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Jane Lefler
Jane Lefler, Animal Behaviorist
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 19828
Experience:  Dog breeder/Trainer and Behaviorist 18+ years
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we have bought a miniature poodle (May this year) he was on

Customer Question

we have bought a miniature poodle (May this year) he was on at the end of May. During his time in his previous home he was used as a stud dog. We are very experience dog owners having bred ***** *****'s and and other terriers for years, however this little chap has us stumped. He is a very lovely little dog, but will not come to recall and runs way, way ahead, he always returns, but will not stay with us and the pack. When he is on the lead he stand on his hind legs a lot and when we meet other dogs whales like an banshee and gets really hysterical and barks like crazy! If I crouch down and focus on him and say 'no' he is much better - off the lead he is ok but runs off - we walk them 2x a day for long walks (40 - 90 mins). I have tried to train him to sit etc, which he will do, but he shakes whereas the other dogs love it and want to please, but I feel he feels under pressure - help as he love him! x
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Dog Training
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 3 years ago.
Hi JaCustomer,
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My name is Jane. I have been working professionally with animals especially dogs in both health and behavioral issues for over 18 years. I have over 14,000 satisfied customers. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.
It sounds like he may have had limited training at his old residence, but let me give you one of the most common reasons a dog does not come when called. Many dogs don't come when called because they have learned that the only time they are called is when fun time is over. People call their dogs to them to make them come inside or to stop chasing prey (cats) or to be put on leash (end of free running time) or even crated. The only association they have with the come command is negative.
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Additionally, dogs find chase to be a highly amusing game and have learned that if they get close to a human, the human might chase them. They love a good game. So what you need to do is make coming to you more pleasurable.
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The easiest way is to reward your dog with small tiny treats and praise whenever your dog comes to you when you give the command. Do this even when the dog wants to come to you. After a few treats, the dog will associate coming to you with getting treats and praise. Outside, you will want to use a long lead. Do not drag your dog to you, but say the command and if the dog doesn't come, give the leash a short tug. Start with short distances and gradually extend the distance as your dog becomes more familiar with the command. Over time, you will reduce the treats and increase the praise until praise is the only reward. Another thing to remember is to never call a dog to you to discipline it, go to the dog. During training I don't call a dog to me unless it is going to be pleasant for the dog. I usually don't have much of a problem since the dogs quickly learn that I have thinly sliced hot dog treats just waiting for them to obey me.
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I alway recommend starting inside since most dogs are more than willing to come when inside. You can even have a helper and both call the dog to them in turn rewarding the dog for coming to you. since you have a large number of dogs, work with him by himself.
One thing that often works is to change the command you are using especially if he has become used to ignoring the normal command used. I've actually had quite a few clients use the technique I mentioned and change the command who see improvement almost immediately..
I know you mentioned training for the recall with treats but try the calling him to you numerous times using the new command inside for no other reason than to give him the treat. Use vienna sausage slices or raw chic***** *****ver treats. They are usually considered high value to dogs and most work eagerly for them.
Regular treats rarely work as well and if possible train while he is hungry. A common substitute command for the come command or recall command is the "HERE" command.
I hope this information is helpful to you and you are satisfied with my response. If you would like any additional information or have more questions please don’t hesitate to press the reply to expert or continue conversation button so I can address any issues you still have .
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

ok thank you Jane we will try that - what about his behaviour and noise when he meets other dogs?

Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 3 years ago.
Jane,
I didn't realize we were both Janes. A lot of stud dogs bark at other dogs in an attempt to keep them from "their" females and it becomes a habit.
I would work on the quiet command in an attempt to stop the barking as well as some other specialized training exercise. As crazy as this sounds you may wish to teach the pup the speak command and then the quiet command. It seems easier to teach the quiet command after the dog has learned the speak command. The following site explains teaching speak and quiet commands.
http://www.dogskool.com/web/news/summer2002/page3.html
You can also keep him on a leash being sure not to tense or change how you are feeling when dogs approach. They can pick up on that and become more aggressive in response to your reaction. They don't realize you are reacting to their possible behavior and not the other dogs. Then when he reacts to another dog in the manner you indicate, get his attention with a short tug and then reprimand with a firm "NO". When he doesn't react to another dog, reward with the special treats. Use special treats for specialized training.
It will be helpful if you can find someone with a dog to help you You will have your helper off in the distance. Your helper will gradually move their dog a bit closer to you preferably walking past your position in the distance. As long as your dog ignores them, you can give your dog praise and a treat. The second you see him fixate on the other dog, bark or show any other sign of aggression (hair standing up, etc.) give your dog a correction by giving a short tug and a firm low toned "NO". It shouldn't take your dog long to realize you will not tolerate the behavior and that if he ignores the other dog, he gets treats. Once this happens you can repeat the training moving the other dog closer until he is no longer displaying the behavior anymore. Since you have a lot of stable dogs already, he may elect to follow their lead after a little training.
You also have the option of getting a bark collar such as citronella spray collar, or shock bark collars that will stop excessive barking. It won't stop the feelings he has but the barking. Another trick that often works is to brush the tail or stub to a horizontal or lowered position to help them move into a better mind set.
Jane Lefler, Animal Behaviorist
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 19828
Experience: Dog breeder/Trainer and Behaviorist 18+ years
Jane Lefler and other Dog Training Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you Jane we will continue with our training - we have already taught our other dogs to speak, so we are on the right track, just good to have it confirmed with more tips thank you!

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Relist: Other.
just wondering if we neutered him would that help as we do not intend to use him as a stud dog!
Expert:  Dr. Jo replied 3 years ago.
Hello,
My name is***** and I will do my best to help you with your final question about your miniature poodle. It's wonderful to see you've already had contact with Jane Lefler and have taken to heart her excellent advice. We all enjoy the validation that comes with knowing our opinions and efforts so far are in agreement with what the experts think we should be doing. This little dog is lucky to have landed with you and it sounds as if your training efforts are spot on.
You asked if neutering him would help. I *strongly* recommend giving this a try for the following reasons:
1. It is very likely to help. Testosterone drives many impulses for roaming, being in charge, territorial defense, and some aggression. That being said, it is NOT the only driving force behind these behaviors, but you will be more likely than others to achieve success in eliminating his undesirable behaviors because you are also focusing on training efforts. While having him neutered is not guaranteed to solve this problem, it is reasonable to expect it to be easier to establish good behavior patterns if he is neutered.
2. Since you do not intend to use him as a stud dog, having him neutered is also a better choice for his health, especially as he ages. Having him neutered will eliminate any risk for testicular cancer and vastly reduce the risk of prostate disease which is very common in whole male dogs as they age.
I know there are cultural differences on this issue between Great Britain and the US, but if I were in your shoes, I would have him neutered right away. The combination of neutering and your hard work with training is far more likely to yield the results you are looking for than training alone.
Please let me know if I can be helpful in any other way.
Thanks!
Dr. Jo
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks Jo - we have thought long and hard about this and think we will give him 2 weeks to see an improvement with daily consistent training and then make a decision. He is such a dear little chap and so affectionate - such a shame that they used him for stud so young :-(

thanks again, Jane

Expert:  Dr. Jo replied 3 years ago.
I think that sounds like an excellent plan. I'm so glad you're willing to work so hard with him. He's lucky to have you.