Postings by Peekaboo

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Behavior & Training > Is there another dog forum we can ALL move to?
Peekaboo

You can't see- me!
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 16, '14 10:36pm PST 
I did see that someone else had volunteered to do this, but if that doesn't work, let me know.

I used to run a forum for several years. It was nowhere near the size of this board, but it was good. I can set it up so everyone can do profiles for dogs, with different sub-boards, etc. If someone is willing to buy the domain name, I have the hosting space -- if no one can help with that, I can set it up as a sub-domain for something I've already got and then move it later. It might come to needing more later on, but what I've got will work for now. It'll take me a little bit of time to get it up and running smoothly, but it shouldn't be too big of an issue.

I don't post very often, but I love these forums. I don't want this community to go anywhere.
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» There has since been 542 posts. Last posting by Shiver Me Timbers "Charlie", Feb 19 10:27 pm

Behavior & Training > Is there another dog forum we can ALL move to?
Peekaboo

You can't see- me!
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 16, '14 10:35pm PST 
I did see that someone else had volunteered to do this, but if that doesn't work, let me know.

I used to run a forum for several years. It was nowhere near the size of this board, but it was good. I can set it up so everyone can do profiles for dogs, with different sub-boards, etc. If someone is willing to buy the domain name, I have the hosting space -- if no one can help with that, I can set it up as a sub-domain for something I've already got and then move it later. It might come to needing more later on, but what I've got will work for now. It'll take me a little bit of time to get it up and running smoothly, but it shouldn't be too big of an issue.

I don't post very often, but I love these forums. I don't want this community to go anywhere.
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» There has since been 543 posts. Last posting by Shiver Me Timbers "Charlie", Feb 19 10:27 pm


Service & Therapy Dogs > Ruling for SDs Traveling to EU..?

Peekaboo

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Barked: Sun Mar 3, '13 5:17am PST 
I was watching this video earlier today... Does anyone know what ruling they're talking about?
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» There has since been 1 post. Last posting by Scooter, Mar 8 3:51 pm


Service & Therapy Dogs > A Few Questions - My Dog A Psychiatric Service Dog?

Peekaboo

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Barked: Sun Mar 3, '13 2:08am PST 
I realized I didn't actually address OP's post...

Athena, it sounds like your dog is already a wonderful help to you, which is really great. But as the others have said, a dog who has received no training at all is not a service dog. What I would do if I were you is begin by ensuring you meet the ADA definition of disabled. Since you receive disability benefits you most likely do, but there are cases where people are receiving benefits and are not disabled according to the ADA. If you're unsure if you meet the definition, you can talk with your doctor or other care provider, and they should be able to help you with that.

The second thing you should do is write down a list of things that you have trouble with that your dog may be able to help you with. This is something that your care provider can help you with if you’re having trouble, or the people on the forum here are usually willing to help as well. It’s okay if your dog is already doing most or everything on the list, but my point for you to do this is to make sure that there isn’t something that would be of great help to you that you could train your dog to do, as well as showing documentation that you have thought about it.

The next thing will be to find a trainer. If possible, you will want one who has experience with service dogs; if that’s not possible, you want one that has experience with advanced obedience, like rally, agility, competition obedience. The first thing you want to have the trainer do is an evaluation – see if your dog is even suited to being a service dog. The trainer should be able to tell what areas you need to work on as well as how to train any new tasks that you would like to train.

Regardless of whether you’ll be training new tasks or not, you should work on training with the things Athena already does for you. By this, I mean shape the behavior so it’s exactly what you want it to be, reinforce it so she does it reliably, and proof it so that she will it 90% (or more) of the time in any environment, including high distraction environments that she’s never been in before. Do this with any new tasks that you will be teaching her as well. If done correctly, this will take a fair amount of time.

This part is really important: whenever you are doing any sort of training, even if it’s just five minutes here or there, write it down. Keep a log of all the training that you do. This will help prove that she is trained if you ever have to go to court. Obviously we hope it never comes to that, but it does happen sometimes.

I don’t know where you’re located, but it’s important you find out what your local in training laws are. If you are granted in training rights with Athena, then you need to be sure to follow them until you finish with training (ie, if it says wear a certain color vest, don’t wear a different color). If you are not granted access, then you have to do your training in pet friendly places and with the permission of any place that it is not against the health code for an animal to be there – which is usually anywhere that serves food.

Once Athena has completed training (performing her tasks at least 90% on the first command in high distraction environments without being stressed is a good measure), then you should have a trainer issue a Public Access Test (PAT). There are several different versions of this floating around. A PAT is not legally required but having your dog take one does two things – the first is that it documents that your dog is well behaved in public (which, again, is good if you ever have to go to court) and the second is that it gives you peace of mind that your dog is able to perform well. I do know some people who have their dogs take it more than once (either a week or so apart the first time or yearly) because a PAT is only a “snapshot” of your dog, how your dog is behaving on that specific day. She might be having a spectacular day and pass whereas she might not on any other day, if you understand what I mean.

This doesn’t have anything to do with her training, but I’m mentioning it because I don’t think anyone else has. It would be a good idea to get all of Athena’s health testing. Not just taking her to the vet and having a once-over, but a full blood panel (including thyroid, etc.). It would be excellent if you could get her hips and elbows checked as well, which have to be sent off for evaluation. You cannot use her for mobility or counterbalancing unless you do this as it could potentially harm her – I don’t know if you’re planning on using her for that, I just wanted to mention it.

Remember that service dog training takes a long time, and it’s very important not to rush things. Slow is fast, as they say. Rushing her may cause her to burn out and not want to work – and that is a disaster waiting to happen. It’s excellent that you’re working on Athena’s CGC as that is a good start.
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» There has since been 3 posts. Last posting by Crazy Sadie Lady, Mar 4 7:01 pm


Service & Therapy Dogs > A Few Questions - My Dog A Psychiatric Service Dog?

Peekaboo

You can't see- me!
 
 
Barked: Sun Mar 3, '13 1:23am PST 
The dog in question in the case that was linked to had been trained by reinforcement – she was given praise and a treat. The judge who originally decided the case even said that the dog received training via positive reinforcement. The judges who reversed the decision said that the type of training (reinforcement) would “make any family pet into a service animal.” The problem, in this specific case, appears to be that the dog received no formal training and “may not be trainable as a service animal.”

I do have to wonder why this case was not tried under the FHA as it was clearly about housing. Surely if it had, the outcome would have been different since the FHA has no requirement for training.

In any case, I think this thoroughly illustrates the reason why it is so important to keep training logs and to meet with a trainer at least a handful of times if you are owner training for an evaluation, check-in, and some sort of PAT.

Edited to add clicky link of the case for those who need it.
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» There has since been 4 posts. Last posting by Crazy Sadie Lady, Mar 4 7:01 pm

Service & Therapy Dogs > Landlord wants to refuse us a service dog
Peekaboo

You can't see- me!
 
 
Barked: Mon Feb 25, '13 8:02pm PST 
Service dogs in training are in fact covered by the FHA. The FHA is older than the ADA and defines a service animal much more broadly. Animals are still covered, as opposed to just dogs and miniature ponies. SDiTs are covered, as are retired service dogs. I am looking for the memo issued directly by HUD/FHA -- I know I have it somewhere around here but I can't seem to find it. In the meantime, I leave you with this FAQs page and the HUD/FHA pet ownership final rule.
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» There has since been 10 posts. Last posting by Crazy Sadie Lady, Apr 26 6:27 pm


Choosing the Right Dog > Any idea how TALL this puppy will get?

Peekaboo

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Barked: Sun Jan 6, '13 4:29pm PST 
I've got a friend who keeps asking me how tall her puppy will get. She doesn't seem satisfied with my guess, so I told her I'd ask here.

The puppy is 5.5 months old and about 22 inches. Her dad was 32" and her mother was about 25".

The other question she has and doesn't like my answer is at what age would the puppy be fully grown height-wise.
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» There has since been 2 posts. Last posting by Wilbur, Jan 6 5:49 pm


Service & Therapy Dogs > Tasks

Peekaboo

You can't see- me!
 
 
Barked: Sun Dec 16, '12 2:36pm PST 
Bella, I sent you a message.

ETA: Whether or not a place can get in trouble for having a non-SD dog on the premises has to do with the health code. This varies by state and to my knowledge, usually only includes places that serve food. I know this is the case for the several states that I have lived in. Mateo, since you're so certain that Bella would get in trouble for bringing her ESA into the dentist's office, among other places, perhaps you could cite your sources so Bella could know the law rather than relying on what someone says?

Bella, because you've already demonstrated an ability to known your area laws, I would encourage you to look up your local health code to see what places, if there are any besides food serving establishments, that you should not bring Bella into.
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» There has since been 17 posts. Last posting by Crazy Sadie Lady, Jan 3 3:14 pm


Behavior & Training > Ecollars : An Intelligent Discussion

Peekaboo

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Barked: Sun Dec 2, '12 8:23am PST 
I have been following this discussion with interest, and there are a few questions that I haven't seen an answer to yet. I hope you will oblige me...

Why would you recommend a dog be trained on your methods rather than be trained with a clicker or other positive methods? By this, I mean things that can be taught equally well through another method. If it is because you feel your method is superior to others, why is it?

You said in a previous post that you don't like it when a person trains the dog with a different method and then uses the ecollar for proofing the behavior. Why is this? Do you feel there would be harm in doing it this way and, if so, what harm?

As has been mentioned, there is concern that the dogs be happy to train, to work. When working with aversives, we often see that the dogs aren't happy, that they lose that spark or they look like they really don't want to be doing what they're asked to do. What do you have to say about this in regards to your methods?

Do you have any videos of dogs that have been trained on your method?
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» There has since been 71 posts. Last posting by Jackson Tan, Dec 7 10:55 pm

Service & Therapy Dogs > Bella Was So Good!
Peekaboo

You can't see- me!
 
 
Barked: Wed Nov 28, '12 2:21pm PST 
It's great that Bella did so well. I can't recall where you are located so I can't double check the laws for you, so be certain that you know the in training laws. I'm sure you know this already, but it's important to know and follow the laws, and to always maintain control of your pup -- this means leaving if Bella (or you) is having a bad day. Of course, based on how well she did, it really doesn't sound like that'll be a problem. big grin

For the problem with the harness, it sounds to me like it's not properly adjusted. Assuming you have the correct size (which if you're not certain, you can take it back to where you got it and ask for assistance there), you can play around with the fitting to see if you can get it to work a little better. It's hard to say what the problem is without seeing it in person, but I most often see them too loose on dogs. You might also consider that it's just the wrong kind of harness for Bella (it happens), and so you might try a different kind. There's a lot of them on the market. I know Bella is small, but some brands of headcollars might also work for her, such as the Comfort Trainer.

While a harness is a great training tool, you might consider walking her on a non-training harness (one that cannot put pressure on her throat) and using a different method to reinforce her heel. Clicker training and the turning around method are both really great ways to do it. I believe it is Asher who has a really great video for teaching heel with a clicker on her page.

About her itching, I think that whatever flea control method you're using is not adequate. If you're using Frontline (or a related product), you should know that those can decrease in effeciency because the fleas in a specific area can become partially immune to it. Try changing to a different product. For example, if you're using Frontline, switch to Advantage. You might try using one of the pill methods, such as Comfortis. But whatever method you use, make sure that you are using it as directed.

I would recommend that you take her to the vet if you haven't already to confirm that it is in fact a flea allergy. If it were a food allergy, obviously treating for fleas isn't going to help. You might talk to the vet about putting her on Zyrtec, if she's not already. You also need to make sure that she isn't stress scratching, which if she is, you would need to either have her evaluated by a trainer/behaviorist or rethink her becoming a service dog.

One more recommendation is to go to My Itchy Dog. They are a company that specializes in natural treatment for, you guessed it, itchy dogs. The people I know who use their products absolutely rave about them, and they have things for every reason to be itchy.

You mentioned about Bella wearing PJs. While I personally don't think wearing cutesie clothes is appropriate, there are those who will disagree with me. Just be prepared to have more access challenges because of it -- or maybe not. Who knows. One thing I would recommend is K9 Top Coat's bodysuit instead of PJs. It's lightweight and looks more professional. If someone asks why she is wearing one, you could always say it's to reduce allergens or something to that effect.
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» There has since been 2 posts. Last posting by , Nov 28 5:25 pm

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