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#346993 - 02/16/18 03:01 PM Sweet Kody turns into Cujo
Shilohsmom Offline
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Registered: 02/11/10
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I have a problem here and its needs to be resolved asap. My dear Sweet Kody with that angelic face is VERY reactive towards other dogs when he's on a leash. I think part of the problem is I wasn't able to do much training outside while I was on that awful chemo combo. But that's over and I've been walking him daily for the past two weeks.

The problem is when he sees another dog he turns into Cujo, lunging and barking and just being out of control. Actually Cujo was kind of lame when compared to Kody.

I've been taking him down to the beach where we sit and I try to calm him down as other dogs pass. I have him sit between my legs and I hold on to his harness and his collar. I command Leave it and Settle until he settles down. At first he wouldn't even take a treat from me he was so upset, but now I he's at least settled enough to take the treat. I'm just not sure this is progress as he still goes crazy trying to lunge and barking like crazy.

I try to get him to make eye contact with me but that really doesn't work. The last two days I've tried not sitting but walking on the other side of the street with other dogs but he still goes wicked.

I've looked up ways to deal with this on line but they say to find out where he's comfortable being around other dogs and keep that distance slowly getting closer. This is near impossible as I just don't know when a dog will be where.

I'm thinking about going back to the sitting for another week but does anyone have any other suggestions? I've never had a dog so reactive. I even took him to doggie daycare so he would be comfortable around other dogs but that didn't help, at least not when he's on a leash. I should say he also goes wicked when he sees a dog being walked by our property.

I'm going to keep at this for the next week and then if I don't see any progress I'm going to call in a trainer. Actually, I've already left a message for one. I would love to take him with Eli so he could see there's nothing to get upset about, but I can't do that to Eli-he wouldn't make it.

I'm wondering too if this might be made worse by the fact that Kody is not yet neutered. I use to neuter at six months but now I've read that that's not a good idea and that we need to wait until he's at least a year. Eeks eek
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Rosa

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and never to be forgotten, Shiloh and Shoshi
Every dog deserves to have a human that thinks its the greatest dog that ever lived!

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#346995 - 02/16/18 06:30 PM Re: Sweet Kody turns into Cujo [Re: Shilohsmom]
Shilohsmom Offline
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The trainer ended up calling me back and we have an appointment tomorrow smile I'll let everyone know how it goes. And if you have any tips please share. Also do you folks think neutering will help?
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Rosa

Proud Mom to Eli and Kodiak
and never to be forgotten, Shiloh and Shoshi
Every dog deserves to have a human that thinks its the greatest dog that ever lived!

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#346996 - 02/16/18 06:44 PM Re: Sweet Kody turns into Cujo [Re: Shilohsmom]
Wisc.Tiger_Val Offline
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Registered: 01/18/10
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Loc: Wisconsin
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How old is Kody. GSD's go through a second fear stage, any where from 6 months to 2 years of age.
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#346997 - 02/16/18 08:10 PM Re: Sweet Kody turns into Cujo [Re: Wisc.Tiger_Val]
Shilohsmom Offline
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He's 7 months, 2 weeks old. Is there something I should be aware of with this second fear stage?? Please advise. We have an appointment with a trainer tomorrow but I certainly don't want to push the little guy. I know when they have those fear stages we have to do everything possible to make sure their environment is safe and that they know they are safe.
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Rosa

Proud Mom to Eli and Kodiak
and never to be forgotten, Shiloh and Shoshi
Every dog deserves to have a human that thinks its the greatest dog that ever lived!

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#346999 - 02/16/18 08:26 PM Re: Sweet Kody turns into Cujo [Re: Shilohsmom]
Shilohsmom Offline
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Registered: 02/11/10
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I just did some quick reading on that second fear stage (thanks Val). I'm thinking that's not the problem. I haven't seen a fear response from him (I don't think what I'm seeing is a fear response, but I could be wrong), he's a pretty daring little guy.
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Rosa

Proud Mom to Eli and Kodiak
and never to be forgotten, Shiloh and Shoshi
Every dog deserves to have a human that thinks its the greatest dog that ever lived!

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#347000 - 02/16/18 10:54 PM Re: Sweet Kody turns into Cujo [Re: Shilohsmom]
middleofnowhere Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/22/10
Posts: 2739
Likes: 186
Rosa,

I'd back off and do the classic desensitising routine. That is work beneath his threshold and gradually narrow that threshold. What I'm relating to is my experience with Barker the Elder the 2nd and cars. We lived in town then and as a puppy she wanted to eat them up! I changed our walks to late evening when there was little traffic and I could move her away and have her sit for a reward while the car passed. Several rewards. It wasn't long until the fire truck could pass with sirens blazing and she would pay it no mind.

Right now, it seems to me like Cody is getting flooded and that's not doing good.

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#347004 - 02/17/18 08:37 AM Re: Sweet Kody turns into Cujo [Re: middleofnowhere]
MaxaLisa Offline

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Registered: 01/26/10
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It takes a lot of self control for a reactive dog to sit and watch other dogs. Usually you have to start with something that gives them exposure and then get them away from that particular environment before they can react, which is kinda what middle is saying. Move him away from the trigger and slowly build up tolerance.
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#347006 - 02/17/18 10:38 AM Re: Sweet Kody turns into Cujo [Re: MaxaLisa]
Mary Jane Online   content
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/16/10
Posts: 2739
Likes: 129
Rosa,

You know tons more than I do about dogs-but what we did with our trainer for Mars is to go to a small fenced dog park. The parking lot was long, so we approached the dog park, slowly getting closer over several days. For Mars it was important to keep moving while being treated. It helped that Mars was outside, while the other dogs were fenced in. To be clear, we did not enter the dog park. Also, Mars was a young adult-not a young puppy.

I'm sure your trainer has some great ideas for your great barky Kody.

MJ

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#347007 - 02/17/18 10:40 AM Re: Sweet Kody turns into Cujo [Re: MaxaLisa]
Shilohsmom Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 02/11/10
Posts: 1758
Likes: 169
Thanks Lisa and Middle, I think your both right, it's also the same as I saw when I googled how to deal with this. The good news is we are meeting with a trainer today (I have a feeling they will all agree with what you've said) but I'll let you know how it goes. I have a feeling we need to adjust where we walk and that's fine with me,
_________________________
Rosa

Proud Mom to Eli and Kodiak
and never to be forgotten, Shiloh and Shoshi
Every dog deserves to have a human that thinks its the greatest dog that ever lived!

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#347012 - 02/17/18 04:14 PM Re: Sweet Kody turns into Cujo [Re: Shilohsmom]
middleofnowhere Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/22/10
Posts: 2739
Likes: 186
Rosa, likely both where and when for a while as you begin to narrow the threshold. Another thing to consider if treats aren't doing the trick - ok a couple of things - a favorite toy that comes out to make him happily distracted and rewarded or ahem small (very small - big treats are counter productive) bits of steak.

May you find something that works for you and the young Cujo.

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