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Anyone else have dogs that seem to always want to " help out " all the time?

Just curious as to how many others here have a dog that just naturally seems to want to " help " with things?
The dog I have now, almost since we got him, seems to always want to be helping. I dont mean just taking part in activities.....
It sort of started with picking things up off the floor and bringing them to me and just handing them over. I drop a sock on the way to the laundry room, he's right there with it in his mouth waiting on me to take it. Any item that seems out of place gets brought to me. Its pretty awesome. Hes 2 days away from 1 yr old, and I can now point at an item on the ground and say " get me that " and he does.
Ever since we got him at 8 weeks, he goes with me every evening to coop up the chickens. A few months ago he basically started putting the chickens in the coop on his own. I had to put a stop to that due to my wife not liking them being put up too early in the evenings.
He's a little busybody, drives my wife nuts. He's just always there, I swear he's always trying to help with things. Its kinda funny, its an item of contention between my wife and I. She's always getting on me about letting him do things he shouldnt...." dont teach him to mess with laundry "lol. I get a huge thrill out of having this dog, I like to use what he offers, she is not so amused by his antics.
He will help carry things around the yard too. He seems to want to help so much I sort of feel obligated to give him a job to do when he's with me. It can be almost anything. Training is the same way. Super super enthusiastic about it. Tell him Down, you'd think he hurt himself he hits the deck so fast. He seems to get alot of satisfaction from it. I've had dogs that were enthusiastic about performing tasks and training and such, but never one that came programmed like this. I swear its like having an employee at my side at all times. Sometimes it can actually be stressful finding things for him to help with. Our little goats have stripped the branches they can reach bare, so I pull down the higher branches for them. Aaaaaaand there he is......helping hold the branch down. Not chewing it mind you, actually holding it down, same as me. Theres not been one single thing he hasnt been able to do once he understands what I want. For the first time ever, I have a dog that will use his nose to hit a volleyball back at me. I can literally play catch with this dog. And at 1 yr old, we still havent hit the rebellious stage. Crossing fingers....... But its the wanting to help that I just cant get over. I'm so impressed by it.
So I'm curious as to how common this is. Does anyone else have one like this??
 

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Re: Anyone else have dogs that seem to always want to " help out " all the time?

Fast mapping is loosely the term for learning from one example. "Do what I do" is a training method where the dog mimics what you do. And, a few breeds like to have job - Lab, Golden, GSD, Border Collies, and other.

I think you have an unusual dog and should cultivate his training and 'internal rewards' for accomplishment. Include your wife in the training.

My dog is smart, but no comparison ... and he would have chased the chickens and goats. ;-)


As some cool, useful behaviors, teach him Left and Right, Up and Down, In and Out, On and Off, Over and Under. Teach him the names (and colors? Dogs cannot 'see' Red & Green, but they can compensate...) of as many objects as possible. You might be able to teach him to count five objects ... maybe more. After you get going with these, I'll tell you about teaching him to read...
 

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Discussion Starter #3
@hanksimon, I never even thought about teaching him to count....have seen dogs do it on tv. I think I'll start researching how to do this, I actually think that would be right up his alley. He is a gsd, funny you mentioned the working breeds in your post. I've never done any formal " dog activities" but I'm seriously thinking of pursuing something or other just for the fun factor for him.
On a side note, I see you live in Charleston. I used to live there also, but moved about an hour south to another small town a few years ago.
 

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@hanksimon, I like the term you used - internal rewards for accomplishment- that fits him perfectly. If you have any other exercises etc that fit that mold I'd love to hear about them.
 
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