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> From Self Control To No Control In 0.1 Seconds
coinsky
post 22nd Mar 2012, 4:59 pm
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This is sort of about Kofi's daycare experience today but also a wider issue so wanted to give it a separate thread. rolleyes.gif

I have been taking Kofi to daycare just for an hour so he can socialise, started off ok, but has got worse with him trying to get back to me. err.gif

The first few times he greeted the lady happily and went off happily, but today (4 or 5th time) he greeted the lady ok (not excited but neutral) until she took his lead and then he changed. He pulled barking at me and as she led him off started fighting with her and really pulling back, tbh I thought if it had gone on much longer he might even have used some form of aggression to get her to let his lead go. err.gif

As I walked off, I could hear him barking and bashing at the fence. The lady has worked with dogs all her life and said she has never seen anything like it, she couldn't control him so took him to a chill out zone where he continued to create for 30minutes and then stopped. When she let him out he checked the gate, saw I wasn't there and played happily with a border collie and a tibetan and when I went back to get him, he was happily milling about with 8 dogs until he spotted me and then the hysterics at the fence started.

She said she felt that he wasn't so much panicking about being left as was just determined to get out to find me. And listening to his barking, I know exactly what she means...

When Kofi wants something, it's like he gets so driven that he goes into a red zone. There are only certain triggers mainly wanting to get to me, wanting to get to someone wearing a sleeve, water and tracking. But when he gets fixated on wanting one of these things, he is uncontrollable.

He would break down a wall to get to a sleeve and has almost had me over a cliff to get to the loch at the bottom!

I do loads of self control stuff with him and he is so biddable (usually) that he is easy to train, but when he really wants something, it's like all that training goes straight out of the window. unsure.gif

Any ideas on how to deal with him when he goes through the roof like this? It usually involves manic barking and pulling and screaming. I can sometimes get him to do heelwork but that is also manic, with him whimpering or barking and if it goes on too long sometimes nipping from pure frustration.


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pangolin
post 22nd Mar 2012, 5:23 pm
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I wonder if it's perhaps expecting too much, too soon, to have a stranger lead him away from you when you're in sight and expect him to be happy with it. I know it's difficult with a professional situation like daycare but maybe some stooge people would be happy to help you teach him to be seperated from you gradually? E.g. they take the lead and you step away 2 steps and return, 5 steps, etc. - 300 peck-ish, with any signs of distress being a sign you need to drop down a step? unsure.gif
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coinsky
post 22nd Mar 2012, 5:29 pm
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QUOTE(pangolin @ 22nd Mar 2012, 5:23 pm) *

I wonder if it's perhaps expecting too much, too soon, to have a stranger lead him away from you when you're in sight and expect him to be happy with it. I know it's difficult with a professional situation like daycare but maybe some stooge people would be happy to help you teach him to be seperated from you gradually? E.g. they take the lead and you step away 2 steps and return, 5 steps, etc. - 300 peck-ish, with any signs of distress being a sign you need to drop down a step? unsure.gif


It's weird because sometimes he is ok. Akitas from here has taken him off me before to do some training and he went off happily doing heelwork and not even looking at me... unsure.gif

Yet other times, I can be standing next to someone and they can take his lead and even though I haven't moved, he starts barking at me because 'someone else has his lead and might kidnap him at any moment!'

Maybe we should practise it on Saturday! tongue.gif

I don't know what to do about the daycare, I was pleased he was playing with dogs especially the entire males but don't want him stressing for so long or starting to associate people with being dragged away....


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Akitas
post 22nd Mar 2012, 5:33 pm
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Inja was like this when he was younger. We just balanced it with controlling him, but the more you fight him the more he fights back. You have to try and set up situations where he has nothing to fight if that makes sense. So for example for the sleeve - once you have the drive and understanding of the exercise(where you want him to pull and bark), you go to if he's silly or breaks for the sleeve the helper drops the sleeve behind his back and walks away. He only returns if Kofi is sensible, the moment he gets silly same again. It takes a while the first few times but does get better. If you keep commanding and trying to make him calm down he has something (verbal) to fight against, almost like pulling against an invisible, verbal lead.

Does that make sense? It's difficult to organise sometimes and takes a while to work, but it worked well with Inja. We actually had everyone leave the field, leaving him alone which apparently was no fun.
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pangolin
post 22nd Mar 2012, 5:37 pm
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The only problem is, you'll have to rip the lead out of my hands, once I have hold of him you ain't getting him back tongue.gif

Different situations and different rules? Has Akitas taken him more than once, and was he taken completely out of your sight? If so, has he gotten more reluctant with each time? If he knows you're about or it's only happened once or twice, he might not have the same associations as with daycare - by now he knows you're going to be gone for an hour. Have the people he's barked at for holding his lead ever walked him before, is he either anticipating being taken away from you again, or because he doesn't know what they're going to do, he's getting worried about being seperated? unsure.gif

This post has been edited by pangolin: 22nd Mar 2012, 5:41 pm
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coinsky
post 22nd Mar 2012, 5:43 pm
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QUOTE(Akitas @ 22nd Mar 2012, 5:33 pm) *

Inja was like this when he was younger. We just balanced it with controlling him, but the more you fight him the more he fights back. You have to try and set up situations where he has nothing to fight if that makes sense. So for example for the sleeve - once you have the drive and understanding of the exercise(where you want him to pull and bark), you go to if he's silly or breaks for the sleeve the helper drops the sleeve behind his back and walks away. He only returns if Kofi is sensible, the moment he gets silly same again. It takes a while the first few times but does get better. If you keep commanding and trying to make him calm down he has something (verbal) to fight against, almost like pulling against an invisible, verbal lead.

Does that make sense? It's difficult to organise sometimes and takes a while to work, but it worked well with Inja. We actually had everyone leave the field, leaving him alone which apparently was no fun.



Ooh yes, never thought of doing that. I have tried it the other way around, so when he barks and flips out we walk away but that just frustrates him even more, because as you say, it's giving him something to fight against. We have been working on controlling him with heelwork/down etc but he is still like a coiled spring, I might suggest the helper walking off instead....I think that might work better. smile.gif

Any ideas how I could transfer that over when I can't control the trigger? (like when he sees a lake or river and goes manic?)

QUOTE(pangolin @ 22nd Mar 2012, 5:37 pm) *

The only problem is, you'll have to rip the lead out of my hands, once I have hold of him you ain't getting him back tongue.gif


Haha, when you see how he behaves at the beach on Saturday, I doubt that very much! lol.gif lol.gif


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coinsky
post 22nd Mar 2012, 5:46 pm
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QUOTE(pangolin @ 22nd Mar 2012, 5:37 pm) *

The only problem is, you'll have to rip the lead out of my hands, once I have hold of him you ain't getting him back tongue.gif

Different situations and different rules? Has Akitas taken him more than once, and was he taken completely out of your sight? If so, has he gotten more reluctant with each time? If he knows you're about or it's only happened once or twice, he might not have the same associations as with daycare - by now he knows you're going to be gone for an hour. Have the people he's barked at for holding his lead ever walked him before, is he either anticipating being taken away from you again, or because he doesn't know what they're going to do, he's getting worried about being seperated? unsure.gif


He wasn't out of my sight, I was stood there but he happily walked off and worked for her and I don't think he even glanced at me the whole time. But I guess that's different from being dragged off away from me.

The funny thing is that the first few times he was at daycare he went off happily and apart from a few sniffs of his lead was find for the whole hour of his trial. unsure.gif He is getting worse the more often he goes, which makes me think I am creating an issue and making things worse.


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pangolin
post 22nd Mar 2012, 5:54 pm
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QUOTE(coinsky @ 22nd Mar 2012, 5:46 pm) *
The funny thing is that the first few times he was at daycare he went off happily and apart from a few sniffs of his lead was find for the whole hour of his trial. unsure.gif He is getting worse the more often he goes, which makes me think I am creating an issue and making things worse.


My (uneducated) guess would be that the novelty factor plays a part - he's not expected to be left so he's wandered off happily. Now he knows what comes next, he's acting up more, like a dog with seperation anxiety becoming more and more concerned at you picking up your keys, putting your shoes on, etc.
So going back to basics and having a stooge person take his lead, hand it back, take his lead, hand it back, etc. Then a step away, back again, a step away, back again. Babysteps until each stage doesn't phase him, like with the SA example unsure.gif
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coinsky
post 22nd Mar 2012, 6:03 pm
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I am going for an all day hike with some friends tomorrow (who Kofi has met once but doesn't really know) so I might get them to take his lead a few times during the day and I will film his reaction. And then report back. In DP style. lol.gif


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Akitas
post 22nd Mar 2012, 6:30 pm
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QUOTE(coinsky @ 22nd Mar 2012, 5:46 pm) *

He wasn't out of my sight, I was stood there but he happily walked off and worked for her and I don't think he even glanced at me the whole time. But I guess that's different from being dragged off away from me.

I think the difference there was that I didn't just expect him to come with me. I asked him to heel and then heeled him away. As I'd asked him to do something specific (and expected him to obey a specific command) I'd expect him to be better.
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Akitas
post 22nd Mar 2012, 6:37 pm
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QUOTE(coinsky @ 22nd Mar 2012, 5:43 pm) *

Ooh yes, never thought of doing that. I have tried it the other way around, so when he barks and flips out we walk away but that just frustrates him even more, because as you say, it's giving him something to fight against. We have been working on controlling him with heelwork/down etc but he is still like a coiled spring, I might suggest the helper walking off instead....I think that might work better. smile.gif

Any ideas how I could transfer that over when I can't control the trigger? (like when he sees a lake or river and goes manic?)
Haha, when you see how he behaves at the beach on Saturday, I doubt that very much! lol.gif lol.gif


Yes, you see if you walk away ... the helper is still there and 'if' he breaks or gets you to break him off then he still has the opportunity for a game. Thus he gets more wound up as the lure is dangling there still. If the helper (and everyone else) simply turns and leaves the field theres nothing he can do to try and influence that action. The other thing to do is to all go and have a drink or snacks or something and totally ignore him until he settles. Something that indicates loud and clear that all fun is OVER. Maybe just stand on a longline so he's not restricted, but can't run off and do sniffing/peeing instead.

With the lake, I'd find somewhere you can tie him up and take a book. If he gets manic tie him to the tree and sit down and start reading. When he settles for a while get up and do a bit of heelwork or something, any sign of manic-ness tie him up and continue reading. If he can do a little bit calmly then CALMLY release him to go swim. Inja has perfected the 'ooops I fell in all accidentally!' or 'Meg pushed me!' strategy if you don't keep an eagle eye on him lol.gif
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coinsky
post 22nd Mar 2012, 7:23 pm
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QUOTE(Akitas @ 22nd Mar 2012, 6:37 pm) *

Yes, you see if you walk away ... the helper is still there and 'if' he breaks or gets you to break him off then he still has the opportunity for a game. Thus he gets more wound up as the lure is dangling there still. If the helper (and everyone else) simply turns and leaves the field theres nothing he can do to try and influence that action. The other thing to do is to all go and have a drink or snacks or something and totally ignore him until he settles. Something that indicates loud and clear that all fun is OVER. Maybe just stand on a longline so he's not restricted, but can't run off and do sniffing/peeing instead.

With the lake, I'd find somewhere you can tie him up and take a book. If he gets manic tie him to the tree and sit down and start reading. When he settles for a while get up and do a bit of heelwork or something, any sign of manic-ness tie him up and continue reading. If he can do a little bit calmly then CALMLY release him to go swim. Inja has perfected the 'ooops I fell in all accidentally!' or 'Meg pushed me!' strategy if you don't keep an eagle eye on him lol.gif



lol.gif @ Inja.

I am going to have to find some sort of stooge set up so I can work on it. If he is offlead anyway, it's not a problem as he is free to go swim, the issue I have is getting to the exciting thing. For instance, I am going to a doggie meet up at the beach on Saturday, and although he has never been to the beach in this country (despite living 1 mile from the sea-this shows you how much I can't cope with it!) I know he is going to start barking/pulling/shaking/jaw clattering as soon as he smells the sea and am dreading how to get him from the car to the beach without it being bloody mayhem. For a dog that normally listens pretty well, I just struggle when he gets the red excitement mist! err.gif

I may just try making him do focused heelwork all the way even though I know that means he will explode when released, it's probably preferable than being dragged along by a screaming lunatic.


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pangolin
post 22nd Mar 2012, 7:30 pm
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Do you want me to mention to the others about perhaps waiting in the cars Saturday and meeting you on the beach front, is that going to make it easier to handle him?
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coinsky
post 22nd Mar 2012, 7:34 pm
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QUOTE(pangolin @ 22nd Mar 2012, 7:30 pm) *

Do you want me to mention to the others about perhaps waiting in the cars Saturday and meeting you on the beach front, is that going to make it easier to handle him?


What you could mention is that someone brings one of those big village fete tug of war ropes with knots in and we tie it to Kofi and then about 15 big men can get ahold and take him to the beach? unsure.gif lol.gif

No, don't worry, it won't make any difference, infact the distraction of other dogs might take away from the WATER.

He hasn't actually been to the beach since last winter in Italy, so after saying all this, he will probably be fine.. unsure.gif Or not. lol.gif


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pangolin
post 22nd Mar 2012, 7:47 pm
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Or with a shorter bit of rope you could just tie his feet together, much simpler lol.gif
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