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Discussion Starter #1
Hi,

I adopted this beautiful girl about 4 months ago and have been enjoying her company ever since! I always get asked what her mix is and I never really know what to say. She was a stray that on was death row at the shelter and can't believe I lucked out on such getting such a great girl!

I've gone through thinking she was a mix of numerous breeds including Siberian Husky, Border Collie, American Eskimo, GSD, etc.

She's probably about 1.5 years old and weighs 35 lbs (full grown size).

I figured I'd ask the boards here....

When she "plays" she tends to run around the other dogs and never really rumbles with them. It's almost more of a "herding" of the other dogs. Like running back and forth around them and ignoring the ball or toy they are chasing. She basically feeds of their energy.

The other reason i'm curious, is that while she's been amazing, she's been really tough to work on with obedience training. And any insight I can get, I'm going to work with!

Thanks!
 

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Yes, I'd go with BC x husky. What do you mean by "she's been really tough to work on with obedience training." Specifically, what is she doing that makes it difficult?
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Thanks!

Some things she's great at - She never has destroyed anything of mine, she usually remains off the counter (though she will put her paws up at times and I tap her back to the ground), doesn't take people food on my dishes even if it's right in front of her, she's been pee/poop trained before and has been almost perfect with me so far - though a few accidents I take responsibility secondary to me not giving her enough time outside or not making it home in time.
Leash training at first was very difficult - she was constantly pulling and wouldn't walk with a loose leash, but she has greatly improved in this realm.

Her energy level is beyond anything I've seen so I enrolled her in doggy daycare - which may be worsening some things while helping to expel her excess energy.

Tough:

1) Jumping on people to greet them - been working nonstop every time she jumps and she's on the leash I pull her back down and try to keep people from giving her attention when she does that - her cuteness is a drawback in this sense b/c everyone says "Oh she's so cute it's ok"...

2) Anxiety - She had bad separation anxiety from me initially when I would leave my place - she improved, but when I try walking her with other people = no one else can walk her b/c she has to be close to me. She will jump, bark, fight against everything and anything in order to be near me on the walk. Cute at first, but definitely not good....She has become more territorial around the apartment, so when people come to walk her or pick her up for daycare - she becomes nippy and barks nonstop making it hard for others to help me walk her or take care of her.

3) She has ADHD - or a sense where she can't relax ever. If I try to get her to look at me and sit or do anything, she may be able to sit, but then is distracted in the distance by something else before I can do anything else with her. I have gotten her to sit, to go down, and to give me her paw (which she does anyways when she gets really excited) - beyond that seems to be hard since she is not good at eye contact and looking at me for direction. Her head is usually down and her nose hot on the trail of something it seems.

4) She flips out on silly objects or things - She can be walking and go in for a closer sniff on a twig...get close to it, then jump 4 feet in the air when she touches her nose to it! It's like she's the most curious dog ever, but can't handle the consequences when she finds it! I think this goes with the anxiety and fear stuff but I just am having a tough problem getting a grip on it all to help her out.

5) If she gets home from daycare and I'm in the apartment, she will beeline through the entire apartment barking, jumping up on me, flipping in circles all over my bed .... expelling a ton of excitement energy....unsure what to make of it. Sometimes, for no reason, she'll come running into the bedroom, panting and start running around barking and wearing herself out....almost like a wound up ball needing to be released.

6) And the biggest one was the leash biting. She would constantly turn around and start jumping up and down and biting the leash nonstop. Hence, why I switched over to a metal leash for a while to try and break her of that habit. That habit usually always occurred during the most ideal settings - eg. crossing a busy intersection....I'd be halfway across and she would jump ahead of me, then face me, crouch down and start jumping up and down like a maniac dog biting her leash...)


Well...those are some of the issues going on now. :)

Thanks!
 

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She looks alot to me like an Alaskan Husky which are basically a mixed breed bred for brains, stamina and the love to run. They can also be very stubborn and LOVE to run, not usually great on a leash. You might try a nose lead ( worked on our siberian husky great ) and if she IS a huskie mix she will be super high energy and needs lots of stimulation . One thing the siberian/wolf mix i had LOVED to do was skiijor , it was great for both of us, if you dont live in an area with snow ( like me in alaska lol ) you can get these skis with wheels or use inline skates. You use a harnsess similiar to the ones for sled dogs and then it attaches to your waist and off you go........ It is a BLAST for both dog and owner !! Theonly problem I ever had with my SadieAnn was getting her to stop ! GOODLUCK
 

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It sounds like she was never socialized properly. You said you've had her for three months? I know when I adopted my bordercollie/chow mix, Bear, it took a lot longer than three months to rehabilitate him. All I can say is lots of patience. I found incorporating basic obedience into everything helped. For example, before feeding him, I would have sit, lie down, give paw a few times before setting down his dish. The same before giving a toy and taking him out. Giving him a lot of exercise to burn energy. Ignoring him until he calmed down every time we were reunited. I hope some of this helps you. Good luck!
 

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She is cute! Wow!

She sounds like a typical high energy puppy (1.5 years is still a puppy) to me, and both border collies and huskies are super high energy, smart dogs.

Have you thought about wearing her out mentally instead of just physically? With dogs with that kind of energy often simple physical exercise isn't enough, you have to tire their minds, too. Try feeding her from a toy instead of a bowl. Engage her in lots of short training sessions. Teach her games like find me and use puzzle toys to give her treats. Really anything you can do to engage her mind will help.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks :)

Yea - she has limitless energy! After daycare though she is totally beat. I've worked with a personal trainer with her on some of these issues as well. We've concluded she probably was not properly socialized as a puppy and probably abused.

She's definitely become very attached to me, but also has seems to recognize girlfriends or other common visitors to the apartment. In fact, the only time she's ever destroyed anything was when a girl and I were dating and she left her flip-flops at the front door - My girl got them and destroyed them haha...I guess she didn't want any other woman having me.

I've had her 4 months now.

I'm in Miami - so not quite the best weather for skijoring - I've tried running with her, but she can't really handle that either. She basically will walk fast while I jog and as soon as I go slightly faster than her fast walk pace, she goes full speed in front of me to the end of her 6 foot leash, turns and runs backwards, and starts jumping up at her leash and interrrupting any rhythm that could have existed - she's consistent with that at least haha....

I completely agree with the mental energy aspect of the training. I think I'm running into problems there and any suggestions are appreciated. I make her sit every time I feed her - and I try to work on sit, down, stay with chicken treats before dinner.

I have used Kong treat dispensers, and Kong toys - I tried a special bowl to help make them work more for food. Are there any bowls you would recommend for the combo wet/dry food? I think the bowl I got was more a dry food thing - so I stopped using it. She has a nylabone - which she never liked at first, but now she chews on it a lot.

A friend is also a former junior trainer and her advice is conflicting to the trainer I'm using. Both focus on positive training aspects....but

1 - Anxious excitement energy - the trainer I'm working with feels I should use ignoring to get her to stop doing it...so when she jumps up, ignore her and show her no attention. When I come home, don't pay attention to her. When she throws tempertantrums on walks - just stand and don't pay any attention to her until she calms down. then begin the walk again.
I tend to agree with this training - the problem is that ignoring her on walks is difficult b/c she is so ADD - she loses attention in one thing and is onto the next before thinking twice about it! So she is never really "calm" before starting the walk again. I could stand in one spot for 20 minutes and she would never calm down. If I try to talk to other people on a walk, she will make a scene and start jumping up and down on me or the other person and/or barking

The friend I have is suggested more of a reassurance pathway with her. Touch her out of certain states. So reassurance with petting and love to get her through anxiety states.....The trainer says firmly tapping on the neck to correct with a noise when something is done wrong - otherwise do not make contact with her body b/c it will take her out of her state of mind. Obviously this is difficult for me b/c I'm a softie and love to give her attention.

Do you think dogs with significant anxiety or separation fears should have different paths followed? Is reassurance through stressful times ok? Or should I stick to the ignoring aspect of it all?

2 - Toys

I usually keep her toys here and there throughout the apartment. Since I'm not home a lot, she tends to dictate when she wants to play. She will go get a toy and bring it to me if she wants to play. This is a big no-no in my trainers eyes. She says I should dictate when it's play time and when it's rest time and dinner time etc. Harder to keep a "play schedule" on a day to day basis, but basically I should keep toys out of reach and I should play with her as opposed to letting her control the play.

My friend feels the toys should be available and if she wants to play and I can't at that time, I just ignore the requests. But she can have access to them at any time.
She has about 6 toys she loves, and if I don't play with the first one with her - she will sequentially bring me every single one until I play with her...or I end up with a pile of toys at my feet. haha...

Any thoughts on the toy situation?
 

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Do you think dogs with significant anxiety or separation fears should have different paths followed? Is reassurance through stressful times ok? Or should I stick to the ignoring aspect of it all?
People say that if you reassure a dog while it's anxious, you are training them to be anxious. First of all, dogs can't really hold 2 emotional states simultaneously. Adult humans can be anxious/happy or guilty/angry or sad/happy, but dogs can't. (Neither can small children.) So if you reassure and make her happy, she's happy not anxious.

My old dog was terrified of thunderstorms. He would try to dig his way through drywall to get away from the sound. I ignored it for 2 years then realized that if ignoring his fear worked, he'd be cured by then. (We get constant T-storms here in the spring.) Then I tried comforting him, and he did improve. He still shook and panted his way through the storm, but he stopped bloodying his feet digging through my walls.

As to toys, why shouldn't you play with her when she wishes to play? Yes, absolutely you should be able to end the game at any point. Nor should she be pestering you if you do say no. You should develop a good "drop it" (aka "out") to facilitate that, but if she wants to play, and you do, too, why not? I really miss Muggsy dropping his toy in my lap to initiate a game. It never caused behavioral problems with him, anyway.
 

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Thanks :)

Yea - she has limitless energy! After daycare though she is totally beat. I've worked with a personal trainer with her on some of these issues as well. We've concluded she probably was not properly socialized as a puppy and probably abused.

She's definitely become very attached to me, but also has seems to recognize girlfriends or other common visitors to the apartment. In fact, the only time she's ever destroyed anything was when a girl and I were dating and she left her flip-flops at the front door - My girl got them and destroyed them haha...I guess she didn't want any other woman having me.

I've had her 4 months now.

I'm in Miami - so not quite the best weather for skijoring - I've tried running with her, but she can't really handle that either. She basically will walk fast while I jog and as soon as I go slightly faster than her fast walk pace, she goes full speed in front of me to the end of her 6 foot leash, turns and runs backwards, and starts jumping up at her leash and interrrupting any rhythm that could have existed - she's consistent with that at least haha....

I completely agree with the mental energy aspect of the training. I think I'm running into problems there and any suggestions are appreciated. I make her sit every time I feed her - and I try to work on sit, down, stay with chicken treats before dinner.

I have used Kong treat dispensers, and Kong toys - I tried a special bowl to help make them work more for food. Are there any bowls you would recommend for the combo wet/dry food? I think the bowl I got was more a dry food thing - so I stopped using it. She has a nylabone - which she never liked at first, but now she chews on it a lot.

A friend is also a former junior trainer and her advice is conflicting to the trainer I'm using. Both focus on positive training aspects....but

1 - Anxious excitement energy - the trainer I'm working with feels I should use ignoring to get her to stop doing it...so when she jumps up, ignore her and show her no attention. When I come home, don't pay attention to her. When she throws tempertantrums on walks - just stand and don't pay any attention to her until she calms down. then begin the walk again.
I tend to agree with this training - the problem is that ignoring her on walks is difficult b/c she is so ADD - she loses attention in one thing and is onto the next before thinking twice about it! So she is never really "calm" before starting the walk again. I could stand in one spot for 20 minutes and she would never calm down. If I try to talk to other people on a walk, she will make a scene and start jumping up and down on me or the other person and/or barking

The friend I have is suggested more of a reassurance pathway with her. Touch her out of certain states. So reassurance with petting and love to get her through anxiety states.....The trainer says firmly tapping on the neck to correct with a noise when something is done wrong - otherwise do not make contact with her body b/c it will take her out of her state of mind. Obviously this is difficult for me b/c I'm a softie and love to give her attention.

Do you think dogs with significant anxiety or separation fears should have different paths followed? Is reassurance through stressful times ok? Or should I stick to the ignoring aspect of it all?

2 - Toys

I usually keep her toys here and there throughout the apartment. Since I'm not home a lot, she tends to dictate when she wants to play. She will go get a toy and bring it to me if she wants to play. This is a big no-no in my trainers eyes. She says I should dictate when it's play time and when it's rest time and dinner time etc. Harder to keep a "play schedule" on a day to day basis, but basically I should keep toys out of reach and I should play with her as opposed to letting her control the play.

My friend feels the toys should be available and if she wants to play and I can't at that time, I just ignore the requests. But she can have access to them at any time.
She has about 6 toys she loves, and if I don't play with the first one with her - she will sequentially bring me every single one until I play with her...or I end up with a pile of toys at my feet. haha...

Any thoughts on the toy situation?
You should take her swimming!! It’s a great mental and physical stimulation for husky breeds. Bring a toy that floats and play fetch! My dog loves this and she’s a similar breed I believe.
 

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