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Messages - FXgirl

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Akita Discussions / Re: I Think I'm a Bad Owner of an Akita
« on: October 24, 2008, 06:24:28 am »
Yeah, there is such a thing as too much petting.  I got in trouble from the instructor the first day of puppy class with my first dog.  Who would have thought, eh?

My apologises for mistaking your roommates as just friends.  He definitely shouldn't be snarling at them since it is THEIR house.

Anyways, don't give up on him.  You can read about dog adolescence to familiarize yourself with what your guy is going through and common mistakes people make.  There is light at the end of the tunnel.  I have much respect for those who have such well behaved young dogs.  I wish I was as good.

Akita Discussions / Re: I Think I'm a Bad Owner of an Akita
« on: October 22, 2008, 06:10:38 pm »
I don't own an akita but I do know of someone who has owned many akitas over the years and was very adamant that akitas should never be let off leash at parks.  They just don't get along with most dogs.  Shoda is now in adolescence so you may not be able to have him off leash anymore but that doesn't mean he can't met dogs on walks as long as he is under control and comfortable.

Some of your problems may be because he is intact but most of your problems are still going to be there even after you neuter him. 

Your relationship with Shoda should be based on respect.  If you don't treat him with respect he most certainly isn't going to respect you.  Do you have a command for when he's blocking the door way and you'd like to pass?  "Excuse me" is what most people use(I say "look out", myself.)  The best way to get him out of your way whether he's blocking the hallway or laying in front of the fridge is to teach him commands than to physically remove him.  Does he have a command to get him to stand from a lying down position?  That one's always useful around here when someone is lying in front of the fridge.

Around here my dogs rarely get "disciplined".  I never understand what people mean when they use that word.  To me it means getting yelled at or hit or dragged into the crate for a time out.  If you can give more examples of specific problems maybe we can be of more help to suggest ideas.  For example: if my dog is barking in my face while I'm lying on the couch watching T.V. I either get up and walk away into another room and close the door behind me or I may give me the "quiet" command that he already knows and ask him to lie "down". 

If he's growling at you when you pet him then he's probably getting pet too much.  He's demanding to be petted.  Ignore him.  If you want to pet him call him over and ask him to sit before pet him.  I would cut down on the petting if you think you are doing it too much.  You can also use it as a reward for obeying a command.

As far as barking and snarling at your friends when you're not around that seems like a pretty normal guarding behaviour.  I don't think it's wise for your friends to be walking into your house without you there.  Someone could get hurt!

This age is sooooo tough but if you stick to it, keeping respect and manners in mind when teaching Shoda you WILL get through it.  I always have a tough time through adolescence until about 18-19 months when it just seems to click for the both of us.

Medical Conditions & Diseases / Re: Need help with pigment change
« on: October 20, 2008, 03:34:43 pm »
None of my three leos have completely dark lips or gums.  De-pigmentation happens with age.  I wouldn't stress about it but if it makes you feel better see your vet.

If that's the only thing the judge could critique about your girl I say congrats.  She's a beauty.  It's just something you'd have to keep in mind when/if choosing a stud that he has dark pigmentation.

A Dog Who's Always Welcome -Lorie Long  EXCELLENT BOOK!

If you're like most dog owners, you want a trustworthy companion you can take on family vacations, to ball games, on hikes, and to cafes and festivals. You want your dog to behave when you have guests, stay peacefully at hotels, ride calmly in elevators, and maintain proper doggie decorum in all kinds of situations.

Chances are, you've watched and admired assistance and therapy dogs who are attentive to their owners' needs no matter what. This book taps into the secrets of assistance and therapy dog trainers and shows you how to use focused foundation socialization training to make sure your dog is well behaved--even in unfamiliar environments loaded with distractions and temptations. It goes beyond typical behavioral training and basic commands and covers:

    * Evaluating your dog and recognizing traits that will affect her needs
    * Using reward-based processes to teach complex behaviors and self-discipline
    * Creating a socialization program that makes your dog focused on you and confident in different environments
    * Reading your dog so you can anticipate her reactions and keep her focused on your directions

With these sophisticated training techniques, you'll turn your family pet into a sociable, take-anywhere dog who will always be welcome!

Great Pyrenees Pictures / Re: Pics of pyrenees/artic wolf hybrid
« on: September 06, 2008, 05:21:40 pm »
Pyrs are not herders they are livestock guardians.  Also not all pyrs make good LGDs which yours obviously isn't but that's okay.  I don't know if that's what your intentions were when you got him but it would have been important to research breeders who have great success producing working dogs and could help you with training.  It sounds like you are just looking for a home protector and burglar alarm anyway so no biggie there.  I would keep him on leash around the chickens for now.

What you're describing so far doesn't seem like wolf behaviour to me but more a young dog who is out of control.

Pyrs dig just ask some of the pyr owners on this list. Also, dogs that are allowed to play fight to the point of getting to a very high state of arousal IS out of hand.  Some supervision from you and he should be able to get over that.  I have three males who would play rough if allowed to and during adolescence I am around to make sure they play fair and give time outs if needed. 

At 9 months old now he may not be wandering yet but he WILL. 

This age is tough.  It takes A LOT of work for the first two years to have an amazing dog.  You can get there but I fear that his "wolf traits" will be used kind of like an excuse for poor behaviour and training on your part.  If you work hard and he turns out to be more than you can handle at least you tried your hardest to give him a great life.

Good luck, I give you all my best.

Food Discussion & Information / Re: Bully sticks
« on: August 01, 2008, 12:27:44 pm »
Interesting about how they are made.  Too bad they didn't explain though why they are so damn expensive.   :-\ 

My obedience instructor calls them d*ck sticks.

I use baby wipes to clean dirty ears(dirty, not infected).  I buy mine from the health food store since the drug store brand has weird ingredients in them. 

Leonberger Discussions / Re: Thoughts on prong collars? Need HELP!
« on: July 30, 2008, 12:20:24 am »
Sorry to hear of your troubles with Sophie.  She may be showing signs of insecurity and needs some confidence building.  Do you take her out on her own to socialize?

I just dealt with this exact same thing with my Bosco who is now a year old.  He was barking and growling at other dogs around the neighbourhood(not in class or the park-??) after some not so pleasant experiences and who knows what else and why.  We started desensitizing at far distances.  Every time I thought we was going to react I shoved treats in his face.  If he did react before I could catch him I would either turn around and walk away or I pulled up slightly with the gentle leader and he'd settle and sit and I'd start treating him.  It took a few months but wow, what an improvement.  I also had to tell myself to relax, be calm and have a loose leash as I'm sure I contributed to his craziness.  He has also learned to watch me when he sees another dog on our walks.

I would be careful with the prong collar in that it *may* make fear based behaviour worse.

All of these management/training collars have their safety issues.  If you can have two hands on the leash and only giving her enough leash to walk beside two feet of loose leash...the less likely she'll be able to lunge forward and take off dragging you behind. 

By the way...I have one of those newer designed Gentle Leaders.  Love it.

Good luck!!

How do you keep her so white!!  Wow!  What a beaut!

Food Discussion & Information / Re: Canidae: Change in Formula
« on: July 05, 2008, 06:36:40 pm »
Does your bag of Canidae that's making her sick have the old ingredient list or the now updated one?

I've tried the easy-walk harness, gentle leader and prong collar.

I am a recent convert to the gentle leader.  I LOVE it.  I will NEVER use anything else for training again.  I have gotten the best results with it out of the three.  I can walk two dogs and not even budge if they pull.  It's been great for my one guy who can get excitable when meeting people and jumping up.  I have maximum control.  I occasionally get people asking me "does your dog bite?", "will your dog bite me?" , "is your dog friendly?", "is that a muzzle?".  It doesn't bother me really.  It keeps the kind of people away that I don't want to talk to anyway. :)

The easy-walk was pretty good.  I could still be pulled around a bit but the big pain in the @ss was that the leash attached to the chest of the dog and he would always be hitting the leash clasp with his forelegs and I don't think that felt good. 

Groans, Gripes, Brags & Boasts / Re: Oh no! Tipper ate the cat food!
« on: June 26, 2008, 01:01:43 pm »
Wow, I had no idea eating a high quality cat food could be a medical emergency.  Anyone have any info I can read up on?  I don't see a big enough difference between the evo cat and dog food that could cause a concern especially in regards to sodium.  Would like to know more....

Hope Tipper is feeling better.

Corben and Merlin are not related.

Why has the vet given him only a few months to live?  Is he deteriorating fast? Corben has had problems ever since I can remember and he is almost 6.  It isn't confirmed he has the disease either but he has relatives that have/had it.  I'm waiting until he passes on until he gets biopsied.  And as you said(and have heard others say) sometimes the tests are inconclusive.  Corben does have laryngeal paralysis which often goes hand in hand with Leo Polyneuropathy .

I would highly recommended that email list I sent.  The people there are much more experienced than I and each has their own story.  You never know, maybe Merlin doesn't have ILP but he may have something else that others may help you get to the bottom of.  Those people have seen it all and are very helpful.

Hugs to your sweet boy.

Too cute.  Are you sure he isn't part leonberger???  Maybe he's been hanging out with Kate too much.


Interesting that I have three leo boys as well with one who has ILP too.  Have you joined the Harvey's Leos list for support?

I'd like to know more about the experimental treatment and how it works out for your boy.

I remember a few years ago when we were trying to figure out what was wrong with Corben we spent $1000 on x-rays alone.  I made things and sold them on ebay for extra funds. Today he is slow moving, clumsy and tires very easily but for now we leave him be.  It's all too stressful for him.  The vets, the poking, prodding, etc. etc.  I don't know what we'll do if/when he will need a tie back surgery to breathe.

Very sorry to hear about Merlin.  ILP isn't a death sentence but it breaks my heart to see my guy unable to do the things  most dogs do.  Good luck.

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