Postings by Sonny

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Choosing the Right Dog > Worried no other dog will live up to her...
Sonny

the world's- first blond,- agility Beagle
 
 
Barked: Tue Jan 14, '14 2:44pm PST 
Tiller,
I can't help but laugh at your Cocker story. My first Labrador was like that, she should retrieve till she dropped. Frisbee, ball, stick, anything! My second Lab was a different story. I tried to teach her. I rewarded her for bringing back the toy. Nothing doing.

Every time she would go get it the first time and bring it back.
The second time with less gusto.
By the third time she gave me the look that said, "Go ahead, but you have to get it yourself this time."
I have 3 dogs now and none of them will fetch.
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» There has since been 0 posts. Last posting by Sonny, Jan 14 2:44 pm

Rescue, Adoption & Happy Endings > Help for a dog with a (new) bite history
Sonny

the world's- first blond,- agility Beagle
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 2, '14 7:35pm PST 
I think this should be looked at as a lesson not to forget - ever.

Dogs and kids should be a natural pair, but that is not the case. Children under age 5 are bitten more than any other age group, in fact 75% of dog bites are to kids. Corrective bites like this one are the usual type of bite and are often to the face.

When dogs get older, sore and crabby, they just don't have the tolerance for kids. Your sister should go ahead and get some good gates or pens and make sure dog and baby are always on opposite sides. I'm including a link to a very nice quality stand alone pen that can be opened as a long fence. I own it in black.
This brand and type is very well made


I can understand her being upset.
As a parent, it's terrifying!
My 19 year old son was bit by our neighbors Golden retriever when he was 7 years old. A year later, the dog nearly ripped the ear off a 4 year old. This was a young dog with poor parenting/leadership from his wimpy owner.

Last fall I visited with a boyfriends family and his niece complained she was not allowed to adopt a dog because her last dog (a pit bull) had been put to sleep for biting. He had on 4 - FOUR separate occasions snapped at children. My date was probably wondering if he was going to have to gag me or something to keep me from giving her hell. I showed amazing restraint.
(FOUR times?!? really?!? 4, WTH?)
She didn't seem like a stupid woman.... shock
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» There has since been 0 posts. Last posting by Sonny, Jan 2 7:35 pm


Behavior & Training > Merging two methods

Sonny

the world's- first blond,- agility Beagle
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 2, '14 5:48pm PST 
What you are aiming for is a Balanced training approach, which is the most acceptable and common method used. Very few use only positive methods with no negatives at all. Thankfully fewer and fewer use compulsion methods only.


This is where the 4 quadrants come in....
Positive reinforcement - Always the first choice, always used with puppies, to teach new behaviors. A positive reinforcer is something you give to a dog for a behavior, to increase the chance of the dog repeating the behavior. (food, pets)

Negative punishment - This is one second choice. Don't be disturbed by the word "punishment". A negative punishment is a loss of reward, privilege or opportunity. (removed from the room for jumping on guests)

Negative reinforcement. - Also a common second choice. Negative reinforcers are things the dog does not like which are used if he misbehaves. When the dog offers an acceptable behavior this reinforcement is removed. (being ignored, shaker can)


Positive punishment - This is the bottom of the barrel, you gotta be desperate to use positive punishment. This involves a negative consequence to an undesirable behavior. (Collar correction fall into this category) +P can work if applied properly, but it can also do more harm than good and send a dog the wrong message entirely. (For example, using leash corrections when a dog barks a people passing the house can build a negative association to strangers and lead to aggression toward them)
This is Cesar Millan territory...
I know Cesar Millan is a favorite whipping boy here, but I hasten to add that his clients are often down to this last resort when they call on him. If the alternative is a dead dog, and Cesar can fix it, I don't care how it gets done.
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» There has since been 13 posts. Last posting by Terry, Jan 9 8:03 pm


Behavior & Training > Why do dog owners never seem to teach their dogs boundaries and manners?

Sonny

the world's- first blond,- agility Beagle
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 2, '14 4:45pm PST 
Heck, I'm a trainer. I can get a dog I never met before to heel and behave nicely in under an hour.

But one of my own dogs is kind of an a$$ sometimes, I won't mention any names (photo on left). It's a matter of how bad he used to be, and how much he has improved in our house. And he is mostly a good boy (pushy, entitled, nosey little jack-wagon).

I do have lines I won't permit my dogs to cross.
1. Don't put your feet, or other body parts on my guests, at least until they invite you.
2. Don't beg at the table and doG help you if you POKE someone for food.
3. Certain rooms are off limits (carpeted ones)
4. No dogs upstairs unless invited.
5. A dog waiting quietly on his or her spot will get fed. First one on, first one fed. dog
6. Walk at my side in your assigned place, no jockeying for position (and tangling up the leads)

I would like them to stop scaring the Fed Ex and UPS men, but I am secretly proud of them for sounding like a pack of hyenas when someone comes to the door. Catch 22 shrug
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» There has since been 20 posts. Last posting by Hucky and Ringo, Jan 16 11:26 am


Behavior & Training > Dachshund won't go to the bathroom at night or in the cold

Sonny

the world's- first blond,- agility Beagle
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 2, '14 3:02pm PST 
I have neighbors with 2 tiny dogs who are not housebroken. Dad works a lot and mom just gave birth to the couple 3rd child. Given the low chance that the humans will take the dogs out on a schedule, I suggested they get a potty patch, or two - one for each dog.
Porch potty
Potty patch
And a bunch more on Amazon
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» There has since been 0 posts. Last posting by Sonny, Jan 2 3:02 pm

Rescue, Adoption & Happy Endings > Doggy on my door-step....
Sonny

the world's- first blond,- agility Beagle
 
 
Barked: Fri Dec 13, '13 9:42pm PST 
Please note: He was not a stray dog. His origin was known.
His owner was a drug dealer in Hartford and was not caring for the dog very well. He was skinny when they arrested his owner and took the dog.
All he knows of people is they are either abusive, or afraid of him. He has always used aggression to keep himself safe.
I have rehabilitated a fear biter. Sonny was a 40 pound adolescent so I could physically manage him. He also had a half-way decent history of being playful in the Louisiana ASPCA kennels.
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» There has since been 6 posts. Last posting by Yoshi, Dec 17 6:23 pm


Rescue, Adoption & Happy Endings > Doggy on my door-step....

Sonny

the world's- first blond,- agility Beagle
 
 
Barked: Fri Dec 13, '13 9:31pm PST 
Update:
After 2 bowls of food, a blanket, and a space heater, the dog fell sound asleep. He has not been aggressive with me, but he is clearly fearful and doesn't trust people. I knelt down, not looking at him and with my side to him and he came and sat 3 feet away. He lifted his paw and looked just miserable. He wanted to trust me, anyone, but he just can't.

ACO brought pills to give him in food to knock him out. 10 pills later he is very groggy, but now hyper-vigilant - not good. As soon as the ACO tried to loop the catch pole over his head the dog went into fight and flight (flight not working so well with drugs in his system). It took 4 of us to get him crated.

Last night, as I tried to sleep, all I could think is, "They won't be able to handle the dog, he won't let them. He's a dead dog."
I got confirmation this morning.
I wasn't surprised, but I am heartbroken.
I may have been the first person that wasn't afraid of him, that was kind to him. He was on the run for 13 days. Many sightings in that time and in every case he ran away. I don't know if he was just too tired to run anymore, or if he really made a choice to let me help him.
Now I feel like I sold him out.
As a trainer, I know he would have been months and months of counter conditioning to get him to trust anyone. He would never be safe with new people. I don't know about animals, he didn't try to approach my dogs. If confined to a kennel, every day would be 1 step forward and 2 back. Kennel life is not good for a fearful dog with aggression issues.

The only thing I wish, is that I could have been with him when they put him to sleep, so he would know someone cared. cry
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» There has since been 7 posts. Last posting by Yoshi, Dec 17 6:23 pm


Rescue, Adoption & Happy Endings > Doggy on my door-step....

Sonny

the world's- first blond,- agility Beagle
 
 
Barked: Thu Dec 12, '13 4:58pm PST 
This morning my 3 dogs were barking at the usual invisible intruder, but they were unusually convincing today. I walked out to the front porch 3 times, told them they were nuts and to hush.

The 4th time I walked all the way out to the corner of the house. Sure enough, they were right, there is a dog on the porch. I did a double take, it was a skinny, cold, scared male Rottweiler.

I fed him and put a blanket out for him, then a space heater. He curled up for keeps on the blanket and seemed content.

Dog on my door-step
He only got within 3 feet of me, with one paw lifted - so scared!

With the help of Doggy downers from Animal control we loaded up the poor guy and they took him to the Vet.
His back story; He was a guard dog for a Hartford drug dealer. Dealer got busted, dog was sent to the pound. Before they could get him in to a kennel, he got loose and has been on the run for 13 days.

News on Dec 2
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» There has since been 14 posts. Last posting by Yoshi, Dec 17 6:23 pm


Rescue, Adoption & Happy Endings > Ended up with a 4th dog

Sonny

the world's- first blond,- agility Beagle
 
 
Barked: Thu Dec 12, '13 4:39pm PST 
BOL!!


SUCKER!!!

(takes one to know one.....) Glad he's home. applause
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» There has since been 3 posts. Last posting by Enzo, Jan 9 4:52 pm

Behavior & Training > Favorite Training Methods!?
Sonny

the world's- first blond,- agility Beagle
 
 
Barked: Tue Nov 26, '13 6:38pm PST 
This is really hard for a professional trainer to admit.....
..... I flunked clicker training when I first tried it 4 years ago. Pepper was just a Pup and Jake (my oldest and her boy) and I took Pepper and Snickers through a tricks and shaping class. Jake caught on pretty quick and Pepper was a fast learner. She made Jake look real good. Snickers is , shall I say, short bus material? He did everything Pepper did, but much slower to catch on.

Well, time and experience has taught me the value of the clicker. With some dogs it is by far the best tool to teach simple to advanced obedience cues.
If you have an ADHD dog, that is hard to focus - get the clicker going!
If your dog sits, but his butt pops off the floor a second later - clicker.
If his heel is all over the map - clicker.
I love my clicker. And so do my pups. Snickers responds better to the clicker than to verbal markers.
When teaching group class I try to impress that the clicker is multi-purpose:
a. It takes a snapshot of the exact behavior you want the dog to repeat.
b. It is a clear, consistent and unique marker.
c. It acts as an IOU, delaying gratification (rewards).
d. It helped focus some of the most spazzy, ditsy dogs I worked in the shelter.

So I have 3 things all over my house...
1. Reading glasses, cause getting old sucks and so does my vision.
2. Sudoku books, cause I love a logic puzzle any time.
3. Clickers, they come in handy with my busy pot (Sonny, you know who I'm talkin about)
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» There has since been 2 posts. Last posting by Czarka, CGC UJJ, Nov 27 7:06 am

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