Dog Site - Dog Stuff
Dog Forum | Dog Pictures

Go Back   Chazhound Dog Forum > Dog Discussions and Dog Talk Forums > Dogs - General Dog Chat


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 10-04-2011, 10:50 PM
mjb mjb is offline
Top Dog
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Florida
Posts: 2,194
Default Help with resource guarding....

I got the book 'Mine', and it looks good, but I can't find "directions" for our specific problem.

Spanky only guards stolen food items. He doesn't guard toys, his food, food that hits the floor when we're around..........but if he steals a food item that got left out at his level, he will growl rather menacingly sometimes when we go to get it.

The obvious answer is to not leave food lying around.

Next, is not to challenge him. I don't. I will trade with him. It is just that once in awhile, visiting relatives, etc., have found him with something, for example, a potato chip bag, that he's tearing up to get the crumbs, and he's growled when they go to get it away so he doesn't make a mess.

Is there anything we can do, perhaps based on the exercises in 'Mine' to work on this particular type of guarding besides keeping everything put away to prevent the stealing in the first place?

'Mine' has nice specific steps to work on guarding food bowl, toys, bones, etc., but I couldn't figure out how to implement for guarding stolen food.

Any ideas?
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 10-04-2011, 11:32 PM
momto8's Avatar
momto8 momto8 is offline
Top Dog
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 792
Default

I have a resource guarder, I believe this is something that never really goes away, it is controlled, but there can be "flare ups". Ace would guard his food, toys and bed, and then started guarding me. He started only guarding from other dogs, then from my husband.
I have "Mine" Love this book! Helped us alot! Also we started using NILF, this helped alot and we pushed up our obedience. If you can I'd sign up for a local class Work on drop it and leave it for when he does take something, this has helped us alot, esp when he would steal something, a good solid drop it command and a solid recall helped tons
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 10-04-2011, 11:37 PM
Brattina88 Brattina88 is offline
treehugging clicker freak
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: OH
Posts: 12,860
Default

Really Really strong, practiced, jackpot Leave its?
__________________

Maddie CGC .:. Cocker Spaniel .:. 12 y/o
Bailey CGC .:. Shetland Sheepdog .:. 5 y/o
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 10-05-2011, 02:25 AM
Kat09Tails's Avatar
Kat09Tails Kat09Tails is offline
*Now with Snark*
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Upper Left hand corner, USA
Posts: 3,368
Default

The trade game comes to mind as a way to clear this up.

Basically you offer something appropriate that he really likes in exchange for what he's not suppose to have. It changes the game from "someones going to take X" in the dog's brain to "ooh! snacks! time for a walk!? or BALLL!!!" So for instance my dogs LOVE love LOVE natural balance rolls and the only time they get a taste of one is when they crate up. So usually I can call a dog off of a really tasty item in exchange for a bit of natural balance roll along with a crate up or a small toss away from the object they would normally guard. This requires a high value item or treat. You need something that is worth more to the dog than what it has currently but only for a moment.
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 10-05-2011, 04:10 AM
Teal Teal is offline
...ice road...
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Northern California
Posts: 1,497
Default

Wow, yall are SO much nicer going about this than I would be! In my house, I own *everything* - my dogs wouldn't even think of stealing something that wasn't theirs, because you don't steal from the alpha! In all honestly, if I went to take something from my dog and they growled at me, they would get a hefty smack, or collar jerk, with a stern reprimand and complete removal from the area.

To me, the trade game just seems like encouragement. Or at least, there is nothing there telling the dog that the initial behaviour - stealing - is wrong. All you're doing is dealing with the result - guarding.

What I would do, is set the dog up to steal something and hide out of his sight but where you can still see him, and have a squirt bottle. When he goes to steal something - come out from wherever you are, reprimand ("No!" or "Leave it!" or whathaveyou) and use the squirt bottle.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 10-05-2011, 04:42 AM
Kat09Tails's Avatar
Kat09Tails Kat09Tails is offline
*Now with Snark*
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Upper Left hand corner, USA
Posts: 3,368
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Teal View Post
Wow, yall are SO much nicer going about this than I would be! In my house, I own *everything* - my dogs wouldn't even think of stealing something that wasn't theirs, because you don't steal from the alpha! In all honestly, if I went to take something from my dog and they growled at me, they would get a hefty smack, or collar jerk, with a stern reprimand and complete removal from the area.
I hope you never have a dog with a serious resource guarding issue that shows you how wrong headed doing this would be. Extinction not punishment is a far better technique for animals already fearful that you might take their precious. Punishment only fuels anxiety and if you don't have a dog that's soft enough to shut down you may end up with a serious bite or escalating aggression series that absolutely didn't need to happen.

As far as the issue of possession there is some truth to managing objects do discourage self rewarding behavior but once the dog has decided the object is theirs - and worth trying to keep in their possession you need to deal with that accordingly and in a way that won't make the resource guarding
problem worse or more dangerous. Dogs don't know stealing unattended objects is wrong, especially when foraging is a self rewarding behavior.
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 10-05-2011, 04:58 AM
Teal Teal is offline
...ice road...
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Northern California
Posts: 1,497
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kat09Tails View Post
I hope you never have a dog with a serious resource guarding issue that shows you how wrong headed doing this would be. Extinction not punishment is a far better technique for animals already fearful that you might take their precious. Punishment only fuels anxiety and if you don't have a dog that's soft enough to shut down you may end up with a serious bite or escalating aggression series that absolutely didn't need to happen.


Which is why I suggested a technique for the OP that didn't involve directly confronting the dog with the stolen object.

*I* know my capabilities as a handler/trainer/behaviouralist, and I am confident in my ability to gauge a dog's reaction. Like I said - with MY dogs, they would get heavily corrected. However, it's a moot point because my dogs know better than to steal in the first place (or guard anything else) But, I have worked with dogs that truly just needed to be told to knock it off, get reprimanded, and have the item taken. Did they all shut down? No. Did some of them require more than just a single reprimand? Yes. But depending on what they are guarding and why (like in this case, of a dog just being a dominant animal and guarding inappropriate items), punishment is not always a bad thing.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 10-05-2011, 06:07 AM
Danefied's Avatar
Danefied Danefied is offline
Top Dog
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Southeast
Posts: 1,722
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Teal View Post


Which is why I suggested a technique for the OP that didn't involve directly confronting the dog with the stolen object.

*I* know my capabilities as a handler/trainer/behaviouralist, and I am confident in my ability to gauge a dog's reaction. Like I said - with MY dogs, they would get heavily corrected. However, it's a moot point because my dogs know better than to steal in the first place (or guard anything else) But, I have worked with dogs that truly just needed to be told to knock it off, get reprimanded, and have the item taken. Did they all shut down? No. Did some of them require more than just a single reprimand? Yes. But depending on what they are guarding and why (like in this case, of a dog just being a dominant animal and guarding inappropriate items), punishment is not always a bad thing.
I will be honest, I find it very disturbing that you bill yourself as a behavioralist and talk of dominance and heavily correcting a dog for something like resource guarding. I can only imagine (and its not pretty) what would have happened had I taken your advice to deal with my 140 pound ex-feral dane and his resource guarding. That's the kind of advice that gets people bitten and dogs euthanized for aggression.

If the dog is truly a dominant dog (which BTW *true* dominant dogs are so rare that most people will never encounter on in a lifetime of dog ownership), then confrontation will end very ugly - for you
I know a lot of people can't stand Leerburg, but this is Michael Ellis, who while I don't agree with everything he does, there's no denying he gets dogs and knows his stuff. Its a long clip, all interesting, but for the "meat" start at 3:55 - truly dominant dogs.
Michael Ellis on Dominance in Dogs - YouTube

Heavily correcting a dog who has guarding issues is entirely counter productive. The guarding stems from FEAR of losing the item in question. Correction just reinforces that fear the dog had. It may effectively stop the dog from outwardly showing that fear, but it has not solved the issue.

I think of it this way - think of the fear reactions as little bombs going off. Correcting a dog can effectively burry those bombs, but they are still going off, still causing damage, you just can't see it. But what if you put two bombs in the same hole, (guarding a resource add stranger danger) or what if you don't burry the bombs deep enough? Now you risk the bombs going off and spraying you (or some innocent passer by) with shrapnel.

Using desensitization and counter conditioning as in the trade game, diffuses the bomb, so they're not going off at all.


The other thing I would recommend for a resource guarder is building up their confidence and trust in you with other activities like obedience or agility training. Part of the issue with guarding is that the dog lacks trust. Training in other areas really helps to build trust.
__________________
"We become better trainers by refusing to swallow uncritically what is tossed to us as truth,
by developing our powers of empathy and observation,
and by searching for better ways to teach and educate the dogs we love."
~Suzanne Clothier
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 10-05-2011, 06:22 AM
Kat09Tails's Avatar
Kat09Tails Kat09Tails is offline
*Now with Snark*
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Upper Left hand corner, USA
Posts: 3,368
Default

I went back and found an older video of someone practicing extinction and counter conditioning with a serious resource guarder that in most cases (including my home) would have been PTS. Rocky at the beginning of the video is great as a visual. The stress on that dog is pretty intense complete with teeth chattering and you can see the brain switch once a higher value reward is offered. *please do not do this without professional assistance*

Aggressive dog training and aggression rehab tips (www.k9-1.com) - YouTube
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 10-05-2011, 07:56 AM
Aleron's Avatar
Aleron Aleron is offline
Top Dog
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: NE Ohio
Posts: 2,270
Default

The training program outlined in the MINE! book didn't help?
__________________
Nikki & the Herding Breed Variety Pack
Visit Us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Alerondogs
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:41 PM.


1997-2013 Chazhound Dog Site