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Old 05-30-2012, 06:45 PM
StephyMei1112's Avatar
StephyMei1112 StephyMei1112 is offline
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Default "Zoomies" on walks...

Now, these "zoomies" occur on a walk and are usually when Katalin spots a area of taller grass/larger than usual patch of green - she tenses up, gets down on the ground and proceeds to go crazy running and jumping with all her might plunging herself down into the grass. These "fits" last about a minute or so and I am putting a stop to them so far by grabbing her by her collar so she can't wiggle around and settling her down - it's not a pleasant experience and is frustrating for the both of us. It used to happen at least twice on each walk - now it happens maybe once a week, if that even.

Now I would prefer her to channel her energy in other manners (I have no problem with her going zoomies in the backyard or house - but while on leash and in the middle of a walk is not ideal) - my trainer has suggested stepping on the leash, tying her to a tree/streetpole, ignoring her or throwing out a treat and re-focusing her energy on that to stop these "zoomies".

1 - She just keeps bouncing even if I do step on the leash and ignore her.
2 - Trees/streetpoles are not readily available at all locations she chooses to go a little bananas - and besides by the time I'd finish tethering her to a tree or something she'd probably have finished already.
3 - She does not care if she is ignored or not - she just carries on
4 - I do not agree with giving out treats when she displays undesirable behavior - it only encourages it I think.

She runs for around 15 minutes in the backyard before we go for a walk, our walks are at a rather brisk pace for at least 45 minutes a time, she gets ample breaks to relieve herself/sniff about...maybe it's just something about tall grass that gets her stirred up lol. Tips are greatly appreciated =)
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Old 05-30-2012, 09:30 PM
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Maxy24 Maxy24 is offline
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Tucker used to do this and will still occasionally do it if he's on a collar. In his no pull harness (easy walk) he tries, hit the end of the leash once, and is all done. If he tried to continue I can just shorten the leash and the way the harness works it prevents him from getting anywhere so he quits fast. Might be worth a try. I'd worry if you keep taking his collar he might start snapping, I know Tucker would have chewed me up for that. But it depends on the dog.

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Old 05-30-2012, 09:59 PM
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*blackrose *blackrose is offline
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Hmmmm...any chance you could put the behavior on cue?

Completely different scenario, but our old dog Blackie would always try to run us off the road to get to something to pee on. So we put him bolting over into the grass to mark something on cue. "Go over." If we didn't tell him to "go over" then he wasn't allowed to go over into the grass. Although he still had his moments, it reduced his running over to pee on something drastically as he knew he just had to wait for us to tell him.

So, if I were you, I'd be preemptive. If you see her start to tense up like she's about ready to do some zoomies, do a 180 and get her away from the stimulus, get her attention and work on an obedience command, etc. That way instead of trying to stop a full grown pup in running motion, you are just stopping an idea. Much easier. Also, I think as she gets older she'll be much less likely to start zooming. As a pup, Chloe used to chase grasshoppers that were on the road and it would drive me she doesn't care about grasshoppers at all.

Alternatively, as soon as you see her start to tense up like she is about to start zooming, turn it into a command (maybe, "Zoom!"). Cooralate the command with the zooming, and then when you see her winding down give another command ("Enough, let's go!") and then continue on your way. I have found that with my dogs, instead of completely expecting them to stop a fun behavior, it is easier and more enjoyable for me and for them for me to put it on command and let them do the behavior when I allow them to. For example, I expect on walks that they walk beside me without any moseying around in the grass...but they like moseying around in the grass, so I put their "moseying around in the grass" time on cue. That way they don't try to mosey around in the grass all of the time whenever they feel like it, but they get the moseying out of their system.

Hopefully that made some kind of sense. LOL That's just what I'd do...not sure if it would work or not. Trail and error and all that jazz. Hopefully someone else has better advice.
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Old 05-31-2012, 08:05 AM
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The boxer who lives next door to us is nuts too. When he starts to do zoomies and almost knocks me over, I tell him to "sit", "good boy", and then we proceed. Maybe you could try getting her to do the sit command and then give a treat. This might put a break in the zoomie.
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