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Timber just recently started chasing his tail. Its kinda funny but it makes me wonder if he's getting enough excersize. He walks in total a little over a mile every day plus plays with his toys inside the house. ie. chasing balls, chasing the laser light and playing by himself. He is 4 months old. He also spends overnight in his crate, two hours in the mid morning and about two hours in the evening while Im picking up the kids after their after school sports.
Whats funny to me is how he will grab his tail and almost try, like, running away with it in his mouth like he just found something awesome.
 

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Tail chasing is an OCD habit and very hard to break. Have you researched how chasing a laser light can cause OCD in a dog? Dogs have jumped out of windows trying to chase a reflection from OCD. It can be very dangerous and is frustrating to the dog.

I would stop the laser light and not allow him to chase his tail. When he starts chasign his tail, redirect him to another toy.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Oh wow! I had no idea!!!! Come to think of it, the tail chasing DID begin after I bought that stupid laser light.
I will now officially chuck it!!! Plus, I will now redirect Timber when he starts chasing his tail.
Thanks
 

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Yes, as gsdraven said, tail chasing (and laser chasing) can be an issue. If Timber has started chasing his tail, he may be one of those dogs that are more succeptible to OCD behaviours, so definitely no laser light!!!

Smart dogs need to exercise their brain too, physical exercise is often not enough. See if you can get him to obedience classes, start tracking lessons, or sign up for agility with him. Daily training sessions (keep it to like five minutes or so for his age - that's about their normal attention span).

Stimulate his brain by exposing him to new places and environments, shake up his routine, make him work for his food (puzzle toys, NILIF, etc).

Stop him from chasing his tail and distract him, re-direct to a toy or other activities.
 

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Recently there was a thread from a woman at Tufts U. asking for gsds with compulsive behaviors like tail chasing, to participate in a behavior study they're doing. You might want to look for it and participate. Apparently gsds have a higher incidence of tail chasing and the light thing than other breeds. Her name is Nicole Cottman if you want to look for it, but I agree- redirect him before it gets worse
 

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Recently there was a thread from a woman at Tufts U. asking for gsds with compulsive behaviors like tail chasing, to participate in a behavior study they're doing. You might want to look for it and participate. Apparently gsds have a higher incidence of tail chasing and the light thing than other breeds. Her name is Nicole Cottman if you want to look for it, but I agree- redirect him before it gets worse
Ugh, I worry about that! They are looking for a genetic marker for OCD behaviours - when I think that a lot of that is really a training and exercise issue.

How will they identify true OCD disfunction from the high drive/high energy dogs that redirect their frustration to tail/light chasing?

So now they will identify all these dogs with frustrated working drives that are bored and chasing their tail, say that they are "defective" and publish it as a medical defect for breeders to avoid those lines, and encourage more pet quality low-drive breeding.

UHG!!!
 
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