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My boxer/bullmastiff mix is about 18 weeks old and we've had her since she was 10 weeks. We were considering obedience school because of her potential size, but her response to our training has been incredible! EXCEPT when it comes to chasing cats and other things that she loves...

I own 2 cats, and Tessie wants to play with them so badly. She flops around on the floor in complete submission, but once she gets outside, at the sight of our cat (or anything moving with the exception of a car) she immediately throws her training out the window and chases. Her responses to things outside is completely non-violent -- once she reaches her destination she's completely endearing, loving, and playful. But I don't want her chasing for the obvious reasons.

Because she's so large (40lbs of muscle), I sometimes forget she's so young. I know some of her not-listening comes from age, but I really need to find a way to get her to respond to the not chasing animals thing.

Anyone have any suggestions? We would really like to avoid obedience school because we're having trouble finding a school that's affordable with a good reputation.

Thanks,
Niki & Tessie
 
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most boxers are recommended to do obedience school...it's just how it goes..
 

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A lot of training can be done at home, but it's very important that everyone in the house is on the same page and does any commands the same way. I worked with Angel a lot when we brought her home at 18 mos. The key is to make it interesting, fun and keep your sessions short. Boxers do not do well with repition, so change up the commands. Master the basics, sit, wait, stay, leave it and come...Teaching "come(recall) is tough, there are 2 topics in the training section that you may find very helpful.

To keep her from chasing, even in your own yard, keep her on a lead, correct the behavior, have her sit for you and wait. when she is calm, reward her and release, if she starts to chase again, start all over again.Working on recall may help you a lot with that...She is a puppy, keep that in mind, all the world is a play toy to them  :)
 

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Thanks, that was actually very helpful. There's only my boyfriend and I in this house, and we definately do our very best to be on the same page. She has responded unexpectedly well to the basics "sit, stay, down, off, etc." and even loves doing her fun tricks like "paw" and "speak" (she's a show off....and maybe we are too =P). It's nice to hear that the things we've been trying to do with her to work on the chasingis the right way to go.  :D
 

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Sounds like Tessie is doing great with home training, and I know what you mean about chasing cats - we have seven, 4 in 3 out and Donner gets along pretty well with them. Working on recall with a lead on and both of you working with her, calling back and forth with LOTS of treats will help.Takes lots of time, Donner just turned 1 year old but she''ll get the idea! In fact, he took off after Miss Kitty while wearing his 50 lead (kinda hard to stop him in time) and when I called the commands "Wait" "Come" he literally came to a screeching halt about 3 ft away from her, turned and came to me!! Made Momma soooo proud! Good Luck!
 

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Wow do I know the feeling of how proud "momma" can be =P. Everyday we work on our stuff and we get more and more proud of Tessie. Sometimes I feel like I'm doing a dis-service to her by not going to obedience school, though -- but she's done SO WELL with home training.

Donner's Mom, have you trained your dog(s) at home or did you bring them to school? I know with energetic and large dogs, like boxers, danes, etc. it's "recommended" you bring them to school, and I really did intend on doing so, but Tessie has done so well...Sometimes we feel like we'd be wasting our money. My real concern is having a healthy and happy dog for as long as I can. Am I cheating my pup out of a great life by not bringing her to obedience school? She's a vet office/my office/neighborhood/family favorite, she seems happy, and she's certainly getting ahold of her at-home training...do you think we should still consider school?
 

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We did take Donner to a 8 week training just for puppies, we had already mastered most of what the class was for except for some really good lead and walking together tips.. The real reason that we went was for socialization. There were people, tons of kids,(some classes don't allow kids) and even one owner in an electric wheelchair. Donners parents were pretty big boxers and we expected him to be big (he is  :D ) and we were determined that he grow up to be comfortable and well behaved in a wide variety of situations.We try to take hime everywhere dogs are allowed. :lol:  Class was a great experience, puppies were allowed a 10 - 15 minutes play time then some group time, then some individual time. We were really fortunate with our trainer, she runs a boarding/training kennel and had some good insights into dog behavior. She actually donated her time as a trainer and our class fee was a donation to the local SPCA, plus the cost of a training harness. I would suggest contacting your local shelters or rescue group and see if they can recommend a good class for a reasonable fee, if it's something you're interested in.Good Luck!
 

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I don't really feel it's necessary to take them to a class. Yes, it's great socialization, but you can do other things to get that, like playdates....Sounds like you have a good start on it tho.  :)
 
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