Not try to play w/ or heard cat? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-13-2009, 07:08 AM Thread Starter
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Not try to play w/ or heard cat?

I have two somwhat recently rescued GSDs. A young assertive and dominant male and an older submissive shy female. He is remindeing her of her prey/play drive. He is "at" the cat constantly. He know he's not supposed to mess w/ the cat. When I look him in the eye and say leave it he does.... until I turn my back or until he "forgets" I said leave it. The girl sees it is fun and gets in on it. How do I get them to stop torturing the cat once and for all? Is it even possible?
JD
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-13-2009, 08:23 AM
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Re: Not try to play w/ or heard cat?

I would love to know the same thing and I only have 1 GSD! (2 cats though)

It may be one of those things that never goes away, or goes away with maturity, I am hoping for the later.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-13-2009, 09:19 AM
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Re: Not try to play w/ or heard cat?

Red racing stripes from the cat sometimes helps.


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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-13-2009, 09:33 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Not try to play w/ or heard cat?

No front claws so no racing stripes. I don believe he'd hurt the cat as he really is just being playful, of course stranger things have happened. They just chase, poke at and mouth him and he bats and meows. I really need him to learn "leave it.... permanantly".
Love o hear any advice.
JD
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-15-2009, 08:01 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Not try to play w/ or heard cat?

No one?
I have to believe that hundreds of us have this challange. What I'm asking is this, what methods and techniques were helpful and perhaps which ones were no or even made this worse.
Thanks.
JD
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-17-2009, 12:49 PM
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Re: Not try to play w/ or heard cat?

Zeus came home yesterday and met the cat, McLovin. He decided to corner her, then got his kicked by her when she gave him a right hook that literally made a "pop" noise when it made contact with his brain housing group.

The effect on the dog was complete surprise and the cat was ready to get some.

We separated them and he now doesn't know what to do with her, but he definitely likes to chase her around the house. Once he's a little older, I "think" he will calm down.

"Axel" v.H. Tyson (2017-)


RIP "Zeus" v.H. Tyson (2008-2014)
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-17-2009, 02:31 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Not try to play w/ or heard cat?

Good luck.
1 month in and I'm still working on "leave it". Problem is it only works while I'm watching.
JD
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-20-2009, 09:32 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Not try to play w/ or heard cat?

So I've been working on "leave it". First off the older submissive girl only bothers w/ the cat when the young dominant boy iniates it. He will now "leave it" right away most of the time. I say most of the time because he does it when I catch him starting to look or move "that way". If the cat leaps or starts to run (because he feels like it not that he has any fear of the dogs) the boy is much more reluctant to "leave it". This no doubt is prey drive. Just yesterday I caught him "stalking" the cat. He was croughed down, his head was low, he was intensly staring at the cat and slowly moving towards him. This caught me off guard as I've never seen a dog do this. Actually I've seen Shelties act similarly while hearding.

Anyway back to the small success. I started to have some success w/ "leave it".
A locally prominant GSD person whom I know (I called her out of frustration) remindede me that the prey drive is very useful for training and I needed to redirect his behaivure. I couldn't think of anything else at the time so after "leave it" I said "crate". I latter worried that this would make the crate seem like punishment but in the heat of the moment & frustration is was what immediately came to mind. I did this several times in a row for two days. A couple of times I saw him look at the cat, look at me and then get in the crate. I had to choke back the chuckles.
Now I realize I need to harness and redirect that drive. So now as I'm teaching him to play w/ toys. Perhaps I could rediret/condition him so when he feels like stalikng of chasing he instead goes for a toy.
What do you think.... could that work, any other ideas?
Thanks.
JD
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-21-2009, 03:04 PM
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Re: Not try to play w/ or heard cat?

I think alot of it has do to with your cats and how much they will tolerate as well as your dogs. I worked on this with Dex for a very long time before it started to get better.

redirecting is a great idea, interrupting the bad behavior (chasing cats) and redirecting to an appropriate behavior (playing with toy). When i did this with dex he would hold the toy in his mouth and still chase and bug my cats, at least this way he didn't mouth them.
You can always try and prevent it too. When your dog locks on the cat and starts the eye/stalk thing you know where this is leading, thats your chance. You can stop it before he gets the chance to chase them, maybe give him a handful of treats for sitting and looking at the cats but not chasing, or even better redirect his prey onto a toy and play an fun game of tug or fetch, and lots of praise . Have you ever used a clicker with your dog? Those can be very helpful as well when your trying to prevent the chase, just a nice consistent sound that always means to your dog hes doing right. We had some success by doing this.

We actually ended up adopting a cat that was extremely socialized with dogs and a bit of leader. (the crappy people who brought him to the rescue threw Ellie and his kitten mates in a large crate with a bunch of dogs to bring them to the rescue,) That ended up helping us a ton, this cat was not bothered the least bit by Dexter's attempts to chase mouth and herd. We then knew our dog was not really out to KILL the cats and those two ended up becoming great Pals
As for my female cats who had to tolerate his puppy madness aren't so forgiving, We had alot of improvements but Leave it was still very very selective with testy teenage Dex, and my two female cats.

One day, I was getting both dogs out of the car at my parents house Dex saw a bunny jumped out before i could stop him and started to chasing a bunny into the road, Leave it meant nothing his fav toy that i always carry around (used to redirect him from most anything other dogs/bodies of water ect...) meant nothing, that was really scary, this prey drive has become life threating, I could of lost my dog and i knew it was time to get some professional help, we also had a barrier frustration issue brewing we needed some help with.

We went to a master trainer. With guidance and supervision she trained to how to use a prong and a vibration/remote collar. I am very much into the softest method possible and love positive training, these tools sacred me, when dex was a puppy i swore i would never ever put anything like that on him ever, i believed EVERY dog could be trained 100% positive and it would work.
Ive learned so much while raising Dexter. With my dog it required me to find a little more of a balance with my training Dex needed a consequences to some of his bad behavior, espeicaly when it becomes life or death. Although we stay very positive and still love to use motivators and everything, we just need to sometimes have stronger consequences. I can't refuse to try a tool that could save his life. I just needed help learning how to use the tools so i could be as fair and gentle as possible with him.

We have had HUGE improvements since then, a Verbal Leave it means something the first time now, and now that mom has some sort of backup for dangerous bad behavior its overall improved our relationship. I would suggest trying the softest methods first really taking some time with them, some dogs do great with it, if it becomes dangerous to your dog or cats safety then maybe consider going to a experienced trainer. Best of luck, I understand how frustrating it can get, but with consistency time and fair training anything can get better
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-21-2009, 03:25 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Not try to play w/ or heard cat?

Wow. Chasing a buuny into the road would be so freightening and obviously quite dangerous. That hit home to me as we have an outrageous crop of wild rabits this year. They are everywhere, all ages, and for some reason, not very weary of peaople or dogs. Its just a matter of time before the new GSDs dipatch one of them.
Thanks for the encouragement and heads up about possibliltes if these softer methods do not work.
I just began clicker training.
I'll let you know how it plays out.
Thanks again.
JD
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