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Everything posted by wuffles

  1. My criteria usually goes on drinking. If mine stop drinking they go to the vet. Likewise if they can't keep water down while fasting (throwing up) they go to the vet too. If it's just diarrhea they get fasted for 24 hours.
  2. I think it depends on the dog. My dogs are gutses of the highest degree. Honestly, people say their dogs are food motivated but mine take it to a whole new level :) Anyway, I tried swapping food with one of my dogs and all she started doing was swallowing things whole if I came near her. Now I just do minor interruptions occasionally, putting extra food in their bowl or patting them gently and walking away. I've found this works much better with my dogs than taking food from them. I teach "give" and "leave it" as separate commands trained using a mixture of food and toys if I need them to spit out or leave something gross. It's a different command for them though, their dinner in their bowl is different. (BTW I've had to take their bowls away before and bones etc in emergencies or if I've given them the wrong thing by mistake and I have had no issues)
  3. Edit: Oops sorry I see you've sorted the issue. Will leave my reply anyway in case it helps anyone :) I started off feeding the puppy in their crate and the older dog outside. Then I gradually moved them closer ie. crate and same room, both outside at different ends of the yard, both outside a few metres apart. I always supervise at first but from a distance as I found watching them makes them more paranoid. I only step in if one goes to eat the other's food and redirect them back to their own bowl. I've done this with two sets of dogs now and find it works well. I work up to them eating about 2 metres apart, I never expect them to share food. They never get fed bones together. My younger dog eats from one of the special bowls as I found he was forgetting to breathe while eating. They do help.
  4. I'm in the same situation. Epic is too big for his 36" wire crate but pretty sure he can't be trusted in a soft crate yet. I am going to trial him in our old crappy soft crate (which is bigger) overnight and see how he goes with that.
  5. Our first dog as a couple was a large (35kg) rescue GSD cross and he was amazing. We searched for an adult dog whose temperament suited our situation (both full time workers). He got a 30-45 minute walk of a morning, outside during the day while we were at work then came inside and spent the evening with us. I did obedience classes with him, not the most obedient of chaps but soooo easy to live with and the sweetest dog you'd ever meet. Honestly he was quite independent so while he enjoyed his time inside with us at night (he spent 90% of it on his dog bed) he was quite happy to toddle outside and snooze there of his own accord. On weekends he got trips to the dog park, I took him to my husband's sports games, markets, playdates... I miss my gentle man so much Now we both work full time, baby on the way, and have two active working breeds. It is a LOT of work. Edit: My GSD x shed a LOT more than my longer haired Aussie Shepherds. He shed like a demon LOL!
  6. Agree with this :) Personally I think that my dogs have benefited from the environment a dog club provides but some do find it tough. I have a very excitable and boisterous 7 month old and he does really well in classes, it also provides me an opportunity to work on overstimulation issues in a more controlled environment than say, out on a walk. Enjoy your classes! :)
  7. This. My pup is only 7 months old. No undesirable behaviours yet. I do believe that desexing earlyish is the best option for the "average" pet owner.
  8. I'd let 'em rip, so long as the exercise isn't resulting in trauma (eg, falling off things, collisions) that may damage bone structure. Has anyone had a case of a high-energy pup given loads of free exercise turning out with problems because they were given freedom? I've never have. We let him go feral when he's outside :laugh:
  9. Personally I think it depends on the dog. My boy was PTS at the vet and my other dog remained at home. To be honest, she didn't fret at all. She looked for him a few times but seemed to accept that he wasn't there very readily. She's a very sensitive soul and I don't know if she would have done well seeing him after passing.
  10. What do people do for high energy pups who do not really do 'gentle' play and do not 'self regulate' in the sense that, off leash, they will run and run and run and run and run and run and... you get the gist? My pup could still run a marathon after an hour of obedience training or an hour of free play etc. We've generally followed the '5 minutes walking per month of age' rule but that's only for stimulation as it doesn't make a dent in energy levels :) (We've done a lot of work to teach him to settle while in the house no matter how much or little exercise he gets, but it's still a bit of a balancing act in terms of giving him enough to at least dim the 'busyness' slightly. He's a skinny little blighter too, on the go all the time!) :)
  11. wuffles

    Help Please!

    Sorry to hijack the thread but mine jumped the pen once - and he jumped INTO the pen He knew it was dinner time and that's where he got fed. Then when he'd finished, he whinged to be let out...
  12. wuffles

    Help Please!

    I always lifted mine in and out and he never learnt that he could jump out. He's an Aussie so he shouldn't be dumb... :laugh:
  13. wuffles

    Help Please!

    Also, routine is your friend! I took 2 weeks off to settle my pup in to the household and he spent time outside, in the pen and in a crate. We tried to mimic our morning routine from the start, so... Crate overnight Exercise/training on wake up Breakfast Into the pen while we showered/dressed Outside with Kong. We didn't leave him for the full 9 hours at first obviously but would leave him outside for a while to get the feel for the routine. He's never had trouble and is very happy to go outside of a morning as he knows there is a Kong coming :)
  14. Just wanted to put the wording from the standard out there as I think it sums up Aussies very well and may give you some insight into his behaviour (which IMO is completely normal but if you feel needs more management then take some of the previous advice on board): "The Australian Shepherd is an intelligent working dog of strong herding and guarding instincts. He is a loyal companion and has the stamina to work all day."
  15. I didn't see the incidents you are talking about BUT... my older Aussie is now 4 years old and she is a LOT less tolerant than she was when she was younger. Once she hit 2-3 her demeanour changed quite a bit, she became the fun police and decided that she cannot deal with even mildly rude dog behaviour. She will often growl at other dogs if they get in her space or if they are acting hyper. I don't see it as a huge issue in our case, as she's happy and social in her interactions with known and friendly dogs. I am quite good at knowing whether she will like or dislike a certain dog so we haven't had problems :) I just keep her away from dogs who will overreact if they get a slight growl, as her reactions aren't over the top. She just doesn't like rudeness (although her definition can be quite broad at times)! What was the other dog doing that he growled at? Are you sure that the other dog didn't eyeball him/show bad body language? They can be a lot more perceptive than us. Remember they are working breeds after all and many Aussies have a strong guarding type instinct that doesn't kick in until they are a bit older. My Aussie pup (7 months) will sit at the front window and growl if he sees people walking past the house. Yet he's friendly with everyone he meets, happy for visitors to come into the house if invited, etc. I don't see it as a problem. As far as growling at stuff in the house, I would try acting like he is "silly", taking him to show him that there's nothing there to be worried about. Act like it's not a big deal. Something may have spooked him and he might just need some reassurance.
  16. I have a very high drive puppy and while I can't help you much on the anxiety issues, the foraging (stealing) is a very big part of our lives! He definitely needed to be taught to turn his brain off or to better use his constant energy. At seven months old we are getting there. The main thing that helped us was implementing very strict rules and making sure all members of the household stuck to them. For example we would designated the few hours after dinner in the lounge room as a family to teaching calm indoor behaviour. We had to remove all toys and pretty much everything in the room as he would get overstimulated. If he tried to leave the room, he'd get called back. If he came, that was ok, but that was one chance down. If he tried again it was an immediate time out (we used the crate but you could find something else that worked for you). If he didn't come back when called it was immediate time out. Foraging the carpet was another thing he loved (still does) so we lightly discouraged that. It was a LOT of work and it still takes lots of ignoring and time outs when needed but most nights he can now spend with us without being an idiot. He's still not great at regulating himself so he needs a bit of 'help'. Good luck :) Edit: Take your eyes off her for an hour? Hahaha :D We're happy if we get 5 minutes of quiet time :p
  17. I just got back from the dog park where my 7 month old pup happily interacted with about 10 other dogs. My older dog has been attacked, unprovoked, twice in her life. Both were at dog club. Take from that what you will.
  18. Probably getting a bit off topic but the bites that break the skin, in my experience, are usually less painful than the tooth scrapes that cause big bruises. Especially when on your forehead
  19. My first thought was, can anyone really guarantee their dogs wouldn't bite if someone stuck their hand over the fence?? I don't think mine would, but if they did, I can't say I would be completely surprised. I've asked my neighbours to ensure their children don't poke their heads over the fence because while they wouldn't be aggressive towards them, I am worried about flying excited teefies which I've copped on numerous occasions :p
  20. I have to respectfully disagree, when I click my dogs come a-runnin'! Actually when I get the clicker out they're over me like a rash. Regarding recall, I still use the "pup pup pup" that a few others mentioned with my 6 month old :) Haven't had too much of a chance to train the command properly so I like to set him up for success, he won't ignore me when I'm making high pitched noises and running backwards :) I still charge the marker but I've found some pups like to have a command to go with it right from the start, for example their name. Aussies have naturally good focus so I've never met a puppy version that doesn't respond to its name straight away. So you'd use name -> click -> treat. Their little brains all act so differently :)
  21. My destructo is crated inside overnight with no issues. Is that an option? Anything outside is fair game at my place, they don't get soft bedding but have kennels with carpet nailed in (which they chew but it doesn't really matter). They also have a hessian trampoline bed as the mat is only $6 to replace. Mine also don't wear collars unsupervised.
  22. I personally really don't care. We call each other "mum" and "dad" in relation to the dogs. My dogs may THINK they're human, but they are definitely treated as dogs. I don't think the term has much to do with how they are actually treated.
  23. wuffles


    Also this might just be my own little quirk but I have never fed any of my dogs after coming home from puppy or obedience class. Cheese/processed meats are very high in fat and other bad stuff so best to let their little tummies process that without another meal on top IMO! Just make sure they have heaps of water.
  24. wuffles


    Cut the treats up reaaaaaaally small, as small as you can, for example I chop my frankfurt slices into 6 smaller pieces. And mixing it up is fine, I throw in bits of small kibble to bulk out my treats BUT my dogs are very very very very food motivated. I put the treats in a lunch box with a cooling block if they are likely to go mushy/smelly over the course of the day :laugh:
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