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Tipitstrouble

Need help with my 9 month old Kelpie x

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Hi guys so at the start of this year I adopted my Kelpie X Staffy not knowing until later that she is part Kelpie. Since then her personality has blossomed and she is all Kelpie in this aspect. Now I am struggling a bit with obedience and keeping her energy levels down. She has Kong's and other brain teasing toys and she gets walked for an hour evening plus 20 minutes of fetch in the morning. But as I live in a house with others I am struggling with getting her to behave around everyone as no one else works with the dog in the way that I do. She has also had a bad experience with being attacked by another dog when she was younger and this has spread into a fear reaction when on leash. She is very weary around other dogs now but the two we live with. She has also become a big bully to the older Labrador we have at the house. I was wondering if anyone could give me some pointers to help these issues as I have never owned a working dog before.

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Just to say hello & welcome :) 
We need a photo of this girl if you can  ;) 

That sounds an interesting mix. 
Can you describe in a bit of detail HER daily timetable ..also describe what the other dogs are like? Physically, as well as discipline-wise. :) 
Sounds like she has a very good brain for learning things, so hopefully she can learn to self-calm when needed, and to maybe do some thinking about things in a different way? 

Folks on here, who live in SA may also be able to point you in the direction of a professional to guide you. I urge you to NOT chooses a fancy franchise name, or someone who works cheap/has a flashy website or looks about 16  ;) Sadly, these days it is all too easy to become a "dog trainer" in name only  :( , without having a good knowledge of the psychology of dogs (and of their humans) !

Edited by persephone
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Tassie   

Good for you for seeking to address her issues now.  At 9 months, she is becoming a potentially difficult teenager, and with fear in the mix, that isn't a recipe for happiness.  You haven't said if she is desexed or not ..that may make some difference.

 

My initial thoughts would be to add quite a bit more training into her mix .. tricks, basic obedience, nose work .. stuff to keep that Kelpie and Staffy mind engaged.   I'd be replacing some of the physical exercise with mental exercise, otherwise you'll have a fit bored pup, her who's not really learning to use her brain.  So several short training periods spaced out over the day, using reward based training.

 

In relation to her behaviour in relation to other dogs, that would be another reason for substituting more training with you into the time you spend walking her.  If she's not super happy with dogs when she's on leash, then the walks are not all that enjoyable at the moment anyway.  She could have more fun and engagement learning with you.

 

Bullying is not acceptable, so I'd be using management like crate training, and gated community (xpens, etc. ) to prevent occasions for bullying, while you work on teaching her more acceptable behaviour.

 

There are at least  couple of good knowledgeable training options in the Adelaide area.  @Snook may be able to make suggestions.

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Hey here is my little girl.

4 hours ago, persephone said:

Just to say hello & welcome :) 
We need a photo of this girl if you can  ;) 

That sounds an interesting mix. 
Can you describe in a bit of detail HER daily timetable ..also describe what the other dogs are like? Physically, as well as discipline-wise. :) 
 

Hi yes she is a very interesting mix, she has the muscle from the staffy and a high prey drive, but the intelligence of the Kelpie and also the speed of one. She is a very good blend of both luckily only taking good traits from both breeds.

 

As for her timetable: Tipit usually wakes up around 6am and I feed her her breakfast in a long or just throw it out in the yard to make her work for it then she is out there til I'm ready for the day (around 8am usually) then we will go to the park for 20-30 min and she plays "soccer" with her blue balls and she loves it. Then she will generally either be outside or inside with me depending on the day and where the other dogs are as at the moment she is not allowed around them much due to the bullying issues. Then usually I spend about 2-3 hours with her and we will go for her nightly walk then she gets home and gets fed. Come back in around 8-9 then stays with me until I crate her at night at 10pm for bed. 

 

And as for the other two dogs behaviour: They both have beautiful behaviour and nature. One is an old chocolate Labrador (male) who has amazing manners but after we put down our old dog he has developed anxiety and is on medication for that. The other is a staffy x Pitbull who has even better manners than the Labrador he is 2 years old now and belongs to my sister and is very obedient. So unfortunately I do know that the problem is stemming from Tipit here. But out of the two other dogs the only problem is, is only one is interested in teacher her manners (staffyx) the Labrador doesn't have a mean bone in his body and just takes it from her and it's only if the other one is around that anything happens. I've removed her from the situation to calm down and I also give her a firm no and pull her away. I don't want to use her crate as a punishment for this though as she loves her crate to sleep in and don't want to taint that 

Snapchat-736066234.jpg

Edited by Tipitstrouble
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Snook   

Thanks @Tassie.

 

I agree with the advice you've been given about needing to get a good trainer on board, engaging your dog in activities that work her brain, and using management strategies to ensure she cannot bully the other dog. 

 

I spent two years working with a trainer in Adelaide to rehabilitate my dog's reactivity towards other dogs but unfortunately my dog was attacked in their care and we were treated appallingly afterwards, so on principle I can't recommend them. I've had good experiences with Adelaide Veterinary Behaviour Services, who I took my dog to see after he was attacked again shortly after the incident with the trainer we had been seeing. We saw one of their vet behaviourists, as my dog was too traumatised to be able to be helped with training and he needed medication, but they do have trainers on their team. I don't know if they offer training services without first having an assessment by a vet behaviourist (which was about $600 from memory) but it would be worth giving them a call and asking if they will assist with just the training side of things, without seeing a VB first. This is their website https://www.avbs.net.au/behaviour-services/rehabilitation-trainer-consultation

 

Noseworks is a great, fun way to get your dog working her brain. We had done several sessions with a local business called Nosey Barkers but I just did a search to get a link for you and they don't seem to exist any more. You might be able to find another place that does noseworks if you do a search though. 

 

My only other suggestion for finding a good trainer is to join the Anxious Dogs of Australia Facebook group and ask for a recommendation. All of the trainers they recommend are force free. 

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What a pretty face :) I thought I was looking at a fox terrier for a few seconds :)

her day is pretty much alll 'holiday ' ..lucky her  ;) Snook mentions some good points in her excellent post. 
It's good Tipit sleeps in a crate - that's a really useful thing to teach! :) 

Noseworks, YES! 
Also - why not just do things around the house ..pick up toys, carry bed, bring you slippers, a book , tissue ... that sort of thing . Gives her something to DO ..to think about , and a JOB. 

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4 minutes ago, Snook said:

Thanks @Tassie.

 

I agree with the advice you've been given about needing to get a good trainer on board, engaging your dog in activities that work her brain, and using management strategies to ensure she cannot bully the other dog. 

 

I spent two years working with a trainer in Adelaide to rehabilitate my dog's reactivity towards other dogs but unfortunately my dog was attacked in their care and we were treated appallingly afterwards, so on principle I can't recommend them. I've had good experiences with Adelaide Veterinary Behaviour Services, who I took my dog to see after he was attacked again shortly after the incident with the trainer we had been seeing. We saw one of their vet behaviourists, as my dog was too traumatised to be able to be helped with training and he needed medication, but they do have trainers on their team. I don't know if they offer training services without first having an assessment by a vet behaviourist (which was about $600 from memory) but it would be worth giving them a call and asking if they will assist with just the training side of things, without seeing a VB first. This is their website https://www.avbs.net.au/behaviour-services/rehabilitation-trainer-consultation

 

Noseworks is a great, fun way to get your dog working her brain. We had done several sessions with a local business called Nosey Barkers but I just did a search to get a link for you and they don't seem to exist any more. You might be able to find another place that does noseworks if you do a search though. 

 

My only other suggestion for finding a good trainer is to join the Anxious Dogs of Australia Facebook group and ask for a recommendation. All of the trainers they recommend are force free. 

Hi I am looking into a trainer and also obidience training but until I'm in a better finical state it isn't possible and that was why I came here to find out some more ideas ☺️☺️. And I will definitely be trying out more brain work for her but when on walks Tipit is very much enjoying them. She does want to be around other dogs she just is confused to as how and is scared of the more excited dogs. 

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Snook   
10 minutes ago, Tipitstrouble said:

Hi I am looking into a trainer and also obidience training but until I'm in a better finical state it isn't possible and that was why I came here to find out some more ideas ☺️☺️. And I will definitely be trying out more brain work for her but when on walks Tipit is very much enjoying them. She does want to be around other dogs she just is confused to as how and is scared of the more excited dogs. 

Having been through something similar with my dog before the attacks, in terms of liking being around other dogs but developing a fear of them at the same time, the best advice I can give you is to not put her in situations where she has to make decisions about how to respond to the behaviour or approach of other dogs. In my experience, this will reinforce for her that other dogs are unpredictable and increase her fear and reactivity over time. This will make it that much harder, and means it will take that much longer, to change her emotional response to dogs and improve her behaviour. I found that out the hard way and would hate for you to make the same mistake. 

 

From a training perspective, it's very hard to give specific advice on a forum and I know that the behaviour modification training strategies I read about didn't really fall in to place for me, even though the concepts weren't complicated, until I had the hands on help of the trainer. Timing and understanding small, fleeting signals that demonstrate your dog us uncomfortable, are fairly critical to getting it right and being effective. That being said, you might find it helpful to do some research on the Look at That game by Leslie McDevitt, and the Behaviour Adjustment Training 2.0 book by Grisha Stewart. These two methods (LAT and BAT) were the core of the work I did with my dog. 

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20 minutes ago, Tipitstrouble said:

And I will definitely be trying out more brain work for her

here are some ideas :)

CLICK
CLICK
 

Oh..and a good set to work on .. is to have her lying comfy ..and practice foot handling /mouth handling in a calm and friendly way ..rewarding for compliance .
My pups enjoy having their feet played with..and their lips/mouths ... ears too! start small .. and work up  to 'hand holding', lip flapping', ear massaging ...  a good bonding 'game' and a very useful skill! 

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12 minutes ago, Snook said:

the best advice I can give you is to not put her in situations where she has to make decisions about how to respond to the behaviour or approach of other dogs.

EXCELLENT advice.

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Tassie   

Adding to what's already been said .. there are some great YouTube videos on teaching (force free) tricks and other behaviours .. to keep that Kelpie mind busy.  Things you can work on for just a few minutes at a time at odd times .. they don't need a long training session.    Others will have more suggestions, but I'm thinking of Kikopup (Emily Larlham), Donna Hill,  Glasgow Dog Trainer,  Lewis Nicholls  .. they all havine interesting things to suggest, which might give you some ideas.

 

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Thank you every for your advice I will take all this in by adding more obedience with her during the day. And I never force her to be around other dogs when walking I make sure her attention stays on me around them if possible.

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Dogsfevr   

The issue i see with her schedule is all activities involve you ,there doesn't seem to be much time based on life skills on its own & how to cope if her routine ever changes or just simply learning to chill .
I have a breed that is very active & i focus more on how to be calm & chilled more than training to be be over switched on & having a busy brain that wants to explode when it doesn't know how to "simply cope" doing nothing .

The Lab is teaching manners by ignoring the behaviour ,it doesn't need to react to teach manners so make sure your reading the signs correctly .I would be working more on teaching calmness at that time than telling it off & pulling it away .
This is a perfect time to teach self control & calm .
I would certainly use the crate if you feel its out of hand ,the only way it will become a punishment is due to your reaction before putting it in .
 

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