something new.. that I don't like

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something new.. that I don't like

Post by Paris1990 on Tue Sep 12 2017, 13:09

So.. on Sunday whilst on our walk i stopped at the shops, the same shop we always stop at and hank gets tied to the same post right outside the door so he can still see me, he sits there every time very patient waiting for my return. Expect for Sunday, someone was stroking him and playing with him outside while i was in the shop and he seemed to get himself caught round the post and pulled himself out of his harness and was doing laps of the shop car park Surprised So i obviously went into a panic and started freaking out as it is next to a road that cars fly down, finally got him and the guy was saying sorry blah blah, didn't listed to a word of it as i was shaking so bad i couldn't put hanks harness back on! so anyways.. after this Hank seemed quite aggressive and was jumping up and biting me and my arm and my bag from the shop like he was crazed. I put it down to adrenaline from him getting lose and me freaking out and him running.

But.. the same happened again last night except for the getting out of his harness. he just snapped as we were walking along a long bit of grass, there was nothing or no one around us that could have upset him or anything just all of a sudden he was jumping up and biting me on my arm and then my leg, I was trying every command I could think of but nothing would stop him until I got down to floor with him and sort of hugged him, then he just walked like normal after that.

Then, as i nearly got home my OH got dropped off at the road with us and walk down and he took the lead, and Hank done the same thing to him out of no where, but obviously my OH telling him No is a lot more efficient that me and he stopped straight away.

I can't think if there could be something else wrong as his poo's haven't been good lately, he is still eating and always hungry. Often when we can tell he's is sick of walking he bites his lead and pulls us and this is generally when we are nearly home so i thought it was a new version of that but that isn't good, parts of our walks are near busy roads so I'm scared his erratic jumping could lead to me letting go by accident. I will be changing tonight route to be more secluded just in case he does it again.

Anyone else had this? it's really unlike him.
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Re: something new.. that I don't like

Post by gillybrent on Tue Sep 12 2017, 17:45

it's possible that the 'escape' has unsettled him, but i'm no expert!

Liz is the one who might be able to suggest something - i'm sure she'll be along soon.

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Re: something new.. that I don't like

Post by LizP on Tue Sep 12 2017, 18:51

She'll be along but probably not till tomorrow, I'm afraid! I don't have time this evening - sorry!


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Re: something new.. that I don't like

Post by Paris1990 on Tue Sep 12 2017, 20:35

Hehe that's okay Liz x
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Re: something new.. that I don't like

Post by LizP on Wed Sep 13 2017, 09:06

Take 2 - I just typed this and lost my connection!

My first thought is that he's associating a specific feel at times on his harness with the experience he had, and that when he feels that again he panics.

If that is the case, the you need to desensitise him. I'd start off at home, in the garden maybe, and have him on his harness and lead/line (a longer line is probably easier for this). Make sure you've got yummy treats to hand.

Keeping the line loose most of the time, occasionally take it just tight enough so he can feel it. I'm talking super light, really so he can only just feel it. At that very moment, call him to you for a treat and a cuddle. Repeat this several times so he learns that any feel on the line gets him treats and a cuddle.

Now start to make the tension on the line slightly stronger. Again, we're not talking of pulling, just so it's more obviously there. Each time, 'come Hank!', treat + cuddle.

Now you can make it firmer, and also pull from different directions. You want to reach the stage that wherever the pull is coming from, however strong (don't overdo it!), he knows that coming to you gets nice things. Not only should you now have a dog who is desensitised to the harness, you should also have a dog that doesn't pull!

If that doesn't work, then we can rethink but I'm hopeful it'll do the trick.

In the meantime, whenyou are out walking walking with him, keep your peripheral vision fully engaged. Be aware of the level of tension on the lead and be aware of the slightest reactions from Hank that might indicate even mild concern. If it's not tension, what else is going on around? Any people, other dogs, wind, anything at all. Write it down when you get home, keeping a diary can be very useful. If it's not a tension/feel thing, you should be able to pick up other clues.

If he does have a wobbly moment, just go straight into the crouch reassure mode. Don't worry about reinforcing inappropriate behaviour, it's more important for the time being to minimise his worry and get him settled as quickly as possible.

Aside all that, could I add a word of caution about leaving Hank tied up outside a shop? It's not uncommon that dogs are stolen from those situations and, unless you know the guy who was with Hank, it's not impossible that he was in fact up to no good. I'd never leave any of mine tied up unattended.



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Re: something new.. that I don't like

Post by Paris1990 on Wed Sep 13 2017, 22:19

Went a different route today and done what you said with the lead and getting him to come to me for a treat and he was a lot more relaxed today, no jumping or getting stressed of any kind so think I will keep that up, he also had a play about with another bitch puppy I can't remember what she said she was but she got the better of Hank and pinned him down Laughing I think that cheered him up and he seemed very merry on the way back home haha.

Yes, as for the shops I agree now and I was thinking myself if he had anything to do with him getting loose as he has never ever tried to do that before he always sits very calm waiting for me to come back out, so I was suspicious when I came out and the guy was being very apologetic and I was quite rude Rolling Eyes
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Re: something new.. that I don't like

Post by LizP on Thu Sep 14 2017, 07:56

Good, I'm glad he's settling.

Staffies are so sensitive, it someone just takes one scare to knock their confidence. Precious little flowers!


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