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Old 07-26-2015, 12:52 PM   #11
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I'm confused. I feel like maybe I wasn't clear. My mom's dogs are fed separately by me (which I don't mind doing) and live outside with their shelter. They don't fight and are happy together, running around and playing all day. My dog(Harvey, as in a fourth dog, not one of my mom's three) lives inside and is never, ever allowed contact with her dogs (except for the dog friendly akita mix that I tried to introduce him to, but they didn't particularly like each other). My dog (Harvey) is dog reactive and selectively aggressive (which is why I hired a trainer, and he is improving greatly!), but it doesn't matter because he is given no chance to get near my mom's dogs because the akita will tear him apart for sure. His behavior has not been affected as he has no contact with these dogs.

I want to get the heartworm thing taken care of (which I must pay for, my mom can't afford it) before anything. And I will. But my real question here is what can I do to provide the outside dogs with more stimulation? I have time restraints and my own dog to take care of, but I would like to do something to give the outside dogs a more fulfilling life. I wouldn't say they're unhappy, but if I can find some I can do with them that will improve their lives, than I would be happy.
Don't be it was me reading through your post to quickly So long as you don't mind this daily ritual then fine, but still consider when funds permit about the resource guarding, don't dismiss it alltogether Does Harvey get to meet other friendly dogs? As socialisation is important! Can I ask does your mother do anything for her dogs? Stimualtion of their minds is also important so games with balls etc would be great may be even teach a little agility if you want to it can be hard work but rewarding too Good luck and thank goodness you are there to help!!!
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Old 07-26-2015, 01:21 PM   #12
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Dunar's Mom: Great idea! I even have a large ball because I am currently in the process of teaching Harvey Treibball. I can use that to play with them.

Bigboy: I would like to improve on the resource guarding (although I learned today that my mom does have a certain way of allowing them to have bones, and it works very well, so I can probably do frozen kongs also), but I feel that the akita is extremely aggressive genetically, and I'm not sure I could fix it. It just feels safer to manage the situation so it doesn't end up being a problem (and it hasn't so far).

Harvey gets to meet friendly dogs *sometimes*. He has a good number of dog friends, but it is very iffy when it comes to meeting new dogs. He knows all of my friends' dogs and he is good with them, but when it comes to meeting strange dogs he is not always good. I got him when he was full grown (I don't even know how old he is) and I suspect he either had a bad experience with a big dog or was just not socialized or both when he was young. He always excellent with small dogs, but he can be pretty awful with big dogs. But I have been working with my trainer and he has gotten a lot better than he was when I first got him. I'm trying to get him to behave reasonably enough around other dogs to enter him into an agility class.

My mom doesn't really do anything for them. I suspect she feels overwhelmed and like she has lost control. She is a graveyard shift nurse and we have quite a lot going on on this ranch (horses, chickens, sheep, dogs, turkeys, now my dog, my cat, and my reptiles now that I moved in). She's not really a "dog person" in the same way I am and she just doesn't really know what to do. I'm happy to take over the care of the dogs. She's asked me to help regain control of them, and I want to do my best. Mostly I feel that they need to learn better manners when it comes to feeding times (which I've been doing impulse control exercises for that, IE making them sit and wait until my cue to eat). They also need some more stimulation, which might help them not be so energetic and wild (they are pretty big, especially the akita mix who is 110 pounds).

As for agility, I would be happy to if I had some equipment. I've been wanting to get/make some, but one thing at a time! Heartworms first. Obviously they can't go to agility classes. The akita would tear all the dogs apart and the chow mix would be terrified. The akita mix would probably be okay, but he is not built for agility, haha. If I had some agility equipment, I could set it up in the horse arena and take them out there for some work.

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Old 07-26-2015, 01:25 PM   #13
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I want to get the heartworm thing taken care of (which I must pay for, my mom can't afford it) before anything. And I will. But my real question here is what can I do to provide the outside dogs with more stimulation? I have time restraints and my own dog to take care of, but I would like to do something to give the outside dogs a more fulfilling life. I wouldn't say they're unhappy, but if I can find some I can do with them that will improve their lives, than I would be happy.
I would definitely get the heartworm check, then just keep them on the heart guard... as far as stimulation goes, if you don't have the time to walk them a couple of times a day, you could alway put them on a treadmill to burn some of that energy off. If you can't do that... the only thing I can think of at the moment is to get a couple of varsity balls for them to play with. Another thing I would do is get some puzzle toys for them, that helps to exercise their minds.

Dogs need something to do besides the same old thing every day. On my website I had written an article on blowing bubbles for my dog to chase, it really gives him a workout. Maybe you can try that.

When you burn some of that energy off of them, they will calm down somewhat. They need exercise and walking them is actually the best because they can take in new scents and scenes. Treadmill will help, it's just not ideal. A varsity ball will really wear them out, but you shouldn't leave them with the ball alone. Blowing bubbles for them to chase, or even getting a bubble blowing machine, will help give them some exercise. Hope that helps with your stimulation problem.

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Old 07-26-2015, 01:33 PM   #14
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Elbee: Great ideas. =) I will definitely play ball with them, and bubbles sounds like a great idea! I bet I could find several different things like that will be new to them and make their lives more interesting. I don't own a treadmill, but I bet I can wear them out without one.

The heartworm thing will certainly get taken care of as soon as I am able to. Luckily, we rarely have mosquitoes (although this year we definitely do), so I think it will be okay.

Walking is tough up here. No one around here seems to keep track of their dogs, so there are ALWAYS loose dogs everywhere. I'm actually afraid to walk dogs around here. I've been chased on horseback, bum rushed on foot, and I've had dogs up here try to attack dogs that I have walked. And with Rikka (the akita) being so viciously aggressive to strange dogs (I mean, Harvey is a pain and will make a huge fuss with his barking and growling when he sees certain dogs, but Rikka is on a totally different level. She doesn't bark, she doesn't growl, she just attacks without a sound and does not let go), I feel like it could get very bad, very fast. And then when winter comes, it gets dark at 5 pm (which I am not even usually home yet by 5 pm) and I am just not walking around this area in the dark. There are animals, loose dogs, and who knows what else. Plus it's the mountains, so there is always tons of snow.

Speaking of snow, I bet I could do skijoring with all the dogs when the snows come. That sounds like a cool idea, and they would probably enjoy that.

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Old 07-26-2015, 01:56 PM   #15
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I'm not so sure I would get on ski's with 3 dogs in tow, sounds like an accident waiting to happen to me...

Glad I could give you some suggestions, please keep us informed on the progress.

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Old 07-26-2015, 02:57 PM   #16
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Oh no, I didn't mean 3 dogs at once! One dog at a time, of course, with proper training for safety. =) Harvey and I go skatejoring, so I'm not unfamiliar with the training and with staying safe while being pulled by a dog. Much safer in the snow than on concrete, I might add.

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Old 07-26-2015, 03:06 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by NeonAurora View Post
Dunar's Mom: Great idea! I even have a large ball because I am currently in the process of teaching Harvey Treibball. I can use that to play with them.

Bigboy: I would like to improve on the resource guarding (although I learned today that my mom does have a certain way of allowing them to have bones, and it works very well, so I can probably do frozen kongs also), but I feel that the akita is extremely aggressive genetically, and I'm not sure I could fix it. It just feels safer to manage the situation so it doesn't end up being a problem (and it hasn't so far).

Harvey gets to meet friendly dogs *sometimes*. He has a good number of dog friends, but it is very iffy when it comes to meeting new dogs. He knows all of my friends' dogs and he is good with them, but when it comes to meeting strange dogs he is not always good. I got him when he was full grown (I don't even know how old he is) and I suspect he either had a bad experience with a big dog or was just not socialized or both when he was young. He always excellent with small dogs, but he can be pretty awful with big dogs. But I have been working with my trainer and he has gotten a lot better than he was when I first got him. I'm trying to get him to behave reasonably enough around other dogs to enter him into an agility class.

My mom doesn't really do anything for them. I suspect she feels overwhelmed and like she has lost control. She is a graveyard shift nurse and we have quite a lot going on on this ranch (horses, chickens, sheep, dogs, turkeys, now my dog, my cat, and my reptiles now that I moved in). She's not really a "dog person" in the same way I am and she just doesn't really know what to do. I'm happy to take over the care of the dogs. She's asked me to help regain control of them, and I want to do my best. Mostly I feel that they need to learn better manners when it comes to feeding times (which I've been doing impulse control exercises for that, IE making them sit and wait until my cue to eat). They also need some more stimulation, which might help them not be so energetic and wild (they are pretty big, especially the akita mix who is 110 pounds).

As for agility, I would be happy to if I had some equipment. I've been wanting to get/make some, but one thing at a time! Heartworms first. Obviously they can't go to agility classes. The akita would tear all the dogs apart and the chow mix would be terrified. The akita mix would probably be okay, but he is not built for agility, haha. If I had some agility equipment, I could set it up in the horse arena and take them out there for some work.
Could you explain how your mom manages to let them have bones with out any fights,etc? I admire your dedication,I really do I really like what you are doing with Harvey making him 'wait' for his food I have done this for years with Nipper and it does keep her focused! I also not so much now have a 3 finger system which I devised my self the 3 middle fingers with the hand in a upright posistion are also upright one drops,then the second one, the third one will vary it may be 10 secs it may be 30 it may less or more only I know and the focus I get is second to none.

Now adays I still use the same method but instead of a count down all 3 fingers drop together but she only gets this method if when I put a treat down or her food and she turns to look at me (with out being asked) then it's the second method if I have to keep asking for a focus then the count down is used instead! What you have achieved with Harvey I see you are teaching each dog in turn to get them to wait for thier food this is so good It's worth continuing doing this I don't think your mom's dogs have had any or little leadership! No wonder she doesn't do much for them! I agree she has probably lost interest because she has become overwhelmed by it all which is sad. Prehaps if she can see improvements in her dogs behaviour then she may start to do a little for them If she wasn't really a dog person then why did she get more than one? We do on here have members who have done Agility so hopefully they can help with this! Please keep us updated
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Old 07-26-2015, 03:37 PM   #18
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Well, about the bones. Their big dog house has two levels and the top one is only accessible to the smallest dog (the chow mix, Ayla), so Ayla gets her bone in that top level. She is perfectly happy to stay in there and eat her bone, so there are no problems there. The akita mix (Kodiak) and the akita (Rikka) are both pretty respectful of each other, but one dog gets a bone in the sunroom with the door shut and the other dog gets a bone outside. This way, everyone is comfortable and there has never been a fight this way.

Yes, I'm making them each wait for their food separately. They are quite rude, jumping straight up and trying to get the food out of my arms. They are slowly getting better as they learn impulse control, so they are jumping less and less.

I do think that she will show more interest once I have them behaving in a manageable way.

About why she has more than one dog... Well, it's very complicated and a little personal. My family went through an extremely tragic divorce 6 years ago and everyone made some dumb decisions. My mother sort of entered an impulsive state during this hard time, and things just sort of went from there. I don't really want to get too far into it. I know it wasn't a responsible decision, but they are here to stay and now all I want is to make up for my mistakes in the past (I was 14 during all of this and didn't know very much about dogs) by doing what I can for these dogs. I don't think they're unhappy, I just think their lives could be better.

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Old 07-26-2015, 03:41 PM   #19
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Oh no, I didn't mean 3 dogs at once! One dog at a time, of course, with proper training for safety. =) Harvey and I go skatejoring, so I'm not unfamiliar with the training and with staying safe while being pulled by a dog. Much safer in the snow than on concrete, I might add.
Oh good, cause I would hate to think you got hurt because you were trying to help, I feel much better now... thank you

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Old 07-26-2015, 06:24 PM   #20
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Well, about the bones. Their big dog house has two levels and the top one is only accessible to the smallest dog (the chow mix, Ayla), so Ayla gets her bone in that top level. She is perfectly happy to stay in there and eat her bone, so there are no problems there. The akita mix (Kodiak) and the akita (Rikka) are both pretty respectful of each other, but one dog gets a bone in the sunroom with the door shut and the other dog gets a bone outside. This way, everyone is comfortable and there has never been a fight this way.

Yes, I'm making them each wait for their food separately. They are quite rude, jumping straight up and trying to get the food out of my arms. They are slowly getting better as they learn impulse control, so they are jumping less and less.

I do think that she will show more interest once I have them behaving in a manageable way.

About why she has more than one dog... Well, it's very complicated and a little personal. My family went through an extremely tragic divorce 6 years ago and everyone made some dumb decisions. My mother sort of entered an impulsive state during this hard time, and things just sort of went from there. I don't really want to get too far into it. I know it wasn't a responsible decision, but they are here to stay and now all I want is to make up for my mistakes in the past (I was 14 during all of this and didn't know very much about dogs) by doing what I can for these dogs. I don't think they're unhappy, I just think their lives could be better.
Respect for that Bad manners in Humans is bad enough and in a dog just as bad! Some one had to step up to the plate and you did I bet you are proud!!!
I wasn't trying to pry and if there are things you can't disuss
then we and I understand! And bless your mom but it must be hard for her. Re the Agility I understand that it wouldn't be wise to take the aggressive Akita to a Agility class too much of a risk. but some other stimulating game should help, but the terrified dog well isn't this dog losing out in some ways if they are terrified? What I am trying say could you help this dog to become less terrified in the long term?
While the dogs are happy from the sound of it there lives could be enriched some what prehaps run this by your trainer even during a conversation with them? Sit down with mom once she sees a big improvement for Eg: At meal times and try a draw up a long term solution!
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