Advice please? My pup only behaves when wearing his prong collar. - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-15-2015, 07:56 PM Thread Starter
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Advice please? My pup only behaves when wearing his prong collar.

Sorry so much for you to read.
Finn is an eight month GSD. He and I usually walk several miles each day. During walks he wears a prong collar and leash. A few days each week I shorten the walk and instead take him to a field to play two ball fetch (a game recommended by Onyx'girl). He loves that game. During play he wears his prong collar and a long line.

Finn seems to be a perfectly behaved pup when wearing his prong collar. On walks, people actually comment on how well behaved he is with people and other dogs.
During obedience class he is attentive and sweet and when we play 2 ball fetch he is impressive. During fetch I also mix things up by giving the commands that we've learned in class. I am surprised at how well he responds to training and how quickly he has learned his commands. Even when hyped up playing fetch he is able to settle himself to do a long stay.

Today I decided to work with him in the yard by taking him through his commands on leash wearing his regular collar (no prong).
He refused to heal and was pretty unmanageable. He also objected to being on-leash by biting the leash and actually mouthing my hand.

He weighs 80 plus lbs and is very strong and stubborn.
One more thing: He refuses to come to me when he is off leash ie if he is let out in the yard by himself he refuses to come back into the house when I call for him. But he comes when my husband calls him.
Thank you.
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-15-2015, 08:20 PM
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Say, you have missed 5 months. You train your puppy to follow you on walks off leash when he is 2,5 months old. From that age you should have trained him to keep his attention on you. Dogs don't listen to you because of helps of any leashes or collars, they listen to you - because they want to. And prong collar is for correction, not for trainig or walking, and definitely not for playing the ball.
1. Your dog is underexercised. He needs a free run, think of enclosed areas.
2. You have problem with a contact with your dog, you do not mean much for him, start from that. Read as much as you can about "building the bond".
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-15-2015, 08:24 PM
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You need to work on your relationship. I had a Findlay! Her name is Jax! If you build the relationship, you'll build the obedience.

How have you trained him? Any clicker training? Rewards?




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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-15-2015, 08:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Findlay View Post
Sorry so much for you to read.
Finn is an eight month GSD. He and I usually walk several miles each day. During walks he wears a prong collar and leash. A few days each week I shorten the walk and instead take him to a field to play two ball fetch (a game recommended by Onyx'girl). He loves that game. During play he wears his prong collar and a long line.

Finn seems to be a perfectly behaved pup when wearing his prong collar. On walks, people actually comment on how well behaved he is with people and other dogs.
During obedience class he is attentive and sweet and when we play 2 ball fetch he is impressive. During fetch I also mix things up by giving the commands that we've learned in class. I am surprised at how well he responds to training and how quickly he has learned his commands. Even when hyped up playing fetch he is able to settle himself to do a long stay.

Today I decided to work with him in the yard by taking him through his commands on leash wearing his regular collar (no prong).
He refused to heal and was pretty unmanageable. He also objected to being on-leash by biting the leash and actually mouthing my hand.

He weighs 80 plus lbs and is very strong and stubborn.
One more thing: He refuses to come to me when he is off leash ie if he is let out in the yard by himself he refuses to come back into the house when I call for him. But he comes when my husband calls him.
Thank you.
I just think you need to be consistent with obedience training. Do you take time daily to teach or reinforce basic OB? Down , come , heel , sit etc.. ? It sounds like maybe you may not be? If you focus on basic obedience as the foundation I think you may make some progress with consistency. The prong is for training and that includes walking. Once the behaviour is established and the dog understands it can be used for correction and self corrects enough most times when a dog pulls. I would keep the prong on for all walks and most if not all training . Hope this helps a little. Keep at it.
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-15-2015, 08:49 PM Thread Starter
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David. Thanks for the advice, I appreciate your response to the issue I'm having with Finn. I thought we had bonded well.
He follows me around the house and runs to me with a wagging tail when I call to him in the house. right now he is lying on my feet which is where he lays every night. Even when other family members are in the room he sits or lays very close to me.
But I'll look into how to create a stronger bond with him.
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-15-2015, 11:01 PM Thread Starter
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Finn and I attend a basic obedience class every Thursday and I re-enforce the training every day and he responds well to commands when he is wearing the prong collar and he always does well with commands in the house.
He knows: Sit, Stay, Down, Drop it, Bring it, Leave it, Look and he'll Come but only when he feels like it. That's the command that I'm having trouble with.
Also, when we are outdoors and he is not wearing his prong collar and leash he is less likely to follow commands. He knows when he's not wearing the collar.
His trainer does not recommend using a clicker or food rewards, we use praise rewards in class.
Thanks for your help.
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-15-2015, 11:05 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mattpayne View Post
I just think you need to be consistent with obedience training. Do you take time daily to teach or reinforce basic OB? Down , come , heel , sit etc.. ? It sounds like maybe you may not be? If you focus on basic obedience as the foundation I think you may make some progress with consistency. The prong is for training and that includes walking. Once the behaviour is established and the dog understands it can be used for correction and self corrects enough most times when a dog pulls. I would keep the prong on for all walks and most if not all training . Hope this helps a little. Keep at it.
Matt. Do you think I should I take the prong collar off Finn when we play fetch with a ball?
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-15-2015, 11:45 PM
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Have you tried turning recall into a game? Can you lure Finn with his favorite toy, then use that as a reward? I don't want to give you advice that goes against what your trainer is doing, but I've found it's easier to start training with a reward other than just praise (food, toy) when the dog is learning. You can start to remove the food/toy reward slowly after you know he has a command down pat, and then just offer praise. Just a suggestion!

As for the prong collar, I wouldn't personally keep it on Finn while he was just playing. If you do continue to leave it on him during play, just make sure you're there to supervise him.

Train the dog in front of you.
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-15-2015, 11:56 PM
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My pup, Shelby, is just a little younger than Findlay. I was having the same problem with the recall. 1. I have another dog and Shelby is distracted by him and rather play than listen. 2. It was winter and cold and I quickly tired of being outside. I was generally calling Shelby so we could go back inside. Huge mistake, of course, because she LOVES being outside. We started working more on her recall. I put her on a tie out, so I could make sure I had control. I could pull her to me, as I called. Then I rewarded her with a treat and lots of praise. Instant improvement. Now that the weather is nicer, we spend a lot more time outside. I no longer call her, just to come in the house.

Shelby wears her prong collar for walks and training. She is starting to show improvement on a flat collar. My hound mix, on the other hand, will probably wear his prong for the rest of his life. He is perfect on the leash, with his prong. He doesn't mind it and it works for me.

Jan
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-16-2015, 07:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Findlay View Post
Matt. Do you think I should I take the prong collar off Finn when we play fetch with a ball?
Well in a word yes just because there is no need to have it on if you are just playing fetch in the yard and no making it a part of your walking time etc.. The exception may be if having it on somehow causes him to behave differently or more positively you certainly could. I have for years as I walk my dogs , take them to play. I walk them on a prong so don't bother to remove it once we play with the ball. No need to.
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