Good news! I got a new job!

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wvvdiup1
Posts: 3397
Joined: Tue Mar 17, 2009 2:31 am
Location: Pennsylvania

Re: Good news! I got a new job!

Post by wvvdiup1 » Thu Oct 17, 2013 8:04 pm

DianeLDL wrote:Sandy,

Akitas are beautiful dogs. Yes, please update your photos. :D

We got Sandy from the shelter when he was one year old. We believe that he had been in the shelter twice. He also was never socialized as a puppy. He is fear aggressive towards other dogs. (Read my thread under training about our experiences in hotel rooms during our last drive from Maine through Philadelphia and across on I-81 to I-40.) It was tough.
He has to have a large distance between him and other dogs. The last night in Amarillo where there were 10 dogs in one hotel row on the first floor was a nightmare. :evil:

It is hard to know what his past experience was. Even stopping at a rest stop, we have to choose an area where we don't see or hear other dogs. My husband wears short sleves and his arms are all cut up from scratching when Sandy freaks out. I usually have a lightweight jacket on during those times.

As to people, there are some he likes and gets along with and others he barks and tries to attack. We never know who. But, i think even though he doesn't like dogs, he seems to be more friendly with people who have their own dogs. Maybe he feels that if the smell like dog, they must be good. So, going through hotel hallways, I often have to carry him, especially since many of the maids cleaning the rooms show real fear which fuels his aggression.

He hates cats, and we know one of the home he was in had a cat. We can only guess as to what happened.

Sandy has been with us nearly 3 years, but I just discovered this forum in May so it is like starting over.

I read your posts on the What are your dogs doing today and it looks like Karma is getting back to normal again. Great news!

It has been a lot of work, but I don't think Sandy will ever make it to be social with other dogs. I just want him to be able to tolerate being near other dogs without reacting. I did read that chihuahuas usually get along better with other chis than with any other dogs. I and husband have friends with multiple chis and they get along. It might have to do with their size.

Our chi is more a deer chihuahua as he has the elongated face and the longer body and long legs. His weight at 11.5 also doesn't fit the AKC norm. So, that is why we call him a chi mix. Those who know chihuahuas say his personality is totally chi. He barks as our "early warning system". It is a bit funny, but annoying, but he knows the sounds of the FedEx and UPS trucks. So, even if they aren't coming to us, he starts barking thinking they are going to bring a packaged. He is freaked out by the garbage trucks, though, so we have to wary when we take him out. No morning walk on trash collection day. :lol:

Talking too much as usual. I am just curious as to what part of Penn are you located? We have been all over the state including my recent convention in Philly. We have been through the state on interstates 95, 76, 81, 80, 84. It is absolutely gorgeous. I grew up in New Jersey, and went to girl scout camp in the Poconos.

Once again, best wishes for your new job and career. When do you actually start?

Diane
I think chihuahuas, JRTs, and other small dogs have the tendency to stand up to big dogs to show no fear towards big dogs. I like to think of these little dogs as "Little dogs with Big Hearts."

It is possible that your dog Sandy was attacked when he was young and his behavior had not been corrected, however, as you've said, no one seems to know what caused his behavior, so working with Sandy to desensitize him from what fears him the most is going to be hard. Before I go further into this topic, use the search engine on this forum to look up "socialization" or "socialisation" and other keywords such as "aggression" you can think of that may help you gain insights into his behavior, because I do know there were some good discussions and "how tos" regarding this issue on this forum. Right now, I seem to be having problems clearing my thoughts to think what possible solutions to give you on this issue of aggression towards other dogs.

Karma, on the other hand, seems to be doing well with other dogs, but I must keep my eye on her body language and read the signals when she's about to attack, if those signals appear. It's hard to remove that aggressive behavior from a breed that is known to be aggressive in the first place, but the work that goes into controling this behavior is well worth it. It will take a lot of time but an effort will worth it. And since I start work Monday, I've been anxious to how well Karma will cope with such a new environment and other dogs and have been preparing to that day. I think I've got everything packed for any signs of aggression, anxiety, and other things to handle any contengencies that may arise. :?

You said you had been to Pennsylvania. You have traveled the eastern part of the state, but I live in south-central Pennsylvania, near Bedford in which Interstates 99, 220, 30, 76/70 (Pennsylvania Turnpike) runs through. It's mountainous with beautiful valleys and luscious pastors are and some other beautiful sights too. At any rate, it is halfway between Pittsburgh and Philadelphia. Whenever you ever get the chance to travel this way, you should! Maybe we can meet sometime! :) I don't get to travel as much as I would like to. :(

Where do you live now? By the way, as you can see, I've updated my avatar picture with a picture of my dog Karma. Right now, she's wanting to go outside to "take care of some business", if you know what I mean. :lol:
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"Common sense is instinct. Enough of it is genius." -author unknown

DianeLDL
Posts: 832
Joined: Sun May 19, 2013 4:16 pm
Location: Maine USA

Re: Good news! I got a new job!

Post by DianeLDL » Thu Oct 17, 2013 8:47 pm

Sandy,

Karma is gorgeous! :D I love your new avatar.

I have had a lot of help from others including Jacksdad, Erica, Nettle, and many others in several threads I have posted in dog training. I have had lots of good advice that I have been putting into action. Sandy does better when dogs are about 50 yards away. I have been doing classical conditioning as well as clicker training. It is just hard when we can't keep a good distance which is what happens in hotels and at rest stops. Often, we have gone off the main road to find an empty park for him to do his business.

We did have an incident in Maine while OH was walking Sandy down our street. A boxer came out of her house and Sandy started to head towards her with his barking and going bezerk. He was on leash, but did a Houdini by slipping out of his collar. The female boxer was great. She bumped Sandy and knocked him down. She did it gently like a mother dog with a puppy. Sandy relaxed and actually once got back in collar and on leash. He was calm the rest of the time while her owner and OH were able to talk. Every time after that when we walked (with a harness on) by their house, Sandy was looking for Cassie as if he wanted to see her. :wink:

The problem with chihuahuas is that they are very territorial and when in a hotel, he seems to think he "owns" the place. I agree that he was never socialized and his last hime had a cat. So, he is extremely reactive to cats. I have definitely figured that it is aggression out if fear. I get you before you get me type of thing. As I mentioned, Jacksdad, Erica, and others have helped me out quite a bit. I know it takes time, though. :D

We are currently in Albuquerque, New Mexico where there are 6ft high concrete fences around all the back yards in our neighborhood. So all the dogs who are outside can be seen through the gates and of course barking. Today, I took Sandy on our first walk since we returned. I used the classical conditioning as well as adding fast walking to get away. The best thing was that even with the other dogs barking and his stress up, he was still able to look at me and take chicken as part of our classical conditioning. He did so well. Of course, he had his harness on. But, the fact that he was able to with all the other dogs barking to look at me and take chicken is real progress. Thank goodness, we didn't see any dogs being walked. All of those we heard or saw were behind the gates and fences.i was so proud of him, he got an extra piece of chickent. :D

As you figured, except for my convention in Philly last week, we usually take the northern routes to and from Maine. Our primary residence is in Albuquerque, New Mexico, but we also have a house in Maine where we usually spend August through October or mid-November. We usually spend the night in West Hazleton, PA where 80 and 81 meet. Then we either head northward to NY Thruway and Massachusetts on our way to Maine or get on 81 to head southward to 40 in Tennessee.

If we get in your area, I will let you know. From what I have seen, there are some beautiful places in Pennsylvania. :D

In the meantime, good luck on Monday. i know how stressful it can be when starting a new job. Take care if yourself and let us know how it goes. :D

Diane
Sandy, Chihuahua mix b. 12/20/09

wvvdiup1
Posts: 3397
Joined: Tue Mar 17, 2009 2:31 am
Location: Pennsylvania

Re: Good news! I got a new job!

Post by wvvdiup1 » Thu Oct 17, 2013 9:24 pm

Diane, I'm happy that that the other members here were able to help you with your situation with Sandy. I wish you well in your training, although it will take time, but the effort will be worth it, so keep at it, and you will see a different dog! :D

Best wishes! :D
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"Common sense is instinct. Enough of it is genius." -author unknown

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