Discipline aggressive husky need help ASAP or she'll go to shelter

Discussion in 'Dog Training Forum' started by juliefurry, May 2, 2005.

  1. juliefurry

    juliefurry Rusty but Trusty

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    I love your suggestions, and I didn't not take them personally in any way. I know i'm sort of an idiot when it comes to training dogs (Mack knows sit and he only does that like half the time we tell him). As for obedience training her it is sort of tricky. She has arthritis in her back legs so sitting is hard for her. We had her on meds which seemed to work for awhile. She's a very free spirited dog and if she doesn't want to do anything she won't do it. I'm not worried about us getting snapped at what I worry about is the children. With two small children I'm worried she might one day snap at them and that they won't be fast enough to get their hand, arm, leg, or face out of her mouth. My husband is more of the one that wants to take her back to the shelter, I would rather pay the money to have her trained. You can see she could be a wonderful dog, she probably just had a rough past, and it's unfair to give up on her without exhausting all the options. I did get a hold of the shelter where we rescued her from and they said we could bring her back but she would most likely just be euthanized. I am trying very hard to talk him into letting her stay.
     
  2. Saje

    Saje Island dweller

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    This is another great site http://www.clickerlessons.com/lessons.html for training. :D My other fave. It's worth a read too. Not nearly as long as the other one! maybe it will help with some of her training. I really hope you don't have to get ride of her. :(
     
  3. CreatureTeacher

    CreatureTeacher New Member

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    I definitely appreciate your concerns about the kids, but really if you stick to the resource control you will see the difference it can make. If I thought your dog was doing these things out of some sort of nasty temper, I'd absolutely tell you so. But as I see it, she's just throwing a little tantrum which can be easily corrected.

    I've trained several dogs that aren't comfortable in a "sit", including arthritic dogs and bony-butts like greyhounds. With those dogs I tend to use "down" instead, and I also teach "bow" (butt in the air, elbows on the floor) which stretches those muscles and pretty much stops them doing bad things. You have to be creative when redirecting behavior. But resource control will also help with obedience; it will make her more eager to please you. And those positive dog training books will help you teach her in a new way, which will probably result in her being a lot more receptive to learning.

    Let your husband know that I understand and appreciate your concerns about the dog and the kids, and that I honestly believe that we can make a home for Shelby and the kids there together.
     
  4. juliefurry

    juliefurry Rusty but Trusty

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    Ok, the collar is off while she is in the house. I have also started on the command sit (which she is learning with flying colors). I just started it like five minutes ago and she's already I'd say 95% consistant with sitting. Obviously she had been trained to sit before (either that or she's that eager to get the dog kibble treat). Hopefully my husband will change his mind by tomorrow morning, which is when he wants to return her to the shelter. I'm going to have him read creatureteacher's posts and hopefully he'll allow me the chance to work with her. I think she is just a very sensitive dog and doesn't like to hear people yell or see people get mad. It just makes me mad that I know she's a good dog and that she's had a rough life in her past home. She cowers almost everytime you are standing over her and go to pet her (she will always cower unless you are at eye level with her). She shouldn't have to get euthanized because of stupid people. I'm sort of hoping for a miracle here because if she goes back she'll probably get euthanized and my husband is sort of anxious to get her out. I'm hoping CreatureTeacher's posts will help change his mind.
     
  5. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    You can tell him you're going to start addressing him as "Killer" if he sends Shelby to her death . . . Sometimes a little drama can save the day.

    It does sound as though poor Shelby was an abused dog. Your husband might actually be afraid of her. I had an ex-boyfriend who was short with Bear. I found out from his sister that he'd been afraid of big dogs since he was a little kid. If she hadn't told me I'd never have known though.
     
  6. YorkieLover

    YorkieLover New Member

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    I love all the responses and suggestions for this issue. I know one of the 2 boys we adopted was very snappish with me when I tried to put him in his crate... My husband was like he's going to have to go if he's snapping at you. Well I talked to a trainer and they told me to leave my hand there and not pull back or yell at him. I did it twice and he didn't even bite/nip me just all attitude. He hasn't done it since. How long have you had your dog? The reason I ask is because some of the behaviors are exactly like ours that we adopted and it's been 3 months and he is finally coming around. He will probably always be skittish to loud noises, arguing and even quick motions towards him. It saddens me that he is like this but we learn to work around it. But it also makes me very happy when I see the progress he has made, like running to the door when I say "daddy's home"....
     
  7. maui

    maui New Member

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    (Killer!? Good one! lol)

    Julie, What a great dog you have. One that is willing to try new behaviors! Sure, they are scary, but he is expressive. After some positive training, think of how much fun the expressive side will be when he offers fun behaviors.

    Emma is eloquent in her bluntness. I enjoyed reading the post about what to do. I have give a little testimonial to the advice.

    We have had resource guarding issues pop up with Ranger. He tries all kinds of behaviors on for size. I would get so scared. Then, a behaviorist explained to me, "He's a teenager, keep up the training, be confident, and it will pass. Whatever you do, don't yell. Wait for the expected result." Then they showed us how to handle it.

    Ranger resource guards his parents. Meaning, he guards us while other dogs are around. If the dogs don't follow rules, he tells them off. Fortunately, he has bite inhibition. If we have food or toys, it's worse. If I ever yelled at him when he acts this way, his emotions would escalate. The next time his reaction to the other dog would be even worse. The instructions were to react before Ranger would escalate. Use polite, happy voices, etc.

    With a lot of careful training he is now able to play at the dog park class we take while I have a toy in my pocket and he doesn't come out fighting with the dog who says hi to me. It has taken some time, but it works. I'll tell ya' we followed a lot of the advice Emma mentions above. NILF, separating him from his trouble (Not easy because we couldn't remove ourselves, but we stopped taking food, & toys, which only reduced his trust to his regular buddies.), using happy voice, rarely saying the word no, etc. all really really works wonders.

    I'm a big fan of group classes as well. It can't hurt to take some time together and learn some commands. Sounds like you are trying really hard and congrats on the sit command.

    Maui
     
  8. juliefurry

    juliefurry Rusty but Trusty

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    Well Shelby is going to stay here, atleast for today. I am trying the NILIF approach, and I have started the isolation therapy. She snapped at my husband last night, this time for no reason (as he explains it). So she is running out of time, hopefully he won't take her to the shelter without me being there. If he doesn't take her by himself I will have until next monday (my next day off of work that the shelter is open) to get some improvement out of her. It's very stressful over here, but I'm trying my best. I don't want her to go back to the shelter. We almost drove her back today but I started crying in the truck when we were driving her there (it's over an hour drive) and we had to turn back because we didn't have any kleenex so she's safe. I hope that all the pressure won't freak her out and scare her from learning. I'm trying my best to get her to stay with us. Although my husband's like "oh we can go get a puppy from my friends lab when he breeds her". I don't like the fact that he is either trying to make me feel better about giving her up, or bribe me into giving her up. It doesn't matter if he gets me 100 puppies they still won't be my Shelby!!!!!
     
  9. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    See, a little drama . . .

    Keep working. Shelby sounds like a wonderful dog and you obviously love her.

    You just tell your husband that even if he does send Shelby off to die you don't want any of his friend's back-yard-bred dogs! (Assuming he's not a reputable breeder - in which case he'd be wary of giving your husband a pup after taking Shelby back to the shelter summarily.)

    I'd never let someone have a pup out of one of my dogs after they'd taken a dog back to certain death at a shelter!
     
  10. juliefurry

    juliefurry Rusty but Trusty

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    Yeah the guy is a backyard breeder. He hasn't had his dog checked for hip dysplasia or anything. I'm not gonna give up on Shelby. I doubt my husband would take her in by himself though. My father did that to me when I moved back in with them and my husband knows how I feel about my father for doing that to me. I doubt my husband wants me to feel the same about him.
     
  11. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    Remind him . . . you know we're all with you and Shelby, Julie.
     
  12. Barb04

    Barb04 Love my pets Staff Member

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    I just read about Shelby. I'm sending all the good vibes I can to Shelby that things turn around. I really hope all that Emma has suggested will help you.
     
  13. YorkieLover

    YorkieLover New Member

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    How long have you had Shelby? As I posted before, if it were up to my husband in the beginning we would've taken Houdini back to the rescue due to his snapping... I found out with time and what I learned on here there is always hope. LIke I said before, he has changed so much in the last 3 months you wouldn't know it was the same dog. Hang in there and give it some time and work what Emma has given you.
     
  14. Doberluv

    Doberluv Active Member

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    I'm sending you my thoughts and wishes that things will work out. Try not to show your tension about this when you're around Shelby. That might dampen your efforts. Shelby will sense something is off and might be more nervous.

    Let your husband know that we're all counting on him to have patience and let you work through this and that you'll keep your kids from getting hurt in the meantime. I'm sure in a while you'll know if things are coming around.

    Wishing you all the best.
     
  15. maui

    maui New Member

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    Julie, I'm thinking about you and Shelby. Know I'm there supporting you 100%. Keep working on it!

    Another idea, can you wear out Shelby a little more than usual over the next few days? Take her on a longer walk first thing in the morning, or do you run, rollerblade, run her up and down some stairs??? May help to calm her down and relax with the family.

    She may need something to do as well. Like pressed rawhides, bones, fetch, etc. These are mental activities and will tire her brain a little.

    And last ... one more thought. My husband mentioned your husband might be a little jealous of Shelby getting so much attention. Remember to ask your husband about work, thank him for fixing the sink... you know him best. Save the good drama for Monday, when you are on the phone calling the training school. (hint hint)

    :) -Maui
     
  16. Husky626

    Husky626 New Member

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    Yeah, everytime chong chong gets to hyper, i take him out jogging or something, or even play basketball with him. Something to worn him down so he has nothing to do but to sit or lie down.
     
  17. Debi

    Debi Moderator

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    I am coming in late here, but I love reading Emma's advice. So excellent. I just wanted to add this....in my opinion huskys need alot of exercise and running room. You have her in the kitchen for most of the day, maybe she has some pent up energy and boredom that isn't helping her mood any. I also just wanted to say that I think it's wonderful that you are trying to work with her to keep her, Julie. How's it all going?
     
  18. Kathy74

    Kathy74 New Member

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    I'm coming in late on this too! We had similar problems with Serene when we first got her, and NILIF made all the difference. It's hard when they have come from an abusive past, and you don't know exactly what happened to them. It sounds like Shelby is being aggressive when she gets a hold of a "human food" treasure. It's definately more of a concern with children (especially the 1 yr old, who doesn't understand what's going on). Be sure to include the children in training whenever possible, so Shelby learns that she must respect your children as well. Good luck. It sounds like Shelby has the potential to be a great dog, and it sounds like she found a person who has the love and patience to get her there! PS: Cheers to you for rescuing, and not giving up on her at the first sign of trouble. She's lucky to have you.
     
  19. juliefurry

    juliefurry Rusty but Trusty

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    Well my husband has agreed to let her stay. I got mad at him because his friend came to take her (he gave her away without asking my permission) and I left really mad. Some A-hole ended up pulling out in front of me and I hit him with my car. I'm ok, a little sore and shaken up, but nothing serious. He saw how upset I got, and I explained to him that I didn't want her to go with anyone or back to the shelter because I would feel like I let her down. He understood and has given me 1 month to get her to improve, some, and if she does he will pay the money to get a trainer for her. He could have just listened to me from the beginning and it would have saved us my Suburban, a trip to the hospital, and it would have saved him from having to call off work. I do take Shelby out a lot. She goes out for two seperate walks (1hour 2 times a day). Plus the neighbor next door to us LOVES her and he will take her out too and go walking with her. On a brighter note my husband FINALLY understands my love for dogs and animals. He even found a puppy for him (I don't know how well three dogs will work in this household seeing all the problems that we have had with our two). Well I'm off to the doctor's now, I had to call off work today so I need to go and get a doctor's note. Thanks for all your support I will be sure to keep you posted on her progress, and ours as well.
     
  20. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    WOW, Julie! When I said 'a little drama' I didn't expect you to shoot for an Academy Award :D

    Seriously, soooooo GLAD you're okay. Sorry about your Suburban. How's the other driver?

    Some good hard play, like chasing a ball or dog frisbee would help to wear Shelby out. Huskies have such tremendous stamina - like a two year old.
     

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