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OMG, what a disaster!

1804 Views 20 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  Guest
Atticus and I attended our first training class tonight.  Oh. My. God.  This dog simply cannot focus when there are other dogs around.   The teacher finally took us to a separate room, but even that didn't work.  He KNEW all those other dogs were out there and he simply was too excited and intent on finding them and playing with them to focus in any way.

At home, we've "sort of" taught him sit, down and stay with a clicker.  "Sort of" meaning he will sit and down and sit and down a few times, but then he'll start downing when I say sit or sitting when I say down.... i.e. he doesn't seem to know the words as well as he knows that SOMETHING is expected of him and he'll offer all the wrong things in response to, say, "sit."  And even that doesn't last long... he gets bored with training pretty fast, which I think is probably due to the fact that he is a raw fed dog and the treats we're offering are just not that enticing after a taste or two.

I really want/need Atticus to be a "canine good citizen" sort of dog, so any advice anyone can offer would be much appreciated.

Oh - before I sign off, I do want to say that he's really well-behaved at home.  All I have to do is utter that "EhEhEh!" kind of admonishment when he's into  something he shouldn't be, and he stops (AND, thus far, leaves those things alone when left at home alone for a few hours).  But when he's around other dogs, all bets are off.

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Practice, practice, practice. A sit that he makes into a down is not a sit.
Yep, its takes time, but all the work you put into pays off later!!!!

Hanna is going to be two and finally can work with her in the presence of other dogs!!  

Treats are key.   I feed raw and we use a number of things.  We cut up stew meat, boil some chick use those chunks, we also use freeze dried chix hearts, and bait (as used in confirmation).   I have use hot dogs, string cheese, they make beef roll (like Natural balance beef rolls) but into cubes.  

If you are asking for a sit, click as soon as his bottom touches the floor.  and treat, if he goes into a down, when you dont ask, no click no reward, but I use  "Unt uh, UP" not sure how to spell it but with a treat held high to lure them back to a sit.  Once they do, click and then treat.  

If he is focused on other dogs then my suggestion if to work with his attention on you.   Go to petsmart for a little bit of your own training.  Take him down an asile.  Anytime he looks or start to look at you when you call his name  - immediately click and treat.  If he sees a dog and starts to focus on it, call him, and at the point where he takes his attention off the dog, mark and reward.   its tough but do it enough and he will learn:)
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Awww, he'll get the hang of it soon!  You could also try using hand signals as well as saying the words.  That's what I did and still do with Lola.  You could also start teaching him "watch me" at home, when he's not paying attention to you say "Atticus watch me" and when he looks at you click and treat (I think that's how you do it . . I've never used clicker training).  I do this a lot with Lola when I walk her.  A nice lady at PetSmart taught me this for free after watching Lola run amuck in the store and not pay attention to me!   :lol: Good luck!
It does take time and patience...I like the hand signals as well, like Alicia said and found it's a good way for me to get mine refocused on me....Samson had a lot of problems when we first attended class as well, but after a couple sessions, I saw a huge improvement, so yes, it will get better, just takes work, as frustrating as that sounds, there is no "quick or easy fix"
I started off teaching him a command to pay attention (because my dog is just as spastic as can be- I think he has puppy ADHD, haha!)

The first command I taught him was to look at me, by saying "look" in a stern voice and putting my finger on my nose, and when he made eye contact, I'd give him a treat and lots of cuddles.

It all depends on your training and your dog, but I found that Beaux learned to focus by me TELLING him to. Now, I can bypass the "look" and go straight into commands, but it took about a month of saying "look" and then "sit down" and then "lay down" and "give me one paw" etc etc etc.... It took another month for him to listen when children and other dogs were around. Now he listens and obeys, even when we're at the dog park! Now if I could just get him to lay down and roll over outside (I have "monk" reincarnated as a dog- I've never seen a dog that dislikes being dirty THAT much).

Practice makes perfect- hang in there (I know it can be irritating).  :)
Lucy was the same way! I would take a treat in my hand and move my hand (with the treat in it) up to my face and say "look". When she did, I click and treat. She has that down pretty good now but it did take some time.
Lulu (9 months in March) is doing very well with her tricks.  I  have not used a clicker --- don't know how to train with that.  
teewee\";p=\"85686 said:
I have taken her several times to Lowes, Home Depot, Tractor Supply so she can see people.  
They let dogs into Lowes/Home Depot where you live!? I wanna live there!
Yeah... it's great!!!   As long as they are on a leash, it's OK.    
I live in Texas.
[quote="teewee\";p=\"85694":kzsob9qe]Yeah... it's great!!!
How much socialization has he had with other dogs?  When I first started puppy class with Lola at about 4-5 months of age she was a freak, almost out of control, and I think it was mainly because she hadn't had that many dog-dog interactions in her young life.  I starting doing doggy daycare at the same time I started puppy training and that helped out a lot, she freaked out a lot less.  

Like others said, just stick with it.  He'll get use to being around other dogs and training.  Lola's 16 months old and she runs around a training building with 6-7 other dogs doing agility with no leash, no problem.
nano\";p=\"85557 said:
If you were in my class and having this problem I would have you remove Atticus away from the group
That's exactly what the trainer did.  She took Atticus and I to a totally separate room to work alone.  LOL, she was sweet... said "This in not punishment!"  But of course it reminded me so much of being sent to the principal's office when I was a kid.

Thanks for your pointers, though.  All help is greatly appreciated!

HannaBanana\";p=\"85601 said:
I feed raw and we use a number of things.  We cut up stew meat, boil some chick use those chunks, we also use freeze dried chix hearts, and bait (as used in confirmation).   I have use hot dogs, string cheese, they make beef roll (like Natural balance beef rolls) but into cubes.
Thanks, Hanna - just one question.. What does bait "as used in confirmation" mean?

Appreciate your other advice as well.

This is just the greatest board in the world for a boxer owner.

Nexu\";p=\"85708 said:
How much socialization has he had with other dogs?  
I take him to the dog park almost every day for an hour, and I took him directly before the class hoping that he would get his "me-need-to-play!" thing out of his system.  Clearly, it didn't work.

If you want to go for CGC the greetings between dogs there are handled by owner and made by the owners permission given to the dog.  Free play at a dog park is not practicing this behavior.  A dog playdate would be more appropriate for him IMO.  I don't do dog parks nor recommend them.  Too many bad things happen there and unfortunately I have heard of many of them from clients and friends.

I have a question for you Anna.  How many other dogs are in the class with your dog?  And how many trainers in that class?  We take Attila to training one night aweek and there is maximum of 5 dogs that the trainer will have in the class.  However we went from 3dogs down to just 2.  

I posted a file with dog training materials I got from are dog trainer.  I will past the link here for you as well.  We also have Attila performing sit, down, and stay on a soft mat or blanket that he always lays on.  The mat really helps when at the trainer because its the scent of what he is use to at home, so he feels more comfortable when at dog training and being around other dogs.  Also the use of treats is a must, but only reward when they perform the command correctly.  Also practice only one command per week or untill he/she understands the command and to the point where you are able to move on to the next.

Any ways here is the link.
Torbel's Dog Training week 1 - 4
This will help with learning sit, down, stay, off, come, and things not to do.
The file is a total of 12.53mb in size.  All you have to do is click the link above and then click on "CLICK HERE TO START DOWNLOADING"  then the file will download and you can select open, save, or cancel.  I would select save, and then save it to my documents or your desktop.  Then once finished you can open the file using winrar.  And within the winrar file is 22 .jpeg images that you can read through windows picture and fax viewer or you can just select all of them and print them out.  I will continue to update this each week with the new additions to our dog training documents.
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Just a quick question. Ashley is my 5th Boxer, and with ALL of them, I have found that treats are a highly ineffective method for training. The dog gets so spastic simply knowing you have a treat they will not look, nor listen till the treat is devoured, and you gently take them to another area to train. I have found the only way my dogs have learned is through praise..which Boxers gobble up as we all know :lol:
I have Ashley currently on sit, stay, down, shake, roll over, off, heel and come, and she is only 3 1/2 months. We are working dilligently on the OFF comand with other people, and as of a week ago we have conqured the most challenging comand of "Carpet" ( she is NOT allowed in the tiled dinning area while we eat, she may stay on the carpet, and watch only, as I will not have a drooling dog in my lap while I try to eat! )
I have never given her treats till our training time was over..she gets love, kisses, and tons of petting instead, which seems to keep her mind on the task at hand, not whats in Mommys pocket. So...has anyone else had success with this method??? Or have I had 5 odd Boxers that train a bit differently??
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I have found that wearing him out a bit before obedience class can make a big difference.
Ashley at her tender age gets about a 5 minute training per day. I was floored that she picked it all up so easy :). I totally agree, you must keep it fun, short and as soon as she loses the itsy bit of concentration she has right now..we end the session with rolling and playing and a quick treat for being such a good Pup!! She seems to look forward to her time with me, and if she is being obstinant ( ohhhh Boxers are obstinant?? lol ) we end the session on a good note, with a down command, and she rolls for her belly rub..I love this pup to death!!
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