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Thread: Has your dog made you learn new things about dog training?

  1. #1
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    Default Has your dog made you learn new things about dog training?

    I guess they all do that a bit.

    This is an interesting article about special project dogs - with problem behaviours that they may have been born with, may have been caused by trauma or just owners who didn't know any better (me).

    The Project Dog

    The Good: A Project Dog makes you look seriously at your skill level in your work with your dog. You have to review and evaluate how you work with this dog. A Project Dog should force you to research and read everything you can get your hands on about how to work with their specific issues. AND you will have to bring ALL your skills at analysing what is and isn’t a solid strategy for dealing with this particular dog.

  2. #2
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    Absolutely. When I bought Koda 5 years ago, I was very young, naive and under the impression that I'd get my puppy, train him tricks, take him to obedience and agility and I'd have the perfect agility dog I'd dreamed of most of my childhood.

    I got my dream puppy, I trained him tricks, I took him to obedience classes I started training agility... he was my perfect dog for the first 12 months or so...

    Then it all changed... I learnt that things don't always work out how you want them to when you're dealing with live creatures with a mind of their own.

    Koda is difficult and a pain in the neck sometimes, but its those traits in him that have taught me so much. If Koda didn't have any issues, I'd still be like I was 5 years ago, under the impression that any dog I'll ever have will be perfect because "bad dogs only belong to bad owners who don't train their dogs".

    There are so many things I wouldn't understand or have any idea how to do if I didn't have Koda.

    So hopefully one day when I finally decide its time for another dog, I can chose my breeder wisely knowing things CAN go wrong, I can make sure pup is socialised well and stress free, and I can pick up on any bad behaviours as soon as they start rather than not noticing them for ages.

    Hopefully having a dog like Koda will make me a better dog owner in the future.

  3. #3
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    Definately!

    I had some lovely training methods, that had always worked on many a herding dog. who's sole purpose in life was to help me instinctively.
    And then i met project 1. Kevin.
    Whilst i had Kevin, i researched up everything about 'project dogs'. I for the first time, had to get expert advise and guidance from an animal behaviourist and Steve Courtney. And my love of training through drive was born.
    Had i never had a 'project dog', i would of missed the opportunity to work with animal behaviourists and dog trainers who have helped me and my dogs along the way.

    I guess each dog, is to a certain extent, is a project, with unique challenges and rewards. But seeing a dangerous dog, become a relaxed, well mannered sociable dog is food for my soul.

  4. #4

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    I really enjoyed reading that – Thank you for sharing !
    WoW - Memories ? I have very fond memories of all of my previous pups – but - I cringe now at some of the things I did in those very early days, under the guise of training and correction.

    Using the same terminology as the article – my first true ‘Project’ was Riley. Funnily enough, I do class all of my pups as a WIP (work in progress) !

    As I have said before on here, Riley's only saving grace was that my little 9 year old girl at the time – loved him to bits at first sight. So I had to make it work. All that I thought I knew before – didn't work with him.

    There were so many things I had to sort out with him. Just a few examples - he would - jump fences and nick-off; try to attack any human males; hit the deck if I had anything in my hand near him; bark at the sound of a leaf falling in the yard – which was difficult even though and because we live on acreage.

    But, with the help of a dog trainer and my vet – I eventually had a big breakthrough with him by the time he had been here for about 6 months. Now, he is 8 years old and a completely different pup.
    Maybe I need to think of my latest one as a ‘Project’ also ! She sure has given me quite a few ‘WTF, What was I thinking ?’ moments since she arrived ~ 9 months ago !

  5. #5
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    And even the 'heart dog' you get, can turn into a right project at times!
    Bernie, now cranky with arthritis and winter, is gobbing off at anyone that goes too close to that back end with their gurt feet. Fair enough i reckon. Nice warning, even my naughtie neices dont mess with that sound. But i always put him away at that point, so he can rest undisturbed by pesky small humans. Ive been warned to. And i listen these days.

  6. #6
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    When my friend and I got our dog and staffy x jack russell we knew he was going to be hard to train and of course we are still training 2 years on the hard to train part for his energy level not his intelligence which he has in spades.
    He learnt the basics farely quickly and is currently under the gold star in dog school (the second highest level they have)
    I have learnt many things it usually seams the hardest lessons are to work with your tone and body langange to work with the dog and remember every dog has good and bad days and days when they want to listen and days they don't and you have to get them interested and motivated to learn

  7. #7
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    I take on the difficult newfoundland Rescue dogs, they are my projects.........but I love them forever. They have taught me so much and they also made me look for more...

    I honestly think that if Annabelle had not come into my life now seven years ago, i would not have studied dog behaviour and training to the extend I have. I would not have gone to so many other trainers all over the country with any dog and learned so much about dog behaviour and especially dog aggression. I would not have gone into obdeince, agility and water rescue work to change her behaviour. And to make her enjoy life more. All of this was the road to learning. And I will always state that Annabelle took me on this long interesting Journey.

    The others that followed and were before her were so easy.........But the end result is just wonderful. I have wonderful dogs, especially Annabelle a most social and happy dog. And I now can help others help their dogs and I now love training for a reason, like water rescue ............

    I thought I knew so much about dogs until I got Anabelle. I was into working stock dogs, I did herding and stock work, but nothing prepared me for her and I had to look elsewhere and ignore the many people who said "put her down" . Each and every dog teaches us. And I think when we get a difficult dogs we learn the most as long as we have an open mind and are willing to learn.

    I love the quote. " your mind has to be like a parachute, to work it has to be open" no idea from who, but it is my fave
    Pets are forever

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