I'm sure there are a million topics on this - German Shepherd Dog Forums
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 02-27-2008, 01:12 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 341
I'm sure there are a million topics on this

However I felt I wanted to start my own. I have never owned a pure breed dog. I've always ended up with "pound puppies" of sorts or just dogs that have simply found me for lack of a better phrase.

Anyhow, while at Petsmart someone simply walked in and dropped off two beautiful German Shepherds. The female looked like skin and bones (and just had puppies) and the male was out of control. Nobody wanted to take these dogs, nobody even wanted to look at them.

So I took them to a GSD rescue not too far from where I live. Anyway, during the drive I got pretty attached to the puppies. I ended up bringing one back with me a little female a named Pandora.

My question is about e-collar training and I don't know if this is the right section or not as it is my first time here. I have used strictly positive reinforcement so far and the puppy is now 6 months old. I feel like my trainers are simply close minded. I asked about a prong collar and was told it would turn my dog mean and that no respectable dog owner would put their dog through that and I found it a bit harsh considering how many professionals have used them for years.

Against their judgement I bought an e collars. I however, have not used it. I have ordered a few DVDs on the how to of e collar training and I want to make sure i'm not going to be going backwards with my dog.

It's not that I havent tried using positive reinforcement. She has learned a lot but it's not as solid as I would like and from what i've read an e-collar can greatly help with proofing everything.

All I really want is a reliable recall and her to walk nicely on a leash. She does fine in front of my house but as soon as we go out more in public to the park or pet store it's another story.

I also don't want to have to always have a certain collar on her for her to learn the commands. I want to eventually be able to phase it out I guess if that makes any sense.

I just want to make sure i'm not considering this when my dog is too young. I also don't want to hurt her but I just feel she isn't getting too much out of strictly positive reinforcement.

Any information would be helpful or website links etc...

Thank you in advance.
Innuendo is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 02-27-2008, 03:05 AM
Senior Member
 
rlwolf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Vancouver, WA
Posts: 302
Re: I'm sure there are a million topics on this

Quote:
Originally Posted By: Innuendo I feel like my trainers are simply close minded. I asked about a prong collar and was told it would turn my dog mean and that no respectable dog owner would put their dog through that...
I agree those trainers are closed minded. Positive reinforcement is a great training tool, and should always (IMO) be used first. However it can't always stop there.

I currently use a prong collar on my dog Freyja. It does not and has not made her mean. She is a great big love bug. I would NEVER hurt my baby, and if I, for one second, thought that the prong or e-collar was abusive, I would never use them.

HOWEVER, they must be used correctly. You are doing the right thing by getting the DVD's for the e-collar first. If you are considering using the prong collar, go to THIS LINK to learn how to fit them properly. I don't agree with everything that website says, but they show you how to fit the prong collar, and as of now, I don't know of any other website that does.

Most people see a prong collar and think "medieval torture device" but when used properly is actually much safer than a regular choke chain. What I did, before buying one, I put it around my thigh muscle and gave a good tug. I get a lot of weird looks when I tell people that. But it didn't hurt. It didn't feel good, but it wasn't painful either. And eventually I will get her to using a regular collar, but for her teenage rebellious days, she needs a little more.

I'm not an expert, I'm just sharing my own personal experience, but I'm sure you'll get a lot of good advice from the others on this forum.

************
proudly owned and loved by

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Freyja -
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

always and forever
from this life to the next
rlwolf is offline  
post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 02-27-2008, 04:21 AM
dOg
Elite Member
 
dOg's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: MItten
Posts: 1,888
Re: I'm sure there are a million topics on this

Lou Castle: <span style="color: #3333FF">The only guy I'd learn e-collar usage from</span> is a board member right here. He's written more posts on more boards in the sanest manner than any other. <span style="color: #3333FF">His site</span>

I have never used an e-collar, but if I were to require it, I'd become a student of Lou's before I ever pushed a button.

That said, I do use a prong. I do fit it per leerburg's page. I do let a butthead dog lunge and self correct while walking, and it takes about a New York minute for them to realize doing so is dumb.
After that, it's simply control, as in if they forge too far it starts to tighten, they slow, and leash gets slack. That quick, that simple.

Compulsion and correction have their place, but not with a puppy.
I feel the same about e-collar usage on a pup. Praise will get you farther, faster.

A six month old is a pup. But I like my shoulder in it's socket, too,
so use a prong to help teach self control or correct for any inappropriate aggression.

Never correct for recall. Never correct for any command not thoroughly understood through marking and praise over and over, so you know it's disobedience rather than confusion.
Otherwise corrections are punishment, and break the bond and trust and that leads to failure, abandonment, and shelters are already full of failures, so please, just don't go there.

As for the "trainers" who want to tell you how to train your gsd, ask them how many they've trained. If the class is full of purse dogs, find another trainer.

My not so humble opinion...but then again is any opinion really humble?



To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
dOg is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 02-27-2008, 08:48 AM
Master Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Cleveland, OH
Posts: 656
Send a message via AIM to wrenny
Re: I'm sure there are a million topics on this

Did you guys just buy your prong collar at the store or order it online?

I should get the extra large for a GSD right? My pup is 8 months old, 80 pounds.

Lex, 10 years old RIP
Lincoln 4 months old.
wrenny is offline  
post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 02-27-2008, 08:54 AM
Administrator & Alpha Bitch of the Wild Bunch
 
Chris Wild's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Michigan, USA
Posts: 13,602
Re: I'm sure there are a million topics on this

Quote:
Originally Posted By: wrennyDid you guys just buy your prong collar at the store or order it online?

I should get the extra large for a GSD right? My pup is 8 months old, 80 pounds.
We always order them on-line since we only use the Herm Sprenger ones. The pet store brands (Costal, Titan, etc...) are lower quality. I've never seen stainless steel or curogan collars in the stores, and these materials are much better than the chrome plated you can find in pet stores. Also, the HS collars are well made and the tips are rounded, whereas the pet store ones often have sharp edges and burrs.

Get the large size, not x-large. The large size is plenty strong enough. The x-large size is unnecessary unless you've got a St. Bernard. More, smaller links is better tha fewer, larger links both in terms of being able to size the collar properly, and in the collar's effectiveness.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Chris Wild is offline  
post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 02-27-2008, 09:09 AM
EJQ
Knighted Member
 
EJQ's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: New York State Capital Region
Posts: 2,460
Re: I'm sure there are a million topics on this

Hi there first of all to the board!

I have no experience with e-collars but I do have some experience with pinch (prong) collars.

Our B'EL, when much younger, was what a lot of trainers would refer to as "sharp". In simple terms. She was a tough customer. We went through the basic negative reinforcement training, which is still very widely practiced. B'EL seemed to rebel against this training and her rebellion increased with each day. We started with a flat leather collar then a choke chain and finally the trainer told us that the only way we would ever gain control of this dog is with a pinch collar. Let me tell you that the only thing that this collar did was PISS HER OFF!!!.

Out of total frustration I spoke to a fellow breeder and she was appalled that we were using this type of training and encouraged us to switch to positive reinforcement. We did - also switched from the pinch collar to a Greyhound collar - the result was absolutely immediate - the rest is history. Here we are eight years later and we have trained several dogs using nothing more than a Greyhound collar and positive reinforcement methods.

I’m not necessarily suggesting that you switch to a Greyhound collar. This is our experience. I will say this, IMO the pinch collar is a great deal safer than a choke collar. The pinch collar when used correctly simulates the “bite” of the mother when she disciplines her puppies.
Hopes this helps.

ARABELLE vom Garringer CGC, TDI

BRYNNA vom Garringer AKC STAR PUPPY, CGC, TDI (crossed over February 15, 2018)
AHREN vom Garringer (crossed over December 30, 2011)
B'ELANNA vom FlaglerHaus CGC, SAR (crossed over March 4, 2011)
EJQ is offline  
post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 02-27-2008, 09:15 AM
Master Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Michigan
Posts: 616
Re: I'm sure there are a million topics on this

So which are you wanting to use? An e-collar or a prong collar your post was confused about this point.

For the walking on a leash the prong collar would be more useful They are a great tool when used correctly for teaching a dog to walk nicely on a leash. They can also be used to proof just about every command if you are creative enough.

I'm not against the use of an e-collar but I do tend to work up in price and difficulty of use. E-collars are at the top of both charts.

By the way your dog is still far to young for either to be used extensively I would introduce a prong at that age and maybe us it to keep control when out in public, but I wouldn't start to proof or train with it. An e-collar waits till later.

A word about your trainers; They are probably not the best out there. Its not just their opinion about prongs though the level of misinformation there is stunning. It's not even their closed minded attitude about a training tool. Its the demonstration of complete ignorance about dog psychology inherent in their statement "it will turn the dog mean."

I would find another trainer.

I would buy an introduce a prong. Introduce it by putting it on but not using it. Put it on for play sessions in the yard. to go to the store, etc anything fun but don't snap a leash to it until the dog sees it and gets excited about the fun she will have once you put it on her

Keep working at the motivational obedience I assume you are using treats? keep at it. Six months is no time. She has a lot of learning left to do and a lot of maturing as well.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Kaiser SchH3 CGC TDI,
Nara CGC,
Wulf SchH1 P1 PD1 T1 URO2 CGC TT,
Raven SchH3 AWD2 PD1 P1 PA T1 UCD URO2 CGC TT,
Della SchHA TR1 PD1 P1 PA T1 URO2 CGC TT,
Heidi,
Jasmine
Wildtim is offline  
post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 02-27-2008, 09:42 AM
Elite Member
 
StGeorgeK9's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Diamondhead, MS
Posts: 1,858
Re: I'm sure there are a million topics on this

Innuendo, Welcome!!!!

I second going to Lou Castles web site, better yet, e-mail him or call him. He is wonderful. I also agree that at 6 months your pup may be a bit young for either of those tools, but, your trainers should no better than to come at you with scare tactics. A dog will not be turned mean by the proper use of either of these tools, the proper thing to do is to find out HOW to use them properly, and I think you deffinately came to the right place. There is a ton of information out here and lots of people willing to help.

Betsy

Ava GSD 3.5yrs

Champ 1985, Heidi 2000

StGeorgeK9 is offline  
post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 02-27-2008, 11:01 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 341
Re: I'm sure there are a million topics on this

Thank you guys for the wonderful information and I will be sure to check out both websites listed.

I agree my pup is still just that, a pup. This is the first dog I have ever had to raise from a puppy. I've always adopted older dogs that never had too much trouble pulling on the leash, etc... they were never perfect by any means at obedience but they were polite in public and that's all I wanted from a family pet.

Anyhow, I had asked my trainers about the prong collar and just got dirty looks and horror stories about how it turns dogs mean or injures them horribly, etc... so that's when I started to look into the e-collar.

Currently I use a martingale (sp?) on her. It works all right but not with heavy distractions. I do, however, like it because I know she can't slip out of it.

I will wait until she is a bit older to use either full time. It will give me time to do the research I need. I ordered two e-collar DVDs. One I can't remember the website name but I have it saved at work and the other was a Leeburg (sp?) dvd. So if either of you have information about his training that would be great. I browsed his website for awhile and found a bit of useful information but some of it I didn't really agree with. I guess that's any trainer though. I also found that I like his leather leashes the best.

Also, Pandora has recently started snapping at other dogs/puppies. It almost seems random but lately i'm thinking it's other dogs or puppies that are very alpha. She is not alpha in my household my other rescue dog is but she seems to be pretty bossy in places like Petsmart or at the park around other dogs.

I'm not sure if this is a stage she is going through or possible signs of future dog aggression? When she snaps I correct her and then praise her for calming down. She has gotten to the point where when she wants nothing to do with a dog she will show teeth and raise her paw but not snap and I let her do that just fine. I feel that is a proper way for her to tell another dog that she wants to be left alone.

Anyway, i've rambled on long enough.. but thank you again for the information. I think i've already found out more here in 2 minutes than previous trainers I have used.

Here is a photo of my two pups (well one is 6 mos, one is 6 years) The big furry one is a rescue we think she is part collie and part Great Pyr but some people see aussie instead. She's about 102lbs so she'd be a big aussie. lol


Innuendo is offline  
post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 02-27-2008, 11:09 AM
The Agility Rocks! Moderator
 
MaggieRoseLee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Bushkill, PA (The Poconos!)
Posts: 27,477
Basic puppy training....

Innuendo, if you can do us a favor and up where it says 'My Stuff' you can get into 'My Profile' and scroll down to put your GENERAL location. Don't need any stalkers knocking at your door, but your closest town/state is a huge help when we give suggestions.

I didn't really get what general dog obedience training you've completed. 6 months is actually still a puppy and when I just start up real dog training. Prior to that it's socialization and puppy kindergarden. With my MAIN goal getting a close bonding relationship with my dog in any and all locations. Tons of car rides and meet and greets rather than 'obedience'.

And when I do start classes around 6 months I'll have shopped around for the best classes in my area. Truthfully, for my area that means an hour drive for the best classes, but if I have to drive then I do so.

I LOVE the prong collar, but use it in conjunction with a good trainer so I fit it properly and use it right. And if I do NOT have to use it, that's fine too (it doesn't make dogs aggressive). I also use the e-collar, but that's WAY down the line in my training when everything else has been tried (really tried with a good trainer, not just me fumbling along doing my best, I am NOT a dog trainer so I go to one when what I know isn't working). I have met too many dogs that have either REALLY been screwed up by improper use of the collar or that the collar isn't working right on the dogs because the people didn't train as they should have.


Quote:
Quote:I just want to make sure i'm not considering this when my dog is too young. I also don't want to hurt her but I just feel she isn't getting too much out of strictly positive reinforcement.
For a 6 month old baby puppy (and that is what you have) I wouldn't be too concerned at this point with the positive training. Once again, your main goal with a young puppy is to have it become confident and happy in any situation........not OBEDIENT. Not yet. And during this time you need to be working on YOU YOU YOU (though it is easier to 'blame' the puppy and think they are the problem ).

A puppy should be joyful, happy, and have the attention span of a gnat. They aren't supposed to really listen and be perfect in a standard we want later on in the training. And if you gain the leadership role for your puppy, working on having training being FUN and working with you being THE BEST, then when you dog step up the training it will go well also. Hey, I use treats/toys and have one of the top agility dogs in the USA! Was she perfect at 6 months? Not even close!

Here's what I'd be working on if I were you....

http://www.flyingdogpress.com/puppack.html

http://www.flyingdogpress.com/leadership.html

http://www.flyingdogpress.com/relationshipbased.html

They really are puppies for such a short time, so as long as I can allow my dogs to have their puppyhood, the better. Real life (and real training) are coming along...




***

Miss Osin Blue Wildhaus NA NAJ NF

"Nothing new can come into your life unless you are grateful for what you already have. ~ "--- Michael Bernhard, gratitude
MaggieRoseLee is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the German Shepherd Dog Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
I'm sure this has been asked 8 million times babyjake General Information 26 01-25-2009 01:54 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome