Dom and Stark...some help please.
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16-04-2012, 08:41 PM
Dom and Stark...some help please.
We have a new Cavalier, she is almost 4 months old (will be on the 28th). We got her a little young (at about 2/1/2 mos) as the mother wasn't interesting in feeding all three pups any more and she was the feistiest. She has had her first two series of shots and the vet says she looks good. She is probably getting close to 9 pounds, much bigger than my other Cavalier at this age.

Two issues with her...I know she is young and little and don't expect her to always be able to wait to be let outside. How can I entice her to use one area...I have potty pads, training spray, and special cleaners for areas that are used that I want to break her of. She LOVES being in the yard but seems to wait till she comes inside to go to the bathroom. With the other two dogs, you would think she would pick up on odors outside and use the yard. She goes bananas in the crate with the other two dogs free. Any ideas?

The other thing is that she is pretty vocal compared to any other dog I have had so I have never really had to quiet one. What works best to reduce the barking. I don't look to wipe it out entirely...she is a dog after all. My dad had a dog that was trained to the word "quiet" but I am not sure how to help her learn what that is.

The other thing is my 2-1/2 year old male Cavalier who has decided to mark nearly EVERYTHING since we brought the puppy home. I clean carefully and it's definitely marking and not that he is past time to go out. I tried a belly band and that works to keep him from peeing on things but doesn't stop the attempt) but I don't want that on him all the time. He is not fixed and the vet isn't too sure it will help the marking at this age. He is also a bit testy with the pup but that's getting better as they figure out who's who among the three of them

HELP...please.

See here they are, the bruises, some were self-inflicted and some showed up along the way. - JF
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16-04-2012, 11:38 PM (This post was last modified: 16-04-2012 11:49 PM by Stark Raving.)
RE: Dom and Stark...some help please.
The most important thing to keep in mind is that she is young, so simply may not have enough control to always make it outside. Potty traing should begin right away, but they need time to mature enough to hold it, so be patient.

My technique for teaching a dog to use a specific area is simple. Go out with them, wait until they poop, then go over, quietly pick up the poo, and lead the dog to where you want them to go. Put the poop down, and praise the dog! Do that every time they go, and get especially excited when the put it there themselves. If you manage to catch at least one poo per day (this needs to be done as soon as the dog goes) she will probably go there consistently within a week or two. However, it,s really important to keep the poop area as clean as possible. They won't use the latrine if it's dirty when there's a perfectly clean flower garden just a few feet away.

Also, never discipline the dog for going in the house. Again, just take it outside with little fanfare, and once you put it where it belongs, praise the dog to show it what a great result comes from poop being in that spot. If you discipline, the dog will interpret that as pooping is bad, and will therefore try to hide it. And trust me, poop on the kitchen floor is way better than poop behind the couch!

As for the vocalizations, believe it or not, you correct with vocalizations! But be wary. A dog that barks at a knock at the door can be a good thing. What you need to do is determine when it's ok, and when it's not, and stay consistent. Assuming your dog already sees you as the alpha, a simple growl should stop her from barking. Just don't praise when she stops. The growl should be a tool you use to get her attention and put her on the alert that the alpha is in control and she should stand by and wait for instructions.

It may seem a little complicated, but you'll figure it out quick once you start to use it. Just remember:

1) growling at the dog says, "you are too excited. Calm down. I am in charge."

2) barking at the dog (saying their name or "no!" loudly is barking) says, "something is going on that's making me excited. You should be excited too" when you snap at your dog, instead of saying no, use a sound (I just say "ah" in a sharp tone) and reserve that sound for communicating with your dogs. It eliminates confusion, and sends a clear message that you both understand.

My dogs are only permitted to bark in the house when someone new arrives. Otherwise, if they need my attention, they are only allowed to gently growl or the like, depending on what they want. Outdoors the rules for barking are completely different, and it's amazing how easy it is to teach. Keep in mind, verbal communication like this should not be followed with praise or reward. That will break the spell, so to speak. Growling, barking, and snapping can all be tools used to tell your dog how to act, whereas commands are telling your dog what to do. If you think of it that way, you'll both catch on real quick.
Just as an after thought...try to determine why the dog is barking. Is it protecting you, is it excited for company, scared of a new visitor, etc. though the correction is ultimately the same, it will improve your communication by being aware of what the dog is saying.

There's a book called, "How toSpeak Dog" that is a Great tool. I often recommend it to clients. There's a fair bit of mumbojumbo from the writer, but if you can look past that, it's a very god manual on how to read your dog.

Just visiting.

-SR
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17-04-2012, 07:28 AM
RE: Dom and Stark...some help please.
I agree, while I use different sounds for the exact same thing.

I use a crisp "ah" instead of the growl. Somehow every dog I have ever trained as known instantly what that means and stopped right away whatever it's doing. And yes, while praise always follows everything it doesn't follow the "AH" I use "watch" and show visible excitement when I want to communicate that something is going on.

But these are just words, the principle is identical.

When I get a puppy, I always make sure I have as many free days as possible to spend with the dog. I don't let the dog run lose in the house when I am not able to supervise every move. If necessary (like I know I will be distracted) I keep it on a leash with me in the house.

At this time, seamless consistency is the most important thing. The pup sees, if I do this, that ALWAYS happens. otherwise s/he will always test to see if this is the time s/he can get away with something. It doesn't take all that long for the "always" to be accepted. This doesn't just go for potty training, it goes for everything.

Potty training - I have done it with dogs of any age and background. Again, it helps to have a chunk of time to be with the dog all the time. If that is not possible, crate the dog when you cannot be home. It's not cruel, throw some chew stuff into the crate with him/her. I know she throws a fit. It's ok. It's temporary.

I take the dog out every 2 hours when potty training. The "in between" time, it is always in my eye as described above. If an accident is about to happen, it's "AH" and I whisk the dog outside.

So when we are outside (at least every two hours) I go to the spot I want to dog to use. Dog is on leash. And there we stay until it happens. I take a book or my cell phone or tablet and just wait. When s/he goes, I praise lavishly, I mean get excited and jump around and be exuberantly happy, and then I give a tiny treat (just a flavor, like cut the thinnest slice you can off a hot dog, paper thin, and cut that in half. ) Praise, praise, praise excessively. She has just performed a miracle.

It can be trying to wait for the moment, but it pays off big time. Just a few times of this and the job is done. The first time is the hardest. After that it comes easier and easier.

Staying in one spot makes it more likely that s/he will go soon, running around is too exciting to stop and do business. You want no interaction while you are waiting. Act bored, she'll be bored. Also, it happens fastest after they wake up and after they eat. So you can save time by doing it at those times.

This is an investment of time but spending a weekend or so doing nothing but pay attention to the dog gives you a life time of trouble free company. It's sooo worth it. Just remember, don't give any chance of it happening in the house. She is not too young.

And one thing I feel compelled to tell everyone since I see so much damage done when people don't know:

Never, ever, ever call the dog to you and then punish it. Doggie logic is very direct, she will think she is being punished for coming. You lose the recall for good. This may put a cramp in some training you feel you must do, but the damage is too big, just don't do it.

Likewise, always praise, praise, praise when s/he gets something right. It not only reinforces the behavior, it establishes authority in a nice way. She learns to look for praise - i.e. approval from you. She'll work on eliciting praise.

Also, when teaching something and the dog doesn't "get it" at the time, never stop on that note. When you are ready to stop, always give something to do you know the dog will do right and then praise, praise and stop on that note. It keeps the dog eager to learn.

Some people will tell you working with food is bad, but I have always worked with "flavors", i.e. bits of food that are so small that they are not really a bite, just a flavor on the tongue. It just works.

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Science is the process we've designed to be responsible for generating our best guess as to what the fuck is going on. Girly Man
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17-04-2012, 07:34 AM
RE: Dom and Stark...some help please.
Eat him.

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17-04-2012, 08:37 AM
RE: Dom and Stark...some help please.
Great advice from Dom and stark. I too have raised dogs all my life and used the same methods. 9 weeks is very young and time will help. dont give in to the fits in the crate. You may have a few days of hell but it will pay off in the long run.

History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a
free civil government. This marks the lowest grade of ignorance, of which their
political as well as religious leaders will always avail themselves for their
own purpose. ~ Thomas Jefferson
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17-04-2012, 08:53 AM
RE: Dom and Stark...some help please.
Thanks guys, I know the pup picks things up quickly...I just need to help her focus on picking up on other things. Didn't take long watching the other dogs to know what "Do you want to go outside?" means. And I think it took even less time to learn "Who wants a snack?"

Definitely going to change how I deal with her barking. She doesn't get it when I praise her for being quiet, she just talks back. I didn't know how to approach that issue since I hadn't really dealt with it before.

I am out of work for a while, so we will get into an intensive potty training routine.

See here they are, the bruises, some were self-inflicted and some showed up along the way. - JF
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17-04-2012, 10:33 AM
RE: Dom and Stark...some help please.
I have this great mental image of someone who is "Stark Raving" walking around the house growling. Angel

"All that is necessary for the triumph of Calvinism is that good Atheists do nothing." ~Eric Oh My
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