sending him off. Even if the behaviorist/trainer would work with you after Logan returns home, I am not sure that would be the approach I would take (just my opinion based on my experience, others may differ).

 

About 16 years ago, I placed a border collie that I had adopted/rescued with a trainer for 7-10 days (can't remember exactly how long), and he was really well trained when returned. The trainer had a lifelong arrangement in which she would work with us whenever we needed or if any issue arose. The first few weeks we met about once a week so she could work with both of us, but then it became more difficult to fit into my schedule and a few months later, I moved out of the area. Issues did develop later, but I didn't know how to deal with them. I also didn't know enough to try and find another dog trainer to help me. I knew nothing about training back then and thought that she did great, but now, I strongly believe that expecting not to be involved in training your own dog is a big mistake. But that was then, and I have learned A LOT in the intervening years.

 

I am glad Logan is doing better.

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Sounds like there is reason for cautious optimism. Dogs, (and people) who have been moved around a lot and mistreated/abused thrive with consistency, 'work' to do, and good company. Sounds like you're giving him all three.

 

And yep, the $3000 is a rip. Logan needs to learn exactly what you're teaching him. He has a safe place, he has stuff to do that he likes and is good at, and the world is predictable. I certainly think you should see the vet behaviorist at UC Davis, but as you said, handing off your dog and your money to some unknown guy is not a good idea.

 

Thanks for the update!

 

Ruth and Agent Gibbs

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Thanks for the update, I have been hoping things were ok. I will add my voice to those that have said the best training is in the home. He is learning to trust and if you shipped him out it would upend his world again.

I am a little cynical about boarding trainers, I know off two in my area, they are both ecollar style trainers and claim to fix dogs with problems but from some experiences I think what they do is suppress the problems and they send the dog back with a remote control! (nothing wrong on boarding school for specific training it is the behavior bit I am cynical about)

When you meet the behaviorist you will all have a chance to learn together.

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A 2 hour consultation is one thing, more than likely a lot of it will be discussion with you, but when you are working with your dog (yes, new name), I would strongly suggest that you work for short periods of time. I would do very short lessons, concentrating on only one thing at a time as if he were a puppy, making sure he is successful at every lesson. Praise nicely. Do not overly handle him. Also, as much as you possibly can, long walks on leash in which you don't ask much of him but just let him be a dog. The more quiet long walks you can do, the better. Think of them as therapy for PTSD. Thank you for giving this dog a chance. Please keep us posted.

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Edited to add:

 

I am so happy to hear that things seem to settle a bit. And you don't sound so apprehensive. That is a huge step.

 

Now on to my mini rant....I suppose I am one of the few that is not in love with behaviorists. Not saying that there are not good ones. But what I have observed and come to believe is that minus the meds, a good, experienced trainer can do more in less time than the behaviorists offer. I feel that many are impossible for the average owner that is really struggling due to cost and also due to the time frame projected. Always allowing for the individual dog owners personally being a big part of course.

 

Now I said, a good and experienced trainer. There are way too many charlatans out there in the profession as well.

But if you have me a choice between a good trainer and an equally good behaviorist, I will go for the trainer every time.

And I have other reasons for this than what I already mentioned.

 

As far as the board and train situations, I find it very insulting to the many professionals on this board that it is being looked down on like it appears. Bringing up someones training methods has nothing to do with in board training or lessons. You either like them or you don't. If you don't, I sure would hope you would not even consider lessons!!!

If a good trainer, chosen on his merits, experience and the mutual agreement on training philosophies does their job, i.e. the dog gets worked in an appropriate manner, then it can absolutely be a huge benefit for dog and owner. In situations where things are border line out of control, where a member of the family is uneasy, where a dog simply benefits from better timed instructions to make it through a rough patch, experience on the part of a trainer can be lifesaving!!!! May I point out a recent situation where no one got to see the dog and now it is dead.

 

No decent trainer trains alone. They involve the owner. At times more, at times less. But if the owner is not involved, it probably will at best be limited success. I have only sent off one dog many years ago as he was way above what I could handle. He was gone for 30 days and came back with so many more skills that allowed me to catch up and learn from him.

 

Of course, no big surprise, I train. Not dogs. And although I prefer lessons as I believe that it often is an owner created issue (sometimes simply by not knowing) and often nothing but mis communication....there are the times I will ask an owner to leave a horse with me. When the habits are too deeply set. When it will take a bit more timing and feel than most owners have. When it takes the confidence that yes, by god, it will be ok is crucial. After that, it is then often a lot easier to catch the owner back up as they can get a feeling of success. Just as much as the animal is actually allowed to succeed without being totally confused all the time.

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Sounds like there is reason for cautious optimism. Dogs, (and people) who have been moved around a lot and mistreated/abused thrive with consistency, 'work' to do, and good company. Sounds like you're giving him all three.

 

This ^^

 

Bless you, Patricia... I know you are still at the start of this journey with Logan, but bless you for all you've done in your relatively short time with him. What a lucky dog to have found you and your husband. :)

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Patricia,

Thank you for all your patience with Logan. I have actively followed this thread. I learned a tremendous amount from it. And I am so glad to hear less apprehension on everyone's part. I currently foster a border collie/lab and are experiencing significant resource guarding and dog aggression with two of the three dogs already in the home. I am so grateful for all the time that everyone puts in on this forum.

 

I will keep watching for your posts and how things are going.

 

Teri

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Teri,

 

Thank you. I feel as every day is one more step, sometimes forward, sometimes back. We haven't had any more bad issues with Logan, but he did growl at my girl dog a couple nights ago. We were going to bed and he was in bed by my husband's side of the bed. I and my two little aussies came into the room and announced ourselves to Logan. The girl dog ran to my side and started to jump up as Logan came around growling. I was so surprised that all I got out was Whoa!! He stopped and my husband called him back and told him to knock it off firmly. I thought he was growling at me, but the girl jumped off the bed and ran out and he growled at her again. These are the things that scare me. She did nothing and he has never shown her any aggression.

 

I really want to follow +R, but find it difficult in these situations. At this time, we verbally get after him, but there are times I'm not sure it will work. I still am leery of Logan, but we are becoming friends. He came out and stayed with me watching tv until late last night and fell asleep. He has never done that before. He is always with my husband. Today my husband had to go somewhere and leave Logan with me. He laid down and was very well behaved.

 

He is so happy to see my granddaughter, but the trust is gone there and she is afraid of him. She puts on a good front, talks to him, and will pet him, but I can feel her stiffen up if he comes too close too fast. So we watch and wait.

 

As to the behaviorist, I am becoming dis-enamoured. Our appt is not until march and I have talked to a couple of people that have paid the high price tag and were not impressed. There is no in-home training at all. So she will see no interaction in the home where the problems seem to be. He behaves very well in public and even allows people to pet him, although we discourage it. My husband takes him with him and has said he is so good. He went to the dog bath Sunday and everyone fell in love with him. One lady walked right up and pet him on the head without asking. He was so good, but my husband asked her not to pet him without asking. He did pull on leash at Lowes, but there was so much to see. But at home, I think it is some sort of resource guarding on Logan's part with his owners. I've read so much that my eyes are crossed, but several incidents we have had is with Logan between his owner and someone else. I'm not sure and am certainly no expert, just trying to read the different scenarios.

 

I am looking into two very recommended trainers in this area. I am having horrible problems with leash control. He does not mind at all with me on leash and I cannot take him walking at all. I'm looking into the easy walk leash as a possible tool. Anybody that has any input to that or ways to control him on leash, I would love to hear from. I've tried everything that I've read and nothing is working (he cares nothing about treats). He hurt me the other day because he just took off on leash and pulled it out of my hand (I was holding it correctly). I ended up on my knees. If he see's my husband or my daughter-in-law, it's all over. So there is a lot of work there and I need help with it.

 

I know I may be taken to task about the behaviorist, but if there is right now no bad behavior, biting, showing teeth, growling, what am I to tell them? Everything is almost 1 month old now. I feel that I need some obedience training right now for leash, recall, manners, and if the bad behavior shows back up, then ??? I will certainly accept any input offered.

 

Teri, if you want to discuss more, please pm me. I would enjoy that comparing your issues with mine. I really admire you fostering this dog. I don't think I would ever do it after dealing with Logan. I think we are doing so much better, but it is a long road ahead.

 

Pat

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Hi Patricia,

He certainly looks like a big handful.

Here's what I have at the moment that I'm reading.

Fired Up, Frantic, and Freaked Out by Laura VanArendonk Baugh- Lots of layman's terms, easy read, and she injects humor too.

Positive Perspectives by Pat B. Miller

Control Unleashed The Puppy Program by Leslie McDevitt-- I found this one harder to follow so I signed up with the Yahoo! Group for clarification and assistance with it-- the group is very active.

I read the boards here TONS. There's so much knowledge here and I use it. I love it here! :wub:

 

I know exactly what you mean about the power of that jerk-- we have columns on our front porch, and my cousin drove up unexpectedly. Jack went one way, lightning fast towards his car around the column as we were coming out of the house. He jerked so hard he nearly brought it down, and it's reinforced with cement! He's only 5 months old! This and other reactive issues is why I bought the Fired Up book. Not much of what I've tried with him is working, and the leash seems to be something just to jerk the livin heck out of me with. I think most of that may be-- just guessing here, cause the person that had Jack before us is a "sensitive subject" that nobody wants to question...-- but maybe the first 4 months of life he was allowed/encouraged(?) to drag around his human. Good luck to you, and bless you for taking on this big boy.

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Yeah, he looks huge in that picture. I couldn't get the original one posted because the file was too big, so I cropped it and he really came in looking huge. He is about 46 lbs, but so strong! I don't walk him on the street. He is too strong and won't quit pulling, so it is the back yard working with him. He does well with my husband, but not too well when there are new things to see. We have an acre, so walking him around it mainly is to train him on leash, which is not working right now.

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He's 5 1/2 months old. I got him at 4 months. Generally he's a great boy, unless it's time to go out for some leash work. If my preschoolers come out to jump on the trampoline, I have to drag him around the back of the house and into the house or he will attempt to pull my arm out of it's socket. Thankfully, the bridge is out on our road or he would be jerking me all over the place. We have minimal traffic now unless someone comes to visit or turn around in our driveway before the bridge. Severe tire chaser for sure.

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Patricia, if I may ask, what happened to the first trainer who worked with you in your home? I know the first visit was a rough ride but (from what you described) it sounded like he gave some good advice and you seemed to like him. Just curious if he was still an option regarding working with Logan in your home.

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Camden's Mom,

 

Hi. The first trainer doesn't want to work with Logan. Logan really lunged, growled, and wanted to "eat" him, is the best description I can give. I had nothing against him, but he couldn't even take Logan's leash. What he gave us was teaching my husband to make Logan wait at doorways, which is going very well. He tried to help us with leash, but it hasn't worked for us. He also said to find another home or possibly PTS. I did think he was a good trainer, but not equipped to help us with Logan's aggression. We did find a rescue in Canada that will take Logan and try to rehab and rehome him but my husband wants to keep him. Right now we are doing okay, but I am always on alert. That option is always open to us, though.

 

We seem to be doing well as far as his interaction with me, but the growling that occurred with my girl dog a couple of nights ago, does bother me. So right now, I am trying to focus on leash training, may get a training harness, the come command. He will not come to me every time I call. But there has not been any aggression that we had in the past.

 

I did mention above my concerns about paying $500 for a consultation, since they pushed my appt back for over a month. It's not that I won't do it, but I am not sure this is money well spent (we are on a fixed income). I know training/behavior will cost, but one consult with a followup, emails and phone calls doesn't seem like hands on to me. I really want someone who can "see" his actions in our home as that seems to be where everything occurs. Jaime the trainer saw it, but he is unwilling to work with Logan and my husband did not really care for him as all of the dogs seemed to be afraid of him.

 

Sorry if I am not making sense. I have a hard time putting my thoughts into words in a concise manner.

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