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Old 02-18-2007, 11:37 AM
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Kayla Kayla is offline
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Default Bad day at puppy club:(

*sigh* well Duke and I just got back from what will probably be our last time at puppy club until he completes basic obidence and is neutered at 8 months old ( which will be in april). He's been going for the last 3 months and has literally gotten 100% better with other dogs and today was the first time he actually played with other dogs, they all ran around jumping and play bowing I was sooooo happy as I never though Duke would get to that point.

Anyways it was an hour into class and Duke started to sqaut to go to the bathroom in the wrong area so I ran over picked him up ( which is pretty hard as he's now 50lbs and very long and I'm only 5'4'') and made a mad dash for the designated outside potty area. After he did his buisness we went back into the main play area and the same wimeriner he had been playing with so well all class came running up to greet us, and jumped up on duke's face. At that moment Duke let out a deep growl and the wimeriner began to run and he bolted after him letting out a deep growl which I have never heard him use. I ran after him trying to step on his lesh ( which I had left attached to his harness incase such an event arose) all the while Duke had caught up to the wimeriner and nipped him on the side. Their was no blood or teeth marks but the poor pup let out a biiig yelp and I managed to grab his lesh and take him over to an unpopulated area to let him have a 5 min time out to cool off.

I was shocked by his sudden outburst and felt terrible to say the least. I kept Duke on lead for the rest of the day and went over later to apologize to the older lady who owned him who just have me a dirty look and walked away and made a point of saying quickly (insert dog name here) lets go as "that" dog is coming. I asked the trainers who supervise the class what they thought and they said it was probabaly a combo of both the breeds in him ( Rotti/Shep/Colli) and his temperment ( which has always been very fear aggressive towards other dogs, which is why I had been taking him to that class and letting him meet and play with as many dogs as possible since age 9 weeks old) as well as all of the horomones which are coming in as he's now 6 months and 3 weeks old. They also recomended trying a choke chain on him along with treats so that when he tried to chase any dogs ( which is when he gets overstimulated and growls) to give him a quick pop and say no and when he went over to sniff dogs to immediatly praise him with lots of petting and giving treats. This sorta of helped but he continued to let out the deep growl whenever any dogs ran by.

It's bizarre as he plays soo well with my friends adult dogs and they can run around in the woods offlesh togther and he never gets into that chase down/deep growl mode even when their both running flat out.

He's starting basic obidence as of Wensday and I know when he gets neutered at 8 months it should help alot but until then I'm really unsure if I should go back to that class, if I do I'll be purely keeping him on lead and bring a clicker,treats and his choker and try and remove him from the situation whenever he starts to get growly with other dogs and click and treat when he sniffs them nicely.

Anyways just had to rant as I feel like we were making sooo much progress and now just lost most of it.

Kayla
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Old 02-18-2007, 11:43 AM
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Don't give up !! It takes a lot of work with some dogs.
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Old 02-18-2007, 12:01 PM
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Don't let the old bat get you down. It's like with kids. Some kids don't play nicely together or they get tired and grumpy or just plain have a bad day. I agree with bubbatd. The rewards are worth the risk and good dog owners will realize that their pups will have spats. It's part of being a dog.

Remember to keep yourself relaxed. If your dog senses tension from you then you add to the dog's tension. It's important that the adults set the tone for play in the group.
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Old 02-18-2007, 11:13 PM
Herschel Herschel is offline
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The obedience class should help, but the administration of aversive corrections aren't going to help his fear aggression. In fact, "tools" such as a choke chain and techniques such as "collar popping" will probably make the problem worse.

Think about it: Your dog feels threatened and growls, you respond by administering something painful (pop with the choke). That basically boils down to you telling Duke that he is right in being fearful because when he is threatened by another dog, he will feel pain. It is also telling him that you don't like his "warning growl" so he will stop doing that.

Once your dog stops growling, then there will be nothing to warn you or other owners of the impending bite. That is when you are really in trouble.

I think neutering and the right obedience class will make a world of difference. However, be careful in finding a trainer that has experience with dogs like yours. Dr2Little is from Canada so maybe she could help you find someone more qualified.
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Old 02-19-2007, 02:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kayla View Post
After he did his buisness we went back into the main play area and the same wimeriner he had been playing with so well all class came running up to greet us, and jumped up on duke's face. At that moment Duke let out a deep growl and the wimeriner began to run and he bolted after him letting out a deep growl which I have never heard him use. I ran after him trying to step on his lesh ( which I had left attached to his harness incase such an event arose) all the while Duke had caught up to the wimeriner and nipped him on the side. Their was no blood or teeth marks but the poor pup let out a biiig yelp and I managed to grab his lesh and take him over to an unpopulated area to let him have a 5 min time out to cool off.
Kayla
I think the Weimaraner is the one who behaved badly and your dog, Duke gave him a bit of a lesson in doggy manners. From your description, the growl and nip were meant as a "back off" to the Weims rude behavior.

Read this article titled "He Just Wants to Say Hi":

http://www.flyingdogpress.com/sayhi.html
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Old 02-19-2007, 03:06 AM
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ihartgonzo ihartgonzo is offline
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Are your trainers actually certified behaviorists? If not... and, judging by the choke chain remark (which, PLS, don't try!!!) they aren't... I would look into a behaviorist, if you are concerned.

Honestly, it sounds like Duke is just an older puppy giving a correction to a younger or ruder puppy. Weimeraner pups are very boisterous & very in-your-face (a lot like Lab pups), and I don't expect a well-socialized dog to put up with rude behavior. Of course, they shouldn't bite the pup, but giving a stern warning is completely normal. Don't let this discourage you, but definitely take it slow and keep up with socialization.
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Old 02-19-2007, 10:31 PM
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Yes actually what you are saying about the choke chain makes sense, I don't really like it and have only used it for 2 days but honestly feel like throwing it out. It hasn't helped at all. I think I will go back to that method combined with neutering and basic obidence. I realised to, in that situation I could of easily used the stay command. Duke listens very well and has a very high chase drive and I've been practising kicking the ball ( which he goes nuts for and tries to herd) and then yelling STAY, and he will stop in mid chase and look back at me. I guess I was just so panicked I didn't know what to do. Now that I bought the stupid choke chain can I keep it on for walks ( even though he rarely if ever pulls) and just not use it in puppy club and put on his normal collar for puppy club? I can't return it now and don't know what to do with it but on walks I can't see the harm in it or should i just chuck it?

Just wanted to add he's not going to that place for obidence, I found a much better certified animal behaviouralist/ trainer that does small group sessions at his house as the puppy club place advocate alot of harsh methods I don't agree with and sell cesar's book which says alot about them. Next puppy club im going back armed with his clicker,treats,flat collar and my words. I hope I haven't caused to much harm to him by using it during that one puppy club session as I can see what you mean that it may teach him to not give warning growls.

Anyways thanks for the heads up on the choke chain, whats everyones final suggestion: chuck it or just let him wear it on walks as extra control just incase as he already walks nicely on lesh.

Kayla
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Old 02-22-2007, 11:55 PM
Herschel Herschel is offline
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Don't "chuck it", but don't use it. Plenty of us have perfectly well trained dogs without using harsh techniques.
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