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Everything posted by KobiD

  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).
  15. She's not being a trouble maker by any means either. Well, no more than normal. All of these are typical behaviours for her. Part of her personality. Given that her primary carer (shes very bonded to them) is away for some time she's transitioned very well with no signs of detachment anxiety. I presume being in a house where there has mostly been someone here (coming/going/etc) as well as having another dog for company, has helped her. The two girls spend most their day laying around.
  16. I agree Pers.. but she's the guest and I don't want to restructure routines and build habits for my own dog during that time! No money involved either.. just good will. This morning I woke up earlier and as such made sure the behaviour wasn't there. It's no fun waking up at 5:30am on Sunday morning though!
  17. Lots of good info here. I'll share our experience.. certainly went through similar things at the same age. We got through it with the same advice. IGNORING IT! That means the whole family, no eye contact. No interruption words. Our dog would be outside while we ate inside so she would stand at the door and seek attention. She has learnt through repetition that if she remains quite she usually gets brought a leftover/treat once we've finished and while we clean up. Remember the longer something has been practised the longer it takes to break through - be aware of extinction bursts (things may get worse before they get better). We also use marker words for positive behaviour, but have also trained a bit of a chained behaviour when eating at the outside table. She isn't barky, but certainly 'works' for treats. Cycling through some learnt behaviours. Sit, lay down, relax, back to sit. She hasn't built the duration.. but I'm ok with that as long as she isn't pawing, jumping, or snatching.
  18. Hello kind folks of Dol. I'm dog sitting for a month, about a week in already.. My dog is a black mutt who is very independent. She has her own triggers that she will bark at, but on the whole she is very chilled and quiet. Doesn't really alert to much, she is more of a reactive barker (towards other dogs, birds, etc). We've been working at desensitising her with some improvement. I've had her from 8 weeks and shes just turned 3 recently. The dog we're sitting is around 6 years old, I have known since she was a wee pup, and has known our dog since we got her too. She's a blue cattle dog, and comes complete with all the drives such a herding breed has. I understand this is probably going to mean hard work and limited success given a short time period. The two dogs get along well. They have a bit of play during the day but not excessive. I have a few issues with the barking - more so I'm thoughtful of neighbours as well. 6AM - Blue dog barks at a neighbour who walks their dog past around that time. This barking then turns into attention barking. In her regular routines she gets walked early morning - I'm not an early morning walker. We've been doing afternoon walks instead. I've been ignoring the barking, often getting out of bed, walking past the dogs and ignoring until they settle and then saying good morning and rewarding. The problem being neither myself, family, or neighbours enjoy several minutes of yipping at 6am. Questioning if I should interrupt the barking, potentially rewarding the attention seeking.. or maybe i need to get up earlier and try and avoid the whole situation before it starts. The other is play time. She is a vocal player. She herds and barks. It's genetic. I can ask her to stop and she'll hush for a bit, but as play continues she just cant hold back what she was bred to do. I've been supervising play and ramping down if she gets excited too much. Any other suggestions for advice?
  19. I could have put more work into her for sure.. There are still some areas where she needs work too. She's certainly still has lots of personality, but on the whole she is well behaved and has a sound temperament.
  20. Coming back around towards the end of the year and have noticed the pattern reoccur. Some itching, drying of the skin, and some hair loss down the underside of the paws. Good thing is we can manage it now before it really flares up. Must be something environmental. Anyway, she'll be coming up to 3 years old soon and has turned out to be a lovely dog!
  21. Spot on karly. The last vet I saw was a small independent. She was very pro malaseb, and not fond of apoquel at all (for a number of reasons she discussed). In saying that she supplied me with as many apoquels as I wanted, offered much advice, let me look at the skin samples under the microscope and wrote a script for some antibiotics in the event that a flare up looked like it needed it. The skin samples showed high volumes of yeast, which she suggested I use fanny cream on.. lol! along with the washing as required. The season is on the change here and we haven't needed the apoquel at all since the last flare up. She still has some itching, but she's not breaking out in inflamed patches and any that do pop up I can get under control reasonably quickly. We discussed the shots and that she has seen good results with it, but it's a big outlay for a short relief. With the apoquel I have pretty much found a quarter of a pill (half of her minimum suggested dose) is enough to nip things in the bud.
  22. What the others have said, and then that again.. You've been doing a great job, but it also sounds like you have a challenging situation on your hands. One thing to consider is that change takes a long time, and progress can be slow. Small steps are key. You are very observant in reading her body language, so you need to incorporate that into your desensitisation lessons. Once you are seeing the triggers you've already pushed her beyond her thresholds and learning will be slower. I'd work at reducing her exposures to stress in general, and then tackling each issue individually. Our dog has always been similar in sending mixed messages. Excitement and fear. Fortunately not towards people.. that is all excitement which has required a lot of impulse control, but specifically with dogs or other animals she is unsure about. She bounces from emotion to emotion. May rush in too quickly to say hello, then get scared and submissive before hackling up and showing other defensive signs. Some of this is her personality, always has been.. and never triggered through bad experience. We have worked hard over the last few years to where the opportunity to practice behaviours are much reduced, and in the situations that this does occur that she is more able to listen to command settle herself. In regards to guests, instead of just treats.. you could have something special that only comes out when someone comes over. Be it a kong, a bone, something super high value.
  23. Thanks Pers.. I hadn't considered Epsom salt baths.. I use them for myself, but not for the dog.. Already supplement with golden paste/turmeric, fish, omega 3's, ACV, yoghurt, etc I have been bathing her feet with an antibacterial wash. I think it probably dries them up a bit, but I prefer dry and flaky to red and moist... and from what I can tell she does too. Just about back on top of things. Just waiting for the one spot on her back foot to heal where she licked it open.
  24. Her sore spots are looking much better than yesterday already. The red irritated areas of skin have dried out and now just flaky skin... I've also worked with her since day one.. she knows the doors are boundaries. I can leave the house open all day and she'll sit at the door. She'll try her luck and stick her front legs in to have a look around the corner but that's it. Same with access to the front yard. From her perspective she doesn't see not being allowed in as a bad thing. And we quite often spend time outside with her and her many toys. In relation to the boots. It's interesting that her irritation has been less between her toes or under her pads and this time more around her ankles and up her lower legs. If it was a contact allergy I'd expect to see it all over her belly as well as she happily lazes around in the grass. It could even be something we encountered on her walks recently that seeds/blossoms at this time of the year. Would you also suggest keeping her locked inside and not walking her to give her some relief?
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