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Old 05-13-2014, 01:00 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Pup afraid of crossing drains.

I have a few metres of uncovered drains in my home which are about 20cm wide and 30cm deep but my 4.5 month pup won't hop across them opting instead to take a detour to do so. I've tried training her to cross them with treats but she still won't do so. This is strange because sometimes I've seen her jump off the bench which is 3ft high.

Anyone has any ideas on how to get her to not be afraid, or will she just grow out of this in future?
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Old 05-13-2014, 01:44 AM   #2 (permalink)
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My GSD won't go up or down stairs that have no backers, I have a difficult time driving over open grid bridges, my grown daughter is scared of drains and subway grates. I think maybe there's a genetically programmed fear in mammals for this stuff.
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Old 05-13-2014, 02:06 AM   #3 (permalink)
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My previous GSDs never had any problems with these things. Strange thing with my pup really, she is really fearless over anything else except uncovered drains.
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Old 05-13-2014, 10:30 PM   #4 (permalink)
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My Sting was that way for the longest time with manhole covers on sidewalks, and storm drains on the curb. I did try the treats and even would stop and "pet" the drains. It didn't convince him. I would try to hurry past it - that didn't work either. Finally, I just acted like it was no big deal - if he wanted to curve around it - fine, I just kept walking and paid him and the drains no attention. That is what finally worked. I guess when I was trying everything it just reinforced his fear that maybe there was something to be afraid of. When I ignored the drains and him, he calmed down.
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Old 05-13-2014, 11:19 PM   #5 (permalink)
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My dog was afraid of stairs to and there is not one person on this forum that's going to approve of the way that I got her to overcome her fear - so we'll just slide right past that and say now she goes up and down stairs on her own walks towards the door where she knows the stairs are.
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Old 05-13-2014, 11:29 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nezzz View Post
I have a few metres of uncovered drains in my home which are about 20cm wide and 30cm deep but my 4.5 month pup won't hop across them opting instead to take a detour to do so. I've tried training her to cross them with treats but she still won't do so. This is strange because sometimes I've seen her jump off the bench which is 3ft high.

Anyone has any ideas on how to get her to not be afraid, or will she just grow out of this in future?
Has she been afraid of them from the start or is this new? At around 4 months puppies go through a bit of a fear stage. I would keep encouraging her and continue using a special treat or toy. She will probably grow out of it but may not. Stay very relaxed while coaxing her.
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Old 05-18-2014, 04:39 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Maybe she saw "It" and has reason to be scared? Are you watching Stephen King movies around her? lol
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Old 05-18-2014, 04:57 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Ok update.

I've taken her outside and she's crossed deep as those found in my home and she's hopped over them effortlessly without batting an eyelid. She is still scared of the drain at home.

I'm not really sure what to make of this now.
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Old 05-18-2014, 05:01 AM   #9 (permalink)
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IN your home? That's a little confusing but perhaps I'm getting a weird visual that's far from actuality. In all seriousness, a lot of people find that just ignoring the trigger and dog work best. Meaning going over it as if it's no big deal while she's on a leash. Sometimes even trying to reward something brings it more attention than it deserves.
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Old 05-18-2014, 05:07 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Areas like grated open drains and stairs that have no backs can be a challenge. I haven't experienced walking over grated open drains but do have 5 steps outside that don't have backs, all mine when young were very cautious and would avoid it. I just kept going up and down plus seeing another dog going up and down helped them to learn it was ok.

I would preserve and if you have the time, spend 5 minutes everyday training her to walk over the grates by using a high value reward item (usually really yummy food like roast chicken), lure her over it with the food. If you can put in the time and have patience, she will eventually learn.
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if your GSD is eating and eating and eating and losing weight - please consider testing for EPI.

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