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Thread: Just Had Mums Dog to Stay for a Few Days

  1. #11
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    Pippi and Barney are mine. Keb is my mums.
    Ok I got that wrong. So Barney and Pippi are used to each other, all good.

    Barney is as best we can tell a lab x. Pippi is a foxy/shih tzu mix. Keb is a NZ Huntaway/Beagle mix.
    So Keb is the visting dog and is much the same size as Barney ie potentially a good play match.

    And Pippi is fear aggressive - I agree with your reasoning. And it is common in little dogs - big dogs can be scary and dangerous.

    And Keb gets a bit protective around his owners. Argh. It would be better if he was comfortable around the other dogs and didn't feel the need to be protective or jealous (of attention given other dogs by his owners).

    Disclaimer - I am not a professional dog trainer - I don't guarantee these suggestions will work in any way:

    Loads of tiny pieces of roast chicken (or other yummy soft treats) in exchange for good behaviour over a series of training sessions might help. Again I'd work with one dog at a time. Not all three at once.

    So a possible session might go - with Barney away (out of sight and hearing) and with plenty of room. With Keb and Pippi both on lead.

    Have Keb and owner(s) sit at one end of the yard or neutral space, and have owners feed Keb treats for being nice (not for growling).

    Have Pippi at the other end with her owner and feed her treats for being nice. If she can be nice at a distance, approach a little bit, with you (the owner) between Pippi and Keb, and feed her more treats if she comes to you and stays nice. Continue to approach in this way. Stop if either dog becomes the least bit excited in any way about the other dog. Stop way before it becomes barking and growling, stop when either dog looks at the other dog and can't easily be distracted by the chicken. Reward attention on you, reward less for attention on the chicken. If one or both dogs do not calm down, go back to a bigger distance.

    Work on that in five minute sessions and have a (long) break between. If you can fit two or three sessions in each time Keb comes to visit, that should help Pippi. And you can work Pippi in the same way with dogs out and about - just maintain enough distance that she's not getting stressed.

    And try to keep the lead loose, if it goes tight, you're too close and Pippi will feel her options for flight are restricted, even if she's pulling forward aggressively - so she will go into fight mode.

    So I'd work Keb in the same way as Pippi. You need one dog as target - in this case you could put Pippi away and sit with Barney - while Keb and owner tries to approach you and Barney, and both dogs get treats for being calm and paying attention to their owners. And you only close the distance when both dogs are calm.

    Depending on how the dogs are, you may need a bigger space than a back yard to work this.

    I find a lot of fear aggressive dogs will do a polite greeting with another dog that holds a completely non threatening pose (eg upside down with paws in the air or at least a steady drop/down position and looking away) as long as the fear aggressive dog is the one allowed to approach in her own time on a loose lead. If she doesn't want to approach - don't force the issue, just wait. And you need to start from far enough apart that the little dog is not stressed. You might need several sessions over days to get this far.

    You may also want to check out Turid Rugass on the net, she's very good at explaining doggy body language and polite greeting techniques eg curving approaches, much looking away and sniffing. This can be faked by putting treats on the ground and walking the dog on lead in a curved line. And if you can get the "target" dog to drop or roll over into a non threatening position - so much the better for the anxious dog.

    Turid Rugaas - Calming Signals Community

  2. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lala View Post
    I dont know if this will help, and it probably wont be for ages anyway, but next time I take her for a walk (not a bike ride) I can video her with my new video camera (any excuse to use it) so you can see what shes like.

    On a bike ride, she does not even give other dogs a second glance.
    Yes on the bike ride she is totally focused on you & the bike & staying in line with it so no time for looking around.
    Video might be very helpful.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by crazydog View Post
    So since puppy preschool & her house mate there is no other dog interaction other than aggressive displays on the lead? So they didn't work on it all at puppy preshool & if they did waht did they/you try? So you can or can not let her off lesh? Wondering as some dogs like Pippi can be off lead at the park ect & just ignore the other dogs & they ignore her. Or there is 2 other outcomes 1 she will be the attacker & take off after certain or all dogs when off leash or 2 if left off leash at a park around other dogs Pippi always seems to become a target of another dogs aggression. Where dose she fit?
    I would start by instead of ignoring her outburst on walks seek out dogs in yards she hates say & everytime she started turn & walk the oppisite dirrection. As soon as you have her focus back on you turn back around & try again. Try & see that the very fist signs are that she's going to maybe start & correct her then before it gets out of control. Using this keep going untill you can walk past the said yard with her taking no notice. Praise her big time when she dose get it.
    To be honest, we don't take her to the dog park and she has not had any interaction with any dogs apart from Barney. As I am too concerned that she would start soemthing and she is so small and could get hurt

    I don't walk my dogs off lead since we moved to Australia. All my dogs that grew up in NZ grew up off lead so can be off the lead...but Pippi has never been off lead out walking and while she is well behaved on lead and a pleasure to walk, I am not sure how she would be off lead and do not want to try her until I thnk her recall is 100% and I dont think we are there yet to be honest.

    Yea I will try what you said and see how we go. I thought ignoring it was probably the best way, but I am def up for trying soemthing else.

    I was going to join an obediance club with her more for the socialisation but I spoke to the behaviourist who said that if we just took her without first confirming why she is like that, it could possibly make her worse.

    So, do you think I should introduce her to Keb when he comes back or just keep her inside again?

  4. #14
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    Hi Lala

    I think you need to introduce her to Keb but you don't need to leave her with him off lead until she's comfortable with him...

    I wouldn't try to desensitise her in a "dog park" that is fenced or off lead either. In fact the fenced dog parks or places with lots of big dogs off lead are bad for little dogs. You might get away with an area the size of two cricket ovals side by side with few big dogs. But so many big dog owners allow their dogs to rush directly up to other dogs (no matter what the size) that most dog parks are not a good place for little dogs to be.

    I like cricket ovals or double ovals that are unfenced ie owners need some control and there is loads of room for getting out of the way. But even here I've seen out of control big dogs knock over other dogs and even humans, and their owners just laugh. Not good.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyacinth View Post
    Ok I got that wrong. So Barney and Pippi are used to each other, all good.


    So Keb is the visting dog and is much the same size as Barney ie potentially a good play match.

    And Pippi is fear aggressive - I agree with your reasoning. And it is common in little dogs - big dogs can be scary and dangerous.

    And Keb gets a bit protective around his owners. Argh. It would be better if he was comfortable around the other dogs and didn't feel the need to be protective or jealous (of attention given other dogs by his owners).

    Disclaimer - I am not a professional dog trainer - I don't guarantee these suggestions will work in any way:

    Loads of tiny pieces of roast chicken (or other yummy soft treats) in exchange for good behaviour over a series of training sessions might help. Again I'd work with one dog at a time. Not all three at once.

    So a possible session might go - with Barney away (out of sight and hearing) and with plenty of room. With Keb and Pippi both on lead.

    Have Keb and owner(s) sit at one end of the yard or neutral space, and have owners feed Keb treats for being nice (not for growling).

    Have Pippi at the other end with her owner and feed her treats for being nice. If she can be nice at a distance, approach a little bit, with you (the owner) between Pippi and Keb, and feed her more treats if she comes to you and stays nice. Continue to approach in this way. Stop if either dog becomes the least bit excited in any way about the other dog. Stop way before it becomes barking and growling, stop when either dog looks at the other dog and can't easily be distracted by the chicken. Reward attention on you, reward less for attention on the chicken. If one or both dogs do not calm down, go back to a bigger distance.

    Work on that in five minute sessions and have a (long) break between. If you can fit two or three sessions in each time Keb comes to visit, that should help Pippi. And you can work Pippi in the same way with dogs out and about - just maintain enough distance that she's not getting stressed.

    And try to keep the lead loose, if it goes tight, you're too close and Pippi will feel her options for flight are restricted, even if she's pulling forward aggressively - so she will go into fight mode.

    So I'd work Keb in the same way as Pippi. You need one dog as target - in this case you could put Pippi away and sit with Barney - while Keb and owner tries to approach you and Barney, and both dogs get treats for being calm and paying attention to their owners. And you only close the distance when both dogs are calm.

    Depending on how the dogs are, you may need a bigger space than a back yard to work this.

    I find a lot of fear aggressive dogs will do a polite greeting with another dog that holds a completely non threatening pose (eg upside down with paws in the air or at least a steady drop/down position and looking away) as long as the fear aggressive dog is the one allowed to approach in her own time on a loose lead. If she doesn't want to approach - don't force the issue, just wait. And you need to start from far enough apart that the little dog is not stressed. You might need several sessions over days to get this far.

    You may also want to check out Turid Rugass on the net, she's very good at explaining doggy body language and polite greeting techniques eg curving approaches, much looking away and sniffing. This can be faked by putting treats on the ground and walking the dog on lead in a curved line. And if you can get the "target" dog to drop or roll over into a non threatening position - so much the better for the anxious dog.

    Turid Rugaas - Calming Signals Community
    Great thanks, that sound slike a good plan.

    Yea, KEb and Barney are very close in size. Keb is very slightly taller and Barney is more solid but for all intents and purposes they are a good match size wise. And they did get on very well (we kept hearign happy dog noises through the windows) until mums hubby went out there.

    I think we will try that. We do even have an enclosure which I did think about perhaps putting Keb in that (removing Barney for the time being as he is fine with both dogs) and then allowing Pippi to meet Keb through the enclosure. The only problem was that to allow the big boys plenty of space to play in we had opened up the whole back yard so they could use the enclusure and the rest and in order ot get outside with Pippi we would have immediately been in kebs face (he basically blocks the back door the minute it is opened lol).

    But that sound slike a good plan (as well as Crazys) so I think when Keb gets here we will definitely do some sessions like that so that eventually Pippi can have play time with the boys.

    I dont think I will ever leave her unsupervised with them when Keb is here though as she is little and may not be tough enough to run round with two big boys (though she handles Barney just fine on her own)

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by crazydog View Post
    Yes on the bike ride she is totally focused on you & the bike & staying in line with it so no time for looking around.
    Video might be very helpful.

    Yea definitely, and we go fast enough that she has to concentrate on pumping her little legs lol.

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyacinth View Post
    Hi Lala

    I think you need to introduce her to Keb but you don't need to leave her with him off lead until she's comfortable with him...

    I wouldn't try to desensitise her in a "dog park" that is fenced or off lead either. In fact the fenced dog parks or places with lots of big dogs off lead are bad for little dogs. You might get away with an area the size of two cricket ovals side by side with few big dogs. But so many big dog owners allow their dogs to rush directly up to other dogs (no matter what the size) that most dog parks are not a good place for little dogs to be.

    I like cricket ovals or double ovals that are unfenced ie owners need some control and there is loads of room for getting out of the way. But even here I've seen out of control big dogs knock over other dogs and even humans, and their owners just laugh. Not good.
    Cool thanks.

    I agree that is not good. Which is why I dont take her to the dog park. I dont want to put her in a position where she doesnt feel comfortable, and I dotn want to put other dogs/people in that position either.

    Plus, she is just a speck of a thing.

    I feel like a bit of a retard to be honest. We have never had this before so wasn't really sure what to do about it. We have always socialised out dogs well and never had an issue.

    It probably doesnt help that we actually dont know anyone in Sydney, much less anyone with dogs, so havent been able to work on that easily with her.

  8. #18
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    I should probably say too, Pippi is our first little dog. I was not a little dog fan previously and the smallest dog I had owned was a 20 kg staffy mix.

    I dont know if this makes a difference, but I have personally found that little dogs are a bit different to larger dogs so I guess it has been a learning curve for us in that we probably need a slightly different approach for her then we have used for all our other larger dogs.

  9. #19
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    Thanks heaps for the advice guys...will definitely check out that link and will try all those things with my little dollop of evil (Pippi).

    Keb is back on the 3rd, so after him and Barney have had a run round and got a bit of zoomies out of their system we will have a go at a session in the back yard with Keb and Pippi

  10. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lala View Post
    To be honest, we don't take her to the dog park and she has not had any interaction with any dogs apart from Barney. As I am too concerned that she would start soemthing and she is so small and could get hurt

    I don't walk my dogs off lead since we moved to Australia. All my dogs that grew up in NZ grew up off lead so can be off the lead...but Pippi has never been off lead out walking and while she is well behaved on lead and a pleasure to walk, I am not sure how she would be off lead and do not want to try her until I thnk her recall is 100% and I dont think we are there yet to be honest.

    Yea I will try what you said and see how we go. I thought ignoring it was probably the best way, but I am def up for trying soemthing else.

    I was going to join an obediance club with her more for the socialisation but I spoke to the behaviourist who said that if we just took her without first confirming why she is like that, it could possibly make her worse.

    So, do you think I should introduce her to Keb when he comes back or just keep her inside again?
    I agree that the obedaince club could do more harm than good at the moment.
    I would be dersentazing her by getting her around as many dogs as poosible all on leash of course. Look for times she good(ignoring the other dogs for example) & treat her make being around other dogs fun. Even if at first the dogs are at the other end of the park,lol. When she is aggressive turn around straight away & walk in oppisite direction with her well heeled(listening to you & walking at your side no pulling on the leash) then return & try again. Try & keep her attention on you with a treat/toy if thats what it takes untill she can ignore the other dog without the distraction technic. Try & get friends that you know have stable dogs to come to help you out. At first all your aiming for is to be able to walk past each other without Pippi taking any notice of the other dog. I would do the yard thing also, my dog can walk past any crazy barking yard full without a second glance now thanks to that technic.
    I would introduce the dogs but I would do alot of work between now & then with the technic your've been told here. I would have him on leash & her free if you can control her(but if not put a leash on)as she will feel safer this way. I would not leave them alone no matter how good the intro went though.

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