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Thread: Medication for anxiousness/DA

  1. #21
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    Aug 2009
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    Megan

    For the naughty demanding dog - this is pretty typical of a farm dog breed (or mix of). They're extremely good at training their owners or figuring out how to get what they want.

    Eg my dog - she likes to lick my food bowls clean and I don't mind getting the pre-rinse ie less food scraps in the washing up. We already share germs so I'm not too worried about dog spit and I wash up in near boiling water anyway (direct from kettle).

    So she barks at the bowl. Once. I either give it to her straight away - after she's done a nice show of impulse control on her dinner mat (sit stay). Or I tell her she's not getting now. Or not ever (and I put it on the sink where she can't reach it). If she carries on like a pork chop - actually she hasn't done that in ages - she goes in the crate and I shut the door. If she keeps barking - I cover the crate up. If she still keeps barking (and the weather permits) - I put her in the car where I can't hear her and she doesn't bark anyway. I would not do this with a destructo dog but she hasn't figure out she can chew the car to bits. She was so car sick as a puppy, she just sleeps in there now - keeps her head down mostly.

    If I couldn't put her in the car, I think I'd go out or into another room and leave her to bark herself out. It's called an "Extinction burst" - where at first the bad behaviour increases - because it used to get what she wants and now it's not going to... This is why it's really important not to cave. If you think you'd want to cave - then give the dog what it wants now and save yourself the grief of the dog being louder and meaner to get what it wants.

    And with smart dogs - lots of physical exercise is not enough. In fact it can be bad - because you end up with a fitter dog with more stamina who can bark for longer without getting tired. You have to do some trick training too. Maybe feed all the dinner or a substantial portion of it - as rewards for doing what you want as part of trick training. Google "shaping dog training" to see what I'm talking about. And if initially the dog is a bit puzzled, start by rewarding every different move the dog makes. From ear flick to getting up, but not barking - unless your first trick is 'bark on command' - which is a fast way to shut my dog up.

  2. #22

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    Hi Hyacinth,

    It's interesting what you say about the dog barking to get what it wants. Today I was out for 3 hours and left the dogs in the room with their anxiety wraps on while I went for a shower. My initial plan was to put food out but when the postman went past and all was silent I thought - well, if they didn't bark at that I might just leave them. I came home and there was only 20 secs of barking in 3 hours, compared to raising hell half the night Saturday and half the day on Sunday.

    Now, I have several theories about why Belle was quiet:
    1. I normally put food out, therefore she (and the others) didn't know I was gone.
    2. Belle gets very nasty with food aggression, and the lack of food therefore didn't put her in that aroused state.
    3. In videos I took of the dogs, I noticed Belle would bark in response to anxious displays of Brutus (he would run at doors screaming, throw himself at walls). With the anxiety wrap, he usually lies on his mat and listens to music - well most of the time. Now, Kratos becomes quite anxious when there is food around because of Belle's food agression (or it's at least escalated by that). On the weekend, he tried to hide behind the bookcase when I put the food out. Without the food today, he presumably slept. So because Belle didn't need to 'control' the boys, she was quiet.

    My only frustration is that their behaviour isn't consistent. If I was to put bones out to keep them busy for example - the situation may be fine, or it could turn really ugly. And if it turns ulgy, I can't put bones out any more, and then Belle will bark because she expects one.

    And another cute thing happened with her - I put a face wrap on her (like an anxiety wrap), and she usually paws it off. I slipped liver treats to her while it was on, then stood over her until she gave up trying to paw it off and put her head down. She had these really sad cow eyes, and I have only really seen her look angry/ demanding before, so maybe she is starting to change?

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
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    Geelong, Vic
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    Hey Chop worked out that video yet?




    taaadaaaaaaaaaaaaa! Look at him now! I stopped the owners walking him too for the past week and he's come about even faster!

  4. #24
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    Geelong, Vic
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    please excuse the video I was trying to hold the dog lead and a camera phone lol you can see the point where it could make or break the situation, he still has that residual stare and he did go off later crying and carrying on but he went in the crate in our van. Next to our dog also in a crate who he doesnt care about at all. So lovely to see him do so well!

  5. #25
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    Megan

    I like to give my dog a bit of roo jerky when I'm on my way out, and after I've gone out and come back and got what I forgot and then gone out and come back cos I forgot to put sunscreen on etc... so last time out she gets some roo jerky. But not always.

    But there is no way in hell I'd put food out and leave if there is a dog that fights over food. That just seems insane.

    The closest I got to this was putting out 10 piles of hay for 3 horses - making sure each pile was at least 2 horse lengths away from the next one - so no single horse could guard more than the pile it was eating. The greedy horses still got more but all the horses got some. But this doesn't work so well with dogs and bones.

    And my dog has a tenancy to choke on bones or splinter them and swallow the splinters - so way too dangerous to leave her alone with a bone too.

  6. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyacinth View Post
    But there is no way in hell I'd put food out and leave if there is a dog that fights over food. That just seems insane.
    I know right? We had a trainer come out to our house at the beginning and this was his suggestion - to put out lots of containers of food so all the dogs get a chance to eat. I guess I just kept it up because I thought if it was possible to keep Belle entertained the whole time the place would be quiet. It might sort of work if it was just her but in the end it just creates a frightening situation for the other three.

    I always had it drummed in to me that "you have to keep the dogs entertained the whole time" - then I got onto the calming books. Um no - dogs need 17 hours sleep a day. I left her for 3 hours today and she was ok. Going to try 4 hours tomorrow. I'll have to build up the courage to try nights again - after last Saturday I'm scared... but this weekend I have family stuff on Sat night so they will have to be alone for a while (everyone has to attend so I can't get a baby sitter). Hopefully sleeping outside our bedroom will help with that and they'll be able to take themselves to bed.

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