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Thread: Muffy the Mad

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    I really cannot comment on how to handle it as I'd have no idea, but it is clear from that picture that she thinks she is a real diva!

  2. #22

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    Did you know the Maltese is regarded as the dog attributed with the most bites in the whole world? Weird fact.

    Grabbing the collar of a dog that is already fearfull is an invitation to be bitten. You have to back off and let the dog take its time. As soon as any dog realises there is no threat of harm, and possability of comfort, they will approach you.

    I'm just guessing but I have to think this dog was abused by being hit with a hand and he will need to be desensitised to this. It may be that approaching him from one side or the other triggers it but will allow you to touch from another angle - this is why you can sometimes give him belly rubs but at other times he growls and bites.

    I would be working with slow full frontal movements only and always with a high value reward immediately available. It is going to be a slow process and I would prepare yourself for a worse case scenario because it is probable the fear is to deeply entrenched to remove completely.

    Cudos for trying to help.
    Nev Allen
    Border River Pet Resort

  3. #23
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    Canberra
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    Sorry, bit OT, but it reminds me of this pekingese my mum brought home when I was about 7 or 8. She got if off an old lady who had to go into a nursing home. And it came with a whole list of instructions but the only one I can clearly remember was "Never try pat her when she is under a chair or table or similar". After she bit everyone in the family except for me (a fact I was very smug about towards my older sisters) my mum decided to rehome her as we had no clue on how to deal with this behaviour. Poor dog...

  4. #24

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    Can you massage her but not pat her? If you can massage her, sooner or later, she's going to see your hands as pure pleasure. If you start with the bits she seems to enjoy, you can slowly expand the area she welcomes touch. I do good massage and often have dogs leaning against me, eyes begging for me to do more. Any sign of aggro, hands leave and she's left wanting more. I had friends whose rotty would melt as soon as I touched him and the owners would collapse with laughter.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Sunshine coast Qld
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Pawfectionist View Post
    Here it is again... if it works
    Attachment 8626
    She's adorable, looks like butter wouldnt melt in her mouth
    The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated.
    Mohandas Gandhi

  6. #26
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    Jul 2011
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    I am also not a trainer, so cant offer any revelant advise, but had had experience with my sisters dog who was exactly the same. She had always treated it as her baby and always let her have her wicked way, I couldnt take my kids over there as she would bite them if they approached or sat in her chair, etc.
    But then my sister became pregnant, and as you can imagine i was on her case about the dog...she felt the dog would be ok, i saw the dog as one that would chew the babies face off in the bassinet.

    I ended up taking the dog to "rehabilite" him, and after a lot of work and patience she turned out really good and was able to go home (with supervision).
    Dogs have to be treated as dogs, they are not children... thats where the problems begin.

    What you have been doing paws is what I did, although I just ignored her for the first week (little treats) and she was just treated the same as my dogs, without any approaching or doing anything to provoke the behaviour.

    Week 2 began the fun..slowly!
    My method was to approach her and do the "bite" when she growled and carry it through everytime as you did and end on a positive behaviour.
    I personally dont like the "crate" method in most cases except new puppies and toilet training as these nervous wanna be diva dogs need to experience real life and all the activities of you and your other dogs are doing, kinda like conditioning to normality.
    But even though during the ignore phase, if she shows unwanted behaviour you will have to address it everytime.

    She has a great mentor in you and she will do really well..good luck!
    The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated.
    Mohandas Gandhi

  7. #27
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    Jan 2012
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    Perth, WA
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    It's lovely of you to take this dog in, I also have no training tips, but I wish you good luck. Look forward to more updates on her progress

  8. #28
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    Jan 2012
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    Melbourne VIC
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    Hi Guys,

    Second day in and she is already attaching herself to us. This is a little sooner than I expected. I worked more with treats last night before bed. We put a dog mat in our room on the floor up our end of the bed. She went to sleep there. At about 6:45 she woke me up (either for the toilet or attention) so I took the dogs outside to the loo. Once I came back in I ignored her again and went back to bed. She had a bit of a sook, jumped on the bed, I sat up and told her to get off, she immediately jumped off and went back to the mat and slept.

    Even though I did not crate her, I feel crate training her will be of benefit to her. She seems to need a quiet safe place to get away every now and then. She has begun following me around like a shadow, which I ignore. I left this morning to go to a consult. Andrew told me she then attached herself to him for the morning. Right now, as I type this, she is tucked up under our corner desk, looking out from next to my feet (dependent much?). I feel creating a safe crate for her would be of benefit to her, without relying on us for security.

    Before I left for my consult we had a dog arrive (we are minding him for the weekend). We put him outside so Muffy could meet him with a wall of safety between them. He wanted to play and pawed at the flyscreen. Muffy went crazy, trying to attack him through the door. I had a spray bottle in my hand, so I said "uh uh" and sprayed over her head (she did get a little wet from the stream) and she walked away and calmed down immediately. While I was at my consult, Andrew let Luke and Ray (the new dog) back into the house. They were all fine together and all went to sleep within moments.

    Muffy jumped on our couch where Andrew was sitting. He told her to get off and she did without fuss. She wants to be close to us at all times. We are limiting our affection at the moment, as we don't want her to grow too attached. We also don't want her to demand affection from us and get it, as seems to be a possibility from her last dwellings.

    We are cautious with her, but we are able to pat her from most angles and I have been giving massages to relax her. She hasn't had any today though. It is a trust thing, of which took less than a day to gain. And yes, we are working with treats to reward her. She LOVES treats.

    So that's the update. All the dogs she has met have been male. We are walking some females later this afternoon (a great dane and a boxer). I feel we may need to handle this cautiously, especially because the boxer is a typical boxer (a nutcase) that may freak her out.

    Oh, and she gives little scared cries every now and then when my dog is near her doing certain movements. I haven't seen it each time, however I think she gets spooked about nearly being stepped on or wacked with a tail or the like.

    Once again, thoughts and advice appreciated.

  9. #29
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    Sounds like your doing a great job Paws...nice work!
    The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated.
    Mohandas Gandhi

  10. #30

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    This is all rather thrilling. I've never been in this situation, never meeting the dog, but getting regular reports. I quite like cages, as they can hissy fit away, and no one gets hurt, and at the end, they also realise, (at my place), that no one is interested in a punch up. Life goes on and they are 1) not the world's victim 2) they aren't the centre of the universe and they do feel it's a safe place, even if you cover 2 sides with a blanket, at first. One of mine claimed hers with pride and put all her treasures in it. Sounds like certainly the biggest worry is letting her feel she can claim you and attack anyone approaching. I'd be keeping up the massages and then stopping it and walking away, so she knows it stopped on your terms, and she will probably follow you about, longing to even catch your eye. In the meantime, you are affectionate to the other dogs - and people, in front of her and as you've done, you've told her to bed herself and that you choose cuddle or attention time. Does she stiffen up if your hand goes around her throat, while she's on her back, getting a massage, or is that a step too far? (Just trying to visualise her). That's a big step in trust.
    .

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