Author Topic: k-9 training?  (Read 1538 times)

grammie

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k-9 training?
« on: October 13, 2007, 10:19:56 PM »
I know some have had good results with a k-9 trainer.  I interviewed one last sat and sat in on his training session with a shepherd.

One thing that I didn't like and maybe you guys can tell me if this is acceptable practice....

The dog was new to him - 6mos old- excitable, but had gone thru some prior training...

the trainer used a long leash and would let the dog wander around and then tell him to heel.  The dog was busy being nosey checking out the new surroundings...

the trainer snapped the leash hard and said heel.  Hard enough to knock the dog off it's feet and the dog yelped.  Everytime he snapped the leash, it was like he caught the dog off guard and knocked him on his keister.

Then he snapped the leash and it hung up on the dogs front paw and the dog yelped in pain and limped for several steps.  To give the guy credit that maybe he knows better than me what he's doing, he did stop, check teh dogs foot and then continue on.  The limp was temporary for only a few steps, but I don't know if it got inflamed later that day.

I also saw him kick a dog that was laying down and wanted to get up.  Didn't kick the crap out of him, but it wasn't a love tap either.  I'm just not into using feet to correct a dog, unless you are blocking him with your leg or something.  Never the foot.

what's up with this kind of training?  I have a feeling the guy was showing off, because our first conversation he said he could teach a dog to heel in 10 mins  ::)  Then after that poor yelping shepard session, he came over to me and said "see, I told you 10 mins".

I'm sorry but, I don't see wearing a dog down from knocking him on his butt as "mission accomplished".   :thumbsdown:

i did warn him that thor may try to jump and attack him if he tries to grab him and walk away from me  without knowing who he is.  he replied, "that will be the last time he ever does that".

definitely not cool from my view.  He may be good with police dogs, but I don't know about boxers.  I'd hate to get a trainer that will break thor's spirit and make him any more neurotic than he already is, yet I know he needs firmer training than I can give him.

I did email the local boxer club in OKC for recommendations for a good trainer.  Not the mall puppy class stuff - Thor does that with a breeze.  I haven't heard back yet, but every one in town that I ask, from rescue to vets, NO one can recommend a good trainer.

I'm about to call vetties breeder and see if I can drop him off with her for a week.  :yes: She's the only one I know that works magic with boxers.

appreciate any input and ideas.  my brain and body are at wits end and I  realize I can't do it alone anymore.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2007, 10:23:55 PM by grammie »

whitedaisy

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Re: k-9 training?
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2007, 10:58:05 PM »
Honestly, I didn't even read your whole post - I'll go back to it but I have to say that I am totally against whatever you want to call what this person is doing. A "yelping" dog is either hurt or scared and that is not okay with me. The dog may learn something - mostly that that guy is a jerk, but that is wrong. Okay, now I'll finish reading your post - hang on...

Oh my  :eek: I can't believe that guy. Please don't bring Thor back there. One other idea is to call your animal shelter and see if they can make a recommendation. And maybe Vetties breeder would help you out, that would be great. I'll keep you in my thoughts and let you know if I come up with any better ideas. What is the main problem you are having?
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TobysMomma

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Re: k-9 training?
« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2007, 01:27:12 AM »
I do not like this trainer, in fact I think I hate him. :angry: I hope you never go back there. I would only go with a trainer that uses positive reinforcement. You may have to be really patient and look long and hard for the right trainer but it will be worth the wait. :thumbsup:
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grammie

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Re: k-9 training?
« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2007, 09:25:07 AM »
I agree I think the guy was over the top.  Luckily I didn't take thor with me.  I wanted to preview the place myself. 

thor will need a trainer that is firm and consistant.  I don't know that treats are any reward for him anymore, so another reward would be needed.  He loves to play fetch and chase me, but unfortunately I can't play with him.  The last time I played chase me I got knocked down because I couldn't get out of the way fast enough when vetty was running towards me and my ribs are still in pain.

the problem he's having is lunging at other dogs on walks and knocking me down.  Pulling almost the entire walk, yet he's not really pulling most of the time.  I just walk so slow that the leash is taut and I am walking faster than I can to keep up.  If he sees a tree he wants to pee on (every damn one!) he'll lunge for the tree and my arms aren't strong enough to hold him back.  I'll tell him to sit, which is does dutifully (it's so cute) but as soon as I release him, he'll pull again.  drives me crazy.

he is dog aggressive with some dogs while on leash.  In a fenced backyard, with proper introductions he is fine and his only problem is he'll want to play non-stop and not take no for an answer.

I'll try the aspca  or pound in the city maybe?  Our local pound is very small and the rescue lady that I work with in town is more in the know than any of them.

thanks for the feedback.  I couldn't imagine thor yelping as positive training.  It may work with police dogs, but not a boxer. 


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Re: k-9 training?
« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2007, 10:19:48 AM »
What a complete b*****d!  Let me see, if you bully something into submission like that, I guess they'd do anything to make you stop.  Grrrrr, I'd like to see how he'd respond if the boot was on my foot!

The best training is positive reinforcement.  To have a dog respond to you because it wants to rather than because it's scared not to is such a reward, unbeatable IMO.  The best training for boxers is repetitive because they think for themselves.  It's like crossing the road, you look both ways automatically because you've done it so often.  That's how I see it with boxers.  Henri does not get 2 chances to do wrong outside.  If he does it, he goes back onlead.  He earns his offlead freedom by proving to me that he deserves it by doing as he's told.  He improves with age because I am consistent and repetitive.  He will ignore distractions most of the time but when the mood takes him, he still things "I will do what I want".  That's fine but there are consequences, ie loss of freedom.

Now the pulling on the leash issue works like this.  If Henri is storming ahead I will suddenly stop and he will get a jerk because he's not paying attention.  When he looks at me I will call him to me and praise him or I will simply praise him for looking at me.  This can take a few attempts but the leash is 99% of the time never tight with Henri.  He doesn't like a tight leash either.  So it's tight, then loose again.

Your gut instinct has told you that this guy needs a wide berth.  Good luck with finding someone who has a kind heart and a firm but gentle hand.

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Re: k-9 training?
« Reply #5 on: October 14, 2007, 10:41:27 AM »
I am totally against hurting/scaring a dog!  This does NOT sound right.  When I make a leash correction, it is a very quick snap!  One that will get the loosened choker/prong/martingale to tighten for a second.  Something that the pup/dog is not expecting yes, but quickly done.  The long leash is fine for recall...let the dog go the lenghth of the leash and then call him back to you.  If the pup does not come back to you, a slight pull to redirect the pup to you.  Also good for letting a pup run off steam like you would run a horse in circles, you would do for a pup.

Scaring a pup when trying to train IMO is just wrong.  You may get the desired result, but trying to get the pup to come to you when you have leash in hand...not a good idea, again, this is my opinion.

I think I would try walking Thor in circles, small one graduating up to larger.  Get him to walk by you if you can...but if not just keep in going in circles.  One reason I do this and did for my horses was to get them to know I was the one ruling the roost.  When I trained Hailey I would do the snap correction and make her sit when I stopped.  I rarely after she was a year gave treats...but did give lots of praise.  Lots of praise.  I never had to worry with her, or for that matter any boxer till the 2 I have now...although they are pretty good till they see we are going bye-bye in the motorhome...then it is blast off to get in.  So...I now let them run there on their own, just cuz I don't need the dislocation of arm or any other serious damage.  I too have a hard time getting about, now with the weather changing more so.  But I have started walking more, but still only in the country cuz that is where I live, and they do very well on leash for me now.

Grammie, I would walk in the circles and graduate to a larger area.  I would do this until you think YOU have over them.  Sneaky or not...remember you are the TOP dog.
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grammie

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Re: k-9 training?
« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2007, 12:11:39 PM »
lol i thought of you gayle when I was there.  "hmmm what would gayle do? KICK HIS ARSE back to Austria"   :lmao:  Too bad we are in the states with our free cell minutes gayle.  We'd call you for a good 'sorting out' and be done with it  :lmao:

thor has never been off lead except for a large, mostly empty lake park.  As soon as I'm able I want to take them both there to run off lead.

claire, having had thor at the other end of a leash, you know how powerful he is  :yes:  :bigcry:  if he had a neck and head like vetty he would be no problem, although....i've found vettie is many times the instigator in the whole mess.  "ppl!  zooooooooom" 

after leanne (sidons mom) mentioning the lunge lead and now you, I think that is the total answer for thor.  He would be far enough away from me initially to not pull my ribs. and I can work at a wide berth and use commands to try to get him to come, rather than tugs until my ribs heal.

I really was shocked at that guy and had I not had some sense left, I was hurting so bad from my ribs that I could have easily said, "do what you can with him".  I'm just so tired of getting beat up, but with hubby now realizing he has to help, I have time to heal and try the lunge lead.

if I was 20 yrs younger and healthy, thor never would have gotten the upper hand to begin with.  I think a mixture of bad breeding, spoiling, and my health has been toxic to get thor to heel.  Although I've been trying since he was 6 mos.  When he was 2-4 months he walked very well on the sporn harness.  then hormones or girth took over and I could no longer hold him back.

excuses excuses - yeah I know!!!

kimmer

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Re: k-9 training?
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2007, 12:22:09 PM »
Grammie I did business with a k-9 trainer and was talking to him about Garth.  He works for the San Bernandino police dept.  He NEVER would train the way your guy does.  It all about reward and praise.  Run and run fast!  Good luck.  I feel for you.

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Re: k-9 training?
« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2007, 05:09:14 PM »
Looks like one of those guys who took Koehler and twisted it up considerably.

Grammie, call me I would be happy to talk you through the Koehler method, and on my trip home to HSV, AL at christmas I will stop over for a day or so and walk you through everything personally. Heck, I might even be lucky enough to "have" to go to HSV the week before christmas for a business meeting which means they pay for the trip ;)  and I would be on per deim :)  meaning I will take you guys out for dinner! 
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grammie

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Re: k-9 training?
« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2007, 07:10:06 PM »
Looks like one of those guys who took Koehler and twisted it up considerably.


I thought of you and the Koehler method while watching him and wondered if that method is brutal like that, but then thought naw, can't be that bad.  No doubt thor needs a strong trainer and a firm but FAIR method would work with him.  this guy didn't play fair.  He's from austria and teaches schutzund also, if that makes a difference in his approach.  different strokes.

when I try to yell loud enough for thor to hear me, I start choking and hacking now like crazy (omg the pain!)  so I just have to lay off totally until I'm better healed.

don't know what HSV is but can't wait to spend some time with you if even for a few.  This winter is supposed to be late and mild, so maybe we'll get some good weather while you're in town.


grammie

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Re: k-9 training?
« Reply #10 on: October 14, 2007, 07:17:23 PM »
ps - here's a pic of thor today laying in wait for vetty when they were playing.  I just realized that's the SAME position he takes when he sees a dog on a walk before he lunges.  He started that for the first time in Aug when he slammed my head into a friends porch when a pit bull approached us.

he can pounce like a LION from that position.  :furious3:

sorry it's a crappy pic:


kimmer

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Re: k-9 training?
« Reply #11 on: October 14, 2007, 07:21:19 PM »
Grammie his ears look like they are ready to take off :smash:

Carolyn

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Re: k-9 training?
« Reply #12 on: October 14, 2007, 07:32:47 PM »
Looks like one of those guys who took Koehler and twisted it up considerably.


I thought of you and the Koehler method while watching him and wondered if that method is brutal like that, but then thought naw, can't be that bad.  No doubt thor needs a strong trainer and a firm but FAIR method would work with him.  this guy didn't play fair.  He's from austria and teaches schutzund also, if that makes a difference in his approach.  different strokes.

when I try to yell loud enough for thor to hear me, I start choking and hacking now like crazy (omg the pain!)  so I just have to lay off totally until I'm better healed.

don't know what HSV is but can't wait to spend some time with you if even for a few.  This winter is supposed to be late and mild, so maybe we'll get some good weather while you're in town.



When applied/done properly, the handler NEVER provides a correction at all. The only corrections come from where the dog is with regards to the handler. I constantly get in trouble for "helping" with the corrections ::) from my trainer. It is a method that works, especially for "free thinking" dogs ;) it uses those tendencies to help train the dog. It really isnt hard per se, just hard to "not" do things you are used to doing. And it works. I had a dog that would literally do alligator rolls at the end of the leash and foam at the mouth to get to another dog. And he was 80lbs of pure muscle. Only took about 6 weeks of concetrated effort on my part, about 1 hr a day and he was the best dog on leash ever!

And HSV is the airline code for Huntsville. Sorry, been booking plane reservations.....my son for christmas and me out to CA this week ::)

also, the Koehler method does not use voice commands past the first week or so. ;) so you can give your poor ribs a rest, it really is all about getting the dog to choose to behave. When my trainer first talked about it, I kept thinking: Yeah well for border collies this might work, but boxers are in whole different reality. Yep, well she proved me wrong about 10mins later. After 15 mins of walking that 80lb monster of mine on the leash, he never moved more than 3 feet from her and always kept a "weather eye" on her. AFTER ONLY 10 MINUTES of using the method. Granted it took 6 weeks or so to cement it in, but it really is amazing and the dogs LOVE doing it and figuring it out as well.
« Last Edit: October 14, 2007, 07:36:39 PM by Carolyn »
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grammie

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Re: k-9 training?
« Reply #13 on: October 14, 2007, 08:42:56 PM »
wow carolyn I guess I need to give you a call this week.  If there is anything i can do just to start out that won't hurt me, I'm game for it.  I'm going to pick up a lunge line tommorow.

I definitely agree with using few voice commands, so I will enjoy that part of the koehler method.  When I tell vetty and thor to sit, I try to get in the practice of telling them only once.  If they don't sit, I get in front of them and give them a stern look and snap my fingers and point to the floor.  They sit immediately.  Tonight Paul was giving them fresh from the oven homemade PB treats and I could hear him, "thor sit... sit thor....sit!  Vetty sit...."

I told him to only tell them once and snap your fingers after that. He saw that it worked.  Training the whole household to follow the training rules .... :thumbsdown:

Kimmer - oh yeah I think thor is part cat!  He is lean and all muscle and has perfected his rear end muscles for jumping  :furious3:  He's just a nutjob!!  He doesn't jump on ppl anymore (unless they welcome it in play) but he will get airborne off to their side as they are walking. 

I think he was dropped on his head as a pup ;)