My BC has some issues
#11
I agree, the best route to follow, if possible, would be with a trained behaviourist to help Jack (and your family) with his issues.

My dog Izzy is quite fearful. Seems to be a hereditary thing with him; his mom was so fearful you couldn't get near her. I've been working with him for as long as I've had him now to help him overcome these fears. Izzy's list of fears have included new people, children, dogs he doesn't know, teenaged boys (esp. if they're quite tall), and he also has food guarding issues. I got him when he was 9 weeks old, and he was so fearful that it even took time to introduce him to pavement...he'd never seen it before and was afraid to set foot on it.

I didn't work with a behaviourist (several reasons, including money and finding a good one) but I would always suggest that this is the best route to go if it's available. For my dog, I did/do work with him, didn't use 'flooding' techniques or anything that would cause him to be even more fearful, and would never pressure him into any situation where he's just too uncomfortable. As a result, we've conquered some problems, but some still remain. For instance, his fear of strangers is pretty much gone now; he's more likely to pull on his leash to meet someone than he is to try and hide. His food guarding issues aren't completely resolved, but he has gone from a dog who would snap and lunge if you entered the room where he was eating, to one who will now accept me walking up to his dish...he backs up and sits, and will wait until I tell him it's okay to eat again. I still do see him sometimes displaying a bit of discomfort in this area though...he will tend to look around nervously every so often while he's eating, so it's not a 'fix'. But it's a definite improvement.

I won't take Izzy to dog parks or pet stores where there are other dogs - far far too stressful for him - and I don't ever allow young children to approach him. While I don't think he'd react now to young children, I just can't take that chance; dog parks have always been a high trigger for anxiety and fear reacting (biting the dog that approaches) so I've conceded that it's just not good for him. When he reacts to something on our daily walks, such as a flag waving in the wind - this happened the other day, he cringed and tried to run - I stopped him, allowed him to settle down, then quietly brought him closer to the flag, a bit at a time, until he seemed comfortable enough around it. Basically, I think it's about turning a negative reaction into a positive one; fear of strangers can be approached with making sure they give the dog his space, they don't stare or even look at the dog at first, and let the dog (once the owner okays it) approach on his own. A food reward can certainly help if the dog is food motivated. (With Izzy, reward for him was the person throwing his ball for him. Now, if someone he doesn't know approaches and they offer to throw his ball, he's automatically their friend for life.)

Sorry, I think I'm rambling a little bit here. Wink I guess I just wanted to say that there certainly is hope for any dog who displays issues. Some (such as food guarding, and fear of other dogs, as Izzy taught me) might be a challenge, while other issues may be able to be resolved fairly quickly. Best of luck to you!
[Image: 24b7da04-ebe3-44ee-81cc-608ab615b402_zps55051c6f.jpg][Image: 83de47f8-0fda-4b91-9e6d-a8f2fd0b85ce_zps484a4b86.jpg]



"If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went." ~ Will Rogers
Reply
#12
(04-24-2017, 09:31 AM)izzysmom Wrote: I agree, the best route to follow, if possible, would be with a trained behaviourist to help Jack (and your family) with his issues.

My dog Izzy is quite fearful. Seems to be a hereditary thing with him; his mom was so fearful you couldn't get near her. I've been working with him for as long as I've had him now to help him overcome these fears. Izzy's list of fears have included new people, children, dogs he doesn't know, teenaged boys (esp. if they're quite tall), and he also has food guarding issues. I got him when he was 9 weeks old, and he was so fearful that it even took time to introduce him to pavement...he'd never seen it before and was afraid to set foot on it.

I didn't work with a behaviourist (several reasons, including money and finding a good one) but I would always suggest that this is the best route to go if it's available. For my dog, I did/do work with him, didn't use 'flooding' techniques or anything that would cause him to be even more fearful, and would never pressure him into any situation where he's just too uncomfortable. As a result, we've conquered some problems, but some still remain. For instance, his fear of strangers is pretty much gone now; he's more likely to pull on his leash to meet someone than he is to try and hide. His food guarding issues aren't completely resolved, but he has gone from a dog who would snap and lunge if you entered the room where he was eating, to one who will now accept me walking up to his dish...he backs up and sits, and will wait until I tell him it's okay to eat again. I still do see him sometimes displaying a bit of discomfort in this area though...he will tend to look around nervously every so often while he's eating, so it's not a 'fix'. But it's a definite improvement.

I won't take Izzy to dog parks or pet stores where there are other dogs - far far too stressful for him - and I don't ever allow young children to approach him. While I don't think he'd react now to young children, I just can't take that chance; dog parks have always been a high trigger for anxiety and fear reacting (biting the dog that approaches) so I've conceded that it's just not good for him. When he reacts to something on our daily walks, such as a flag waving in the wind - this happened the other day, he cringed and tried to run - I stopped him, allowed him to settle down, then quietly brought him closer to the flag, a bit at a time, until he seemed comfortable enough around it. Basically, I think it's about turning a negative reaction into a positive one; fear of strangers can be approached with making sure they give the dog his space, they don't stare or even look at the dog at first, and let the dog (once the owner okays it) approach on his own. A food reward can certainly help if the dog is food motivated. (With Izzy, reward for him was the person throwing his ball for him. Now, if someone he doesn't know approaches and they offer to throw his ball, he's automatically their friend for life.)

Sorry, I think I'm rambling a little bit here. Wink I guess I just wanted to say that there certainly is hope for any dog who displays issues. Some (such as food guarding, and fear of other dogs, as Izzy taught me) might be a challenge, while other issues may be able to be resolved fairly quickly. Best of luck to you!

Thank you so much for your reply!  I really appreciate it.  I have checked out some behavioral trainers and they are a little expensive.  I will do my best for my Jack.
Reply
#13
I originally made a deal with our behaviorist that I'd help her out with some of her computer things and she'd discount our visits. Maybe you can find a way to do something similar? Obviously not everyone will be open to it but you can always ask! Maybe some volunteer time or something.
[Image: e5Qmm5.png]


Gotcha Day: November 14, 2015
Vet-Listed Birthday: May 2, 2014
Reply
#14
The great thing about BC's is that you often working on stuff in your own habits that you never even thought to work on. You aren't the first to find that a behaviorist is too expensive or hard to find. And there are plenty of us here who have "done it ourselves" with a tentative BC. Start by building the trust between you. Izzy's Mom had a lot of good tips. And you can use the Fenzi work that Ember has been posting about. With BC's, slow and steady wins the race. If you two grow to work really well together other when other dogs and people aren't around, it will be a lot easier to change those behaviors when they are. Keep posting, and we will all be cheering you on!
Reply
#15
Micah has fear aggression problems too. There are a lot of loose dogs in our area, but we know where they are and when they are likely to be behind fences versus out on the road. We have worked really hard on a rock solid "Leave it" and "Watch me." We stay as far from the other dogs as we can and tell him to "leave it" as soon as he notices one of the animals he fixates on, then have him "watch me" the entire time we are walking past any of the dogs behind fences. If there is a loose dog, we turn around and go the other way immediately. If the loose dog was between me and home, I wouldn't hesitate to call the sheriff out. Our animal control is handled by the sheriff's department.
Gotta love 'em.
Reply
#16
(04-24-2017, 06:55 PM)Gideons mom Wrote: Micah has fear aggression problems too. There are a lot of loose dogs in our area, but we know where they are and when they are likely to be behind fences versus out on the road. We have worked really hard on a rock solid "Leave it" and "Watch me." We stay as far from the other dogs as we can and tell him to "leave it" as soon as he notices one of the animals he fixates on, then have him "watch me" the entire time we are walking past any of the dogs behind fences. If there is a loose dog, we turn around and go the other way immediately. If the loose dog was between me and home, I wouldn't hesitate to call the sheriff out. Our animal control is handled by the sheriff's department.

I think that's a very important point you brought up, the 'leave it' and 'watch me' commands. For Izzy I tend to say 'don't touch', and wasn't really sure if it was all that effective (at least toward other dogs) until one day when I had him off leash in an open field. A neighbour of mine showed up with his lab (Ben)...a big, goofy dog, but one that Izzy has always been absolutely terrified of whenever he sees him. Ben was off leash as well, and as soon as he spotted a ball in Izzy's mouth, he made a beeline for him. I was quite far away and had no control as Iz dropped the ball and suddenly bared his teeth at Ben, so I just shouted out the first thing that came to mind: "IZZY, DON'T TOUCH!!!" Izzy did react when Ben got too close, but to my utter surprise the anticipated 'bite to the face' that Iz will (predictably) do whenever a dog scares him, instead turned into his snapping the air close to Ben's head. But he never touched Ben.

If you can train your dog to defocus with the 'watch me', that can help tremendously, and a command to tell the dog to not touch something - an object or other dog - can be extremely helpful as well. Extremely important too if one's dog is ever off leash.
[Image: 24b7da04-ebe3-44ee-81cc-608ab615b402_zps55051c6f.jpg][Image: 83de47f8-0fda-4b91-9e6d-a8f2fd0b85ce_zps484a4b86.jpg]



"If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went." ~ Will Rogers
Reply
#17
Oh I like that command! I wonder how it would work if you've already taught a "touch" command. I might try it.
[Image: e5Qmm5.png]


Gotcha Day: November 14, 2015
Vet-Listed Birthday: May 2, 2014
Reply
#18
My "Leave it" is not just a "don't touch," but also a "turn your body away," so in this instance it really does double duty, since it breaks eye contact and helps him to be able to refocus on me.
Gotta love 'em.
Reply


Forum Jump:


Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)