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Thread: HELP... I can't take it anymore...

  1. #41


    I re-read this thread with all the replies to my husband... we are deciding to tackle this head on. Here is our course of action:

    1. We are going to get rid of as much of the outdoor furniture as we can. It is mostly big stuff but the cushions and maybe the outdoor chairs can go for now.
    The wooden frame of the outdoor lounge will be covered in bitter stuff bought from the petshop.
    2. We are going to tie bones and toys inside his kennel. Until now everytime we put things for him in the kennel, he just takes them out. This way he will have to stay in there if he wants to chew/play with it. Hopefully that will get him used to the kennel.
    3. We already try not to make fuss when we leave and come back but leaving a radio inside the house so he can hear it outside might be a good idea, so will do that too.

    See how we go I guess...
    Thank you everyone from the bottom of my heart.

  2. #42


    Quote Originally Posted by bunny-girl View Post
    Husband tried taking him for a bike ride but as soon as Hooch sees another dog - he is after that dog and husband comes home all bruised (lol). So he gave up on the bike rides.
    Maybe use a scooter or skateboard, something that is more safe? Maybe you could teach him how to use a treadmill. You are going to have to find a way of making him too tired to chew, unfortunately it is the only solution until he gets older and calmer. Once he gets into a routine of hard and strenuous exercise you will definitely see less chewing. Amstaffs are often very high energy dogs, and the fitter he gets the more exercise he will need. On the upside, you will get fitter also.

  3. #43
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Rural Victoria


    Some of his anxiety is because he is a very young dog with a big backyard, as he grows older and gets more confident he will settle. A dog run doesn't have to be covered for the whole length - one end could be under your patio and the rest under the open sky as long as he has his kennel to retreat to in it.

    The average size run for one medium to large dog would be about 4 meteres long by about 2.5 metres wide. You could probably buy one for the $440 you were considering spending on Barkbusters. He will be happy and safe in his run and you won't have any anxiety about crating him. A dog run also comes in very handy when you have visitors with toddlers who might get knocked over or pull Hooch's ears or something. (I like to put the toddlers in the run with toys, and the dogs OUTSIDE the run - dogs and kids are both safe and the adults can relax! )

    Mental exercise is far more tiring than just physical, he does need both, but he also probably needs to chew at this age.

  4. #44
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    melbourne australia


    You asked what the cost of a animal behaviourist is: for me was $300 a pop. I needed 3 sessions and lots of homework over a 8 week period.
    At the end of which, i had been taught how to see the clear signals i had been missing previously, i was taught how to you both positive and negative reinforcement for my 'hard' dog. My issue was dog aggression and people aggression. So a different scenario.

    And i was told, that people often increase a problem dogs exercise to solve the issue. Which if you were not walking your dog enough, is a great idea. But i had been exercising my dog. So when i doubled that exercise, i ended up with a dog with even more stamina and fitness, more muscled, and still had issues. So please be wary of trying to tire a dog out.

  5. #45
    Join Date
    Aug 2011


    I am happy you are reconsidering the Bark Busters option because I was worried that it was an impulsive decision and I would hate for you to waste even more money.

    I do always take my dog for a walk in the morning before I leave. Not for the exercise - it's usually a fairly short walk - but more for the mental stimulation. I walk her partly off leash, partly on leash and she has to concentrate to follow my instructions. And on top of that she gets to chase gahlas, sniff around and if she's lucky say hello to other dogs.

    I would also keep up the training. If he stays scared of the clicker, just use a marker word instead. I would recommend lots of recall exercises (play hide and seek, let him run from one to the other in the yard), LAT for distractions and once you feel you are really on top of that, start teaching tricks. Or set up an obstacle course in the backyard or something.

    Just some things that I can think of that will tire him out a bit more without turning him into an athletic superdog.

    And I also like the run and play pen solutions.

    Kudos to you for really trying to make this work, BG. So many dogs are given up on for this kind of stuff and none of it is their fault.

  6. #46
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Logan, Brisbane QLD


    Go the run. I think that is the only solution that will definitely work. Trainer could be a dud therefore you have wasted your time & money and are still left without a solution. Whilst a run wouldnt address the chewing problem it would eliminate anything for him to chew.

  7. #47


    I will take a short video of my back yard a little later today, maybe you guys can help with ideas where to put the dog run because right now it seems impossible for me to find a place for it. I cancelled D. Busters. Too many bad reviews. Husband is taking half a day off work, will move the cushions and chairs and get some big bones and rope to tie the toys to the kennel.

  8. #48
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Geelong, Vic


    bunny girl email me

    your dog is suffering from a severe lack of structure. That is why he follows you or chews, he doesnt know what to do with himself. You feel sorry for him being in a crate, but you yell at him because he has done something that he feels is comforting to him. He cant walk on a lead properly, so you just stop giving him a good run that he needs. It's not a glorified cage, dogs are naturally creatures that den and go into small spaces, it is totally within their nature to do it. If you want to help your dog, you have to toughen up a little and stop feeling so stressed.

    I would try a calming paste like Troy Behave paste, 2-3 mls a day depending on his weight and run me a full email with his breed, background and what you have done so far.

  9. #49
    Join Date
    Jun 2011


    Also if I'm reading right you got him about at nine months old and he's now a year old. So you've not had him long??

  10. #50


    Nekhbet - I emailed you. I do appreciate your offer to help!!
    Mac - Have had him for 3.5 months.

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