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  1. And so it continues. Shes a smelly dog! She gets a bit itchy.. Her little feet and legs get a bit inflamed.. But we are managing through the season with some meds, some washing, and keeping on top of it.. Nearly certain to be an environmental trigger.. pattern continues year by year..
  2. An update would be great! Always to hear how things are progressing.. Our mutt must be 4 years old or so by now and also has the ability to get.. mmm very excited! She's not a non stop dog, but in certain situations she crosses threshold. She can be happy excited, overstimulated by scent, and has also been reactive towards other dogs. Impulse control is the aim of the game. Working out how to keep them under threshold where they can learn, while rewarding the positive behaviour. Our girl still doesn't walk well on leash. She finds the end often. Doesn't neccessarily pull, but hits the end, doubles back or goes loose. As soon as I move again she finds the end of the leash. She runs better than she walks. She walks between off leash at her own pace. She often rushes up on guests and wants to jump to say hello. She likes licking the kids on the nose.. People often inadvertly reward her behaviour and it takes everyone on board to change it. With dogs she isn't reactive towards, she treats them the same and says hello often too excitedly - not always welcomed. Part of this is her personality. Shes a goose and she thinks shes a kangaroo. She bounces like a tigger.. BUT! We have a postive marker, and a negative marker. She knows the noise that means 'stop/inappropriate'. She also has many other skills on cue. So for us, the key is to redirect to a wanted behaviour, or as others have said.. incompatible behaviour. If she wants to say hello to kids, I have the kids make her sit and be calm first. We have calm and gentle on cue as well. If shes too excited when I approach the back door I wait for her to sit/settle/calm. If she peps up as I slide the door open, I slide the door back. If she pulls on the leash I stop. If teeth ever touch skin during play it stops. She's far from perfect.. and still becomes overwhelmed at times.. But repition repition repition.. and avoid getting into situations where they can practice the behaviour.. I guess in your case that would mean avoid having your back turned. Or play a game where you turn your back, and have someone else mark and reward BEFORE he jumps. Once you can reward the behaviour then becomes the long journey of building duration and proofing it in a variety of environments.. It is achievable!
  3. Hippity Hop! Bumpity Bump! Merry Christmas to all, and long time no activity from me. Wet season was a bit late to arrive this year, but with the increase in humidity, a little rain, and some flourishing grass in the yard we've yet again seen some skin irritation (feet, back of legs, etc). Decent quantity of apoquel on hand and a 1/4 dose seems to settle her down significantly. Treating any areas with either water/metho mix to dry areas out, or betadine.. Malaseb washes when she gets a bit smelly too. No significant changes in diet. Still keeping a healthy weight, and nice stools on Mfm (Kangaroo/Fish).
  4. Thanks for commenting on my thread. Would only suggest you do the same, and try to keep a log of flare ups and what has changed prior to that. If you've been somewhere different, exposed to something, eaten something etc. I haven't been that thorough with mine, but I probably should. I'm also in QLD but up the other end. With weather and season on the change you may find things settle for 6 months until the heat, humidity, rain and rain arrives.. and then all the vegetation that grows and flowers following that!
  5. I ended up moving to the Savourlife single protein (ocean fish). Has taken her a bit to adjust to it too, with some rather soft bowel movements; a touch softer than I'd like. I have another bag of mfm to go to again as it's the tried and true.. but I do think it's mostly environmental. I found a small patch of paspalum grass seeding down the back yard and it seems to align with that. I keep digging it out, but each year it keeps trying to grow! This season felt long and nasty, but I also ran out of apoquel in the midst of it too. So thus far I have found the best approach for us is early detection. If I can get the itch under control early then the symptoms seem to hold fast. If not she flares up more, scratches more, and the hairloss and irritation becomes a lot more broader (further up legs, belly, chest etc). Any open skin responds well to betadine and/or metho washes (diluted with water in a spray bottle). She's on the mend now, and should have enough drugs to keep things under control next season.
  6. Great responses in here! Is this your first dog? If so, it can be very overwhelming and frustrating at times. It sounds like you are on the right path to me though, just doubting yourself. Like others have said, puppies are active AND destructive! Many people will crate train to reduce potential damage, but really puppy proofing or a play pen can work to set some boundaries. Give the puppy things it can work on that you are happy with. Bones, Kongs, chew toys, etc. And finally, some of the best pieces of advice I was given... Instead of thinking about what you don't want.. have a vision of what you want to achieve and encourage and reward that behaviour. You will see more of it. If you see something you don't like, take away the triggers and stop that from being reinforced. It means thinking a couple steps ahead. And.. every single time you spend time with or away from the dog it is learning. It's an opportunity to train. Making them think tends to tire them more than physical play does, so lots of mental games and shaping activties are great for smart dogs! AND always work with the dog you have infront of you. Some days will feel like steps backwards.. Don't expect what you saw yesterday, just work with what you have. Keep sessions short! Take a breather as required.
  7. Just double checked the Savourlife listing on petbarn too. No chicken listed in their ingredients, which is why I would have purchased it as an alternate to Mfm. Petbarn offering a full refund on that.. Then to decide what to do. Order more Mfm or try something else. Will be getting to the vet early next week I think. A round of antibotics wouldn't hurt and some apoquel to help keep things calm. Edit: dug a bit deeper. The savourlife single protein options are only available up to 10kg bags. The listings they have for 20kg bags work out significantly cheaper, and have a heap of chicken meal as the filler to allow that. Something to be mindful of if you have a dog with allergies.
  8. Thanks dogsfevr! I'll look into it all. Which direction does the thyroid take us? Under or over active? What part does it play in the skin?
  9. Couple more months on and a bit later on the wet season and growth and she's now in the middle of a flare up and I'm all but out of apoquel. Need to get to the vet and get another script happening. The washing alone doesn't seem to be enough to stop the licking. It does keep the injection away, but the licking strips the hair and makes it even easier for the skin to flare up as a result. Heart breaking going through this every year... BUT! I also changed her off her usual Meals for Mutts to Savourlife early feb. We're a good way through the bag and it's also aligning with her itch/flare up.. It's 2nd ingredient is chicken meal.. and I have suspected that chicken also gives her some itch. So hard to find a food without chicken in it though.
  10. That's understandable too! I recall the first 12 months of puppy life being a lot of hard work. Much harder than the first 12 months of child life. Just very fast paced, and when you'd think you have something sorted something else would present. 3 years on and I think that shes a great day, but in another 12 months she'll be a solid dog! I've been saying that the last 2 years. haha! An adult dog that you have had some time with may be the right choice. You'll know what you have, and from what I gather you won't be leaving dog and child alone anyway. Then when little one gets a bit older it may be the right time to add the second.
  11. We were in a similar situation, except our child was a bit older.. around 24 months instead of 5. Pro's and con's for both sides.. But like others have suggested I would only start with one animal for now. In our case we opted for an 8 week old puppy from a rescue. Unknown mixed breed, unknown temperament etc. But figured we were starting with a clean slate, with lots of time for puppy to get used to kids, kids to puppy.. To teach them both how to respect eachother, and to desensitise any triggers as they arose. Getting through the puppy teething, chewing, etc took a bit of work for sure! Damages can be minimised with good planning. I would be much more cautious with an older dog and a young child. Especially one you have had limited contact with, and even more so being a working/herding breed as a cattle. They can be confident, hard headed, and nippy by nature. Maybe even consider putting in 6 months working with rescues etc and wait for the little one to grow up some more before extending the family. A 5 month old child isn't really old enough to understand or build those bonds with a dog yet either..
  12. Best advice I got on here was to remember to work with what you have infront of you. Don't compare to other dogs, etc. Don't be upset over mishaps. Just continue to be consistent and make sure to reward/reinforce the behaviours you want to see more of. Rewards can and do vary from situation to situation. From one dog to another. Your attention can be rewarding, barking can be rewarding, treats can be rewarding, going on leash, through a door, or anything that the dog wants is a potential reward. Patience is key, chose your moments wisely.
  13. Shes having a chew on something at the moment.
  14. Yeah both dogs are outside 100%. We have a purebred ragdoll that lives inside.. Confined to the laundry would feel like an exclusion to her. At her normal house, she is on more land, but sleeps inside and comes in and out as she pleases. My dog still respects the boundaries (door ways) when she visits there. Blue dog has been respecting boundaries while here. IE I can leave a door open and she doesn't come in.. just waits at it. The visibility is not great. Small section about 3M which is wooden fence. She can see through the gaps, and shes that alert that even without sight she'd be aware of them passing. I'm confident that she will settle more yet as she learns what the expectations are. She's a sharp minded, confident dog. Also, she doesn't bark at the post man! so she's certainly not aroused by every little thing that passes by. Just the ones she's not sure of.. or in the case of the morning walker, I think its that shes missing out on. The sun is well and truly up by then at this time of the year too (FNQ).
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