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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-10-2008, 07:05 PM Thread Starter
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need lots o' help

just want to say thanks in advance

we have a one year old shepard who really doesn't like strangers coming into the house. a little barking would be fine with me but he barks for too long and will occasionally jump on the people coming in or charge them. he's never bit anybody but occasionally a tooth will run into you. i need some tips on how to control this a little. i realize that i won't be able to completely eliminate this but i'd like him to be a little more controlled and listen to commands. like i said alerting us that someone is coming in is fine but it needs to stop when i say so. this is kinda urgent as my friends are scared to come over
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-10-2008, 07:12 PM
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Re: need lots o' help

Start by having a leash on the dog. The dog thinks it is in control of who comes in the house and not you. Which brings up another point, are you using NILF (Nothing In Life is Free)?Basically you dog earns everything, sits to eat, sits by the door, you go through the door first, these are all leadership things.

There are many things to do after these steps but what I posted I feel are important to start there.

Val


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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-10-2008, 07:17 PM
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Re: need lots o' help

Some links on NILF:

http://www.dogo.org/Education/NILF.htm

http://k9deb.com/nilif.htm

Also it sounds like you dog has a bit of a fear problem, charging at people is a fear problem, which if not addressed eventually your dog will bite someone.


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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-10-2008, 07:17 PM
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Re: need lots o' help

Hi frankenfish, welcome to the board!

First of all, do you practice NILIF? (nothing in life is free) if you don't google it, you get a lot of great info on it. Also, how much exercise and training do you do with the dog?

Basically what I would try to do is have someone come up to the door. Have them knock or ring the doorbell. If he barks Tell him quiet (If he knows it, if he doesn't teach him that first, and do this with treats) reward him when he gets quiet. Make him sit, then stay. Open the door. If the dog goes berserk and breaks the stay, shut the door. Ultimately the dog wants the door to come open right? So, this is basically teaching him how to behave when the door opens. Put him back in the sit stay. Mark the behavior and reward. Keep repeating this until the dog can sit calmly as the person walks in.

Zeus "Zeusy" - GSD 2 year old DOB 3-19-08
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-10-2008, 07:20 PM
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Re: need lots o' help

What I do is when the doorbell rings and Jesse is barking at the door, I then step in front of him and turn and face him and make him step back and sit I take ownership of the door, I don't make a move opening the door till his butt is on the floor, when I open the door he is to stay where he is, takes a while but he got the point and he is not to move till I release him - flip side he loves everybody that comes to the house because part of socialization was to be tied outside on a very long lead with us out front too watching the happenings of the neighborhood and having people come up to greet him for treats or play. Also since Jesse has been 8 weeks we have done everything Val above has stated and other things like whatever he wants play etc he has to do something for me first.

Lauralie
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-10-2008, 07:25 PM Thread Starter
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Re: need lots o' help

thanks everybody for such quick replies. he defintely needs to start earning more. getting him used to the doorbell sounds good also. fortunatly he already knows sit/down/stay very well so that should be helpful. he gets plenty of excersise so that isn't a problem. i that he really just needs to get used to people coming in and realize that we're dominant, not him. i'll be back here frequently as i try to train him. thanks again everybody
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-10-2008, 09:45 PM
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Re: need lots o' help

I'd also sign up for training classes, even if you've already went through one. You may think you don't need them or that they won't help much but you wouldn't believe what a huge difference classes can make.

Renji - 6 y/o M GSD x chow rescue


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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-10-2008, 09:53 PM
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Re: need lots o' help

My Basu used to act this way. He really scared people. Here's what I did:

Taught him the command, "Go to your bed" and the "Stay" command. Teach this when there are no other distractions first and gradually add distractions. When he goes to his bed, give him a really special treat--something he only gets for doing that command.

When company comes over, ask them to wait before entering the house. When they ring the bell give the bed command and the stay command. Have the people enter the house, keeping yourself between him and the people. As they come in the door give him lots of little pieces of the yummy treat. If he moves or barks, stop dispensing. If he's quiet and still, dispense like crazy. Ask your guests to completely ignore him and not even look at him. Continue to reward him for being quiet and staying in his place.

This is easiest to teach if you have people who can help you by coming over a lot. At first just have them come to the door and then once he's got the idea of what he's supposed to do, have them come in the house. At first you can keep him on leash and step on his leash with your foot so that he cannot charge the people.

This worked like a charm for Basu and even though he continued to be fear aggressive he knew the routine and chose treats over biting people every time.

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