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 01-04-2014, 11:37 PM
Eselpee's Avatar
Eselpee Eselpee is offline
Active Pup
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: The heart of Route 66
Posts: 9
Default Rattle Snakes

I have a new stray that I have started in PetSmart classes since there are no other alternatives available in this very rural area. I would like to hike with this dog, but I live in an area known for the Mohave Green Rattler. The local Game & Fish offers rattler aversion classes that use shock collars. They are taught by park rangers, not dog trainers.

It is imperative that he not entertain any curiosity about these snakes. The Mohave Green is the most poisonous snake on this continent. They are unique among rattlers in producing neurotoxic venom and they are notoriously aggressive. Dogs typically get bitten on their snouts and are vulnerable to brain damage. The Mohave Greens are not seen frequently, but it only takes one unlucky encounter to damage a dog.

This new dog, Gus, is a very sensitive guy. He is an old-style ranch collie just under 35 lbs and estimated to be about 7-months old. I don't want to use shock collar on him; a clicker is too much for him. I hope to get lots of feedback before I start hiking with him.

Thanks!!
Janet
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 01-05-2014, 01:02 AM
Romy's Avatar
Romy Romy is offline
Taxiderpy
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Olympia, WA
Posts: 9,943
Default

I'm not a fan of aversive training, and in the vast majority of cases it's not necessary. However, snake aversion training is one of those things that it's probably necessary with. Like you said, if he gets too close, he's a dead dog. A dead dog vs. a temporarily terrified and hurting dog is a sucky choice to make, but in the end it may be worth the discomfort if they are very common where you live.

In terms of clicker training him to avoid them, the problem I see is that you'd need a snake, preferably a rattlesnake, to proof him against. Different types of snakes smell different to me, and I imagine it's even more dramatic of a difference to dogs. Also, you want him to actively stay away from them and not just ignore. If I'm thinking of the same snake as you, they're pretty notorious for being a little jumpy and are more likely to strike someone walking too close by them than other rattlesnakes.

The alternative may be to just keep him leashed when he's on hikes and stay very vigilant.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 01-05-2014, 08:16 AM
BostonBanker's Avatar
BostonBanker BostonBanker is offline
Top Dog
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Vermont
Posts: 8,129
Default

I am sure someone posted a link not long ago about a new technique for training snake avoidance that doesn't involve shock collars. I didn't read it, because we are pretty much free of anything venomous in our state. Google and the search function are failing me now; anyone else remember it?
__________________

Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 01-05-2014, 08:44 AM
Dogdragoness's Avatar
Dogdragoness Dogdragoness is offline
FINALLY warm ... YAY :D
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Gillett/San Antonio TX
Posts: 3,417
Default

If you are going to use this method to train snake aversion (and it does work very well when done correctly, I have used it myself). BUT ... and this is a big "but" ... make sure you work with a professional trainer that knows how to use one and have them work with your dog on snakes if it bothers you that much.

I had a terrier that just wouldn't leave them alone no matter what we tried, and due to his age and the fact that he has been hit four times (yes I said four :/ ), the vet said the next time could be his last, so we sought help and it worked, I would rather him have a moment of discomfort then die a horribke, painful death from a snake bite.
__________________


Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 01-05-2014, 04:31 PM
halblingefrau's Avatar
halblingefrau halblingefrau is offline
Big Dog
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Chandler, AZ
Posts: 156
Default

My parents live in the mountains near Kingman, AZ and the mohave greens range there as well. Mom has been looking into aversion training as well. I would be in agreement with the others that, while I normally wouldn't advocate aversion training methods, in this case I think it's warranted. Is there any way you can talk to any other dog owners who have had the training offered by the rangers?
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 01-05-2014, 06:54 PM
Eselpee's Avatar
Eselpee Eselpee is offline
Active Pup
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: The heart of Route 66
Posts: 9
Default

Thank you all for responding. It is helping me think things through. I was not able to find any experienced dog trainers in this area, so I will at least talk to the Game & Fish rangers. Maybe I can observe a class. I will at least wait until I have several months of positive dog training in with Gus.

Quote:
Originally Posted by halblingefrau View Post
My parents live in the mountains near Kingman, AZ and the mohave greens range there as well. Mom has been looking into aversion training as well. I would be in agreement with the others that, while I normally wouldn't advocate aversion training methods, in this case I think it's warranted. Is there any way you can talk to any other dog owners who have had the training offered by the rangers?
Halblingefrau,

Kingman is where I live too! I would be very happy to share anything I find out. I would like to hear anything your parents find out too!
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 01-05-2014, 06:56 PM
Eselpee's Avatar
Eselpee Eselpee is offline
Active Pup
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: The heart of Route 66
Posts: 9
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by BostonBanker View Post
I am sure someone posted a link not long ago about a new technique for training snake avoidance that doesn't involve shock collars. I didn't read it, because we are pretty much free of anything venomous in our state. Google and the search function are failing me now; anyone else remember it?
I lived in VT for 25 years before moving to the sunny SW. I hope you're staying warm! Its early in the year for the current temps.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 01-05-2014, 08:28 PM
halblingefrau's Avatar
halblingefrau halblingefrau is offline
Big Dog
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Chandler, AZ
Posts: 156
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eselpee View Post
Halblingefrau,

Kingman is where I live too! I would be very happy to share anything I find out. I would like to hear anything your parents find out too!
I had a feeling since your profile says "the heart of Route 66" that you were somewhere in Mohave County. Mom still hasn't chosen what she will do in terms of rattlesnake training. There are a lot more options down here in the valley where I live.

She doesn't go hiking with her dog, but they live up in the Hualapais and once she let Stubby outside to potty and he jumped right over a snake! Luckily it was only a bullsnake and Stubby didn't even bother with it other than jumping over it. Still, scary!
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 01-06-2014, 11:56 AM
DJEtzel's Avatar
DJEtzel DJEtzel is offline
Top Dog
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Kalamazoo, MI
Posts: 2,468
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Romy View Post
I'm not a fan of aversive training, and in the vast majority of cases it's not necessary. However, snake aversion training is one of those things that it's probably necessary with. Like you said, if he gets too close, he's a dead dog. A dead dog vs. a temporarily terrified and hurting dog is a sucky choice to make, but in the end it may be worth the discomfort if they are very common where you live.

In terms of clicker training him to avoid them, the problem I see is that you'd need a snake, preferably a rattlesnake, to proof him against. Different types of snakes smell different to me, and I imagine it's even more dramatic of a difference to dogs. Also, you want him to actively stay away from them and not just ignore. If I'm thinking of the same snake as you, they're pretty notorious for being a little jumpy and are more likely to strike someone walking too close by them than other rattlesnakes.

The alternative may be to just keep him leashed when he's on hikes and stay very vigilant.
I agree with this. I'm not a fan of aversion via E collar whatsoever, but I do think you have to make a choice here. I know a gal on another forum that uses shock collars for aversion to snakes on all of her dogs. They are of varying levels of confidence, from what it sounds like. I would much rather worry about a dead dog than a slightly shaken dog. The IDEA is that there is pain and fear associated with it. Which is better, IMO, than death.
__________________

Red Dog's Reconnaissance Man CGC CL1-R CL1-H CL1-F CL1-S USJ
General Patton Vom Winter Storm
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 01-06-2014, 09:13 PM
Eselpee's Avatar
Eselpee Eselpee is offline
Active Pup
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: The heart of Route 66
Posts: 9
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by DJEtzel View Post
I know a gal on another forum that uses shock collars for aversion to snakes on all of her dogs.
Thanks DJ,

I have resigned myself to the need for this, but the people running the class are park rangers not dog trainers. Therefore, I feel the least I could do for my sensitive little Gus is to educate myself. I would like to hear more about what your friend has learned about this method. I might be underestimating Gus, but I want to be prepared.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Tags
aversion training, safety, shock collars, snakes

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 05:51 AM.


1997-2013 Chazhound Dog Site