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looking for help with aggresive puppy!

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by ju_and_jack, Aug 19, 2009.


  1. ju_and_jack

    ju_and_jack PetForums Junior

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    Hiya all, I got a collie pup when he was 8 weeks old, this is my first puppy so we're both having to learn lots of new things! He's now 13weeks by the way! I started clicker training at 9-10 weeks, which at first he absolutely loved, he got the hang of it straight away and within minutes he was sitting to command, and the next day we moved on to paw shake, which again he loved and within 5 minutes had mastered it.
    Next I moved onto 'stay' at this point he decided he didn't like it anymore, he'd sit and when he didn't get the click immediately he would jump. bark and nip me, we gave it a rest. I dont know if this is what started his aggresive behaviour or if it was just coincidence, but ever since then he does this kind of then for what seems to be no reason. Don't get me wrong he is a lovely friendly dog, and greets other dogs and people really pleasently, and will happily let strangers stroke him, but if my partner or I try and walk across our garden for example he'll jump up and grab our leg in his mouth, and start growling/snarling,,. rolling his gums back to show all his teeth...

    I thought he might be bored at first, so I started giving him an extra walk every day, but.. he does it while we're out walking too! He walks off the lead as long as we're not near a road.. he'll walk alongside us perfectly well, sometimes stoppiong for a sniff, then catching us back up.. then all of a sudden he'll grab us and wont let go until we prize his mouth open!

    We've tried obviously telling him no, firmly, tapping his nose, ignoring him, placing him in his crate with something of his own to chew, we praise him for anything at all thats not biting us, and on the rare occasion that he does stop biting on his own, he gets extra praise and a treat. When we're out walking and he does it, we put him back on the lead.. which is a struggle on its own because then he moves onto biting our arms and hands since they're now in reach to! and once he's on his lead, he goes as far as doing sumersaults in the air trying to get to our legs to bite! Then he will finally give up and walk on perfectly well again.

    When I say bite.. I dont mean mouthing/nipping like I'd expect a puppy to do, I mean my legs, arms and hands and covered in scratches, grazes and teeth indentations!

    Sorry for the long post, I wanted to give as much information as I could in the hjope someone can point out what I'm doing wrong or suggest otehr things to try!
    Thanks :)
     
    #1 ju_and_jack, Aug 19, 2009
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2009
  2. Colliepoodle

    Colliepoodle PetForums VIP

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    At 13 weeks he is NOT aggressive. He is playing. He is playing rougher than you would like, granted, but he is still playing.

    There is a sticky on "Nipping pups" at the top of the page. Give it a read.

    It sounds as if, with the clicker training for "stay", either a) He doesn't understand properly that the click ends the behaviour and he must wait for that, and/or b) You are upping the criteria for duration too quickly.
     
  3. james1

    james1 PetForums VIP

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    maybe he wants a good treat :)
     
  4. Savahl

    Savahl Guest

    Sounds like excitment more than aggression! puppies will nip when over excitement. When clicking, do you make him stay put til you treat? Buster used to get sooooooooooo excited when we clicked his tricks, so when treating now, he doesnt get it unless he is still in position...

    i.e. Sit command, he sits, you click, he jumps up, you put him back in sit but DONT click again (as you already have) and treat him in sit. So when doing stay, click, then make him stay again and go to him and reward him there (again no need to click a second time). This is what our trainer recommended to us. Otherwise the click breaks the command - it made everything a lot calmer
     
  5. Colliepoodle

    Colliepoodle PetForums VIP

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    The OP is clicker training - he is GETTING good treats :)
     
  6. Colliepoodle

    Colliepoodle PetForums VIP

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    The click is MEANT to break the command. The click ends the behaviour. That's how it works.

    To keep him in the sit/stay - delay the click by TINY increments.
     
  7. ju_and_jack

    ju_and_jack PetForums Junior

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    Hey thanks for your reply. I'm not too worried about the 'stay' traingin, I just thought I'd add it in since thats when his nipping turned to biting and may have been relevant.. I do think I just expected him to grasp it too quickly as he did the other things! We can work on that one! :)

    I've just come across the thread you pointed out and read through it, unfortunately for me and lil jack... we've tried/are doing everything mentioned!
    And yes, sorry.. I know he is only playing, the title does come across the wrong way now you mention it lol.. It was meant as aggressiev playing rather than 'attacks'!

    letting out a high pitch 'yelp' makes his growls louder and his teeth dig in harder!

    i'm a bit weary of distracting him with a toy coz I always make him work for anything he gets, wether it be his meals, a walk, a throw of his pull, or giving him his bone to chew... so I'm a bit worried if I try distracting him from biting me bu giving him a toy or something to bite on, that he may associate biting me with getting a reward?
     
  8. Savahl

    Savahl Guest

    This is just how i was taught at our clicker classes :confused: And who am i to argue with the APDT trainer. It worked for us anyway, he was way to excited by the clicking and no matter how long the delay he would jump up at us for the treat.

    This works differently when free shaping, but for stationary things (sit, stay, leave, down...) it seemed a success

    EDIT: i was also led to believe the click MARKS the behaviour, not ends it.
     
    #8 Savahl, Aug 19, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 19, 2009
  9. ju_and_jack

    ju_and_jack PetForums Junior

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    This is how I do it, he still gets his treat even if he moves out of position after the click.
     
  10. Colliepoodle

    Colliepoodle PetForums VIP

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    If the dog jumps at you for the treat, don't give it to him - make a habit of throwing it away from you for him to chase and eat. It should'n't take long for him to stop jumping at you, and start standing AWAY from you, ready to chase his treat - in a similar way to a dog waiting for his ball to be thrown.

    The click both marks AND ends the behaviour :)
     
  11. Savahl

    Savahl Guest

    I'll stick with how i do it :) Its worked for the last two yrs. And I have used it to teach loads of tricks, behaviours and keeps my very hyper dog calm whilst training :)
    The article I posted explains it better than i can.
     
  12. james1

    james1 PetForums VIP

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    thats what i thought as far as clicker training, the dog is following the commands of the clicker - I didnt think it ended the command either :confused:
     
    1 person likes this.
  13. jilly40

    jilly40 PetForums VIP

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    hi there hope things are going ok ?http://www.wiccaweys.co.uk/start.html give these a look up lots of collie traits on there ,helped me no end reading my eva was a NORMAL !!! collie hehe .hope this helps xxx
     
  14. Colliepoodle

    Colliepoodle PetForums VIP

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    The commands of the clicker? The clicker doesn't command anything.... :confused:
     
  15. Savahl

    Savahl Guest

    If it ended the behavoiur i dont see how you would clicker train lead walking, i clicked and treated as he was on a loose leash, by clicking and ending the behaviour you could only click at the end of the walk...or everytime you rewarded a loose lead he would break it and pull again... rather than maintain a loose lead while you treat him.

    I recomend enrolling onto a clicker training course anyway - i found things went along much better with the harder stuff when someone physically shows you :)

    Also: repost the article http://www.courteouscanine.com/articles/read_article/?id=8 Also check the Karen Pryor site for lots of hints and tips :)
     
    #16 Savahl, Aug 19, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 19, 2009
  16. Colliepoodle

    Colliepoodle PetForums VIP

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    Yes, I just read the article. Interesting... if it works for you, carry on.

    I remember now that Mary Ray doesn't necessarily end the behaviour with a click, but I still think that it is probably easier for a beginner to understand clicker training by working on the premise that click/treat = release :)
     
  17. ju_and_jack

    ju_and_jack PetForums Junior

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    Thanks Jilly, that a really interesting read..
     
  18. Colliepoodle

    Colliepoodle PetForums VIP

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  19. james1

    james1 PetForums VIP

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    If the clicker isnt used as a positive command in trining support then why not just use verbal reinforcement?
     
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