That darn nose!!!! - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 12:07 AM Thread Starter
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That darn nose!!!!

Well it's almost been a week since Duke has been here. I wanted him to settle in a bit before I really started training him. Plus, to be honest, with Zira being such a pain with her stitches and vet visits for that.... I've been slacking on training. (I know.. bad owner! Bad, bad owner!!! )

Anyway, I have been walking them a lot to get out some energy... especially since that's all Z can really do and it's good bonding time for the two. Zira walks excellent... I trained her well and she knows better. She heels VERY nicely (so proud of her )! Duke, however, I doubt was ever walked... at least not properly and can be difficult. We are working on the pulling and will be starting 'heel' soon. This is not really my issue, it's just a matter of working with him. However, this dog has a nose that doesn't STOP!

I do understand his lines, and that naturally he is just a very driven dog. I expected this. Though, it gets a bit tiring when we are trying to jog or power walk... I am consistently pulling his head up and telling him to move on.

My question is... How do I get such a nose driven dog to pay attention to ME and have him move nicely without pulling his head down every 10 seconds? Am I doing it right by just pulling him forward and telling him to move on? I do not want to discourage him from using his nose as I want to get him into Schutzhund training soon, so it will be a useful tool for him down the road with the tracking part. I love having a dog that has so much drive and curiosity... but, we do have to find a happy medium here. There is a time and place for that nose and our jogs/power walks just do not fall under that category. Now when we are just loose leash walking around the neighborhood, I could care less if he is sniffing around. That's not 'serious' time.

Any tips from you all with these high drive dogs?

Alyssa
-Zira (01/09/11)
-Pakros von Jagenstadt "Duke" (01/06/10) -CGC
-Storm vom EnZ (05/16/12)
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-05-2012, 10:39 AM
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For pulling, get several gentle leaders (Halti)We went through about three with King, he would scratch @ it all the time. Halti Training Headcollar, Size 3 - 2436338 | Tractor Supply Company
Remember this, the more your GSD resists the headcoller the more he needs it!
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-05-2012, 11:05 AM
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Here's a few pics of King wearing his Halti



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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-16-2012, 07:42 AM
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I spent over three hundred bucks for a trainer to help me with your problem for three hundred all i got was instructions on how to use a halty but it was worth every penny i now recomend them to all my friends. but back it up with a martingal just in case.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-16-2012, 09:35 AM
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I don't think that constantly yanking on a head collar to teach your dog to keep his head up is going to help much either. Either way, it's just constant pulling up on the dog's head/neck.

I don't let Aiden smell things on walks unless I notice that he may have to go potty. I trained him not to because a lot of our Schutzhund training is outside on a field and I wanted to condition him to get used to not having to smell everything when we are working. I am also training for his AD where he has to jog next to me on a bike and it would be really bad for him to slow down to smell something while I'm riding next to him. Also, being an intact male, he would most likely mark every tree that we walked past and that's totally ridiculous.

I started by walking with him on a short leash and making sure he wasn't on the grass, just on the sidewalk/road. If you live in an area that allows you to walk in the road, I'd start there since there is less there to distract him. It just took Aiden a good routine pattern to learn that walks are for walking, not smelling. He can smell around our yard or anywhere else that he is off leash and I'm not asking for his attention. And I prefer for him to potty on our property anyways so that he doesn't get in the routine on peeing all over the neighborhood.

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-16-2012, 01:43 PM
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I would get him started in tracking - you need to give him an outlet for his natural behaviors, some dogs are all about their nose.

My female did the same thing as a pup, until I started her in tracking. I was able to give her an outlet, then at the same time, use treats and a regular collar (not a fan of halti's at all) to teach the leave it. Then I would apply the leave it command on the walks everytime she indicated she was going to dip her head to sniff. I still gave her time to smell on her walks, in certain areas. But I hate the leash jerking to smell something every 5 seconds.

Hope this helps!
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-16-2012, 02:07 PM
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I use the Halti on my boy. I never have a problem with him dropping his nose (but he isn't as nose driven as your pup).

Honestly, my favorite thing about the Halti is that people think it's a form of muzzle and they don't try to pet him.

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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-27-2012, 10:30 AM Thread Starter
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....For some reason, I never saw all the replies here... Sorry! Thanks everyone for all the advice!

After a few training classes with our Schutzhund trainer... he's a million times better! He's starting to understand that what I say, I mean it! Our obedience work has definitely improved! I want to start him in tracking soon though, so he can use that nose! It'd be such a waste for him not to!

Alyssa
-Zira (01/09/11)
-Pakros von Jagenstadt "Duke" (01/06/10) -CGC
-Storm vom EnZ (05/16/12)
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-27-2012, 10:55 AM
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[QUOTE=N Smith;2401951]I would get him started in tracking - you need to give him an outlet for his natural behaviors, some dogs are all about their nose.
QUOTE]

I like this suggestion.

My boy also loves to sniff, head down he could inhale the whole ground. I have given him an outlet to use that powerful nose of his and will hide various objects on our property and have him "find it", he's relentless and won't stop. I too, should look into tracking classes and really try to tap into this.

However, there are times when it's not appropiate to have his nose to the ground and I need his attention or want his head up. I actually started to just say "head up" and he caught on to what that meant, it sounds generic but works. I say "watch me" when I want his eyes which is a different focus.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-27-2012, 10:59 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Courtney View Post
My boy also loves to sniff, head down he could inhale the whole ground. I have given him an outlet to use that powerful nose of his and will hide various objects on our property and have him "find it", he's relentless and won't stop. I too, should look into tracking classes and really try to tap into this.

However, there are times when it's not appropiate to have his nose to the ground and I need his attention or want his head up. I actually started to just say "head up" and he caught on to what that meant, it sounds generic but works. I say "watch me" when I want his eyes which is a different focus.
I do the same thing. When we are on a walk (not in heel), I just tell him to get his head up.... seems to work now. Though, he's gotten to the point that he barely tries now. The only time he does it lately is when I have him on the long line and just let him roam, or when we are just hanging out in the parks.... then I don't care. He can use his nose all he wants during that. But, when it's time to power walk, or Fuss... His head better not go near that ground! Much better now!

Alyssa
-Zira (01/09/11)
-Pakros von Jagenstadt "Duke" (01/06/10) -CGC
-Storm vom EnZ (05/16/12)
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