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Old 09-25-2012, 05:44 PM
Barbara!'s Avatar
Barbara! Barbara! is offline
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Join Date: May 2012
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Default Have you ever wondered?

If your dog might just genuinely be slow? Do learning disabilities occur in dogs like they do in humans?

As some of you know, I got my Rhodesian Ridgeback, Malyk, when he was about two-ish. He had basic training...sit, lay down, leash manners... But that was about it. I have been working every day, tooth and nail, to try to get him further along than that. I am beginning to think that I should stop, give up, and accept that I may not get any further with him. I wanted to get him CGC titled, but he just doesn't get it. Nothing I teach him sticks.

He sits (when he wants to), lays down (when he wants to) and has leash manners (unless there is something he really wants to get to.) I have tried reinforcing sit and have tried to teach him that I don't have to have a treat in my hand for him to get a treat, but it just does not work. I am truly beginning to think he may have some sort of mental glitch.

A few weeks ago, I thought that it may be that he just isn't paying attention. So we tried to work on some eye contact exercises where he recognizes his name as a cue to pay attention or look to me for direction. (Never had a dog that didn't do that anyways.) And he just didn't get that, either. This is part of the method I used:

He wouldn't gravitate from looking at my hand to looking at my face. (I even tried holding the treat in my teeth, YUCK.) We workd on that for two weeks, he hasn't got it, and here I am now.

So my question is I guess, can there be mentally handicapped dogs? I love Malyk to death, no matter what.
"I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself." -D.H. Lawrence

"Only when the last tree is cut, only when the last river is polluted, only when the last fish is caught, will they realize that you can’t eat money." –Native American proverb
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