New Puppy Mummies No. 4

(300 Posts)
SallyBear Thu 30-Jan-14 10:52:22

Have we really got to a fourth thread already?! grin Wow.

Please feel free to join in.

I have Toby, who is a 7 month old foxy coloured Labrador.

moosemama Thu 30-Jan-14 11:03:44

Jayne, I have a treat pouch I bought off Ebay for a couple of pounds.

If he has already sussed that stopping biting and sitting gets a reward, you need to start slowly increasing the length of time between the desired behaviour and reward. Just up it a second each time until he starts getting the message that he doesn't just have to let go, he has to stay unattached, iyswim.

Jayne (Meg 3rd bordercollie so we knew what we were in for) was an absolute devil for this- much worse than no.s 1 & 2, and in the end we used a small misting spray and it worked. I thought about cruel too, but not half as cruel as stepping on her (which we all did). I also used it for swiping things off tables (it hasn't worked so well there). I think there is a limit to how much rewarding you can do for positive and ignoring bad behaviour. We rewarded Meg too much (she would stop half way through an outdoor poo for instance to come for her praise and treat- with horrid results!)
Now we use praise and toys as a reward (and brushing) and kibble rewards for small good things with cheese for top work such as recall and (current effort, work in progress) loading the washing machine.

Thanks, Sallybear! These threads are such a help.

SallyBear Thu 30-Jan-14 11:20:58

You're welcome!
Did any of you see my disgusting poo eating thread? Any idea how to get Toby to stop? Why is he doing it, could it be nutrient related, is it a Labrador thing or is he just a delinquent?

Checking in smile

Yes I did, Sallybear. My friend's terrier does it too. He is such a contortionist that sometimes...
Well, you can imagine. He has a special place for doing it too, just outside their dining room window. I suspect it is absolutely natural behaviour in wolves etc (ask Chris Packham!) In the awful old antarctic days Amundsen kept the outdoor loos clear by allowing the huskies free access. Yuk, yuk, yuk.
Meg, dear little animal, has a passion for cat sick. Any ideas on that?

(This is an entirely unhelpful post.)

Racerider Thu 30-Jan-14 11:50:50

Any tips for keeping puppy of dishwasher while loading ? She even licks it when clean , must be salty. And same for Hoover Cable ? She doesn't like the kong enough to be able to to bribed with it yet.

Thanks for all of the play biting tips. Pup is only 9 weeks today and hasn't mastered sit yet but I'm working on it. She doesn't seem fussed on treats yet- she finds things difficult to chew unless they've been soaked in water.

My mum's BC is a poo eater. She's been advised to add something like pineapple to her food. The poo doesn't smell as attractive then apparently. She hasn't tried it and I haven't googled it (which probably isn't much help)

moosemama Thu 30-Jan-14 12:01:48

Distract and reward will work, but it takes a lot of time and effort and you have to be totally consistent.

I don't like water sprays really, as any negative reinforcement is only suppressing the behaviour, rather than actually teaching an appropriate alternative.

If they're going straight back to the behaviour you need to start extending the length of time before you reward. If they're interrupting the right behaviour to get the reward, you need to work on your timing and be sure you're only rewarding when they get it right.

A clicker really is the best way, as it doesn't take long for them to learn that they don't get the reward until they hear the click - which is always used to mark the exact moment they are doing what you want. So for toiletting outside, you would only click once they have finished, then reward. The click marks the behaviour, so if they stop pooing before they've finished and run to you for a treat - no click, no reward. A few goes of clicking at the right time - after they've finished - should get them back on track. It's not a quick fix, but it is totally positive and conditions the behaviour, rather than bribing or correcting.

Awks Thu 30-Jan-14 12:10:03

Hello again, long time no speak. Jarvis is 7 months old too and it seems a long time ago since the first few posts, it's lovely catching up with you all in my lunch break.

Poo eating? Yuk that sounds minging but it's pretty common isnt it? No idea how to stop them but pineapple does sound sensible.

Anyones dog do the subservient dribbling? Jarvis does it to dh, not all the time and there is no trigger, sometimes if dh walks in the room and says hello to the dog, he will walk over and dribble wee on his shoes :D Sounds funny but it's driving dh mad. I've googled and cockers are well known for this and sometimes they grow out of it but any hints welcome.

Moose, you are right and your way is much better. Sorry.
I wish we could get clickers to work here.
Meg goes frantic with excitement at the sight or sound, when she's a bit older we will try again.
It is nice that she works for hugs and pats as well as treats though, and very lucky that grooming is a treat- she brings you the brush.

NCISaddict Thu 30-Jan-14 13:28:01

On our 4th thread already, it's the longest I've ever stayed attached to a thread.
As I type I can hear Finn crunching away at a lamb neck in the hall, no doubt he'll leave it somewhere where I tread on it and nearly break my own neck.
We have training tonight, I wonder how it will go as we missed last week due to my night shift. I'm always rather nervous even though the trainers are lovely.

moosemama Thu 30-Jan-14 13:32:41

Barbarian. Don't apologise. I do understand that not everyone has the time to do it the long-winded way. I don't want anyone to feel bad about the way they're training, Lord knows we give ourselves a hard enough time anyway. Just thought I should explain the difference in the way the two methods work.

I am lucky enough to have a lot of spare time and really enjoy the training part of dog-ownership. Not everyone has that luxury - or passion.

I would be a big fat liar if I told you I've never used short-cuts or negative reinforcement in my training over the years.

If you do want to do clicker training, but Meg can't cope with the sound (very common in BCs by the way) you could try a marker word and see if that's any better. Quite a few people at my club use marker words and I use both for my dogs, as I don't always have clicker to hand.

You clearly have a lovely bond with Meg. It's fantastic that she'll work for hugs and pats.

Hi Awks. My first ever puppy used to wee on greeting as well. She was low in confidence but was also the most dizzy, over-excitable dog we've ever owned. She grew out of it as she got older and relaxed a little.

I have lost all my clickers!! How have I lost all of them? More ordered from Amazon.

All fine here, I expected the puppy to take up all my time this time round, so am more prepared. He's a good little soul. Toilet training has been a doddle for this one, someone said that they either 'get it' or not, I very much think it's true. 9pm til 6am last night, bless him.

Doing lots of small bits of training but not managing to train individually very well, but it seems fine to reinforce what Harry already knows. Lots of self control training. Haven't tried a lead yet but he will be fine, he takes it all in his stride.

Primula cheese spread is my jackpot treat for recall this week smile They both respond to 'whass ziss' (what's this, squeaked!)

Still glad to see DH in the evening though, or the kids back from school to share smile

grooming as a treat sounds lovely, although the amount of fox poo that Harry rolled in this morning, he's not allowed near me for approx 3 months

ps me too, love the training aspect smile

Can you tell I am skimming at present?

moosemama Thu 30-Jan-14 14:03:35

Needa, I use 'Wassis' as a positive interrupter/attention cue as well. I found I felt less daft saying that then 'watch me'.

Awks Thu 30-Jan-14 15:17:00

Thanks Moose - he is timid in some circs but massively confident in others. Just like the rest of us I guess. Hope he does grow out of it as he's such a little dote.

I use wossis too, he loves the ssssssss sounds :D

NigellasGuest Thu 30-Jan-14 15:44:12

can anyone give me any pointers on how to teach "leave it" please?

at Puppy class the trainer's method involved the puppies straining on the leash to get to a treat and waiting for the leash to go slack, but my pup isn't at all interested in treats at a distance.

moosemama Thu 30-Jan-14 16:14:04

Nigella, Kikopup's training videos on YouTube and her website, Dogmantics are fantastic.

I use the same method as her to teach all my dogs and as an example, Pip was able to leave things reliably from very young. It's works really quickly.

Your dogs are lucky to have you, Moose! Yes, I do have a marker word- just 'good girl' in a very happy tone of voice which works quite well. I didn't know that about BCs and clickers. I hope she grows out of it. The only thing she will do for a clicker is left and right, I think because that is pretty boring sitting down stuff.
Blooming Meg just took off after a duck on reservoir bank and went swimming!!! It is snowing here. Then she rushed out and hugged me. All her white bits green with goose poo.
Nigella, we taught 'leave' on lead, walking past desirable things (hairbrushes, other puppies, shoes), distracting with treat and rewarding the instant she looked away.

NCISaddict Thu 30-Jan-14 16:52:41

Now for a doggy AIBU... I should go to training class tonight but I don't want to. It's not that I don't like going but it's at 8-9 and I'm knackered, I've just finished a run of night shifts and need more sleep.
Finn has had a good walk and I have paid in advance so they're not losing any money but I feel guilty.
I know what I'm doing with training, he's not my first pup or indeed my first Collie and all previous dogs were well trained, not to competition standards, but good enough to walk and be sociable, come back when called, not jump up, walk at heel and leave things.
Would AIBU to give up classes? If I hit real problems with him that go beyond teenaged tantrums I'll give the trainers a call and book one to one sessions.
Someone tell me I won't have a delinquent dog on my hands by tomorrow who'll end up selling the dog equivalent of crack on street corners because I can't be arsed to go to training?grin

SallyBear Thu 30-Jan-14 17:13:22

NCIS YANBU. We went to one class. Haven't been back, and apart from the poo eating and being distracted by playing with other doggy pals, Toby is absolutely fine and isn't a teenage delinquent. wink

NCISaddict Thu 30-Jan-14 17:18:01

I've done the tiny puppies course, was hoping to make some dog walking friends but I obviously look too scary!
Just can't find the enthusiasm for the next step up course and it really isn't the trainers fault, they're really nice.

Will open a bottle of wine instead smile and hope we don't regress back to poo eating!

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