|Husky of the Month|
Congrats Nikita, Archer, and Cheyanne,
our November HOTM Winners!
Thanks to all for this month's entries!
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Our current rescue spotlight is:|
Delaware Valley Siberian Husky Rescue!
Need advice on socialization and discipline tips.
Join date : 2013-06-24
|Subject: Need advice on socialization and discipline tips. Mon Jun 24, 2013 10:15 pm|| |
Hey, I have some problems with my 50 pound 10 month male husky Scooby. He's not neutered although I plan to neuter him soon. Scooby only listens to me if he knows I have a treat in my hand, he'll do everything I say then. But if I don't have a treat, he'll either take forever doing what I tell him or not do it at all. He's a bit of a puller on the leash, although I now use a prong collar, he still walks in front. I can't take him for a walk without that collar yet. Sometimes when people try to pet him, occasionally even myself, he gets defensive and starts clapping his mouth. He doesn't come to us acting aggressive, so he has some fear aggression. How can I fix this?
Socially, he can be embarrassing. He has a major, I mean a MAJOR, jumping problem. He doesn't jump on me, but he jumps on everyone else. How can I stop his jumping? I have a hard time with this because since he doesn't do it with me, I don't really know how to correct it. Every time I pull him off and sit him down, he does it again. He's been around other dogs only a few times, and everyone one of those times he's tried to breed with the other dog, so I'm getting him neutered so he can hopefully calm down and play with other dogs. If i take him to a pet clinic or a pet store for his vaccinations, he sees all the other dogs and goes crazy trying to pull on the leash. He ends up choking himself. Whenever we're done and leaving, his eyes are all red and he's heavily panting.
I need help with discipline too. Whenever Scooby does something bad, I don't really know what to do. He doesn't do bad things in front of me like chewing on objects, but if I find these chewed up objects, how exactly do I make him understand what he did and why it was wrong? Presently, I stick the object in his face and yell at him NO, but he ends up howling and snapping his mouth. If I leave him for 5mins, he'll end up chewing on that object again and repeat cycle.
I plan on putting him in some classes after he's neutered. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for taking the time to read this.
Join date : 2013-05-18
Location : Québec, Canada
|Subject: Re: Need advice on socialization and discipline tips. Mon Jun 24, 2013 10:59 pm|| |
What I believe you have is a case of a dominant husky testing the limits. You need to be able to put your foot down. If you leave a sock near him and know for a fact that he will chew on it as soon as you leave, this is a great opportunity to catch him in the act.
A dog needs to be rewarded at most 8 second after he did something good to be able to connect the act and the praise. Same goes for when he does something bad. You have an 8 second window to discipline him.
When you do catch him in the act you have to claim what he has. Approach him confidently and claim what is in his mouth. Once you have it, the dog needs to surrender to it. To achieve that can be tricky. What i'd do when i got the sock is put it right back in front of the dog. Correcting him everytime he tries to take it. The 2nd step to achieve surrender state is to prevent the dog from going away. If he does bring him back in front of the sock. He will at one point just lie down or start ignoring it.
You then walk away, victorious leaving the toy on the ground. You will have to repeat this for every object you catch him with and probably more than one time for every object until he gets the message. Everytime you succeed in making him surrender to the object. You can then take a toy that he CAN play with and just play. In time he will learn what his toys are and what objects belong to you.
Now for the jumping part. What people need to do when your dog jumps on them is to literaly walk into the jump, bumping him out of their way. If people take a step back the dog wins immediately and will try again. By walking into it you reverse the roles. The dog has to give you space or he will be knocked down. Making you victorious again.
If everyone he meets does the same thing, eventually he'll understand the people don't want a 50 pound husky jumping on them and will stop doing it on his own.
Hope this can help you.
Join date : 2013-02-05
Location : seattle, wa
|Subject: Re: Need advice on socialization and discipline tips. Mon Jun 24, 2013 11:15 pm|| |
The problem with ^ is that you can't prepare every person you meet, not to mention some people don't mind them jumping. Just to play devils advocate,I agree that other people are a huge problem with dog training but you can't invest too much stock in "other people should..." That just isn't practical. What you can do is round up 3 or 4 people and set up scenarios in advance to work on this.
Let's face it, if jumping is a dominance thing, a controversial characterization anyway, most people aren't dominant and thus the jumping will continue if you invest too much in what other people should do with your dog.
Join date : 2012-11-05
|Subject: Re: Need advice on socialization and discipline tips. Mon Jun 24, 2013 11:52 pm|| |
For the pulling , I know there's ways to train them to walk better but I'm no expert on that. We bought a gentle leader head collar and its awesome. Might be worth checking out if the prong collar doesn't work as well. Our friends with a gsd were using a prong collar and switched and seem to have better luck with that. I also invested in some bitter apple spray. If I see her chewing something that's not a toy I correct her but its helped to spray it once and she won't touch it again. Although if its something I can put out of reach I usually just move it. But for furniture and such the spray has saved my table legs. Like I said though- these aren't training solutions but they have worked for us alongside training.
Join date : 2013-05-18
Location : Québec, Canada
|Subject: Re: Need advice on socialization and discipline tips. Tue Jun 25, 2013 12:11 am|| |
I brought my husky and 6-7 of my friends one day and told them all what to do when he jumped. We played with him and got him really excited. Everytime he would try to jump on someone he'd almost get stepped on. Took 10 minutes and he stopped doing it. Since then I've had very few incidents. I'm just saying what worked for me. If your husky is at 10 you have to go to 11 or he'll keep doing it. This was my way of doing it.
I completely agree that most people you meet on the street are going to do the complete oposite of what they should. I got mad at people so many time when training mine. But for the jumping I'd tell them walk into him he'll stop jumping and it works most of the time. After a while he understood when he stopped jumping people would pet him and play with him.
I'm not a believer in keeping things out of reach of dogs. They should know what they can play with. Claiming your things works so much better than making them taste bad. I know more than one dog who doesn't care what kind of spray is on the table leg.
Join date : 2011-08-07
Location : Michigan
|Subject: Re: Need advice on socialization and discipline tips. Tue Jun 25, 2013 12:24 am|| |
One Word: Exercise.
This one thing can curb the majority of issues in sibes. Take him to the dog park for a while or rally walk him or let him play in the yard. I'm talking wear him out. Cato is a holy terror if he doesn't get exercise.
Join date : 2013-02-11
Location : NYC
|Subject: Re: Need advice on socialization and discipline tips. Tue Jun 25, 2013 10:02 am|| |
I agree with most of the advice stated above, especially exercise (nothing will help without having a physically fulfilled husky), except I respectfully disagree with the idea that he is chewing socks because he's trying to establish dominance. The behaviors that dogs use to show dominance over each other don't involve chewing, they involve mostly body language, a great deal of which, I'm guessing goes unnoticed by us. A dog doesn't reason that if he chews on or destroys another dogs toys, den or items, he's the top dog. Guarding maybe, but not chewing. In addition to that, I don't buy into the whole dominance theory anyway, yes huskies will take advantage of weakness, but not out of dominance. They do it because it is self rewarding. The pee in the house because they feel relief, they counter surf because they get food, they chew because they are bored, they need to exercise their jaw, and chewing is satisfying. It is a totally natural behavior, and they don't understand the difference between a sock and a stuffed toy, you have to teach them. I think that claiming the sock and other items can and might eventually cause resource guarding issues, when there is something just too good to let you claim. If you view it as a battle, so will he, and someday he is going to fight back or just plain have enough of your rude behavior. Or he will just totally check out. That is just my thought on dominance. I think you need to work on completely husky proofing (10 levels above normal puppy proofing) your living quarters. If you don't want him to chew socks, don't leave them on the floor. If you don't want him in your laundry, put it in the hamper in the closet and close the door. That stuff is just too tempting for a 10 month old, so why set him up to fail? If my puppy grabs something, then I take it, put it away and give him a toy or something to chew on. Here are a couple training things I think will help and have helped a ton with my puppy.
1. Teach him a release command. I use the word 'off.' It's an all purpose command for letting go of what is in his mouth. Weather its a leaf or something he picked up while walking, or something in the house he's not supposed to have, like a sock. To work on this, I started simply by showing him a treat and holding it in my hand. Of course, he started licking and trying to get it. As soon as he paused in the licking, mark (i used a clicker) and give him the treat. Repeat millions of times. When he is regularly doing it, add the command. Show treat, wait for him to try to get it, command 'off', when he stops trying to get it treat. Then start to transfer it to other objects. Toys, socks, shoes, and slowly increase the difficulty. Also, I make sure to give back what I take, so he learns that most of the time, if he listens, he not only gets a treat, but he gets back what he wants. I knew Dizzy had it when he spit out a chicken bone he found on the street so fast it was comical vs. the typical quick swallow so I don't take it away.
2. Teach him 'no' as a command. I don't think a dog really gets it until you teach them. If Dizzy starts to get into something he shouldn't I say 'ah ah' (in a light happy voice, not a scary one), and when he stops mark (click) and treat. Now if he gets into trouble and I say 'ah, ah' he walks over for his treat. If you yell or get mad or frustrated, he's going to learn that scary stuff happens when you are around, and just start sneaking off to do things he likes. He will also avoid you, which will lead to the grab and run. It's up to you, but I personally don't want to have a dog that is scared of me. I want to feel, and for my dog to feel as if we are a team. That will serve you much better in the long run, and make him more likely to listen to you in stressful and difficult situations.
3. Eye contact. This is something I am trying to train as a default behavior with Dizzy. As in, when he's interested or unsure of something to make eye contact with me. So, I'm not actually using a command but working on rewarding every time he does it. If he's laying around chewing a bone and he makes eye contact with me, click and treat. If we are going up the stairs, if we are on a walk, if he's going to the bathroom (all dogs seem to love to make eye contact while pooping, go figure). You dog sounds very easy to hype up, so with him, I would start in the least interesting place to him. If he's not good at eye contact, start by marking (clicking) any shift in his attention to you. If he cocks his ear your way reward that, if he turns his head, reward that and work up to eye contact. Keep treats with you ALL the time and reward every eye contact possible. I like to think of these as check ins. Also remember once he does it and gets his treat, let him go back to whatever he's doing. It won't take long for him to learn he can either do what he wants and get nothing, or look to you, get a treat, then do what he wanted to do in the first place. This will start to develop into him checking in with you more and more often. As he gets better and more into it increase the difficulty. Take him to a busy place and sit next to him, let him watch everything, and every time he looks mark and treat. Don't ask him to do it, just reward when he does.
4. Work on training calmness. I just read a great book, got it as an ebook from barnes and noble called On Talking Terms With Dogs - Calming Signals
by Turid Rugaas. It was $10. I understand the point of getting him hyped up to work on dealing with the jumping behavior, but many dogs can't think when they get to that crazy level. They lose their heads and go nuts, hence zoomies, and bad out of control behavior. I would rather begin by promoting and teaching calmness, and once he is at a lower level of arousal consistently, you may feel you don't need or want to elicit that hyper state. If there are issues you need to deal with when he's in that state, go there after you train calmness.
5. Check yourself. Personally, I think about training, and about my dog as if I am parenting him. Not in the sense that I look at him as a human, but in the sense that his behavior is either natural, or what I've taught him, so I MUST be patient. He doesn't do things out of spite, stubbornness, dominance, or revenge. He does them because of instinct and impulse. You must be calm, engaged, and fully present if you want and expect that behavior from him. If you feel yourself getting mad or frustrated, if your jaw is tense, if your fists are balled, put him in the crate until he calms down and do something relaxing lol. I have given myself and Dizzy many chill breaks in the crate. Don't use it as punishment, always give a treat for going in the crate. But when he gets into that crazy state, I give him the command 'crate' and he gets 10 min break in the crate, with a low stimulus toy, himalayan chew, then we go right outside for some exercise.
6. Teach down and don't let anyone approach him until he is down. If you say, 'Please don't approach until he lays down, he's in training' most people will either wait or keep walking. You can also use your body language to tell people to stay away. Don't make eye contact, turn away, or walk the other direction. I would recommend doing this anytime you take him out for a while. He sounds like he gets hyped up just being out of his normal environment. Desensitize him to this slowly before you let people approach. Especially because most people really like to get dogs hyper. They talk in high squeaky voices, play with dogs mouths and say 'I don't mind' when I correct him for biting, and encourage jumping and the zoomies. So if Dizzy is in a hyper or zoomie state, I just don't let anyone get close. I can also tell when he's getting close to his tipping point, then its back inside for a 10 min crate break.
I think classes are a good idea because they will allow you to deal with some of these issues in a safe environment with others that understand what to do when you are working on an issue. Even though I'm happy with the progress Dizzy is making, he still has some issues. He fixates on other dogs, lays down, and when they approach he jumps on them and plays really rough. It's the sneak attack. I am working on this, but I know that being in a class will help because the other handlers will be working on similar issues and won't let their dog approach if I'm trying to break the fixation. I know this is a novel, and I'll probably think of a ton of other things to add, but hopefully it will help.
Join date : 2012-09-22
Location : Chicago
|Subject: Re: Need advice on socialization and discipline tips. Tue Jun 25, 2013 10:52 am|| |
Great advise Jen! I just want to chime in to and stress the importance of #3 eye contact. It might seem silly to click or say yes, then give your dog a treat for just looking at you, but it is the foundation of basic obedience. My trainer calls it the "auto check in" Also like others have mentioned, it would be worthwhile to sign up for an obedience class so you have an opertunity to work out your issues with a professional. Plus it'll be a great motivator to always practice your training so the class can see improvement in your dog the next week
Join date : 2012-11-03
Location : San Antonio, TX
|Subject: Re: Need advice on socialization and discipline tips. Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:39 am|| |
NILIF training is a good idea here, especially for the chewing issue. http://k9deb.com/nilif.htm This explains what it is. This way he knows that if you take something from him, he gets something even better in return. It will help prevent resource guarding.
Join date : 2013-02-11
Location : NYC
|Subject: Re: Need advice on socialization and discipline tips. Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:50 am|| |
- @cinnamonbits wrote:
- NILIF training is a good idea here, especially for the chewing issue. http://k9deb.com/nilif.htm This explains what it is. This way he knows that if you take something from him, he gets something even better in return. It will help prevent resource guarding.
Also a great idea! I am definitely a proponent of giving back what you take though, especially at first, unless it's dangerous of course.
My opinion is that it creates a better foundation than simply trading up. So they don't gulp things down that they really really really want, you have taught them that its likely they will get it back anyway. The amount of times I totally remove something vs. letting him keep it is about 1:9. Most of the time he gets it back plus a treat. Even if its only for a few seconds or minutes, then distract him with a different game.
Join date : 2013-06-24
|Subject: Re: Need advice on socialization and discipline tips. Wed Jun 26, 2013 12:06 am|| |
Thanks everyone for the tips! I really appreciate it.
|Subject: Re: Need advice on socialization and discipline tips. || |
Need advice on socialization and discipline tips.
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