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Help needed please - "special needs" dog with poor impulse control.

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by Dogpsycho, Feb 23, 2014.

  1. Dogpsycho

    Dogpsycho PetForums Newbie

    Aug 18, 2013
    Likes Received:
    Hi & thanks for reading.

    I've recently adopted a (possibly about 4 yrs old collie type) "street dog", who, due to having had a dislocated lower (front right) leg (now pinned & plated) is somewhat restricted in his walks, running, playing etc.

    He appears to have a poor "impulse response" control mechanism, and by that I mean that he reacts (noisily & actively) to virtually anything & everything that moves and/or makes a sound. I think that this may be a "fear" reaction. He's also been shot whilst living on the streets, which may also be a contributory factor.

    I've managed to improve his lunging/attempted chasing of vehicles/ other dogs/people, with associated barking, but I was wondering if there was anything else I could do/use to help him (and me) enjoy his walks more. I have 2 other (blind) dogs, who, if he gets the opportunity/idea, may chase/"barge," whilst barking, somewhat frightening them.

    I've managed to (sometimes) get him to "shush", do a sit (but not a "stay") and (sometimes) a recall. I've had him now approaching 2 months. I intend to get his DNA checked to see what/who's in his "family tree", with any genetic components I can expect.

    So, apart from time, patience, training, treats, a "Dogmatic" head collar & harness, does anyone have any other tips/ideas that may help, please ? (Applying essential oils has been suggested, which I'm currently investigating).

    Thanks for reading :)
  2. sazzle

    sazzle PetForums Senior

    Sep 10, 2011
    Likes Received:
    Sounds like you are doing a great job so far. Well done for rescuing him.

    Ive had some success with my dog by using clicker training, learning about calming signals (we are having a lot of success with 'curving' when we approach scary things) and have also read up on behaviour regarding barking.

    My dog wasnt quite as reactive as what your boy sounds and its taken a few months to get to where we are, (I am expecting it to be ongoing for a few years if not forever :eek:) so keep persevering. :)
  3. MollySmith

    MollySmith PetForums VIP

    May 7, 2012
    Likes Received:
    I have had huge success with Grisha Stewart's BAT training for Molly who was the worse case our behaviourist had seen for lead reactivity. It has taken us about two years and it's a constant training process for her but it's worked well. 'Look at that' and clicking for calm responses with high value treats, curving and distance have been the key.
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