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  #91  
Old 03-22-2013, 10:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Shai View Post
Kim was, I thought, naturally an "omg hai!" dog to where if we were working and someone walked in she would zip off to greet them. After working through it for a while (bear in mind this was my first dog lol) I realized that it was actually more insecurity on her part...she figured they were going to come up to her and wanted to beat them to the punch and show them how very friendly and meaning-no-harm she was.
This is super interesting. Tipper is my only O HAI dog and she is very insecure with new people. To the point of submissive peeing a lot of the time. She's gotten a ton better but we're not anywhere near where I'd like to be (mainly due to me not working on it as much as I should). I never considered it in terms of "I am not a threat, see how friendly I am!"

Mu is very much so a "I can neither see nor hear nor care about you even a little bit" kind of dog - unless they have food. And then she still doesn't want to be touched but she'll get right up in someone's personal space until I call her off. I love it but it does offend people when she deliberately moves out of their touching range. Lol.
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  #92  
Old 03-22-2013, 10:11 AM
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After having Kaylee and having to manage who she could see, where people were, if she was going to be ok with said people, body blocking children or adults I really really wanted a love everyone dog. And I have that in Traveler and I adore it. I love how his whole body shows how much he wants to be loved by the masses. It so totally him. Everything he does is done with his whole self including loving (and being loved by) people.

But, he also can turn that off and focus on me and when out if I say something to him he's right back onto me. I like that. He can get overstimulated easily sometimes in crazy people environments and his love of people can exasperate that but overall him growing up and coming into his own has helped that a lot.

You wouldn't know he's mister love everyone though when he met up with Shai and Mira. We just had two blurs retrieving the whole time. It was only in the parking lot he said "Oh, wait. Another person!"

Didgie is much more into me and less into people but she still loves to say hi. It just lasts so much shorter than Traveler's greetings and then she's right back to "Lets go do something!" People are interesting for about 30 seconds, then it's boring and things need to be happening.

But honestly, I think it was a little bit of their core personality and a lot of how I handled them different. After Traveler I was coming off of Kaylee so I was like "YES! GO SAY HI!" and he's a natural crowd worker and proud of it.

With Didgie I focused more on coming back to me and being the reward in those environments.

At the end of the day though I'll take love everyone extreme over the other extreme.
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  #93  
Old 03-22-2013, 10:13 AM
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Here's a random question for everyone:

How much of the "everyone's best friend" do you think is a training/relationship issue with the handler? Anyone who has met Zinga (or even Zuma) knows she's very much everyone's best friend and loves to be in everyone's faces looking for attention. However, through premack work and training, she now will go say hi to a stranger and come straight back to me and offer great focus.

I have never had a dog that even though they loved people and are over the top with greetings, that they prefer the company of another person to that of mine. So I'm curious about that. What training/relationship building has been done with that sort of dog? Are they just a house pet or do they actively engage in training or other activities with their handlers?

This isn't meant to tick any one off, I'm just really curious.
It's clear, IMO, that most every dog prefers its owner.

With a normal, average dog, I actually enjoy that when walking my Malinois they can greet strangers (Backup more so, now, than ever before) but they don't care to. They don't seek them out and no matter how much smiling, crooning, or baiting a stranger offers they just look relatively disinterested. I get "shy" a lot and that is frustrating because it is presuming there is something wrong with my dog that really just doesn't hold any value in a stranger. However, why does my dog need to? I can easily respect a desire for a party with everyone dog but I don't prefer that behavior in my Malinois.

The flip side would be my pit bulls, I can use Arnold as a more reasonable example because Shamoo is not trained at all and she wildly seeks out strangers with screams and hugs (and it cracks me up aside from worry that she'll scare some people). Arnold is always looking for people, he loves them and management is required to avoid giddy wiggling and over the top hoooooman hellos. He will work for anyone and snuggle anyone, clearly he has dependency issues with me because when I leave for work he sulks and sleeps in the guest room away from even Denis but when I'm around he is extremely the life of the pet me, love me party(as a good pit bull should be).

The same management is required for his dog awareness (which is aggression, not overt social butterfly, nor aloof) and my Malinois again just do not care about strange dogs as long as they are not crowding them. Arnold has been intensively trained in this aspect from corrective and aversive to positive and it's your choice, it's still and always will be a management issue, although approaching 9 he's a bit less trigger finger.

While I am sure you can train and manage every dog breed to be relatively the same in some breeds you're going up stream and some you're not. I am sure it has to do with my personality but whatever it is I just click with the stereotypical shepherd aloofness and handler obsession.
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  #94  
Old 03-22-2013, 10:18 AM
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While I am sure you can train and manage every dog breed to be relatively the same in some breeds you're going up stream and some you're not. I am sure it has to do with my personality but whatever it is I just click with the stereotypical shepherd aloofness and handler obsession.
This is where I get a bit lost? I have great handler obsession with my dogs out in public, they are focused and working, but they still love people. It's not one or the other and I feel like people think it is. Much like aloofness and reactivity, same deal. You can have aloofness without reactivity. You can have stranger friendliness without the urgent need to say hi to everyone they meet.

So basically what I'm saying is, I like the way each of these are SUPPOSED to be, however if things go wrong and the dog springs to the extreme end of the spectrum, I would much rather deal with the crazy happy extreme.
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  #95  
Old 03-22-2013, 10:24 AM
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Shai, your inbox is full. .

Sorry for the totally irrelevant post. I guess to make it on subject: summer is insecure sometimes but not when it comes to new people. She just really really loves everyone.
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  #96  
Old 03-22-2013, 10:24 AM
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For some reason dealing with Mia's over exuberance towards squirrels was much better for me than summer's exuberance with people. Logically it should be the same, I know.
Well but to be fair Summer had years of being rewarded for being stranger-focused before she came to live with you. If Mia had had equal time of gleeful free-for-all squirrel-chasing, it may have been less fun to deal with lol. Summer had been on a variable reinforcement schedule for years and probably has just enough people respond to her now to keep that desire burning bright.

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You wouldn't know he's mister love everyone though when he met up with Shai and Mira. We just had two blurs retrieving the whole time. It was only in the parking lot he said "Oh, wait. Another person!"
He was very sweet for those seconds of greeting though lol. He managed to pack a full on "ILOVEYOUILOVEYOUILOVEYOU" into about 3 seconds before the tennis balls came out. And then yeah I don't think he even knew I was there except when we briefly threw toys for each others' dogs haha. I honestly don't know if Mira and Traveler even met, despite hanging out together for what, an hour or two? They were even touching shoulders some of the time and racing back and forth past each other.

Ball? Ball. Ball ball ball BALL BALL BALL!
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  #97  
Old 03-22-2013, 10:30 AM
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Well but to be fair Summer had years of being rewarded for being stranger-focused before she came to live with you. If Mia had had equal time of gleeful free-for-all squirrel-chasing, it may have been less fun to deal with lol. Summer had been on a variable reinforcement schedule for years and probably has just enough people respond to her now to keep that desire burning bright.
I am sure that was part of it. Summer was her main therapy dog and spent her time going from lap to lap to lap. And it is an issue nowadays with people reinforcing her even I they don't mean to. One of my class mates picked her up a few weeks ago when she ran over to him mid run. He was trying to hand her back to me but I know summer was thinking 'oh, he loves me and he is holding me!' But yeah I'm sure I could have raised her slightly more in line with what I like in more ways than one.
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  #98  
Old 03-22-2013, 10:30 AM
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I worry that you think I've made any attempt to insult your dogs or their personality, I've said from forever that I love the way Traveler sounds and in turn all of the following Koolies, the ability to work like a border collie without the potentially freaky social issues is awesome. I *like* the way they sound, I also enjoy my dogs and their aloofness paired with handler obsession and above all else drive for the reward. When I previously said it's a selfish thing and referring to the "I'm more important that society to my dog" I wasn't saying it's impossible to have both, I just enjoy that aspect about my aloof dogs.

It is also possible to have a dog who is aloof and doesn't give a real crap about their owner. Tucker, my almost 16 year old wheaten, he's always been that extreme of "meh, I'm not into play, food, praise, toys, so whoever has a warm bed and a yard is cool, I'll be outside wandering and eating plants." I have an airedale like this at work as well, very little human bonding and respect.

I prefer the aloof dog who's not thrilled to be pet by strangers but OMG MY FAMILY. It doesn't mean any other dog is putting their family at the excitement of strangers nor does it mean they're lesser for being excited to see people. Additionally aloofness can be easily misunderstood by both the public AND the handler for badness and vice versa.

This obviously is an issue with generalizing and labels, it's so hard for everyone to agree on them and it causes confusion and frustration.
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  #99  
Old 03-22-2013, 10:33 AM
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Being cajoled by strangers cooing and kissing and enticing them over..that's a training problem. Not a side-effect of loving people.

Merlin LOVES people.. yes. But if I don't tell him to go say hi or he isn't at the store (a place where being a crowd slut is something I encourage).. he barely acknowledges them. They will get a glance at most if they are making really annoying sounds (like kissy noises)

As per his SDit work, I did extensive socialization with him. All kinds of people, all kinds of places, crowds, kids etc.. so of course he LIKES people, but Merlin is handler obsessed to a fault I often have to remind him to get a life.

tell him to go say hi or put him in an environment where he KNOWS he isn't working, and you get Doug. OH HAI I LOVE YOU SO MUCH PLEASE SCRATCH MY BUTT WIGGLE WIGGLE
but that isn't to say that he doesn't give 100% to his work and to being with me.

Aussies kind of get that kind of rap of being these fuddy duddy happy dogs that love everyone and don't work.
But even at 6 months.. Merlin gives 110% to his work with enthusiasm and great focus.
Doesn't mean that when I tell him it's ok he doesn't enjoy a good butt scratch from some strangers

I totally get what you are trying to say, I just think it's important to re-iterate that being the social butterfly doesn't mean you have a dog that doesn't love to work or focus on you.

Merlin's just a baby, so of course he is a goofy love bunny when he can. I just think that the "Shepherd aloofness" can manifest in more than one way, if that makes any sense.
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  #100  
Old 03-22-2013, 10:40 AM
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Being cajoled by strangers cooing and kissing and enticing them over..that's a training problem. Not a side-effect of loving people.


I totally get what you are trying to say, I just think it's important to re-iterate that being the social butterfly doesn't mean you have a dog that doesn't love to work or focus.
Yes, but would you propose it is equally as training intensive with every breed?

I have found with my malinois they never sought out those cajoling strangers, it's never been an issue to proof.

Purely talking raw dog, out of drive. I can distract and work Shamoo through offers of affection but deep down she wants that lovin from that stranger, it's in her blood and I love it, a pit bull should be nothing less than a people slut. This doesn't mean it's not trainable nor workable, but it is there.

My malinois, out of drive, sitting, waiting for something to happen might investigate a stranger but it's extremely unlikely unless prompted by us, they just doesn't hold them at a high value of interest beyond "I see you, we're cool".

Does that help explain a bit of the difference I am trying to reach?
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