What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

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MPbandmom
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Re: What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

Post by MPbandmom » Fri Oct 07, 2016 7:35 pm

An interesting walk today.

Sirius is still being a little funky about walking in the evenings. Sometimes she heads out of the house and straight for the park. Other times she wants to walk around the block and avoid the park. I have been trying to go with her flow and what she appears to be comfortable with. So far we haven't had any negative encounters with people while walking around the block. We have been able to move off to the side and have her focus on a treat.

Today she decided to walk to the park. She doesn't seem to want to walk the usual loop these days though. Shortly after entering the park, we encountered a park staff member who likes to talk to her. In the past her response to his talking has been to tell him to knock it off. This evening she was quiet. :D I gave her a treat and told him we were making progress. (This is the second time a male has spoken to me from inside of a car and she didn't react to the voice. I'm thinking the car aspect of it is playing a part in that, but in the past she would bark at people talking in cars too.)

We continued on our way. She was mooching around the back of the rec center when suddenly a youth came running out of a door that was a couple of yards away from Sirius. Running out in the manner where if one misses the door exit bar, one might put one's arms through the door glass. So there was a loud slamming bang as the youth's hands hit the exit bar and then the door swung open and the youth suddenly appeared essentially right in front of Sirius. Well that gave both of us quite a start, as I have never seen anyone exit through that door before, and well it was startling. Sirius informed youth that she was not impressed with a lung and bark and youth immediately turned tail and went back inside of the building before the door even had a chance to close behind him. I think he was startled just about as much as we were. :lol:

We continued on our way. Sirius decided to go around behind the ball fields. She has been wanting to do this recently. She actually keeps acting like she wants to go to the very busy road that boarders the park, but I have been preventing her from getting anywhere close to the road. We encountered the park staff member again, and he spoke to her again, and she remained quiet again. :D

We continued on our way. We are doing a fall mileage challenge and scavenger hunt and one of the things on the list to find is squirrel. Sirius happened to wander through a patch of trees where there were quite a few squirrels, fairly close, and she wasn't trying to get them. I decided to take this opportunity to get pictures. I was just about finished snapping photos of the squirrels, when two young children came running past us in very close quarters. Once again Sirius lunged. I grabbed her and the children stopped in their tracks and then passed more slowly and with a bit more distance.

I knew the children were there, as we were close to a playground, but I thought they were late departures of the afterschool care program and waiting for a ride to show up. There had been several apparent staff members standing by the playground and I mistakenly took it that they were watching the children. Had I not been so focused on taking pictures, I would have been more aware of the children when they first left the playground. :(

For the most part we had a very nice walk though. I will just have to be a little less focused on my picture taking in the future. Most things I have taken pictures of for the scavenger hunt have been stationary, so pretty easy to photograph. The squirrels were not easy to photograph. :lol:
Grammy to Sky and Sirius, who came to live with me, stole my heart, and changed my life forever as I took over their care and learned how to be a dog owner.

Erica
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Re: What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

Post by Erica » Fri Oct 07, 2016 11:24 pm

Good to hear from you, Fundog! Fingers crossed for Annie getting used to the ramp :)

Sounds like a mostly good walk, MP. ;) I guess it can't ever be perfect...just gotta have those wild cards around!

Delta and I got to rally-o class *early* for once, instead of just barely on time. :o And because of that we saw the malinois in the obedience class before us. I still love the breed, haha. Will have to see if I'm ever in a place where one is feasible. Our instructor also had her dobe with her - a really nice one (to my eyes) - some dobes just look weird and distorted to me and are held up as "ideal" for the breed. This one looked like a large, elegant dog. He was so sweet too. :)

Delta was a bit wired and kept getting distracted, but it was our first week after a couple weeks off (as the instructor had been busy and not held class). He did his pivots into front and heel really nicely, as well as the 360* turns and such! Can't remember if I mentioned the heeling workshop we did but it really helped with that.

Instructor mentioned that poodles are allowed in breed-restricted herding trials, and that she knows a herding teacher. Interesting line of thought :P

I might be teaching a class this month, if the other assistant wants to start teaching as well. Head trainer is confident in our skills but wants to be sure we're confident in ourselves too.
Delta, standard poodle, born 6/30/14

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Nettle
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Re: What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

Post by Nettle » Sat Oct 08, 2016 3:57 am

Given that poodles are really gundogs, might gundog training be an option also? You don't need to go the whole hog, but some find, flush, stop and retrieve might be great fun for him. I have known a couple of standard poodles used in the beating line or for picking-up, though the coat is a problem with lowland brambles, so it might be better to have simulated situations rather than the real thing.

Either do-it-yourself or find a reward-based trainer - quite unusual in the gundog world as yet.

Then there's Search and Rescue.....
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Erica
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Re: What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

Post by Erica » Sat Oct 08, 2016 9:17 am

Yeah, finding a R+ trainer would be the tricky part! When we do off-leash walks and I spot a squirrel, I'll ask him to watch me, or touch, or recall, and then send him after the squirrel as a reward. He thinks it's great fun. :) I think the facility we do agility and such at has been looking to host a reward-based gundog workshop, so if that happens we might give it a go. Delta's got a horrible mouth for real retrieving; he loves to chomp chomp chomp on whatever he's holding. It's not a problem with toys, though, so I'm not bothered.

Poodle coats are so good at picking up hitchhiking seeds and burrs and such. :/ I'm very happy that our forest has very little underbrush, just tall trees and small flowers in the spring.

Search and Rescue could be fun too...will put that on the list for when we need something new to try! Delta is very confident about loads of strange footing, and loves to climb things. Teaching him to do it safely would hopefully be part of the training and would be very useful in general.
Delta, standard poodle, born 6/30/14

MPbandmom
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Re: What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

Post by MPbandmom » Sat Oct 15, 2016 11:22 am

I have been mostly walking the dogs at the park behind the house recently since OH is no longer walking with me and days are getting shorter. Thus making a drive to the battlefield pointless as it would be dark when we arrived.

Last night I was thinking on some place to take the dogs today. It is a gorgeous fall day and thoughts of a nice long walk at the battlefield topped my list. I have been reading about a family festival to be held there this month, so decided to check the web page for the date to make certain it wasn't today. When I clicked into the web site, I noticed an alert for the park. I figured it was probably about ticks which are a common pest there, but out of curiosity clicked in to check it out.

It was not about ticks. It was about black bear sightings in the park. It advised visitors that while black bear attacks on humans are rare, if they were to encounter one, they should walk away, not run away.

We recently had an incident along the Skyline Drive at the Dickey's Ridge Visitors center where two dogs were mauled on a trail while walking with their owner. I believe one of the dogs did not survive the injuries. It is an area where we have taken our dogs for a walk in the past. Articles related to this incident spoke about how bear attacks were more likely if dogs were present, as the bears were more likely to feel threatened. At the same time, I have often heard of people keeping dogs such as Akitas to guard against and scare away bears. So I suppose it could go either way. In any case, I believe I will forgo walking at the battlefield until the bear(s) has/have moved on.

I must say I have had some very pleasant encounters with other dog walkers around here recently. They have either dodged me, and I thanked them, or I have dodged them, and they have thanked me. I think that is a very positive statement that at least some people are starting to learn about keeping distance as a means of keeping dogs calm. :D
Grammy to Sky and Sirius, who came to live with me, stole my heart, and changed my life forever as I took over their care and learned how to be a dog owner.

rnor1120
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Re: What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

Post by rnor1120 » Sat Oct 15, 2016 9:13 pm

Chance and I went on a run. There was a loose dog that ran straight up to us. My new running leash has a loop near me and a loop near him. I stopped, reassured him that he was a good boy, and threw one of the leash loops around his mouth as a makeshift muzzle. The dog ran up to us, sniffed his rear, and then ran off. Chance remained semi-calm and never stopped looking at me. The loose dog was collected by his owner, there was no incident, and we continued on our run. The loose dog's owner asked me if Chance was still a puppy, because he had so much energy to be able to run with me and was so well behaved.

No actually, he'll be about 7 in January, and usually he's an a$$ to other dogs.

As the owner of a reactive dog, there is nothing as rewarding as an uneventful encounter with another dog. As the owner of an almost-senior dog there is nothing as rewarding as being told your old man still has energy :D (by the way, we ran 5K and he pulled me the entire way).

Erica
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Re: What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

Post by Erica » Sat Oct 15, 2016 10:06 pm

Good job Chance! :)

I'm teaching my first class tomorrow! :shock: It's a make-up class so will be a mix of dogs and skill levels, and one of the head trainers will be there to assist me. Then next weekend the other new trainer and I will be teaching puppy class for the day as the usual trainer will be out of town. :)

Delta is getting good at his stays with distractions - I can put him in a sit stay, squeak a toy at him, and run away with him keeping his stay. It looks very impressive if you ignore that, before he sits, he spends a good while just jumping madly at head height to try to get the toy!

It's also getting cool enough for forest walks now. Still get a good handful of spiderwebs to the face, but I love tromping through the woods enough to ignore that. Delta's low enough that he doesn't hit them. Lucky dog!
Delta, standard poodle, born 6/30/14

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Nettle
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Re: What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

Post by Nettle » Sun Oct 16, 2016 3:49 am

Argh BEARS¬ :o :shock: so glad I don't have to cope with bears, given the amount of time I spend in the woods.

Erica you will be AWESOME! Once you get in the zone, your nerves will fade away and you'll do what you know so well :D

Rnor that is such a compliment for your dog and the way you keep him.
A dog is never bad or naughty - it is simply being a dog

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JudyN
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Re: What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

Post by JudyN » Mon Oct 17, 2016 1:07 pm

We went for a walk with my friend, her timid ex-street dog Lola, and elderly Grumpy Jim today. As usual Grumpy JIm growled whenever he felt Jasper was too close, but Jasper doesn't react, and just moves away - my friend tells GJ off for growling but I suggested he should be allowed to express his feelings and Jasper is responding respectfully to them (GJ is muzzled just in case he should kick off).

Apart from this the dogs don't interact much, but usually at some point Jasper will get a burst of energy and buzz Lola to incite her to chase him. They had a good game of chase today, but then Lola seemed to be chasing in a less friendly way (not aggressive, maybe scared, and chasing him away), GJ decided to intervene, and I think at a point Jasper decided he'd done enough running anyway. It ended up with them either side of him staring at him, and him standing in the middle looking a little worried & unsure. They all came back for treats and went back to mooching, but I was left with the impression that there was enough going on in that short interaction to write a lengthy thesis on dog dynamics :lol:

Which does lead me to a minor vent.... 'They're all friendly, they're wagging their tails.' That's like saying The Joker out of Batman is really friendly because he's got such a big smile :roll:
Jasper, lurcher, born December 2009

Shalista
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Re: What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

Post by Shalista » Mon Oct 17, 2016 4:02 pm

"he's friendly" "they're happy" "they're just playing"

Are some of my least favorite phrases in the dog world >.<
Baxter (AKA Bax, Chuckles, Chuckster) Rat Terrier, born 01/16/13

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Nettle
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Re: What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

Post by Nettle » Tue Oct 18, 2016 2:47 am

Mine too, Shalista.

Super analogy, JudyN. Times like that, we realise just how far we have come. 8)

You have to feel sorry for most dogs - they are trying so hard to get their point across, and people just don't "hear" them.
A dog is never bad or naughty - it is simply being a dog

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jacksdad
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Re: What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

Post by jacksdad » Sun Oct 23, 2016 6:01 pm

have to share as it has been a lot time since I have had time to hang out with you all, but Jack was a rock star yesterday and I couldn't have been prouder of him.

3 years ago I started taking clients part time, so that is where I have been. The bulk of my clients are fearful or under/no/poor socialization at that oh so critical age. The dogs range from little "rag muffin" 15 pound dogs with some poodle in them up to including a young female Dogo.

Anyway, my little "rag muffin" dog is rocking the training as far is the indoor stuff goes such as go to mat before greeting when a visitor comes over and other basic training. But knowing that she is overstimulated outside and will react to other people and dogs, it was time for a crash course in counter conditioning on our last session.

Enter Jack. As those of you who remember Jack, he really isn't of the temperament for using as a stimulus dog. But with small dogs he is about as rock solid now as you can expect for a dog with past fear issues of other dogs. And has over the last few years been dealing with other reactive dogs on walks like a champ...98% chance of no reaction on his part if they are small dogs. Also, for people who don't know better and let their fearful dog get up to us despite me asking they don't...he has been giving very calm an positive experiences. Anyway, the goal was never to have the dogs actually meet, and they of course did not, and of the dogs I know...he was the most stable for this..imagine that given were we started back in 2009.

So in a quite park, we used Jack to demo how to apply very basic counter conditioning, and then used him as a stimulus dog for my client. it was "tough and hard work" on jack...to just lay there at a safe distance and take chicken from me :lol:

the client dog did get a little close a couple times and of course went "reactive", but a retreat for distance and a brief break and she was ready for more. we now have her safe distance. We ended with about a 15 min session of Jack laying down facing away from the client dog, the client dog moving 1 or 2 steps at a time with long pauses in which she would lay down and just relax...would look over at Jack, look away, sniff the air etc. not avoiding him, but not "laser locking in" on him either. they said it was the calmest they had ever seen her that close to another dog. (for the training geeks...this part was not technically counter conditioning, it was just simple desensitization)

Made me really wish he was the right dog to do this as a regular thing as then he could come to work with me...but he isn't. however, in special cases he has come far enough to help out. I couldn't be prouder of him.

Erica
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Re: What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

Post by Erica » Sun Oct 23, 2016 8:14 pm

What a turnaround :) Congrats to the both of you, Jacksdad, and to your client too!
Delta, standard poodle, born 6/30/14

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Nettle
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Re: What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

Post by Nettle » Mon Oct 24, 2016 4:44 am

Well done Jack and Jacksdad - you have both come such a long way :D and Jack has come with you on a journey to help other dogs with what you have both learned.

Good to hear from you.
A dog is never bad or naughty - it is simply being a dog

SET YOURSELF UP FOR SUCCESS

Ari_RR
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Re: What are you and your dogs up to today? Part 2

Post by Ari_RR » Mon Oct 24, 2016 11:07 am

This is an inspiring story.

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