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Sensitive dog? (long)



 
 
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  #1  
Old July 11th 03, 09:11 PM
Suja
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Default Sensitive dog? (long)

A friend of mine has a GSD pup who is about a year and a half old. For
a dog that is pretty much completely untrained (don't ask, her mom has
some weird theory about obedience training breaking a dog's spirit), she
isn't all that badly behaved. The only "command" she knows is 'Sit'.
That's because I taught it to her as a condition for throwing tennis
balls. She is allowed free run of her own house, although she has in
the past (her mom says that it isn't the recent past) chewed up a sofa,
a couple of dog beds, CDs, power cords (unconnected), etc. She is also
allowed on the furniture, but it is on her own terms, and not when her
mom asks her to. She is VERY loving, and I swear she really wants to
crawl inside of you. This becomes a problem when she's in the car,
because she will attempt to get pets and climb into the lap of the
driver, stick her tongue down your ear or up your nose. Although she
has become much improved about this, she still jumps up on people if she
is really excited. In her house, she has doggie door access to the
outdoors, and never has accidents.

Now, her mom is away at a conference for a few days, and for the past
couple of days, Zoe has been staying with Isabelle's folks. In that
time, we also found out that she countersurfs, 'cause she knocked
something important off the kitchen countertop and broke it, and may not
really be housebroken because she has had an accident after not having
gone out for only a couple of hours. Izzy's mom needed relief - not
entirely Zoe's fault, Izzy was being a huge bully and was picking on her
at every opportunity - and I took Zoe for a couple of hours. The first
thing she did when she came here was to pee on the carpet. This was
after I had let her out in case she needed to go, which strengthens my
belief that she may not really be housebroken. So, the first question
is whether it is likely that a dog with doggie door access to the
outside is *really* housebroken. If put in a situation where there
isn't 24 x 7 access to the outdoors, is it common for the dog to not
know how to signal that she wants to go out? Zoe is generally a big
whiner, but she didn't give me any signals that she needed to go, and
had the accident when I had left her alone for a minute to refill the
dogs' water bowl.

When I discovered the accident, I let out a pretty disappointed 'Oh,
Zoe', and she acted really contrite, ears back, all hunched over. I
hadn't raised my voice, and I didn't yell at her, so I was quite
surprised by this. After that point, she acted all weird for a while.
For example, we were outside, and I called her to me (she doesn't really
have a recall). She came running, then stopped about 3 ft. away and
slunk down, ears all back like I'm going to hurt her. What is up with
that? I'll admit that I was probably stricter than anyone else has ever
been with her, making her sit for pets, sit for fetch, sit for food,
etc. but she didn't have any problem with any of that. OTOH, I had been
teaching her 'Off' when she jumped on me by pushing her away or saying
'Uh-uh' when I knew she was about to jump, and that didn't have the same
effect on her. Izzy's mom was teaching her 'Off' to keep her off the
furniture, and that didn't phase her one bit. So, is she sensitive to
correction, or isn't she?

One thing we both noticed is that it is taking her a LOT longer to "get
it" than other dogs we've taken care of who didn't know the house rules.
I know that she is a smart dog, so it isn't a lack of brains, but
we both wondered if learning that there is such a thing as rules is
quite that much harder than figuring out what the specific rules are for
a dog that is used to some (but different) set of rules.

I am thinking of training her myself, because I have serious doubts
whether her mom ever would. I know that if it continues like this, no
one would be willing to take her on if her mom ever has to go out of
town. She is very sweet and smart, I just wish she were better trained.

Suja

  #2  
Old July 11th 03, 11:58 PM
Andrea
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"Suja" wrote
snip
So, the first question
is whether it is likely that a dog with doggie door access to the
outside is *really* housebroken. If put in a situation where there
isn't 24 x 7 access to the outdoors, is it common for the dog to not
know how to signal that she wants to go out?


No, not IME. My dogs have 24x7 access to the yard via our dog door. Now,
two of ours were house trained when we didn't have one, so I'll discount
them. The other 2 have grown up with it. Neither has ever had an accident
since they were learning as pups even when we close the dog door, which we
do on some occasions. I have traveled with Brenna quite a bit staying at
hotels and friends' houses. She *always* tells me when she needs out.

Now, if the dog is not very well house broken, changing the environment can
throw them off. It's like a young puppy who is "basically" house trained
when he leaves his breeder. There's an adjustment period. Sounds like that's
Zoe's deal. Brenna didn't pop out knowing to go outside to potty - I still
had to actually house train her. Maybe Zoe just instinctively went away from
the house and so no one ever really worked with her?

When I discovered the accident, I let out a pretty disappointed 'Oh,
Zoe', and she acted really contrite, ears back, all hunched over. I
hadn't raised my voice, and I didn't yell at her, so I was quite
surprised by this.


Sounds like maybe she gets reprimanded when they find an accident - she's
trying to appease you because she expect trouble. So in that case, I'd say
she associates humans finding it with being "punished" and not the act of
going in the house as the issue. She just knows that "outside" at home is a
place where the humans will not discover her pee. She hasn't found the safe
zone yet at your place. So really, she's not properly house trained sounds
like to me.

--
-Andrea Stone
Saorsa Basenjis
http://home1.gte.net/res0s12z/
The Trolls Nest - greenmen, goblins & gargoyle wall art
www.trollsnest.com


  #3  
Old July 12th 03, 12:11 AM
WhansaMi
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The first
thing she did when she came here was to pee on the carpet.


Suja, when we took the dogs to the dog sitter in Amissville, Missy promptly
pooped on the floor, and then, as we were taking her through the basement to go
outside, she peed about 5 feet before she got to the door. We were aghast.
The Cavs are a bit hinky about housetraining (Bailey thinks we are
EXCEPTIONALLY cruel to make him go outside when it is raining), but Missy is
our "good dog" who has had exactly one accident in the house--and that was when
she passed bladder stones the size of peas.

Our guess was that she was stressed. But, she soon acclaimated to the new
environment, and the sitter said she didn't have a problem at all the rest of
the week.

I'd watch her, but I wouldn't assume that because she did it when she came in
the door, it means she isn't housebroken. It may just be the stress of a new
environment.

Sheila
  #4  
Old July 12th 03, 12:15 AM
Alison
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yes the dog is sensitive and also now anxious and a bit confused at
having to deal with being in different house holds and with differnet
people teaching it different things.

.. She is allowed free run of her own house, although she has in
the past (her mom says that it isn't the recent past) chewed up a

sofa,
a couple of dog beds, CDs, power cords (unconnected), etc. She is

also
allowed on the furniture, but it is on her own terms, and not when

her
mom asks her to.


Lots of dogs have the run on the house and are allowed on the
furniture . If the dog has stopped chewing and destroying then its not
a problem . if the dog doesn't want to get on the sofa when the mum
asks it then the dog is unsure and uncertain .



She is VERY loving, and I swear she really wants to
crawl inside of you.


It also a sign of submissiveness (sp) and anxious to please which
means she is sensitive.

This becomes a problem when she's in the car,
because she will attempt to get pets and climb into the lap of the
driver, stick her tongue down your ear or up your nose.


LOL very distracting . It would be better if she were restrained.


Now, her mom is away at a conference for a few days, and for the

past
couple of days, Zoe has been staying with Isabelle's folks. In that
time, we also found out that she countersurfs, 'cause she knocked
something important off the kitchen countertop and broke it, and may

not
really be housebroken because she has had an accident after not

having
gone out for only a couple of hours. Izzy's mom needed relief - not
entirely Zoe's fault, Izzy was being a huge bully and was picking on

her
at every opportunity - and I took Zoe for a couple of hours. The

first
thing she did when she came here was to pee on the carpet. This was
after I had let her out in case she needed to go, which strengthens

my
belief that she may not really be housebroken. So, the first

question
is whether it is likely that a dog with doggie door access to the
outside is *really* housebroken. If put in a situation where there
isn't 24 x 7 access to the outdoors, is it common for the dog to not
know how to signal that she wants to go out? Zoe is generally a big
whiner, but she didn't give me any signals that she needed to go,

and
had the accident when I had left her alone for a minute to refill

the
dogs' water bowl.


Maybe she hasn't learnt how to ask to go out or maybe you didn't
recognise her signals . If the dog is clean at home then I would guess
it is house broken . She might to be too nervous to ask or go in front
of you as she weed the moment you left her. You can't blame the dog
for doing these things , she's not been trained and is in strange
places and is over anxious and over excited and is getting flak for it
which makes the situation worse.



When I discovered the accident, I let out a pretty disappointed 'Oh,
Zoe',

and she acted really contrite, ears back, all hunched over. I
hadn't raised my voice, and I didn't yell at her, so I was quite
surprised by this. After that point, she acted all weird for a

while.
For example, we were outside, and I called her to me (she doesn't

really
have a recall). She came running, then stopped about 3 ft. away and
slunk down, ears all back like I'm going to hurt her.What is up with
that


Possible because you didn't catch her in the act of weeing and she
doesn't know why you are disappointed in her adding to her confusion .
You dont have her confidence and trust .

? I'll admit that I was probably stricter than anyone else has

ever
been with her, making her sit for pets, sit for fetch, sit for food,
etc. but she didn't have any problem with any of that. OTOH, I had

been
teaching her 'Off' when she jumped on me by pushing her away or

saying
'Uh-uh' when I knew she was about to jump, and that didn't have the

same
effect on her. Izzy's mom was teaching her 'Off' to keep her off

the
furniture, and that didn't phase her one bit. So, is she sensitive

to
correction, or isn't she?


Maybe she is sensitive to you correcting her. She doesn't know you as
well as her family .

One thing we both noticed is that it is taking her a LOT longer to

"get
it" than other dogs we've taken care of who didn't know the house

rules.
I know that she is a smart dog, so it isn't a lack of brains,

but
we both wondered if learning that there is such a thing as rules is
quite that much harder than figuring out what the specific rules are

for
a dog that is used to some (but different) set of rules.
I am thinking of training her myself, because I have serious doubts
whether her mom ever would. I know that if it continues like this,

no
one would be willing to take her on if her mom ever has to go out of
town. She is very sweet and smart, I just wish she were better

trained.


I think you will have to handle her very carefully or you could end
up making her worse. Some dogs take a while to calm down in a strange
place, I'm sure she'll be better once she gets to know the place and
people . She broke something on the counter once , that doesn't mean
to say she will always do it or always wee in doors.
I have recently adopted a tiny dog that is submissive and anxious to
please , he wants to be picked up a lot as it makes him feel safe
and tries to get out of the door with you so he is not left behind. He
does know * commands * but his anxiety stops him from obeying .
alison


Suja



  #5  
Old July 12th 03, 03:27 AM
Shelly & The Boys
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"Suja" wrote in message
...
So, the first question
is whether it is likely that a dog with doggie door access to the
outside is *really* housebroken. If put in a situation where there
isn't 24 x 7 access to the outdoors, is it common for the dog to not
know how to signal that she wants to go out?


Speaking for my own dogs (including Guiness as well), they've
got a doggie door for when we are home, including at night.
But, when we are at work, the screen door is closed, blocking
outside access.
We do not have accidents, haven't since Bodhi first came here
as a wee baby. And, he was partially crate trained, so he was
a breeze to potty train, as was Coda IIRC. (Not counting the
diarrhea poop accident caused by an upset belly)

However...both boys were potty trained to go *to* the door or
to give me a signal that they needed to go out (and were
taken out and brought back inside by me as well), not to just
go use the doggie door. Meaning, they were both potty trained
before they learned to use the doggie door.
I suppose it depends on how the dog was trained to go out, by
signaling their person that they needed to, or by being taught to
just go out the doggie door. If that were the case, Bodhi
would've just peed on the porch. The weather was nasty a time
or two and he really had to go, ran out, peed on the porch
then wanted to run back inside! laugh He's a funny dog, if
the grass is too long, he hikes his butt up on the railroad tie I have
seperating the grass and the wood chip/tree area, that way
the tall grass doesn't tickle him! :-)
Shelly & The Boys


  #6  
Old July 12th 03, 04:06 AM
Suja
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Alison wrote:

yes the dog is sensitive and also now anxious and a bit confused at
having to deal with being in different house holds and with differnet
people teaching it different things.


Oh, I totally understand that. She hasn't been away from her mom since
she was about 6 months old, so it probably contributes to how she feels
as well.

Lots of dogs have the run on the house and are allowed on the
furniture . If the dog has stopped chewing and destroying then its not
a problem .


Actually, I'm not quite convinced that she is non destructive in the
house. In the past, she has eaten her mom's sofa among other things, to
the point where her mom now needs new furniture for the house.

if the dog doesn't want to get on the sofa when the mum
asks it then the dog is unsure and uncertain .


That's Khan for you. I ask him to get up on the furniture, and he's
convinced that I'm trying to get him into trouble.


LOL very distracting . It would be better if she were restrained.


I wish. She is not exactly crate trained at this point. She had been
as a young pup, but hasn't been in there in about 9 or 10 months, and
won't go in willingly.


Maybe she hasn't learnt how to ask to go out or maybe you didn't
recognise her signals.


No signals at all. The house has an open floor plan, and from where I
was, I could've seen her if she had approached any of the 3 doors. BTW,
she was introduced to the doors.

for doing these things , she's not been trained and is in strange
places and is over anxious and over excited and is getting flak for it
which makes the situation worse.


She didn't catch any flak for it. No yelling, no screaming, nothing. I
just took her outside in case she needed to finish. I understand that
dogs may become 'unhousebroken' in strange environments, but am
wondering whether there is a doggie door connection to this since she
had had ample opportunity to go to the bathroom outside just minutes
before, and had chosen not to use it. I am choosing to interpret this
as thinking that maybe she is used to just relieving herself whenever
she must, and may not completely have a handle on the whole 'ask a
person to go out' business.

What I found strange was her reaction to my non-correction, versus my
reaction to active corrections. She had no problem with being told
'Off' or 'Uh-huh', but sort of wilted when I said 'Oh, Zoe'. I for one,
find that unusual.


Maybe she is sensitive to you correcting her. She doesn't know you as
well as her family .


Doubt it. Next to her mom, I'm the one person who she sees on a regular
basis (5-6 times a week), and is the closest to. While she knows Izzy's
family, she is definitely not as familiar with them as she is with me.


I think you will have to handle her very carefully or you could end
up making her worse. Some dogs take a while to calm down in a strange
place, I'm sure she'll be better once she gets to know the place and
people . She broke something on the counter once , that doesn't mean
to say she will always do it or always wee in doors.


Well, she's going to stay with someone else, so I won't be dealing with
her until mom returns (we'll have a serious talk about doing some
training). Where she's going, she'll have a doggie door, and humans who
don't care if she jumps on them, eats their couch or steals the roast
off the counter (their dog does it too). I think that she'll be happy
there.


I have recently adopted a tiny dog that is submissive and anxious to
please , he wants to be picked up a lot as it makes him feel safe
and tries to get out of the door with you so he is not left behind. He
does know * commands * but his anxiety stops him from obeying .


Hey, I've had a pretty scared dog myself, so I understand where you're
coming from. Good luck with your new little one. Did I miss something,
or have we seen pictures yet?

Suja



  #7  
Old July 12th 03, 05:41 AM
Jdoee
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So, the first question
is whether it is likely that a dog with doggie door access to the
outside is *really* housebroken. If put in a situation where there
isn't 24 x 7 access to the outdoors, is it common for the dog to not
know how to signal that she wants to go out?


You are really asking about two different things. If you define housebroken
as dog can hold it until dog has an opportunity to go outside, then this dog
is housebroken. If you define housebroken as dog can hold it until dog has
opportunity to go outside AND dog must know how to ask people to let it out,
this dog isn't housebroken. Given what you have said, I think this dog is
housebroken but not trained to your routine. One accident in a new place
for an untrained dog doesn't mean anything.

As for the other stuff, it might help to forget all the analysis and look at
it this way. She is a 1 1/2 year old german shepherd. She will feel much
better about things if she has a job. To work around her *free spirited*
mom, teach this dog a bunch of useless stuff, like moving objects and
playing dead and whatnot. There are plenty of books out there on dog tricks.
When mom sees how much more well adjusted the dog is when the dog can work,
mom might consent to teaching the dog a bit of obedience.

Or, depending on your relationship with mom, you could have a talk with her
and tell her the following:
"Your dog is the type of dog that needs to be kept occupied. She will be
happier and healthier if she gets some training. By not training her, you
are hurting her by frustrating and confusing her."

"What if you have to go into the hospital, or make an emergency trip?
Nobody will accept your dog for boarding except kennels. (Not that I think
all kennels are evil, but I bet Ms Free Spirit does.) If she is better
trained she could stay in a house."

Good luck with this, and try not to alienate mom. Perhaps she has memories
of some kind of harsh training some other dog has been subjected to. jdoee

----------
In article , Suja
wrote:


snip
  #8  
Old July 12th 03, 05:49 AM
Tricia9999
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If put in a situation where there
isn't 24 x 7 access to the outdoors, is it common for the dog to not
know how to signal that she wants to go out?


I think some dogs that have 24 hour access aren't really housetrained.They
don't need to learn to either hold it or ask to go out.

She came running, then stopped about 3 ft. away and
slunk down, ears all back like I'm going to hurt her. What is up with
that? I'll admit that I was probably stricter than anyone else has ever
been with her, making her sit for pets, sit for fetch, sit for food,
etc. but she didn't have any problem with any of that.


My guess is that because the owners don't want to train her or set limits, they
end up losing their temper with her when she grabs the chicken off the counter,
or chews up the favorite whatever. Poor dog is confused - no rules but lots of
anger. OTOH, if you are right that they don't get angry with her and never ask
anything of her, she may just be a super sensitive dog - she is a GSD after
all.


  #9  
Old July 12th 03, 05:53 AM
Tricia9999
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I know that she is a smart dog, so it isn't a lack of brains, but
we both wondered if learning that there is such a thing as rules is
quite that much harder than figuring out what the specific rules are for
a dog that is used to some (but different) set of rules.


Sent before I meant to...anyway, as with all of us, the more we use our brains,
the better we get at it. The more we learn how to learn and learn some
limitations, the better we are at getting it the next time. Just imagine a kid
that never had to learn any self control for his first 8 years of life - then
you decide to start setting limits. Would take much more work than if you
started with him at infancy.
  #10  
Old July 12th 03, 06:26 AM
montana
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In article , Suja
wrote:

What I found strange was her reaction to my non-correction, versus my
reaction to active corrections. She had no problem with being told
'Off' or 'Uh-huh', but sort of wilted when I said 'Oh, Zoe'. I for one,
find that unusual.


This reminds me of the late Gaston, a huge Dogue de Bordeaux, who was a
*very* sensitive boy. You could tell him "off" or any of what you are
terming "active" corrections, but when he was little, someone said the
word "bad" in front of him and he never got over it. There was something
about that word that just made him feel miserable and for his entire
life, you had to be careful about accidentally using it in front of him.
He even knew that word when you spelled it. He wasn't the first dog that
I've known that got overly sensitive about a word, an expression, or a
tone of voice.
 




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