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Too Much Dog for Me?

If you are wondering what is the right dog for you, this is the place to be. In this introductory forum we talk about topics such as breed vs. mix, size, age, grooming, breeders, shelters, rescues as well as requirements for exercise, space and care. No question is too silly here. This particular forum is for getting and giving helpful, nice advice. It is definitely not a forum for criticizing someone else's opinion, knowledge or advice. This forum is all about tail wagging and learning.

  
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Tiller- (Skansen's- Ira in the M

I DO Exist...To- Drive You Batty
 
 
Barked: Fri Jan 4, '13 10:20am PST 
Thanks for the info Pmailed, Stella! I have forwarded it to Quincy/Toto also, who has been in dogs a million years laugh out loud She also gives classes, in addition to breeding/training/grooming, and I am a puppy coach.

The person I found for you, just to put this out publicly while maintaining anonymity, is APDT/CPDT, has been training for 20 years, has been a regional SAR handler and is the training director for the local Prison PAWS program.

The trainer she is considering (for boarding) has more of a pack mentality. Has studied wolves for many years. The trainer she has gone to has an OB focus, without a behavioral focus.

So that's scant but good summary info to put forth just so people can offer their comments smile

And I remain all over doggie daycare as an option, too. If you could pair the trainer I recommended with 2x weekly doggie daycare, I think you'll see rapid changes, and you'd still be spending less money than having her sent away for training.

Thank you again. If I had adopted this dog to you, I would be over the moon regarding how committed you are being.
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Ace

Mischief is my- middle name
 
 
Barked: Fri Jan 4, '13 2:05pm PST 
I can so relate to the OP, except for the cat part. Ace is my first dog, and I didn't get a dog until my last cat passed on. But as far as the brattiness and energy and problems on walks... I still don't have it all worked out yet, but don't lose hope laugh out loud

Ace was a rescue I got when she was 7 months old. She's 2 years old this month. Still energetic, but she really has calmed down a lot.

Patience...
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Stella

Waiting for- Treats
 
 
Barked: Sat Jan 5, '13 12:56am PST 
Thanks again for all the replies and help.

Tiller, thanks for the info on trainers, and I'm glad to see I come across as committed! I'm really trying, but have been surprised at how much more difficult it is to have a puppy versus what I was used to with just cats. But my dog gives me things the cats can't!

I feel like all I've done is complain about Stella, but she does a lot right. She came to me perfectly crate trained by the foster mom who worked with the rescue. She was also well socialized with other dogs, something I'm trying to maintain.

And just tonight Stella laid calmly on the chaise like the stately dog she is and watched an episode of "Elementary" from our DVR. cheer Of course, it was late and she was tired from an extra long walk and her digging time (I let her dig in an area of the yard). She did get up a few times to bug my cat, but was mostly good!

I'm going to try some of the scent games as mentioned. Also, to answer the questions, I've had Stella since July. And instead of the "wait" command we learned "leave it" which is I think used the same way. She responds well to it on walks when she wants to devour inappropriate things people leave on sidewalks. I've used "no" when she "plays" with the cats, but maybe another command would work.

On the doggie daycare, will it be a problem that Stella is a bit rough with her play? She plays with a Westie who lives in our neighborhood and they tumble around like crazy. I'm surprised the Westie enjoys playing so rough with a big dog, but he keeps coming back for more! (You can guess what happens when Stella sees her playmate when we're on walks! We try to avoid it.) Also, part of me is protective and I'm afraid she'll get injured or pick up an illness in daycare. She has all of her shots, but aren't there things dogs can still catch? When I got her she had a couple of parasites, despite having been on preventatives. I guess it's no different than the dog park, where she's been a couple of times.

Weather permitting I'm going to take Stella to the dog park tomorrow. I wish I could let her off leash, but she doesn't come when distracted, so bad idea. This is a huge sprawling dog park with two big lakes. I don't want to lose her, but I'd also like to let her swim -- not possible when she's on a retractable leash. I've let her wade before though.

So, I have a vet appointment for my two cats on Monday, and I'm going to be asking him all kinds of dog questions. laugh out loud

By the way, I enjoy hearing all the opinions on what breed Stella is. It's much easier to talk about this here, versus when I'm on a walk and someone stops me and asks "What breed is he?" (they always think she's a he) And of course, Stella is trying to jump all over this person and it takes all my strength to hold her back and I just really want to get away from the person asking me a question I can't answer! I usually just say, "oh, she's a rescue mutt" and keep walking. People probably refer to me as that little lady with the big wild dog. My neighbor actually told me she thinks I should get a poodle instead! What they don't see is how much calmer she is when they aren't around.
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Toto, CD, RN, CGC

We don't do- doodles!!!
 
 
Barked: Sat Jan 5, '13 5:18am PST 
Stella, something VERY IMPORTANT I forgot to mention... remember to laugh!!! When someone comes along and she is driving you crazy, LAUGH and relax. It WILL help, and at least the endorphins you release by your laughter will make you feel better, not to mention help HER to relax as well. Talk to her like she is a person...doesn't matter what you say but I personally believe it IS important to your dog and helps keep her focused on you.
All the time in my classes I see people who never say ANYTHING to their dog (except keep repeating the commands). I notice that those who are laughing and chattering with their dogs always get more attention from their dogs. I think it also helps YOU to relax and become more of a team player with the dog.
I don't consider daycare any more of a risk than sending your child to school. Sure, it IS possible for an injury to occur, but it rarely happens. I really can't remember ANY injury any dog in our daycare has suffered that required a vet visit since we have been here, almost 13 years. Remember, there are employees there, hopefully trained in observing dogs and interrupting before something bad happens. And, we do sort them according to size as well as play style, at least here we do. At five months, Quincy is allowed with males and females but when he matures, he will most likely only go with spayed females to lessen the chances of bickering over a toy or the like. It's all about the staff paying attention.
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Stella

Waiting for- Treats
 
 
Barked: Sat Jan 5, '13 3:43pm PST 
Well, I was bitten at the dog park today. This over-friendly dog that shouldn't have been off leash wouldn't stop jumping on me. The owner stood in the distance and called but the dog was clearly ignoring him. Then the dog jumped up, hung its teeth inside my nose and made a slash coming out. There was a lot of blood and the guy refused to tell me his name. He didn't want me to have his dog's info either. He was very rude and said he couldn't afford this right now.

All I can do now is call animal control next week and give them this dog's rabies tag number, which my husband got for me. I hope that this was actually this dog's tags. The guy with the dog seemed not quite right in the head, maybe on drugs? He said he didn't have his ID with him, but was driving! We got his tags and the police said that without a name and esp since it was out of state tags, they could do pretty much nothing.

So, sore nose and some antibiotics to prevent infection. I know that rabies is rare. I know I'm worried for nothing but I've always been paranoid about rabies! I don't think I can ever bring myself to go to the dog park again. Oh, and this guy also claimed my dog bit his. No, buddy, that was my blood on your dog! Geez. Stella was so good at the park, so I hate that I won't be taking her again. I just can't deal with off leash dogs right now. cry

Toto, thanks for the daycare info. That makes me feel better about it. I'm going to ask my vet for a recommend for daycare. Maybe my vet can help me feel better about the rabies thing too! Boy, he has a lot of questions coming from me...

Edited by author Sat Jan 5, '13 3:49pm PST

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Tiller- (Skansen's- Ira in the M

I DO Exist...To- Drive You Batty
 
 
Barked: Sat Jan 5, '13 4:09pm PST 
I wouldn't worry, Stella. Rabies makes the animal go loco. A happy, jumping and somewhat out of control dog isn't really compatible with that. A super friendly fox, wandering over to say "hi" on the other hand....never thinks that's cute! That's a bad sign. I am sure you are fine.
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Toto, CD, RN, CGC

We don't do- doodles!!!
 
 
Barked: Sat Jan 5, '13 4:34pm PST 
Frankly, I am not, nor have ever been, a dog park fan. Your incident is, sadly, way, way too common!!!!
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Stella

Waiting for- Treats
 
 
Barked: Sat Jan 5, '13 4:39pm PST 
Thanks Tiller. I just want to be clear, I was never going to sue this guy and wouldn't want anything to happen to his dog. All I wanted was to verify the rabies vaccine, which was my right. He didn't seem to think so, and didn't have a vet either.

I know my dog is too friendly too, but not like that! This dog seemed to have not been trained at all. I can't believe he would let it roam the dog park without being on a leash. Perhaps the owner learned his lesson, I hope. I know most people who go to dog parks are responsible, but now I'm a bit freaked out by the lack of control I have if I chose to visit a dog park. Maybe it will just take me a few days to get over this mentally.
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Tiller- (Skansen's- Ira in the M

I DO Exist...To- Drive You Batty
 
 
Barked: Sat Jan 5, '13 6:06pm PST 
I didn't think that, Stella....and I am sorry he had to be so defensive!

I am not big on dog parks, either. Funny thing, I grew up in NYC, in the era before dog parks, and really there were never any problems. I think since the onset of dog parks themselves, they have a little bit too much of a "safe haven amongst dog lovers" vibe, and people use them to socialize fretful dogs, or those who are too pushy, not in good control, etc., people with those dogs figure dog lovers will understand, etc. I've gotta be right in some regard, as growing up in NYC, where I accessed Central Park all the time, these sorts of things never seemed to happen. shrug

Regarding your earlier doggie day care questions, I wouldn't worry about Stella's playing style....they usually arrange similar dogs to have space together, and/or supervise. I've adopted out a number of crazy energy, very strong Pit Bulls who are rough n'tumble players and go to doggie day cares as part of their week, so I wouldn't anticipate any problems. All shapes and sizes go to doggie daycares, but "too big, too vigorous, too rambunctious" are always amongst the main suspects for finding their way there wink
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Sallie Mae

Sallie Mae
 
 
Barked: Sun Jan 6, '13 8:27pm PST 
Stella, your post sounds just like my mom when I was about your age. She was a mom that really was scared of failing. It shows in your post how much you do care and soon enough, your dog will shapen up to be a well trained young lady. I go everywhere and I am always getting responses as to how well behaved I am. My mom is so proud, as like with yours, I was her first big dog and pulled many antics on her. She did win our battles and just stayed informed here asking lots of questions. Btw, thanks fellow dogsters for being patient with my mom and answering all those questions!! You are in the right place and there have been many great answers here for you. Learn to laugh and breathe are 2 of the best in my humble opinion!! I never go off leash anywhere, but my mom now knows that she can control me on leash. She walks me all over the place as long as she has that leash, bol. I also have a huge back yard to run in and when I go places like the vet, my mom doesn't always keep a tight grip on that leash, but just not outside where there are cars. I also live in Mississippi, but there are no dog parks in my area. My mom tends to agree with other posters here and are not a big fan of those anyway. There are no doggy daycares in my town, either. As far as the question about boarding and training, my mom had friends that tried that and had very bad experiances. It didn't work, and that particular trainer doesn't live here anymore. We do not have cats, but I have been off leash in areas with them and finally did have an experiance that made me run, and I have been running from them ever since. Tell your mom to be patient, she is doing well with you and things will only get better!!
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