Making Improvements Without a Trainer
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Thread: Making Improvements Without a Trainer

  1. #1
    ZRL
    ZRL is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultMaking Improvements Without a Trainer

    Now that I am away at college and I can't make it to classes (and I quit on the trainer that was cruel to Zeke)......we're doing better than ever.*

    We've always had recall trouble (mostly because I let him develop bad habits) and every time we go to agility/rally classes* each instructor always *requires* us to practice recalls with their specific method.....which never works, and they end up calling him dominant etc.

    Anyway......today we did quite well.* Originally I went to a fenced baseball field and worked on it, but a pack of unattended children started calling him and then climbed the fence* :.* I wish I had an extendable hand to push them all off the top of the fence* :P.* ANYWAY, we left.* I didn't want to deal with that.*

    So, we went home to practice.* Unfortunately, Zeke loves to eat persimmons and there are a TON of persimmons in the fenced part of the yard where we train.* So....he totally ignored me and ran away and acted horrible.* So, I left him and walked out of the yard.* Then came back when he started getting upset that I was gone.* Every time he acted bad, I left.* *Eventually he started acting wonderfully and running agility very nicely .* *

    I wish trainers would have let me do that earlier.....but they said I *had* to go GET him (he thinks its a game of chase) and drag him back and totallt humiliate him.* That just makes him more determined NEVER to get caught...and I didn't even do what they said.* I just grabbed his collar and walked him back to the course.* If I had carried him by the collar he would have never EVER come back again.* They also got on my case for not using a stern and forceful voice on my "dominant out of control dog".* He runs away even faster if he thinks he'll get in trouble...which they didn't believe, even when I demonstrated. He doesn't run off to be BAD, he just forgets himself 'cause of his excessive energy (its like having a perpetual BC pup, but less obedient :P).*

    Not that I think they are bad trainers, just that they cannot understand dogs that don't respond how their own dogs would.*
    Zeke RN, agility miscreant and CGC failure

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  3. #2
    lcspt is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Making Improvements Without a Trainer

    Sounds like you're getting a handle on what works with your dog.
    "In moments of joy all of us wished we possessed a tail we could wag." W. H. Auden

    Linda, Kona and Bo

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    Buddysmom's Avatar
    Buddysmom is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Making Improvements Without a Trainer

    This is very interesting. The lady that did our obedience seminar this weekend insists on this tactic. EX: Dog A was doing the articles from Utility. He turned and was supposed to sit before being sent. He anticipated the send and started forward, the trainer had the girl call the dog back and the exercise was over. She told the rest of us that any time a dog anticipates the retrieves/go outs/articles/gloves or any of the sending exercises that that's it, exercise over. Don't allow them to do the thing they want to do the most. She said that easiest way to stop a bad behavior was to deny them the thing they wanted the most.


    Eiderdowns That's My Buddy
    CDX, RE, WC, CGC, TDInc.
    Monnie

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    lcspt is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Making Improvements Without a Trainer

    She said that easiest way to stop a bad behavior was to deny them the thing they wanted the most.
    I do that with the gloves and yard drills with the bumpers. Denying the retrieve. ;D
    "In moments of joy all of us wished we possessed a tail we could wag." W. H. Auden

    Linda, Kona and Bo

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    Buddysmom's Avatar
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    DefaultRe: Making Improvements Without a Trainer

    Linda, exactly. That's how I got Buddy to quit anticipating the dumbbell.


    Eiderdowns That's My Buddy
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  8. #6
    patm's Avatar
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    DefaultRe: Making Improvements Without a Trainer

    I run a fine line between trying to do what the instructor wants us too (and trusting her years of training dogs), and "knowing my dog" and when things just might not work with her. We had trouble with the recall also - lots of different things, and I finally actually had to change the word that I used and start training it all over. We needed to train with other dogs though, cuz Emilu still has trouble either being too friendly or getting a little aggressive (with the hairy terrier types). Working around other dogs is invaluable to us. Working "around" the instructor helps sometimes too

  9. #7
    Buddysmom's Avatar
    Buddysmom is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Making Improvements Without a Trainer

    Quote Originally Posted by patm
    I run a fine line between trying to do what the instructor wants us too (and trusting her years of training dogs), and "knowing my dog" and when things just might not work with her. We had trouble with the recall also - lots of different things, and I finally actually had to change the word that I used and start training it all over. We needed to train with other dogs though, cuz Emilu still has trouble either being too friendly or getting a little aggressive (with the hairy terrier types). Working around other dogs is invaluable to us. Working "around" the instructor helps sometimes too
    I seem to keep saying this, but our instructor today said the same thing. Not everything works for every dog. You have to know your dog and know what works in a given situation. If something isn't working, quit and try something else. If you have an instructor that won't allow you to try something new, when what you're doing obviously not working, I'd find another instructor. I had an instructor once that insisted that I use the word "out" for giving up the dumbbell. I didn't want to use "out". I wanted to use "give". We went round and round. I finally quit saying anything. I'd just reach down and take the dumbbell. That instructor was not happy with me. Oh, well. My dog, my commands.


    Eiderdowns That's My Buddy
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    Monnie

  10. #8
    AngusFangus is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Making Improvements Without a Trainer

    I agree, some people are just so inflexible. :

    She said that easiest way to stop a bad behavior was to deny them the thing they wanted the most.
    That whole story reminded me of a little ditty our agility instructor shared with us a few weeks ago. She said she was having trouble with one of her poodles, who decided she wanted to run the course the way SHE (the poodle) wanted to run it. She would just zoom off and go for whatever her favorite obstacle was.

    She ended up doing this in a trial. Our instructor said she just very quietly said, "OK, let's go." Waved goodbye to the judge, collected her dog very calmly, walked her back to her crate and put her inside. Game over.

    She said, "That was the worst punishment I could have given her: Not allowing her to run the course. Agility dogs LOVE running the course more than anything. She knew she messed up. And it didn't happen anymore."



    Connie and "The Boys":
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    Buddysmom's Avatar
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    DefaultRe: Making Improvements Without a Trainer

    Our instructor for the seminar did the same thing at an obedience trial. Dog, a Border Collie no less, anticipated the articles. Chris called the dog back and told the judge, "We're done." and walked out the ring. She said a couple times of that and the dog quit anticipating the start.


    Eiderdowns That's My Buddy
    CDX, RE, WC, CGC, TDInc.
    Monnie

  12. #10
    rottnlabs is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Making Improvements Without a Trainer

    A good dog trainer is one that has more than one way to teach something and is open to new ideas. I have one agility trainer who has only owned BCs. Everyone knows you can't train a Lab like a BC. It just doesn't work. A BC is like a mini cooper. A Lab is like a suburban. The other trainer has a Rottie, a Wheaten, a Pit Bull, and a BC. She's knows every breed is different and every dog within a breed is different. She is a wealth of knowledge about training ideas.

    The one she gave me for a runaway dog was SHE called Murray to her, grabbed his collar and walked away from me with him. Murray is a Lab who loves people (especially my trainer) so he had no issue going with her. At first I thought "this is never going to work with a Lab." She also quickly realized this didn't bother Murray so she told me to start calling Murray and get more and more frantic with each call. Boy did that ever upset him. He whined, pulled, and struggled to get away from her then. He realized she was taking him from his mommy. Finally she released him and he couldn't get back to me quick enough. He almost knocked me over. We only had to do this a couple of times before he stopped running off from me.
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