|10-07-2013 10:41 PM|
|Mary Beth||I would put the pen away - Nova is getting more and more stressed and reactive to the cats. For that upstairs loft, if possible, I would install a dog gate the one with the little opening for cats to get thru - Foster & Smith has them. Instead of the pen for Nova, I would use a crate (a plastic one not an open cage) and Nova can sleep there at night in your bedroom (but put it so it is on the opposite side of the bed where the cats come - that is what I did when my Sting was a pup and I had a cat) . I would also put Nova in there and close the door so the cats can't come in when I couldn't watch her and then give quality time to the cats- this will also give Nova a break unless there is a fenced in backyard and the cats can be kept inside. Inside, I would keep Nova on her leash at all times inside the house when she is out of her crate- that way I could stop her, redirect her with a toy (like a soft one that squeaks and encourage her to bite that) , correct her when she lunges, praise and reward her for behaving. Also since Nova needs an acceptable outlet for her prey drive, I would be sure to play tug with her - and end the game by letting her win. And make sure Nova gets plenty of exercise and obedience work (if you have classes in your area, that would help) so that she has activities to use her energy on and to focus on other than the cats.|
|10-07-2013 09:01 PM|
Training methods for cat reactive pup- stressed.
Sorry for the long info guys...any help would be awesome
6month pup getting more cat-aggressive.
-Our female cat has always run from her, and twice in 4months Nova has managed to get the opportunity to chase her (my complete, head-desking bad, both times I wasn't paying 100% attention and thought the cat was upstairs).
Our male cat used to stand his ground and hiss/swat, but now bolting when he feels he has a clear path.
Cats are 2 and 3, and neither have ever been around dogs (indoor-only, rescue kittens).
We have the pup in an xpen which she hasn't shown any inclination/ability to jump out of (yet), and she is in there at all times when I cannot supervise/at night to sleep.
Our small house is fully open plan - the only doors are to the bedroom and bathroom, both small. The upstairs is an open loft which is cat-only (we use part of the xpen to block it off when pup is loose) - has the litter-boxes etc, but cats love to sleep with us and are affectionate, so love to come down when we are downstairs.
My problem is Nova throws at the pen sides when she sees female - it makes the cat react and run, so she gets her reward/entertainment. She will even hackle up recently. I have tried clicker training on leash and in pen to ignore the male cat, who will tolerate being within about ten feet, but as soon as she is back in the pen and sees the female cat she's into the thousand yard stare and if she comes within a certain distance, bang against the pen sides. There is always an escape route for the cat but its' stressing them - and me - out.
There is nowhere in the house we can put the xpen where we can block the cats access to that area - they are used to and continue to free roam. Also the pup is six months, and spending more time than I'd like in the pen just because I can't trust her around them.
Two nights ago Nova jumped up at the pen when she saw the cat and got 2 toes stuck in a joint in the pen I didn't even think could fit a ruler, screamed bloody murder and we had to dismantle the pen to get her free, it was stuck so bad. She's fine, no lameness or anything, but now I'm terrified that she'll do it when we're not home to rescue her. She only jumps at the pen edge due to cats, never at other times.
I'm getting to the point where I almost feel the need for physical deterrent when she does this - but I'd need to jump into the pen from wherever I am in the house, so I couldn't punish her on the spot, so thus pointless. I tried the water spray, it doesn't deter her from repeating the action later.
Any tips/success stories would be great, I am getting worried. All my previous dogs/cats were overlaps from when I was a kid, so each cat and dog had been brought up with the previous cat/dog from puppy/kitten stage, never had to deal with this before.