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Hello everyone,
my dog Gus is 9 years old and doesn't have an actual race, it's more of a mix between a jack russell and a sheepdog...
Anyways, when we first got the dog at the age of (somewhere around) 9 months, we didn't really know what to do as he was going to be our first dog ever. We looked up a lot of things and eventually we succeeded in training him in the most important rules of behaviour for us. And that's where we stopped training him and just went out for playtime and walks. However, I've noticed that he still has some things that he shouldn't do, like suddenly getting aggressive (since the past 4-5 weeks), barking a lot, and not responding well anymore to commands we didn't say in a long time. My parents have recently decided they want to sell the dog as they say they're not interested and are finding him 'useless' and 'annoying'. I would gladly give my house away to keep him here and that's why I've decided to try and teach him what things he should and shouldn't do. My first taught of it was that I could teach him things easily as I'm basically doing everything for him that needs to be done (like walking him 4 times a day, making sure he has enough water and food, playing with him, and taking him to the forest for some exercising), so he would trust me and see me as friendly. However, when I started the training I noticed my dog just keeps walking away when he doesn't instantly get the concept of the training. I usually try to get him to try another time or try to diversify it all by playing with him or doing another training exercise but whenever I get back to training, and he doesn't understand it immediately (even with treats!) he just walks away and goes to sleep... I really don't know how to make him try a bit more again... I've tried so much! I will do anything to get him to do so again! I really don't want to lose my best friend...
 

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A 9 year old dog is going to have a REALLY difficult time being rehomed. For one, it's going to be tough to find someone who wants a senior dog. For another, this dog has lived with you since a puppy...your family is all he knows. If he has lost some of his manners, it's the humans' fault, not his. He doesn't deserve to be cast out at this point for something he didn't have control over!

The good news is that old dogs CAN learn new tricks. You might want to seek out a training class or sessions with a positive trainer to help you find out how to motivate him. You may try working to find tastier treats that he'll work for or find other ways of motivating him. A vet check up also would not be a bad idea, just to make sure he isn't losing his sight or hearing or having any other issues that might be getting in the way. It may take some time and patience for him to catch on to this new game and you may need to keep the sessions short so that he can rest between.

Thank you for working with him to try to save him from being rehomed. I really hope it works out and he gets to stay!
 

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Try training him right before his mealtime, when he's most hungry. He might be more motivated then.

As for the barking, he might be bored? I know Pepper barks to entertain herself and to try to get attention.

Dogs do need continual training otherwise they forget the commands (or just think they can get away without doing them). Has he ever taken an obedience class? If you can afford that, it's well worth it.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
A 9 year old dog is going to have a REALLY difficult time being rehomed. For one, it's going to be tough to find someone who wants a senior dog. For another, this dog has lived with you since a puppy...your family is all he knows. If he has lost some of his manners, it's the humans' fault, not his. He doesn't deserve to be cast out at this point for something he didn't have control over!

The good news is that old dogs CAN learn new tricks. You might want to seek out a training class or sessions with a positive trainer to help you find out how to motivate him. You may try working to find tastier treats that he'll work for or find other ways of motivating him. A vet check up also would not be a bad idea, just to make sure he isn't losing his sight or hearing or having any other issues that might be getting in the way. It may take some time and patience for him to catch on to this new game and you may need to keep the sessions short so that he can rest between.

Thank you for working with him to try to save him from being rehomed. I really hope it works out and he gets to stay!
You're right there! I read so too! My parents ignored that though, and the sad thing is that they've found a colleague who wants him. I'm still trying to convince my parents as good as I can though, Ill use your arguments again. The only problem with the manners and the whole rehoming is that my parents just DON'T CARE. No matter how much I tell them it's not the dog's fault for his behaviour, and that he will be very unhappy as we are all he knows in terms of family, my parents keep telling I should've trained the dog better when it was still a puppy. Apparently they think a 6 year old can properly teach a puppy how to behave and what's good and what's not.

Luckily I've gotten into dogs and dog training a few years ago and ever since all went a lot better as his behaviour improved a lot since I started actually exercising, not just playing. But now he's started to do some bad things again, and my parents decided to sell him, I've given it my all to improve his behaviour according to my parents wishes. The problem here that keeps me from getting actual help is: I don't have money, and my parents are everything but willing to invest money in improving Gus' behaviour... That means I'll probably be unable to go to a suitable trainer with him.

I could try the VET check up, to make sure he's still in good physical condition, so I'll be at least sure it's not his hearing or sight that's in the way. I've also tried about every different treat he could like, ranging from cheese to chew sticks to dog cookies... it just doesn't seem to work!

And about the time thing, is it possible that it takes several weeks for a dog to adjust to the 'new game' and get used to it's concepts? If so, all hope is not yet lost! Oh, and I usually have sessions of about 15-25 minutes (when he's co-operating), is that too long?

In any way, thanks a lot for your tips and support! I really hope so too, he's the human best friend I never had..

Try training him right before his mealtime, when he's most hungry. He might be more motivated then.

As for the barking, he might be bored? I know Pepper barks to entertain herself and to try to get attention.

Dogs do need continual training otherwise they forget the commands (or just think they can get away without doing them). Has he ever taken an obedience class? If you can afford that, it's well worth it.
I've tried to train him before his morning meal, and he indeed was more motivated. But he still walked straight away when I started the new training...

I think you're right that he might bark because he's bored. You know, my father works fulltime, my mother doesn't do anything with Gus and I'm a student, so I'm at school during the midday. When I get back I try to spend as much time as possible with him though, but even then, or just a random moments when he just awakes from sleep, he starts barking... If it's from boredom, I'm really afraid there's not much I can do to help it... I already try to be with him as much as possible...

Yes, I see. I used to use the commands I thaught my dog about every day, so that counts as continual training in my opinion, and he would respond every single time.. however, now, he just doesn't respond to some commands he always has known before. And for the behaviour-training: Im really working on doing several sessions a day to keep the continuity in it and to make him remember it all!

Since I'm really really short on money (my parents are really poor too), I sadly won't be able to afford obedience classes... I really think it would help though, so I'm going to try to get money to follow an obedience class with my dog!

Thanks for all your tips!
 

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I would recommend looking up Kikopup on YouTube. She has some really excellent training videos that are easy to follow. She's great! Maybe when you find one you'd like to try with your dog, you could sit your parents down and show them what you plan to try. They might be more optimistic if they see what your plan is.
 

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I would recommend looking up Kikopup on YouTube. She has some really excellent training videos that are easy to follow. She's great! Maybe when you find one you'd like to try with your dog, you could sit your parents down and show them what you plan to try. They might be more optimistic if they see what your plan is.
Wow, that's a sound plan! Maybe I indeed just have to make them sit down, look, and notice how I'm doing my utter best to teach my dog new things! When I teach him one of the things that the youtuber covers, maybe they'll understand that it just may take some time, but definitely WILL have results to train with your dog, right?

Thanks so much for the help! Ill make sure Ill post the results as soon as I get the chance to!
 

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I'm really sorry that your parents are putting you in this position and I hope it works out for you. :(

It can take a few weeks or more for any dog to get used to training and understand the "game." (Training very often works best when the dog sees it as a fun game you do together!)

If he does end up getting rehomed, as long as it is a good, loving home, he will adjust. It's not the best option and I know it would be painful for you as well as a tough adjustment for him, but try not to beat yourself up over it if it does happen. You're doing your best to prevent it and at least you are learning better and will be able to do better than your parents have done when you are on your own and, hopefully, have your own dog!
 

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I'm really sorry that your parents are putting you in this position and I hope it works out for you. :(

It can take a few weeks or more for any dog to get used to training and understand the "game." (Training very often works best when the dog sees it as a fun game you do together!)

If he does end up getting rehomed, as long as it is a good, loving home, he will adjust. It's not the best option and I know it would be painful for you as well as a tough adjustment for him, but try not to beat yourself up over it if it does happen. You're doing your best to prevent it and at least you are learning better and will be able to do better than your parents have done when you are on your own and, hopefully, have your own dog!
Okay! So it can take some weeks... That's good! Ill go on trying and Im sure he'll understand the training in no time at all! I usually try to train everyday and mix it up with a long walk or some playtime, that seems to be the most effective and least boring way for us.

And thanks for the encouragement. I think that even though you have given me some great advice and hope, and even though I might teach him everything my parents want of Gus, they'll still rehome him. They just aren't the people for dogs, and since they're the bosses around here...

However, until that ordeal has come Ill do everything to make them change their mind. I've already started teaching my dog one of kikopups things, and I have a vet check up planned for next week. Ill continue training, and mix it up with playtime, and Ill keep bugging them with my arguments..

Now lets just hope for the best!
*on a sidenote, since Im a huge dog lover Im sure Ill have a dog of my own later on. I've always been fascinated by shiba inu's and their one-of-a-kind character.*
 

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Its great that you are trying to mix training up with play time. Rather than treats have you tried toys? A tug or a ball or something that your dog really likes? That can make a HUGE difference once you figure out what will work for him. One of my dogs will heel beautifully if I'm holding a ball, the other a tug...both will work for food too though....Just a thought since I noticed there was a lot of mention of treats, and although kikopup is fantastic, I find she doesn't mention using toys very often and I don't think I've seen her demonstrate it in any of her videos.
Good luck training and good luck convincing your parents!
 

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He should get a physical at the vet. Changes in behavior at that age could be due to hearing or vision loss.
 

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At 9 yrs, and becoming aggressive, I would get a vet check. A low thyroid (even slightly low) can cause aggression. Arthritis may be causing stiffness/pain, so he may be grumpy because of that. Cataracts can interfere with sight, so things may be making him bark more. Training will help (use high value treats like tiny pieces of cut up hot dog), but a vet check needs to be done. Ask for a T-4 thyroid test.
 
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