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Small furry obsession

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by Lizz1155, Aug 4, 2016.


  1. Lizz1155

    Lizz1155 PetForums VIP

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    Mornin' all (long time, no see. Hope you're all doing well).

    Hoping I can call on your wisdom one more time... this year, our back garden has become full of wildlife, and Ted is now obsessed with it.

    It started with him finding one hedgehog, a couple of weeks ago. We've had a few more since then, along with frogs. Since his first hedgehog, he's become obsessed with searching around the garden for unusual wildlife. He'll be searching at all times of day, and barking at anything he thinks should not be there. It's like he's constantly on alert, and thinks hedgehogs are the most amazing thing ever.

    In the instances where he does find a hedgehog, he will bark repeatedly and will not settle down for the rest of the evening. (I've ended up purchasing a secure hedgehog home, that Ted cannot see or reach. So if he finds a hog now I just scoop it up and move it out of his reach, into the hedgehog home).

    Obviously we bring him in when he starts to bark at the wildlife, but I'm concerned that the barking will lead to an ASBO. He doesn't settle when he comes back in, he'll just paw and bark at the back door (which is now covered in opaque window film). This can go on until late night, and I'm starting to miss sleeping.

    He's walked for at least 45-60 min daily, food (orijen) from a kong wobbler. I give him things to chew on/occupy him, but since he's gotten older he just walks around with them in his mouth, whining.

    Any ideas? Thanks
     
  2. labradrk

    labradrk PetForums VIP

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    Break the cycle, if he needs to go out into the garden put him on a lead so he cannot go looking for hedgehogs.

    Change the target, so if it's in the evening he is particularly bad, plan to do something fun in the garden in the evening instead at a time he'd normally be a pain in the arse. So wildlife hunting time becomes playtime, or training time, or time for some scentwork games. After that, bring him inside and in the hopefully unlikely event he doesn't settle, calmly but firmly direct him to what you do want him to do. Rather than allow him to scratch at the door, direct him to his bed and reward. Rinse and repeat when he gets up. He'll get it, you just have to be consistent.
     
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