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Thread: Please help...we love him but don't know what to do.

  1. #19

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    I would call in a 'dog whisperer'!! Definitely consult with someone who's methods and goals resonate with yours. Say, if you are vehemently opposed to choker chains, don't hire someone who tells you to use one, keep looking.
    I actually watched "The Dog Whisperer" at a friend's place the other day and was really quite impressed by the man's motivations and methods I only watched it once, and it's a completely non-violent way to communicate with dogs and to get them knowing their place in the family pack.
    My sister adopted a dog that turned out to have some pit bull in it after being told it was a mastiff x lab (no way was it that, it probably had some boxer in it, but def no lab and no mastiff!). They loved the dog but he started to get a bit nippy. She'd been taking him to obedience training for months and months and couldn't get on top of him and does not have the internal resources to put the energy required to get this dog in line. She gave him up and an active, child-less couple has taken him on. In her case it wasn't a case of getting a dog and just deciding he wasn't right - the shelter mislead her (knowingly or otherwise) because he was most definitely not the breed she expected. Though, even if he HAD been a mastiff x lab, she'd have been in for a couple of years of work...she's really not a dog person, she needs a lap dog for her family! In hindsight, it's not the dog that's the problem for her, it's her thinking a dog should fit in and hope like hell it doesn't need stacks of training! Both parties are better off without each other in that case.
    Good luck, he sounds redeemable


  2. #20

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    ummm woooo I never said KILL it. I said get RID of it... as in rehome or whatever.

    Ok so that is YOUR opinion over an animal but to me the love of my children and the safety of myself and others around me is MORE important then a pet.

  3. #21

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    Lenny Good on you and DH for opting to get some outside help for you 4 legged boy

    We have a 8 year old lab x kelpie and he is very excitable at times.Our boy and DS are great friends but we will NEVER leave them alone together. DS pokes and prods our boy and at times he'll just lie there and other times he'll get up and walk away

    You have been given some fantastic advice from some wonderful people in here. I'm keen to hear how he progresses once your parents have gone home

  4. #22

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    mako - looking sassy! I haven't seen your new av! Thanks for the support.

    Mayaness - Redeemable - I like that!! He is redeemable. I used to sort of complain that the shelter mislead us a bit - but really, we were naive. I'm glad your sis found a great home for her dog. It's good that the dog gets a happier life now.

    krysalyss -

    missymoo - this would be an absolute last resort. Absolutely LAST resort. We are a million miles from this point atm. I am actually looking foward to putting in some time, effort (and money ) and then really enjoying our dog and our relationship.

  5. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by missymoo84 View Post
    ummm woooo I never said KILL it. I said get RID of it... as in rehome or whatever.

    Ok so that is YOUR opinion over an animal but to me the love of my children and the safety of myself and others around me is MORE important then a pet.
    Ok I know you are trying to be supportive, but like krys said, anyone who has ever had to euthanise a healthy animal who can be helped for convienience sake will be offended by your original statement. The problem is the commitment you make when you take an animal home as part of your family. The actual amount of rehoming that happens is quite small. Unless you give it to someone you know, the RSPCA and other "rehoming" agencies have a very hard time rehoming animals.

    Lenny he does sound redeemable

  6. #24

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    Lenny, I'm sure you'll get many, many years of love and enjoyment from your doggie boy. It is worth putting the effort in that you need to now.

    I have taken in two dogs (JRs, so small) that were dumped and the first was very easy behaviourally-wise (although he was a complete nut until he turned 2 when suddenly all the training we'd been doing seemed to finally sink in). The second dog was a bit older and had some issues from being abused. She still is inclined to assert her personal space and gets funny over stealing food. She has received training, but with her background and age it's a lot harder. She is 200 times better than she was and quite trustworthy now. But there are some situations we know she won't be able to handle, and we make sure she isn't exposed to them (lots of people, finger food lying around, etc). She's also deaf, so gets 'surprised' easily.

    My point is, if she can be trained to a position where it is only an occasional thing we need to remove her from then you can certainly get to where you want to be with your dog with professional help. I know our dog would have definitely been put to sleep if it had gone to the RSPCA and she is actually a very loving and easygoing pet - most of the time!

  7. #25

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    ETA - I added some photos to the gallery of doggie boy...

    My Dog

  8. #26

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    How gorgeous Lenny! Love Georgia as well!

  9. #27

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    I never said to put it down. I am confused where you are getting that from?? We had a dog that snapped at a visitor child and we REHOMED it ourselves. Put an add in the local paper and a guy came from a farm and took Zeb to live with him.
    Geez.

  10. #28

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    This is going to sound cruel, so I'm preparing myself for all the neg comments!!
    We have a German Shephard who has just turned 2, and we had some trouble with him jumping and whatever when he was about 12-14 months old, and basically not listening to us. We called a trainer who is basically like that Dog Whisper guy XD And what he did was when he did something wrong, like jump, he would throw the chain at his rump and say "baarr" really loud and agressive like. Apparently it's meant to have the same affect as what their mother would have on them in the wild (a growl and a nip on the butt). He responded to it really well, and only needs correcting once when he does something wrong and never does it again. Our boys problem was more out of excitement though, and he really just needed to learn when it was and wasn't ok to get excited over something. So I'm not really sure how you would go being agressive towards him when he's being agressive towards an object iykwim. I would look in your paper and look for trainers who specialise in behavioural problems, I've always been a firm believer that you shouldn't touch or move a dogs food while they're eating it, (you wouldn't like it! ) and we were taught that from mum when we were little tackers! But the obession over the tennis ball is a little weird...
    Good luck! Pets are great fun for kids I reckon, it would be nice if it was all sorted out and you could keep him

  11. #29

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    Teagz, I have no problem with that! I have found that during puppihood, it can help to be the mummy puppy sometimes It's natural consequence and they understand it. Choker chains just don't fall into that category for me and I can't stand them, personally. I used one a lot as a kid because I was conditioned to believe that's how you trained a dog. I just won't use one ever again.
    MissyMoo - I know where you're coming from. Sometimes it's not worth persisting with a dog that you just can't trust - for whatever reason, be it you don't have the time to put into correcting the tendency, or the resources, whatever - because the cost is too high for that situation. Just like with horses, though, I'm a big believer in word-of-mouth and will never get a horse or dog through the papers or classifieds. Every time I get an email asking for a dog to be rehomed, the dog finds a home within a short time, or when one is advertised in the vet clinic. Our little dog was an email! Our big dog was from the shelter - very easy to find homes for 9 week old pups, though.
    Anyway, whilst I can see the point the others were making, I think they were using MissyMoo's post as a platform for a view which is quite valid and bears thinking about, more than attacking MM's stance on the matter. I hope I'm right!

  12. #30

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    Mayaness and MM: My offence is to do with the way the post was worded it. To say 'get rid of' something is to basically bring it down to the same value as rubbish. If the post had been worded "perhaps you should consider rehoming" then I would have had no offence to it. Note I did not think that MM suggested killing it. Being flippant about rehoming to me is also offensive. Rehoming is not a simple process. To the animal it is very stressful to cope with the change that it brings. Additionally only a very small minority of animals are rehomed compared to the amount looking for homes. For cats the percentage is a lot smaller than dogs.
    Many people consider it their right to own a pet therefore get one before thinking about what is required. An animal isn't an inanimate object and possesses rights of its own. To own a dog is a responsibility that more often than not requires some training. Out of the hundreds of dogs I have seen come into the shelter I worked at, approximately five had valid reasons. My own dog came from that pound. He had passed through four families before he got to me for no reason at all (including behavioural). Potential aggression can be a valid reason for rehoming. But for the respect of the animal, this is a decision that should be made with thought and kindness, not as if the pet is an inanimate object without feeling.

  13. #31

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    oh, ok, that's how you read it
    The likes of you and me (Krysalyss) will always think this way and will not give up on an animal without a fight. For those who would have to put in training and lose even more love for the dog because of the effort required, moving it on is the best option.
    My little dog is a horrible barker, and I'm figuring this is the reason she was given up. She has so many redeeming features that it's not going to be the reason we give her up, and when we live on a farm she'll just come into her own Meanwhile, DP comes from a family steeped in dog history, and whilst I don't, I somehow got the bug to make up for my parents' and sister's cluelessness
    It's like with horses. You can't keep a horse that you can't ride for fear of it being an @rsehole just because you feel obligated to keep it forever. If you're not having fun with your horse, move it on or if it's that dangerous, call in the knackers - for everyone's sake. It's a tough stance, but one that even the RSPCA would make and Monty Roberts espouses, so I'm comfy with it.
    It's about degrees of suitability, IMO. You don't hold onto a horrible boyfriend just because he makes great scrambled eggs, KWIM?
    So, I agree with MM's perspective, I just felt it warranted more explanation here than the brief post that was initially offered.

  14. #32

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    Just typed a bit post and lost it.

    I just want to clarify a few things in why Krys & I are pretty straight about this. Both of us are educated and have studied animal behaviour, both of us have worked in places where we have been forced to put animals down for owner's convienience due to behavioural issues. I have held dogs while they have died for simple, fixable reasons. This makes us both passionate about it.

    The other thing with giving opinions on animal behaviour that upsets me I guess is a lot of the stuff in Australia is outdated or blatently wrong. Some training organisations aren't built on any understanding of dog behaviour. Some use very out of date information. A lot of the information given in this thread is out of date and inappropriate. Its like suggesting things like breastfeeding hurts dental development.... just wrong.

    BUT think about it... would you let a baby trainer who has no formal qualifications, and no children help you with your baby? Than you need to think about dog trainers before hiring one. There is only 1 accreditation system in Australia at the moment and that is the Delta Society Canine accreditation and those would be the trainers with the most up to date techniques and information.

  15. #33

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    Sorry I didn't go into more depth. I was in no way treating the animal like it had no feelings. I am a dog lover! Sometimes I post whatever I am thinking quickly, it's often hard to have 5 minutes to write an explanation when you have a whingy 6 month old
    Of course you must always consider what you are capable of doing. If you can safely train the dog, and have the time and resources to do that then that would be the BEST option.
    However when we had to rehome Zeb, it was the ONLY option. He growled at a 3 year old through the door for no reason, his hair stood on end. He snapped through the fly screen. This girl had never been to our house before so it wasn't like he knew her. He was our pet for 8 years, I had grown up with him, but for my parents, having a dog who showed that side to him when theres 6, 7, and 8 year old children around wasn't an option. For them it was a risk to big to take. The ad went in the paper, and there was many many calls for a pure bread german shephard with papers. We were open about what had happened and VERY picky about where it went and when mum chose the man to take him she was happy he was going to be happy there. He called back a couple of months later and told her how he had settled in very well and was loving the open spaces.
    I was bitten by a dog when I was 5 on the face, it wasn't my dog but a friends dog. Their response was "oh yes he has done it a few times". Lucky for me it was a graze and didn't go right through my cheek but it was enough for me to say that if I ever had my OWN dog who showed those signs then it would be given away or put down if it came to that. I personally wont have a potentially agressive dog around my own kids.

    For those reasons I am very weary because it is a big risk to take. I honestly did not mean to offend anyone.

  16. #34

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    Lenny...you live near me I think....we have just enroled Ollie with PawBehaviour to do a course....the lady is delta trained and the first night you go withut the dog to discuss issues and what specific things you want to address etc and then with puppy after that.......all our contact so far has been very positive...classes are a max of 6 dogs etc so seems quite a good one.....you can google and the website should come up for you....the classes are in Carrum on a Weds night.

  17. #35

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    Thanks for clarifying MM. I appreciate it and your opinion.

  18. #36

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    Thanks for that recommendation Mel. We are just by Woodlands school.
    I did google Delta but I only looked at the behaviourists - not the accredited instructors. That's excellent. I will call them and see what they think or can advise.

    You might just see me one day soon walking a funny looking black mutt - who behaves like an angel!!
    Last edited by Lenny; May 31st, 2012 at 02:48 PM.

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