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Old 10-18-2016, 08:17 AM
 
1,912 posts, read 995,998 times
Reputation: 3229

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It's been about six months since I adopted my dog from the shelter. I really don't know what she's a mix of, the shelter said spaniel mix, I thought maybe sheltie mix, but the vet things papillion mix (if I google papillion/eskimo mix I get a dog that looks a lot like her). There are pictures of her in my profile. I don't know if breed matters, but it seems like it might. They told me she was over a year old, probably no older than two years old when I got her. My vet confirmed that.

Anyway, I am having issues with her being a spaz.

I should note that I exercise her daily. We go about 3 miles (two shorter walks and then one longer 2 mile one). We used to run it, but I keep aggravating an injury I got in the spring, so we now walk. Same distance, it just takes longer. She pretty much collapses and chills out after our long walk. I read lack of exercise is the main reason dogs can be hyper. So I wanted to mention it. We also play fetch in the house if the walk isn't enough (up and down the stairwell).

She is also pretty calm around me most of the time. She's excited when I get home from work, but simmers down within a minute. And she gets excited for our walks (and acts nutty until we get going). I make her sit before we leave the house, which takes about five minutes because she's so excited. But most of the time she's calm, obedient, likes the routine.

My problem is when things are a bit out of the routine. When my friends come over on the weekends to play cards or even when my boyfriend comes over. When guests come over, she goes crazy. Running around, jumping on them, licking them, and mouthing at them (not biting, but mouthing with light chewing. It's very soft but it's a habit I can't seem to break her of). She whimpers, barks, pants and overall is a "crazy dog." She's the worst around my boyfriend, she goes nuts over him. She tries to jump up to lick his face (and she's a little dog and can jump vertical about 5 feet, so she almost makes it). If we sit down, she tries to get in his lap to nudge, lick and chew on his hand. When she gets like this, she can't hear me, she doesn't respond to me, she's in her own overly excited world.

Eventually, she always calms down. But that period of being a spaz is uncontrollable. Her crazy behavior is unacceptable and I need to train her better. But again, with me, alone, she's fairly calm and when I am with others, I can't seem to get through to her (I've tried poking her, treats to distract her, clapping my hands... she might look at me for a slit second, but doesn't care).

I've tried exercise before people come over. It doesn't work and I can't always do that. I've tried leaving her a doggie daycare (it's kind of expensive so I can't keep doing that. And while it helps a little, but she's still a spaz. Just not quite as long).

I've also decreased her food a little bit as of a few days ago. I don't know if that's part of it (too many calories and not burning enough). She was a healthy 19 pounds when I got her and now she's 22 pounds! Of course, I also had her spayed when I got her, so that might be contributing to weight gain too.

The only real success I've had is I stopped her (for the most part) from attacking people's feet. She used to like to chew on shoes (but only when people where wearing them). Drove me nuts when I first got her. And that used to be part of her "spaz out" too. I broke her of the habit by making a loud noise she didn't like. But that same method doesn't seem to work on the rest of her spaz out. Honestly, it seems like the best thing I could do is prevent her from getting into that crazy mode in the first place. But how?

Any ideas?
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Old 10-18-2016, 08:35 AM
 
Location: West Virginia
12,447 posts, read 31,530,567 times
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When some one knocks tell her to Sit put her leash on her tie her to you. Tell company NOT to give her any attention. AND when she still misbehaves tell company to have her Sit. This is a case where your company has to help train her.
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Old 10-18-2016, 08:47 AM
 
Location: Amelia View
4,213 posts, read 12,567,500 times
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Agree with Katie1. Visitors do have to help. Friends have two goldens who so adore people that they do go bonkers when guests arrive. We're helping our friends retrain the bouncy girls by ignoring the dogs when we walk in the door. The girls now go out the backdoor into a fenced yard to run their sillies off, and then they're good.

Another friend had two highly excited dogs, and his idea was that visitors would give the dogs a treat as soon as they entered (bowl of biscuits kept in the foyer). That was the biggest mistake because it taught the dogs yippee doorbell equals yummy treat.

With some breeds it's not possible to completely extinguish excitability (it's instinctive), but it IS possible to teach them to tone it down.

Be patient! You are doing all the right things!
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Old 10-18-2016, 10:05 AM
 
13,678 posts, read 13,606,695 times
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She sounds like a blast. That's exactly the type of dog I want to get.

Dog sports are a great idea. Flyball and agility are both good ways to exhaust a dog. Nosework is another sport you can do that isn't hugely high-energy, but requires brain work that often exhausts a dog.

Swimming will wear a dog out after only 30 minutes - there are dog pools where you can take them.

But the most easy thing to do is to find an uncrowded dog park and play fetch outside with a Chuck-it. I have to do this with my Catahoula for hours sometimes. He just needs that unrestrained running sometimes.

Work on obedience training. She must sit and wait before she goes through a door you are opening. She must sit and wait before she gets her food. She must sit and wait before you throw the ball.

Schedule regular play dates with friends' dogs. My kelpie is in huge demand with other dog owners because he loves to play and will keep it up for hours. Our friends bring over their dogs with some frequency.

As for guests, they must ignore her entirely and turn away when she gets pushy. Give them instructions beforehand. When she behaves appropriately she gets praise, treats, scritches, whatever. But NOTHING until she settles down and acts normal.
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Old 10-18-2016, 12:02 PM
 
Location: West Virginia
12,447 posts, read 31,530,567 times
Reputation: 8151
Quote:
Originally Posted by mawipafl View Post
Agree with Katie1. Visitors do have to help. Friends have two goldens who so adore people that they do go bonkers when guests arrive. We're helping our friends retrain the bouncy girls by ignoring the dogs when we walk in the door. The girls now go out the backdoor into a fenced yard to run their sillies off, and then they're good.

Another friend had two highly excited dogs, and his idea was that visitors would give the dogs a treat as soon as they entered (bowl of biscuits kept in the foyer). That was the biggest mistake because it taught the dogs yippee doorbell equals yummy treat.

With some breeds it's not possible to completely extinguish excitability (it's instinctive), but it IS possible to teach them to tone it down.

Be patient! You are doing all the right things!
Yummy treats are Fine Just the Timing is Wrong.. Visitor enters tells dog down or sit count to 30 - 60 sec Then Gives treat teaches dog visitor Will feed BUT only after a Calm greeting. Of course the door opens visitor is giving out the treat when the dog is Wild is Not teaching the correct behavior.
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Old 10-18-2016, 12:23 PM
 
Location: Canada
1,403 posts, read 851,604 times
Reputation: 4474
My dog used to be rather uncontrollable when he was younger, if anyone came to visit. I had to teach him a 'down/stay' - actually, I had a specific spot for him as well: he had a large pillow on the floor and I'd tell him "place" when someone would come to the door, and I'd answer the door after he had obeyed the command (I also had to train the humans to ignore my crazy dog, not give him any attention, even eye contact). He had to learn to remain there as well until I released him from the command, and if he was still over-excited upon release, he had to go back to "place" again.

For an overly-hyper dog, I might suggest teaching her the "place" command by starting her off in a crate. Train her to stay in the crate, closed door at first when she's excited if someone comes to the house, and eventually work your way up to an open door (teach her to sit/stay in the crate while leaving the door open). Once that's been achieved, work on the sit/stay (or 'place') without a crate.

With a dog that has an enormous amount of excitability, the training process may take quite some time, but it's worth it in the end. Oh, and as a P.S.: Even once your dog does grasp and obey the commands, they do have to be constantly reinforced, otherwise she may go right back to "A human!! Entering my home!! What fun....CHARGE!!!"

I never tried the dog attached to owner via leash, but have heard many good things about it...you may want to try this first and if it doesn't work out, give crating a try.

*Edited to correct my reference to your dog's sex...I guess I automatically write "he" because my own insane weirdo dog is a male.
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Old 10-18-2016, 01:48 PM
 
1,912 posts, read 995,998 times
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So it looks like I need to train my visitors as well as my dog! lol

Thanks for the ideas. I've tried the leash thing in house and it ended up not helping. She seems to get more wound up. But maybe I should revisit it and do something differently.

Honestly, the best thing for this dog it to let her loose at my mom's house (huge yard) with my 5-year-old niece. The two of them have about the same energy level! And they seem to wear each other out (perfect solution for me and my brother). It's fi to watch them too. Too bad I can't do that every day.

As for the dog sports idea, in my area it's kind of pricey. Playing fetch is a good option and we do that in the house. I took her to an open area to play fetch (and we were there for an hour) but the poor thing managed to tear both of her dew claw pads somehow playing. She did a lot of "wipe outs" and tumbles playing. My guess is that's how she did it. Took a day to get them to stop bleeding. So I think I will stick to indoor where she doesn't get up the speed.
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Old 10-18-2016, 03:50 PM
 
Location: West Virginia
12,447 posts, read 31,530,567 times
Reputation: 8151
Do you or you DH jog? IF not maybe you should great way to wear her out 10 Tips for Running with Your Dog | SparkPeople
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Old 10-18-2016, 04:27 PM
 
1,706 posts, read 1,227,377 times
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Physical exercise alone isn't enough for some dogs; they need mental exercise too. 15 minutes of trick training or basic obedience training will wear your dog out as much as an hour of walking/running.

It isn't the quantity of exercise your dog gets, it is the quality. They need fun play time with you, full-out physical exercise, and mental exercise to thrive.

When I walk my dogs we do practice rally and agility moves as a regular part of our walk.

Kyra Sundance has a great book on training tricks, think it is 101 Tricks to Teach Your Dog? You can google it.
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Old 10-18-2016, 04:47 PM
 
Location: Canada
5,879 posts, read 2,384,245 times
Reputation: 5340
Quote:
Originally Posted by BellaLind View Post
It's been about six months since I adopted my dog from the shelter. I really don't know what she's a mix of, the shelter said spaniel mix, I thought maybe sheltie mix, but the vet things papillion mix (if I google papillion/eskimo mix I get a dog that looks a lot like her). There are pictures of her in my profile. I don't know if breed matters, but it seems like it might. They told me she was over a year old, probably no older than two years old when I got her. My vet confirmed that.

Anyway, I am having issues with her being a spaz.

I should note that I exercise her daily. We go about 3 miles (two shorter walks and then one longer 2 mile one). We used to run it, but I keep aggravating an injury I got in the spring, so we now walk. Same distance, it just takes longer. She pretty much collapses and chills out after our long walk. I read lack of exercise is the main reason dogs can be hyper. So I wanted to mention it. We also play fetch in the house if the walk isn't enough (up and down the stairwell).

She is also pretty calm around me most of the time. She's excited when I get home from work, but simmers down within a minute. And she gets excited for our walks (and acts nutty until we get going). I make her sit before we leave the house, which takes about five minutes because she's so excited. But most of the time she's calm, obedient, likes the routine.

My problem is when things are a bit out of the routine. When my friends come over on the weekends to play cards or even when my boyfriend comes over. When guests come over, she goes crazy. Running around, jumping on them, licking them, and mouthing at them (not biting, but mouthing with light chewing. It's very soft but it's a habit I can't seem to break her of). She whimpers, barks, pants and overall is a "crazy dog." She's the worst around my boyfriend, she goes nuts over him. She tries to jump up to lick his face (and she's a little dog and can jump vertical about 5 feet, so she almost makes it). If we sit down, she tries to get in his lap to nudge, lick and chew on his hand. When she gets like this, she can't hear me, she doesn't respond to me, she's in her own overly excited world.

Eventually, she always calms down. But that period of being a spaz is uncontrollable. Her crazy behavior is unacceptable and I need to train her better. But again, with me, alone, she's fairly calm and when I am with others, I can't seem to get through to her (I've tried poking her, treats to distract her, clapping my hands... she might look at me for a slit second, but doesn't care).

I've tried exercise before people come over. It doesn't work and I can't always do that. I've tried leaving her a doggie daycare (it's kind of expensive so I can't keep doing that. And while it helps a little, but she's still a spaz. Just not quite as long).

I've also decreased her food a little bit as of a few days ago. I don't know if that's part of it (too many calories and not burning enough). She was a healthy 19 pounds when I got her and now she's 22 pounds! Of course, I also had her spayed when I got her, so that might be contributing to weight gain too.

The only real success I've had is I stopped her (for the most part) from attacking people's feet. She used to like to chew on shoes (but only when people where wearing them). Drove me nuts when I first got her. And that used to be part of her "spaz out" too. I broke her of the habit by making a loud noise she didn't like. But that same method doesn't seem to work on the rest of her spaz out. Honestly, it seems like the best thing I could do is prevent her from getting into that crazy mode in the first place. But how?

Any ideas?
Your "Pooch" is just a PUP..She need's guidance, Now, in order for her to learn rules boundaries and limitations. ALL advice so far are correct..BUT, as far as visitors go..advise them to make no acknowledgement of them..await on your controlling.. Pup's always get over excited with any stimuli..but especially with kids, noises and doorbell rings!! This is your chance to correct her..and allow her to LEARN~~

I also agree with the thought!! A TIRED DOG is a Good Dog..but works best with adult dogs..Pup's on the other hand become stimulated by noise..enviornmental, excitement and when not "Corrected" will always become over excited..

Good on you~~ Take charge...allow her to sniff..BUT never accept charging nor jumping up on anybody .. and BTW~~ Shelties are heading breed..so maybe brush up on that personality trait..as They often try to corral people..which can often make uneducated doggy people to feel intimidated~~ Education will help you and your visitors in the end~~ IS she been fixed yet?? as that can maybe settle some of female dog's instincts..tho when puppies..You'd never see it.. <<<SMILE>>>

Quote:
Originally Posted by Katie1 View Post
When some one knocks tell her to Sit put her leash on her tie her to you. Tell company NOT to give her any attention. AND when she still misbehaves tell company to have her Sit. This is a case where your company has to help train her.
It's something I wish all folks who are training their pups should realize... Also should emphasize..Telling all vistors to refrain from "Eye Contact" to stay calm and once settled..allow pup to sniff and become foamier with the scent. With time and consistency...The Pup will learn..NOT all who enter their space is a "PLAY TOY" !! LOL
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