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  #41  
Old 17.10.2019, 08:01
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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Don't take it personally, he's a dlck to everyone.
Then ban him. Words hurt. Doubly more when you kindly ask the person to LEAVE.
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  #42  
Old 17.10.2019, 08:11
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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Then ban him. Words hurt. Doubly more when you kindly ask the person to LEAVE.
No there is no need to ban him, you just need to stop being so sensitive and taking the words of random strangers who know nothing about you or your situation to heart. I understand you are upset and laying your soul bare and I do symapthise, but the reality is that people may still view your story unfavourably and are free to give their thoughts.

if you can't deal with other peoples opinions, no matter how disagreeable they may be, then it's better for you not to engage in the more social aspects of the internet. Otherwise, stick around and develop a thicker skin.
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  #43  
Old 17.10.2019, 08:16
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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Then ban him. Words hurt. Doubly more when you kindly ask the person to LEAVE.
Please don’t let the words of one person cloud your judgement here, just ignore him and focus on the good advice you’ve been getting.
People who have nothing helpful or useful to add should just scroll by and say nothing, unfortunately some people seem to be unable to do that.

Having said that it wasn’t necessary to be quite so rude to him, rise above it and ignore him. You can put him on ignore here and you won’t even see his posts anymore (unless somebody quotes them)

Sorry I don’t have any useful info to add but I have no experience with dogs. I do know that my sister in law’s St Bernard needed very little exercise, much less than the cocker spaniel.

Last edited by Guest; 17.10.2019 at 09:58. Reason: s/person/dick and removed quoted insult
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  #44  
Old 17.10.2019, 08:20
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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No there is no need to ban him, you just need to stop being so sensitive and taking the words of random strangers who know nothing about you or your situation to heart. I understand you are upset and laying your soul bare, but the reality is that people may view your story unfavourably.

if you can't deal with other peoples opinions, no matter how disagreeable they may be, then it's better for you not to engage in the more social aspects of the internet. Otherwise, stick around and develop a thicker skin.
Do you think my problem is someone viewing my story unfavourably?! It said my dogs are in jail, living a life with no parole in a piss pot apartment.. As though they do not go outside or have time to run (what they insinuated is ILLEGAL in Switzerland, as dogs must have time to socialize and so on).

I can deal with opinions, but I did NOT come her to be insulted, and I will speak up for myself. I have been through enough in my life, my skin is PLENTY thick enough, all due respect Chuff. You don't know how much abuse I have endured in my 31 years on this planet, all I have survived. And anonymity is no excuse to be a f'n as$hole to someone else and at the end of the day I am GOING to defend myself. If it looks sensitive so be it.. then I am soft and it is voll ok.
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  #45  
Old 17.10.2019, 08:24
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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Do you think my problem is someone viewing my story unfavourably?! It said my dogs are in jail, living a life with no parole in a piss pot apartment.. As though they do not go outside or have time to run (what they insinuated is ILLEGAL in Switzerland, as dogs must have time to socialize and so on).

I can deal with opinions, but I did NOT come her to be insulted, and I will speak up for myself. I have been through enough in my life, my skin is PLENTY thick enough, all due respect Chuff. You don't know how much abuse I have endured in my 31 years on this planet, all I have survived. And anonymity is no excuse to be a f'n as$hole to someone else and at the end of the day I am GOING to defend myself. If it looks sensitive so be it.. then I am soft and it is voll ok.
Yeah, your skin seems like iron. Good luck and be wary of oversharing!
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  #46  
Old 17.10.2019, 08:34
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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For once I wholeheartedly agree with Chuff, that doesn’t happen often.



Please don’t let the words of one dick cloud your judgement here, just ignore him and focus on the good advice you’ve been getting.
People who have nothing helpful or useful to add should just scroll by and say nothing, unfortunately some people seem to be unable to do that.

Having said that it wasn’t necessary to be quite so rude to him, rise above it and ignore him. You can put him on ignore here and you won’t even see his posts anymore (unless somebody quotes them)

Sorry I don’t have any useful info to add but I have no experience with dogs. I do know that my sister in law’s St Bernard needed very little exercise, much less than the cocker spaniel.
I will exercise the ignore function. My rudeness is warranted as I asked before not to be provoked, because I stated it was a sensitive topic for me. But the sociopaths come out, even when you play nice. I don't take back anything I've said.

You are right I need to put it to rest, with this I can agree.

And it is true, some giant breeds really are not too exercise inclined. Most of the Dane's time is spent sleeping. She has never been one for long walks.. meaning beyond an hour. I asked my vet if this was normal and he said pretty much it is par for the course. She works better if she has a task, like carrying her backpack or scent work.. We are out about 4 times a day for 30 minute intervals. I am at home 24/7. She goes to the Hundehort 1 to 2x per week, baring peak vacation times where there is no space for her.

My other dogs takes his walks early in the morning, we go about 90 minutes in the wee hours and 90 minutes in the early evening. WC breaks in between. As he has gotten older he has slowed down due to a shoulder injury he sustained a year ago.
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Old 17.10.2019, 08:35
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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Yeah, your skin seems like iron. Good luck and be wary of oversharing!
Thank you. Carrying on I will proceed with much caution.

RSC.
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  #48  
Old 17.10.2019, 10:38
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

I’m sorry for your troubles. There are a lot of good people on EF, but you will find that this forum is a lot like a chicken coop where bullies wait around to peck at injured hens looking for help. Ignore them and don’t take them seriously, they’re miserable pricks. All the best to you.
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  #49  
Old 17.10.2019, 12:17
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs

First, big cyber hugs to you and your pups.

You sound like a responsibleb, caring, loving dog owner. You have indeed followed the early training route most experts recommend, you have done, and continue to do, right by your dogs. Give yourself credit for all the good you have done.

Sometimes we are thrown unexpected challenges. I know how hard this is, I commend you for all you are doing. Take heart. You are not alone.

Because I am tied up with eldercare craziness at the moment, I’m not going to write one of my usual long missives. Rather, I’m going to pop in and out of this thread with suggestions as time allows.


So first:

Because you mention fairly deep seated anxiety it might be helpful to look at that carefully, as in order to address behavior we need to address emotional state first. Towards that end:

Dr Maya Bräm
https://www.tierspital.uzh.ch/de/kle...gie/braem.html

She is the specialist for behavioral medicine at the Tierspital. She does consultations there, and also, within reasonable distance, in the client’s home. She is based in the Basel area and conducts her private practice there, but is willing to travel in the greater ZH area in conjunction with her Tierspital schedule.

With two dogs you have a pack dynamic, and the neighbors dogs are a factor, so I would recommend a home consultation with Dr Bräm. It’s important to look ar all factors.

Dr Bräm has been an immense help with my nightmare challenge, Robin Goodfellow. While Robin is the ‘most broken’ of my dogs, the situation is exacerbated by pack dynamics, hence the suggestion of a home consultation to look at the whole picture.

You can read more about Dr Bräm on her own website, here:

http://mayanimal.ch/dr-maya-braumlm.html

I have had dogs for going on 30 years, most of that time devoted to dogs with behavioral challenges. I was pretty confident in my abilities... then along came Robin. He is my ‘almost Waterloo’ dog.

I have made the decision to include medication in my approach to helping Robin.
Meds are not a panacea, and certainly not a replacement for ongoing rehab work. Meds are just another option in the training/rehab toolbox. Not appropriate for every dog nor in every situation, but at least worth an open minded assessment.

Forgive the anthropomorphism, but it’s a bit like human mental health. Sometimes you need therapy only, sometimes you need both. The goal is finding the optimal approach for the individual.

Dr Bräm is a highly respected in the field. She is kind, compassionate, supportive. She will not push you in a direction you do not feel comfortable going. Thanks to her help we have made progress, we are starting to see a light at the end of the tunnel. She s happy to consult in English, btw.

Now, there are several other thing to consider in rehab work, and I have additional suggestions. But I see it’s now sunrise so time to start the merry-go-round that is dealing with US healthcare. Eek.

I will pop back later with additional thoughts, especially on the subject of current research and expert thinking on the effects of hormones and behavioral problems, as time allows today.

Take heart. You are not alone.

Feel free to take this discussion to PM if you prefer.
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  #50  
Old 17.10.2019, 12:30
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs

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Because you mention fairly deep seated anxiety it might be helpful to look at that carefully, as in order to address behavior we need to address emotional state first.
When I skimmed this post and saw this para, it occurred to me that the OP seems to be anxious with her situation and surroundings, which is being compounded by the boisterous pooch.

Maybe the doggo is tapping into the OP's anxiety and stress and it's compounding the behavioural issues?

I know dogs are super sensitive to human ups and downs so if the pup has grown up with human stress in the house it stands to reason some of it has rubbed off.

Sorry if that sounds like I'm speaking out of turn but it was just an observation.
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  #51  
Old 17.10.2019, 13:32
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs

Meloncollie, thank you so much for your suggestions. It has been a truly hard road with this dog. I have owned many in the past, of various breeds in different situations in the states. I have never come up against something like this.

I was reluctant to medicate her. I now believe I need to do this as part of her rehabilitation plan. If dogs are like humans, she can't possibly retain the coping skills she has learned being this easily triggered. If medication can allow her to feel more comfortable, I am all for it as she seems to be suffering psychologically.

I have some questions:
1. In your experience, do dog genetics play a role in forming her personality? Why did you decide to medicate Robin? What did you use, and how did it change your relationship with him? What was the difference in interacting with the environment and while training with you?

2. Do you think I should push for the spay as soon as possible, despite my vet's suggestion to wait?

3. She is eating BARF + vitamins and veg, could her diet contribute to her behavior?

I am ok to write here, as aside from the conniption I had earlier, I hope someone else in this situation is helped by these exchanges.

I am sorry you are having the navigate the US healthcare system. It's highway robbery, and a nightmare! I wish you luck and also hope the loved one you are caring for is ok.

RSC
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Old 17.10.2019, 13:54
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs

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When I skimmed this post and saw this para, it occurred to me that the OP seems to be anxious with her situation and surroundings, which is being compounded by the boisterous pooch.

Maybe the doggo is tapping into the OP's anxiety and stress and it's compounding the behavioural issues?

I know dogs are super sensitive to human ups and downs so if the pup has grown up with human stress in the house it stands to reason some of it has rubbed off.

Sorry if that sounds like I'm speaking out of turn but it was just an observation.
No, you are absolutely right. I was, for a long time, the subject of bullying by my neighbors. From the onset they did not like us so much when we moved in. They blamed us for absolutely everything, most things we were not responsible for. They just assumed it was us. So to say I have been tense here is an understatement.

Finally, nearly a year in, we did some conflict resolution and explained what things we were and weren't responsible for. Now we have an understanding, but because it went on for so long I am still not comfortable. My dogs know when I am not feeling well. I am sure they feel it and smell it.

My trainer also said this, and so then I went to some Yoga classes. I try to practice my breathing when I go walking with them to help some with my anxiety. Of course it is still there.

I am thinking of taking a holiday with the Dane to a remote place, to see if this helps anything. Rent out a cabin or chalet hopefully with a grill so I can BBQ everyday, have some time in nature and just decompress and work on our relationship and her training.

RSC
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  #53  
Old 17.10.2019, 14:09
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

I did look for your other posts to understand why you were so on edge, clearly, there was more to it... The thing with your neighbours and the washing machine sounds like a right palaver, but it seems you were able to sort it out - good for you.

Going for a break sounds like a great idea, thanks to AirBnB you have more options when it comes to dog friendly areas. Brittany can be surprisingly stunning at this time of year and the beaches are deserted, even if you just want to sit and enjoy the view, it is a lovely place. The area around Roscoff is my favourite, my gran lived there and when my uncle's dog absolutely loved it.

Best of luck.
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  #54  
Old 17.10.2019, 15:01
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

Hi Kittster,

Thank you for the suggestion. It would be nice to be near some water right about now. We moved away from ZH lake region out to here, so I miss being able to get to the lake at night. Brittany looks like a great idea.

Yes, the washing machine incident was with my old neighbor. These new ones were 10000% worse. Living in my other place was peanuts in comparison. Here we are allowed dogs, so there are quite a few here of all sizes and the neighbors kept calling the office saying that the poo they found on the ground was from us. Well, it wasn't. We would never leave their poop for someone else.. its like a horse pile... even if it wasn't the moral thing to do, how could we get away with it? EVERYONE would notice us.

We have had crazy letters and balls or other toys shoved in our mail box under the assumption that they belong to our dogs.. when the only thing I will buy them are mini tires and the extra tough black Kongs because other stuff doesn't last! It turned out these were children's toys, not dog toys. There once was a party here and lots of people and they complained our dogs trashed the elevator, provided photo evidence as well... but the catch is we were not even here that weekend.. just stuff like this.. or that we play loud music.. but we haven't even ever connected our speakers here. My husband is constantly on bluetooth headphones as am I because we are particular about noise. It was RIDICULOUS.

They have called the police on us, accused us of animal abuse and then called the animal protection agency on us. They came, inspected our house, our animals, made me show that they are not afraid of me--as if I would ever hit my dogs. Checked where their beds were, where their water bowls are. Walked around the apartment complex, our building and everywhere to see if hygiene standards were met. Checked to see if we had dog food which meant going into our meat freezer (we have one just full of raw meat, as we buy it in bulk for the Dane and then we have one human food freezer) and our pantry to look at the food for our second dog. She also took copies of the dossiers we have for each dog, which we then emailed to the amt as we've all documentation of health checks and passports scanned.

What came of this was a rapport with the lady who was here. So I have a contact in the vet office. That was the silver lining. She said there was and is no case of animal abuse or cruelty, my dogs are not afraid of me and are were also friendly to her.. they are very well taken care of and have a more than generous living situation. She told me I can explain to the police I am being harassed if there are any more false reports. So these people really had it out for us and did so anonymously.

This is where my defensiveness was coming from. I am not saying I am some perfect "Angel Neighbor" and I never did anything wrong. I am sure I have yelled too loud at my husband, talked too loudly on my balcony while on the phone. I am sure my dogs' noses have touched the door or window or elevator and I didn't clean it immediately after. I have forgotten to shut some doors quietly. I have been in violation of Nachtrühe by about 30 minutes a few times. My neighbors have also made these same errors. Still, I am not some slovenly person who doesn't care for my neighbors. We have never trashed common spaces, or done the level of things of which we've been accused. We don't play loud music and I am, while not Swiss, integrated enough to know the rules.

But I just became so panicked about leaving my house I was literally timing my walks with my dogs and even leaving for appointments with times where I'd see nearly no people. Sunglasses on, hood up, headphones in to try to minimise my self as much as possible, because it felt too tense.

I bought a wireless vacuum to hoover the rugs in the common spaces, although we have a super and the dirt and debris were not from us. I started cleaning the elevator from top to bottom twice a day. Once at 5 am and again after the last dog walk of the day.. between 9 and 11pm.. despite it not being our mess. I just did it because I got sick of being dogpiled.

So now, it is marginally better after the conflict resolution... but I am having a hard time to get back to center or to feel comfortable. This has also taken a toll on my relationship.. so moving is really good for everyone involved.

It just kind of felt like I was suffocating for a bit. Took a great toll on my mental health and the report of animal abuse definitely broke my heart a bit.. so conflict resolution or not.. I am still not happy having been brigaded.

The good thing is now, I can at least speak to my neighbors if something does occur.. but lol I still feel awkward and cringe-y.

I remember reading about neighbors and mobbing on EF as a lurker and being like wow can this really happen?? Kind of in disbelief, but its real and I got a good taste of it!

After writing all of this, I think a vacation is well overdue. Thanks for your suggestions.
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  #55  
Old 17.10.2019, 16:28
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

I have a boisterous 11 month old GSD so very strong and can react to other dogs. There seems to be 2 separate schools of training one of which is dominance, flooding use of prong and e-collars to control through fear (Cesar Milan) and then there is positive training, which I firmly believe is the correct method.


Have a look at this website by Victoria Stilwell which has worked very well for my boy

https://positively.com/


  • Dogs will sense your anxiety so if you are tense and fearful when another dog approaches you will project that onto your dog. What works for us is distraction. Making him want to focus on me for a high value treat or toy rather than the approaching dog, Make it a game and praise her when she does what you want her to do
  • I use a no-pull harness with a connector at the chest and on the back. It has made a big difference to him not being able to pull me to where ever he wants to go.
  • Try and find someone with a very non-reactive dog so you can practise get your girl to leave them alone
  • Get her out of the usual surroundings for a weekend and see how much of a difference that makes.
  • Make training fun - even if it is teaching tricks in the house.
I don't know about bitches but as an aside I have been told by my vet and several experts that bigger dogs such as my GSD should not be castrated until they are about 2
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Old 17.10.2019, 17:44
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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I have a boisterous 11 month old GSD so very strong and can react to other dogs. There seems to be 2 separate schools of training one of which is dominance, flooding use of prong and e-collars to control through fear (Cesar Milan) and then there is positive training, which I firmly believe is the correct method.


Have a look at this website by Victoria Stilwell which has worked very well for my boy

https://positively.com/


  • Dogs will sense your anxiety so if you are tense and fearful when another dog approaches you will project that onto your dog. What works for us is distraction. Making him want to focus on me for a high value treat or toy rather than the approaching dog, Make it a game and praise her when she does what you want her to do
  • I use a no-pull harness with a connector at the chest and on the back. It has made a big difference to him not being able to pull me to where ever he wants to go.
  • Try and find someone with a very non-reactive dog so you can practise get your girl to leave them alone
  • Get her out of the usual surroundings for a weekend and see how much of a difference that makes.
  • Make training fun - even if it is teaching tricks in the house.
I don't know about bitches but as an aside I have been told by my vet and several experts that bigger dogs such as my GSD should not be castrated until they are about 2
Could you please share which no-pull harness you use?
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Old 17.10.2019, 19:03
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

Not an easy situation. But there are 100s of 1000s of pets kept in conditions which are totally unsuitable for them, and it is really not helping. Why oh why?
And shelters are full of them - good on you for trying to find a way....
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Old 17.10.2019, 19:39
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

It is actually just a training issue. Dogs are different. So they also need different trainings. Stronger dogs need also sometimes correction. I have Malinois and White Shepherds. White Shepherds are quite easy to be corrected and they listen very well. On the other hand, with Malinois I have to have much stronger hand. But I have already 20 years experience and was also competing with my dogs. Not probably so easy for normal people with not such a background.

My advice to you is to change your trainer. Find a trainer who knows how to rehabilitate dogs. Some deal also with very difficult cases. Yours seems something in between.

I always send all my puppy owners to their suitable trainers and when the match is good never any problems. When not....

I wish you patience and try to find suitable training methods for this dog.
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Old 17.10.2019, 19:40
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

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Could you please share which no-pull harness you use?

I got it from Fressnapf and the brand is More4. I just checked on their online page and it isn't there so cannot share a link. I will try and get a photo of him in it and post it tomorrow. It comes with a special lead so you can connect one end to the D ring on the chest and the other end to the normal connector on the back and its like walking him with a set of reins. Its got quite a bit of padding on the chest which is nice
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Old 17.10.2019, 19:47
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Re: At the end of my rope.. husband, two dogs..

Yes, thank you for all of your advice. We are 100% positive training.. as Cesar Milan and his methods scare me a bit. I love Victoria Stilwell, I watch her YT channel but did not know she had a forum! I will check there.

1. You are right. We practice look at me and use distraction, it is just that if we see something.. like a cat or dog or bird or hedgehog she is no longer able to respond to "look at me" or her name. When we create enough distance, she is fine.. but the unpredictable moments of life I cannot account for I do not understand how to manage. Do you have suggestions for that crucial time?

My trainer has told me to remove ourselves quickly from the stimulus, to create distance which we do.. but I have to literally pull her away although she knows the "leave it" command! I want her to choose to willingly go away.

Do you think her reactivity is just also an issue of dog adolescence? My older male used to be like this too, but now I can tell him leave it and he is like "meh.. ok" and comes trotting. He is also now almost 5.. so at a different stage of life.

2. Which no-pull harness are you using? Currently she has 3 harnesses, but most of her pulling is managed with the Dogmatic headcollar. She has it in leather and it is very strong.. this was to replace the Halti because she was too strong for the material.. I feared it might break. The trainer said I needed to be able to pull her head in the direction I need her to go if she chooses not to look away and destress herself from the situation.

3. Yes, my trainer has agreed we can do this with some friendly dogs. We have been doing B.A.T. 2.0 by Grisha Stewart. I have been using high value treats when she turns her head on her own or otherwise decides not to care/begins sniffing and exploring unstead of being hyper-focused on the other dog. If there were a way, I wish my Dane could meet another dog every day in this manner because I think repetition of this procedure is going to be the ONLY thing that raises her threshold. Maybe I can make a post and see if anyone is in my area and willing to meet us on a field a few times in a week.

4. Yes, taking her for a vacation is next on the list of things to do. I am curious how her behavior would change outside of this environment, and plus to have my dog and some solitude would really do us both some good!

5. I try to make training as fun as possible! We have a dog whistle and when she responds to it she is paid in chicken hearts.. they are little enough to be bite size to her. I play this with her in the house, because ultimately when we are further along I would like to be able to recall her with the whistle, or use it in emergencies to ask for her attention when we have close encounters. We are also working on touch.. where she needs to tap my hand with her nose... with the goal being that I can get her to follow from a close range in order to touch my hand if I hold it out. We do "lets go" and "turn" where she is on the leash and I am hopping backwards in hopes she chooses to follow. All of this in the living room and at short intervals. I try to back off when she is spacey and if I have to keep repeating the command, I give us a break as to not overwhelm her.

Yes, you are absolutely right about castration. It is best, if at all possible, to wait until they are older when dealing with large breeds. They mature at a slower rate, and giants are still growing into their 3rd year... for dogs maybe a bit of height and weight between the 2nd and 3rd year and for bitches they don't get too much taller, but begin to fill out. That's why we were hoping to keep her bits and pieces until she passed the two year mark.

Thank you for your suggestions, they are much appreciated.

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I have a boisterous 11 month old GSD so very strong and can react to other dogs. There seems to be 2 separate schools of training one of which is dominance, flooding use of prong and e-collars to control through fear (Cesar Milan) and then there is positive training, which I firmly believe is the correct method.


Have a look at this website by Victoria Stilwell which has worked very well for my boy

https://positively.com/


  • Dogs will sense your anxiety so if you are tense and fearful when another dog approaches you will project that onto your dog. What works for us is distraction. Making him want to focus on me for a high value treat or toy rather than the approaching dog, Make it a game and praise her when she does what you want her to do
  • I use a no-pull harness with a connector at the chest and on the back. It has made a big difference to him not being able to pull me to where ever he wants to go.
  • Try and find someone with a very non-reactive dog so you can practise get your girl to leave them alone
  • Get her out of the usual surroundings for a weekend and see how much of a difference that makes.
  • Make training fun - even if it is teaching tricks in the house.
I don't know about bitches but as an aside I have been told by my vet and several experts that bigger dogs such as my GSD should not be castrated until they are about 2
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