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 Howling at other dogs

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Tye's Mummy

Female Join date : 2013-05-09
Location : Lincoln, England

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PostSubject: Howling at other dogs   Howling at other dogs EmptyFri May 10, 2013 5:50 am

Please help. I've had Tye for a week now, he is 1 year old and an absolute delight. However, I really don't look forward to taking him on his walks. There is a spot at the end of the street where he just goes nuts, staring, yelping, pulling like a truck. It didn't happen for the few 1st days but my daughter walks down that way for school, could he be picking up her scent or is he seeing things I cant see?

ALso, whilst I am here, bounding and howling at other dogs, In the UK we don't have Dog Parks so they can socialize, and rely on lovely owners willing to allow Tye to be friendly with their dogs. A lot of people walk away, a lot look at us in disgust ( Tye is bouncing around and howling at this point) Others just don't want to know. We live near a big playing field so there are more than often an owner and his mate on there. How can I stop him jumping and howling at other dogs? He did it this morning on the school walk and almost threw me to the floor.

Thankyou in advance for ANY kind of help towards this Smile
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The Long-Winded Canadian

Male Join date : 2011-08-11
Location : Montreal, QC

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PostSubject: Re: Howling at other dogs   Howling at other dogs EmptyFri May 10, 2013 9:25 am

Hard to give solid advice that will work for sure on stuff like this. It's all excitement based and that normally isn't the easiest frame of mind to get attention or stop them from doing anything. There are some things you could try though, that may help you get Tye to become more accustomed to those situations, it will not be an over night fix though.

Training Classes

Head out to your local pet food supply store and ask about training classes. This is a GREAT way to start. Most beginning courses expect the dog to go ape shit crazy at first, and most of the dogs in that class aren't trained yet either.

Ideally you wanted to do this as a puppy to help later on in life, but there are adult training classes available. Just make sure you interview the trainer and even let him/her meet Tye first to evaluate his energy. Be honest and explain what you want and the problems you have with his excitement, bouncing, and other dogs.

What makes training classes ideal in this case is Tye will normally get to romp around and play before the class starts with other dogs, and as it progresses you get to train him to listen to you in the presence of other dogs.

Attention Triggers

You can train Tye using attention triggers. An Attention Trigger is a word you use when you want your dog to stop doing anything it's doing and focus on you.

Normally this is done by saying the word and showering your dog in treats, repeatedly. This word then becomes attached to MANY MANY TREATS AND REWARDS, so ideally when you say it when Tye is flipping out he'll turn to you and start looking for a reward.

It isn't hard to do, and is useful in many situations. As you progressively train you keep ramping up the challenged; more obstacles.


Taking Tye some place that has Heavy Dog traffic is great. The more dogs who pass him without him being able to get to should start to reinforce the fact that he won't get to meet them all.

Now it is going to get worse before it gets better. You'll be sitting there embarrassed to death as your dog howls, rolls, barks and whines. Let him go through his death throes. Just sit there until he clams, there will be a point he does, he just needs to get there.

Bringing treats should help with this again and if you use them right could help break his fixation on them. waving them under his nose while he is staring at a dog might grant you his attention, and thus a reward for him.

Ideally you want to reward if a dog passes and he responds calmly, or if you can get his attention (eye contact) while a dog is close. Doing this from a bench far away at first and slowly move forward, again making the challenged more intense for him.

Structured Walks

A walk shouldn't be something where he has control to do as he pleases, even if he sees another dog. To that end you might want to start adding more structure to your walks, and reinforcing the fact that a walk is more than a treat, it is his job.

I'm of the mind frame that my huskies need a job to feel like they are living a full life. Our walks are generally moderate in length (3 to 6Kms) but we do so very structured and with weight. My dogs are also fed after their walk is done, almost never before. It gives them purpose and sets up a reward system for them.

Many people will tell you your dog needs to be walking behind you do that you establish leadership, it's a crock. Your dog can be anywhere and you can still be in control, for example mine walk slightly ahead of me and beside me.

You do however want to establish rules. My Rules are No pulling, No Smelling every little thing, No pulling my arms out of it's socket when you see another dog or squirrel, no eating random stuff, ect. They need to walk politely by my side or I stop walking or change directions. The longer my walks take the longer before they eat, and trust me they understand that.

When we get to a park or a place I deem ok they get to go to the end of their leashes and smell, dig, run, play, poop, lick, (hopefully not lick poop) anything they want. I believe unstructured time they get to be playful dogs is just as important.

Set up your rules, define what a walk should be and enforce it slowly. The only time my pups really lose their minds now is if the other dog we are passing is barking and charging at them.

Find a trainer

Kind of like the classes but you could also look into hiring a private trainer that will just work one on one with Tye. A good trainer tends to have a dog with him anyways, so that could help desensitize Tye.

Again do your research and even ask for references; be honest and explain what you need done.

Hope some of that wall of text helps,
and Welcome to the forum,

Is this about the cake problem? What's the matter with you mathematicians, cake is never a problem. - Professor Lazlo
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Tye's Mummy

Female Join date : 2013-05-09
Location : Lincoln, England

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PostSubject: Re: Howling at other dogs   Howling at other dogs EmptyFri May 10, 2013 10:15 am

Thankyou for taking the time to write all of that. Smile

We have just returned from walking him, this time where there was not too many dogs. The 1st time he saw one he did howl and jump up but once out of sight he wasn't interested. The 2nd time were a pair, this time we got him to sit down, and sat with him. Unbelievable. He tried pulling a little bit, tried only once to jump but we gained his attention and gave a treat, let the other dogs pass by and was able to walk as normal, no turning back or wanting to jump, and no howling. It was like he was a different dog!

He walked the rest of the way with only a slight pull, as expected, and a delight to walk.

Upon arriving home we fed him, he drank and now hes tired out.

The treat system works fab and we're now incorporating this into every command, every time. He's learning, and its only been a few hours.

We'll see how he gets on with his evening walk.

Again, thank you so much for the advice.
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