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Old 02-23-2013, 11:07 AM
*blackrose's Avatar
*blackrose *blackrose is offline
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Default Why does he do this?

Cooper is...special. And he has some interesting quirks that I am completely baffled by. One if which I would like some feedback on to see how in the heck I can get him to stop doing it.

So here it is:
Cooper has to be kicked before he will go outside.

Yes, you read that right.

If he has to go outside to potty, he'll come up to you and make little wookie noises. You get up to let him outside and he runs away from the door, typically to his crate, or just outside of his crate, and lies down. You then have to go up to him and nudge him towards the door with your foot. Then he runs to it, all excited and happy, and will go outside without an issue.

If he's running back to the crate and you are standing in his way, you can literally stick your foot out and nudge him to the door, and he reacts the same way - running to the door all excited and happy and going outside without an issue. So it isn't the place that is the trigger, it is literally the action of pushing him towards the door with your foot.

I can't think of anything that has lead him to believe this is the appropriate sequence of events to go outside. I just want him to go outside like a normal dog.

The other night I decided to call his bluff and every time he would run away after asking to go out, I'd sit back down and ignore him. We literally did that for almost 30 minutes with no change before I started to get worried he'd mess in the house and finally caved and went and booted him towards the door to get him outside. So ignoring him and waiting for him to offer an alternative behavior to reward epically failed in that instance.

So. Help? Anyone have any insight on Cooper's brain (or lack there of)? It's just getting really annoying.
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Old 02-23-2013, 11:14 AM
Brattina88 Brattina88 is offline
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that's... interesting ...

My suggestion would be to break the cycle, and reward for behavior you want. I would leave a short tether on him - so when he asks to go outside, pick up the tether and say "Let's Go Outside!" (or whatever you want to say) in a chipper voice and just go straight out. Straight out, no distractions, hesitations, or kicking out lol

I had a foster dog that did a... almost similar (?) thing. She was from a hoarding situation and was VERY timid, flighty, skittish. She would pace and circle to tell me she needed to go outside, but when I stood up to let her out, she'd hide behind the couch, poor girl I tried to wait her out like you said, but unfortunately we had a couple accidents that way. Behind the couch So then I used the teacher and the clicker and she came out of that habit within a couple of weeks.
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Old 02-23-2013, 11:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brattina88 View Post
that's... interesting ...

My suggestion would be to break the cycle, and reward for behavior you want. I would leave a short tether on him - so when he asks to go outside, pick up the tether and say "Let's Go Outside!" (or whatever you want to say) in a chipper voice and just go straight out. Straight out, no distractions, hesitations, or kicking out lol

I had a foster dog that did a... almost similar (?) thing. She was from a hoarding situation and was VERY timid, flighty, skittish. She would pace and circle to tell me she needed to go outside, but when I stood up to let her out, she'd hide behind the couch, poor girl I tried to wait her out like you said, but unfortunately we had a couple accidents that way. Behind the couch So then I used the teacher and the clicker and she came out of that habit within a couple of weeks.
Cooper is interesting, to say the least.

He *is* a very submissive dog (is a submissive wetter, too ), if that has anything to do with it. Although I would think if he was somehow unhappy about going outside, he wouldn't be so happy and excited when he's running to the door after being booted. But then again, he is Cooper, so...

I'm not really sure how to get a tether to work. He HATES dragging around a line and it might make the situation worse. But I guess I won't know until I try!
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Old 02-23-2013, 11:33 AM
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milos_mommy milos_mommy is offline
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That is unusual, my guess is that someone once did that to get him to go outside, and he was later rewarded for pottying outside, and some weird-dog brains would think that HAS to happen for him to go out. It might be an OCD thing, even.

I think keeping a tether on him is a great choice. When he comes to you to go out, snap a leash on him (or keep one on him all the time) and don't let him dart away at all. Hopefully you can eventually phase out the lead.

Do you clicker train at all?
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Old 02-23-2013, 01:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by milos_mommy View Post
Do you clicker train at all?
I don't have a clicker, but I do mark and reward behaviors. So in a sense, yes.

Quote:
It might be an OCD thing, even.
This wouldn't surprise me. He isn't your stereotypical OCD type dog that can't settle, but some of the behaviors he does it is like he is running on default and isn't really thinking about what he's doing, he just does it.

Quote:
I think keeping a tether on him is a great choice. When he comes to you to go out, snap a leash on him (or keep one on him all the time) and don't let him dart away at all. Hopefully you can eventually phase out the lead.
The dogs don't wear collars in the house and are only collared/leashed up when we're going somewhere, but I may try using one of those cheap thin slip leads that we use at the vet clinic. That's actually a really good idea, especially since I'm not sure if he'd drag a line in the house (or if I could even find one thin enough that he could drag around comfortably).

I just hope that trying to loop it over him results doesn't result in his little brain short circuiting because something new is happening.
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Old 02-23-2013, 01:34 PM
JessLough JessLough is offline
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If he won't drag a line, they have those leashes that like.. are spiraled so they aren't dragging anything and then you grab it and its a leash.
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