Our Dogs Seperation anxiety...

Discussion in 'Pets & Animals' started by ryann, Jul 12, 2007.

  1. ryann

    ryann Member

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    Up until recently we had two dogs, both Staffordshires, older male, younger female. The female always hated being left alone, but it rarely happened and only for short periods.

    Now, due to the untimely passing of our male, the female is left alone during work hours and howls (really is a heart breaking howl) for a few hours of the day.

    The neighbours seem to understand, but someone left an anonymous note in our letterbox telling us all about it.

    We have tried taking her to Hanrob at Mascot for day-care/training, but they didn't seem interested in making any effort despite us paying. We are now taking her to our local vet just for day-care. This isn't our preferred option. Can anyone recommend some good methods or trainers/businesses which could help? Getting another dog is not really an option either.
     
  2. dhwwwops

    dhwwwops Member

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    Separation anxiety can be particularly difficult to fix.
    You will likely need to spend a lot of time with training with your dog . Lots of time!

    Try contacting your local Delta society trainers, who may be able to offer you reputable safe, trainers in your area if they themselves cant help you.
    http://www.deltasocietyaustralia.com.au/

    Reach out to your friends who have pets, you are likely to need a lot of "environmental enrichment" for your younger dog.

    Be aware that working with separation anxiety is very largely reliant on time spent with the dog, providing enrichment, increasing separation time frames over and over again. For that reason if you were to go to a training organisation that charges fees to fix separation anxiety that are similar to the fees for obedience etc then you are going to be out of pocket a LOT!

    There are also puppy daycare clubs around that are similar to those provided by some vets also. Daycare will not be a fix for working with the separation anxiety but can be part of a wholistic approach.

    The cries staffies give out when under stress can be heart breaking, I wish you luck!
     
  3. Urban_Jungle

    Urban_Jungle Member

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    Staffies HAVE to have constant company unless brought up from word dot and then they tend to be a bit boisterous to other dogs when out. Even my old bugger gets all mopey when left alone. Easiest suggestion. Get another dog :). Your just stressing her out otherwise and figure it her way, she has always had company and now her best friend is dead and she is alone :(. I'd be crying to.
     
  4. hollysmum

    hollysmum Member

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    If you are unable to get another puppy for company for your dog you could try some alternative methods like Bach Flower Essences

    I have seen some remarkable things happen with natural therapies in both animals and humans so could be worth you investigating
     
  5. zoomzoom83

    zoomzoom83 Member

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    don't waste time on delta training and all that crap. Go the only people who will guarantee to solve the issue, or will keep coming back until they do is barkbusters. Give them a call, it is the best thing to do, i guarantee it.
     
  6. rickbishop

    rickbishop Member

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    Is she food driven? If so, give her a bloody great bone in the morning when you leave. Given how single-minded staffies can be, by the time she realises that she's all alone, she'll have been chomping on the bone for about 5 hours.

    It worked for my kelpie.
     
  7. Steve D

    Steve D Member

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    DO NOT FUCKING USE BARKBUSTERS.

    They pretty much excel in scarring the living fuck out of your dog and breaking its spirit.

    If you want real animal advice, try www.dogzonline.com.au, they have great training forums.
     
  8. zoomzoom83

    zoomzoom83 Member

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    Do you even know what the fuck you are talking about??? they don't do any such thing as scaring the fuck out of dogs you idiot. It is alot about pack mentality and showing who is boss. It is all about simply verbal commands. No physical abuse, or chokers or anything like that. It is about showing who is boss and allowing the dog to relax from being the leader of the pack, because you are the leader.
    If you want to know how i know about this kind of things, is because i work in local government working directly with barking dogs, and such issues.
    You would probably believe everything that Dr. Harry says aswell.
     
  9. Steve D

    Steve D Member

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    Dealt with bark busters, throwing a fucking chain at my dogs feet and screaming at it is not productive.

    You can be the leader through building trust in your dog, not being agro with it.

    You ask any dog school or club / forum about bark busters, the message is the say, stay the fuck away.

    By the way, why the personal insults? Did i touch a nerve? Do you perhaps work with them? Or dont like others voicing their opinion, and anything that differs from your "bark busters is the best blah blah" diatribe is an "idiot" etc?

    Steve
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2007
  10. _Raz_

    _Raz_ Member

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    Like someone already mentioned, maybe try some rescue remedy... I have heard a lot of good about this stuff..

    tire him out before you leave and give him something to do while you are gone... like hide some treats around the yard or house, give him a bone, make him work for his food... if he likes toys, maybe get one of those balls that release treats when he rolls it... be careful though, being a staffy, he might eat the ball :p

    If he is really bad and these things don't help him, he probably has a more extreme case and you will most likely have to get help with the problem.

    Is he a bit of a velcro dog when you are home?
     
  11. zoomzoom83

    zoomzoom83 Member

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    I don't know who you dealt with but, it is not about screaming at the dog, more so then using voice commands with different tones. The reason dog schools and clubs don't like bark busters is because when they do puppy training they get 20 puppies and put them in a room and say that is socializing, when it is terrorizing the dogs. It causes more problems then it is worth. Yes socializing is important but not when the first contact the puppy makes with other dogs is 20 dogs. It needs to be in small groups. I have seen issues with dogs caused by dog obedience classes and the dogs have been no better off then doing now training at all, some with behavior issues because of it.
    The reason it got personal, is because you came along and just said "DO NOT USE FUCKING BARK BUSTERS" without giving any reasons, or a personal insight. If you want to warn people to stay away for whatever reason you want then give reasons, instead of just flaming them without a reason.
    And no i don't work with them, but i have seen the results that their training has done. It is rare not to get results with bark busters, and seeing they guarantee their work why not. I work in animal management in local government and i have seen all these behavior issues and i have seen what works, and that is what i go by.
     
  12. Bass

    Bass Member

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    I sent my staffy away for a bit of general obedience.. I knew she had some anxiety problems but they assured me it'd be good for that too. Pfft, she came back a lot worse off then she was and for the first week just kept trying to escape (i'm sure she was terrified of being abandoned again) I should have researched things a bit more in retrospect. I also didn't approve of their training techniques once I found out.

    She's better now, but I think i'm going to try and find the time to train her myself.
     
  13. hollysmum

    hollysmum Member

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    There is a lot more to Bach Flower Essences than just Rescue Remedy, you could use others to help your dog deal with the lose of your other dog (dogs grieve too) and with adjusting to a new situation - I would be happy to recommend some and even send them over to you if you were interested?
     
  14. dhwwwops

    dhwwwops Member

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    I consider myself to be an open minded trainer / handler and I enthusiastically and objectively avail myself to opportunities where I am able to learn new training techniques and better understand our K9 companions and their animal behaviours.

    With this in mind i look forward to you sharing your obvious abundance and diverse experience in the dog training world. Could you please respond to my following comments so that I too can become enlightened.

    Could you please tell us how to make use of your guarantee?

    1. "don't waste time on delta training and all that crap."
    ***Could you please detail your knowledge of Delta training and all that crap and explain why it would be a waste of time?

    2. "If you want to warn people to stay away for whatever reason you want then give reasons, instead of just flaming them without a reason."
    *** Could you please explain reasons, define appropriate strategies and offer a defined scope of circumstances in which particular type of training and behaviour modification might be appropriate for treating K9 separation anxiety?

    Perhaps a person might consider that in animal training a particular solution to a problem may be addressed using various style of training and behaviour modification. Please detail which type of training Barkbusters falls into and could you possibly offer the types of circumstances it is and isn't appropriate for?

    3. "And no i don't work with them, but i have seen the results that their training has done. It is rare not to get results with bark busters, and seeing they guarantee their work why not. I work in animal management in local government and i have seen all these behavior issues and i have seen what works, and that is what i go by."
    ***Your obvious scope of experience has no doubt given you an opportunity to view situations that many people have not been blessed to learn from.
    The Delta Society and their Trainers, Behaviourists supporters, their Full time jobs in Zoo's, Animal hospitals, Universities and their relationships with Research groups and welfare organisations I would have thought, would give the Delta Society wonderful experiences and extensive knowledge that would help them in their endeavours.

    Could you please explain why your experiences are more valuable or effective than the combined knowledge and experience of the organisation.

    Your clarification on these issues will be greatly received.
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2007
  15. zoomzoom83

    zoomzoom83 Member

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    1. The issue with delta training and all the other training classes, is that you are putting dogs into situations where they would not ordinarily encounter in real life. At what point would you have a dog come along into a room with 20 other dogs and asked to socialize. Especially in puppies, when you put these dogs into these situations to puts them in an uncomfortable situation, which scares the crap out of the dogs. This leads to behavioral issues.

    2. Refer to this page http://www.barkbusters.com.au/badhabits.htm for more information about bad habits and separation anxiety. I am not going to go into full detail as each dog is different and there are different training for every dog but the basic idea is the same for all.

    3. I am not saying that they don't know what they are doing or that i know more then them. What i am saying is from my experience, i discover more behavioral issues with dogs who have attended these types of training. Yes your dog can sit and stay and shake hands. Which is useful, but they are no good at training dogs that have issues, especially when the owner is not at home to reward them with food, or similar.
    I have dealt with and been to the home of one of these delta trainers, and i would not put up with the behavior that her dogs done. The first thing that happened when i stepped into the door was her dogs jumped all over me, yeah she told them off and they eventually stopped, but the behavior should not occur from the start. These is acceptable within delta training but i dont believe it is acceptable on any level.

    What i am trying to say is investigate what works for your dog, but do your homework, and ask people who have attended and not just those who have completed, the ones who have dropped out, because they will give you more insight into these training.
    I am a strong believer that the training needs to be one on one as this is the only training that is dedicated to your dog and your dogs issues.your dog will never come across a situation where there will be 20 other dogs there in one occasion socializing together. Just my 2 cents anyway.
     
  16. dhwwwops

    dhwwwops Member

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    I wish you luck with your training Bass. There are many types of training, not all types of training suit all types of dog, not all types of training suit the trainer.

    Here's a link to a book that I think is terrific and well worth reading before deciding on any particular training methods.

    Its called "Don't shoot the Dog." and I regard it as one of the best books I have.
    http://dymocks.com.au/ProductDetails/ProductDetail.aspx?R=9780553380392
     
  17. rickbishop

    rickbishop Member

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    What, don't you take your dog for a walk?

    In darwin, all parks are leash-free area's, and it's not uncommon to see a dozen dogs running around playing with each other (under supervision from their owners).
     
  18. dhwwwops

    dhwwwops Member

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    *** 1. "The issue with delta training and all the other training classes....." Is it possible the idea of putting dogs into situations that you would consider unusual might not be unusual to others? The Annual Millions Paws walk, Obedience clubs, Agility classes are all situations that many people share with their dogs and many others. The opportunity for dogs to become stressed in these situations is very real and can create uncomfortable situations however i thought that this is where the training and behavioural shaping starts. Wouldn't this be the ideal time to put a previously identified plan in to place and act accordingly? Something along the lines of
    "..I will introduce the dog to the group, starting off with just a few other dogs, when my dog is comfortable and desirable behaviour has been rewarded then I might expand the size of the group. If at any time the dog is more than mildly uncomfortable then I have progressed too quickly and I should reduce my group size, increases distance thresholds and reinforce the desirable behaviour until it is consistant"

    Wouldn't it be reasonable to say that if the dog is exhibiting undesirable behaviour then the trainer / handler has not planned well or acted in accordance with those plans? I would consider that the idea of the above mentioned 20 dog class would be effective under most circumstances if conducted correctly.

    ***2. "Refer to this page http://www.barkbusters.com.au/badhabits.htm for more information about bad habits and separation anxiety"

    Whenever I consider what training to carry out I consider what my objectives are,the dogs thresholds, reinforcement schedules and contingencies or responses from the dog. Many dogs react differently to different degrees of the above considerations so a one size does NOT fit all approach seems a reasonable one.

    In considering the responses from the dog in a separation anxiety situation a couple of the possible responses from the dog may be...

    DOG Perspective:"If I bark because I am anxious from being separated from my family and my family comes back when I bark, then I will bark more often because I am rewarded by my family returning when I bark." "This barking behaviour rewarding!"

    DOG Perspective:"Even though when I feel separation anxiety and I bark so that my family comes back to me, and although My family will reprimand me which may include undesirable stressors I will do it anyway because I want a short term fix". "I will do this even though I am getting more scared of my family yelling at me or throwing shoes or whacking me with a newspaper and I am likely to start exhibiting avoidance behaviour"

    When I consider these possible contingencies or responses I cant help but think that there must be another approach which does not reinforce the undesirable behaviour or possibly breakdownn the handler dog relationship through unnecessary reprimands. I have used alternative approaches and they have worked also.

    bthomass"I am not saying that they don't know what they are doing or that i know more then them. What i am saying is from my experience, i discover more behavioral issues with dogs who have attended these types of training. Yes your dog can sit and stay and shake hands. Which is useful, but they are no good at training dogs that have issues, especially when the owner is not at home to reward them with food, or similar.
    I have dealt with and been to the home of one of these delta trainers, and i would not put up with the behavior that her dogs done. The first thing that happened when i stepped into the door was her dogs jumped all over me, yeah she told them off and they eventually stopped, but the behavior should not occur from the start. These is acceptable within delta training but i dont believe it is acceptable on any level."


    ***"What i am trying to say is investigate what works for your dog, but do your homework, and ask people who have attended and not just those who have completed, the ones who have dropped out, because they will give you more insight into these training.
    I am a strong believer that the training needs to be one on one as this is the only training that is dedicated to your dog and your dogs issues.your dog will never come across a situation where there will be 20 other dogs there in one occasion socializing together. Just my 2 cents anyway.


    Here's where I hope I can provide some objective perspective. I Have enrolled in one of the Delta Society's Cert IV courses and I attended a training intensive and I also had to drop out of the course because I ended up gaining full time work as a Government Dog Handler during the time of the rest of the course. So I hope you consider that I have done my homework.

    The intensive on the course was probably one of the more enjoyable learning experiences I have had! We had exposure to bird trainers, dog trainers, dolphin trainers, Polar bear trainers, seal trainers, Veterinarians, Nurses, ex Army trainers, and Goat trainers. No I am not exaggerating, the scope of experience and knowledge was brilliant!

    Many of the trainers use their own styles of training based upon a common theme, "Positive reinforcement" not necessarily because they were told that their particular type of training was better or more effective than any other, simply because their training styles and methods all had a common theme. Their own experiences of multiple methods of training, positive reinforcement, compulsion training, or dominance training led them to come together in a common type of training.

    Some extra thoughts.
    * Teaching a dog to shake hands can be very useful for reinforcing reward and reinforcement schedules, training processes, handler / animal relationships. Sit and stay can do the same and can be used to increase the focus time of the dog, reduce stress and again reinforce positive behaviours.

    Using simple behaviours is the first step towards teaching complex behaviours, whilst on this Delta course we saw a video of an Alpacca picking up paper balls of the bottom of a barn floor and putting them in a drum. That's pretty complex behaviour if you ask me, and although it may be of limited use the benefits from that training and relationship building with the animal seem pretty obvious to me.

    If you believe that rewards are only effective while the owner / handler / trainer are present or the dogs behaviour based on those rewards are inconsistent then it may be that when you tried those training methods or rewards systems you had not achieved the desired level of consistency and/or the behaviours had not been reinforced effectively. I offer this tidbit from wikipedia which may explain the process to you a little more.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reinforcement

    Other key phrases you might find useful include "Extinction"(in the context of training) and "Variable reward schedule".

    The example you gave about the jumping dog would be totally unacceptable to me as it appears it is to you. While I cant vouch for the effectiveness of that individual trainer, it may may be that the trainer found that letting her dogs jump about in an excited manner was for them. Many open minded trainers would enjoy the opportunity to have a VERRYYY long chat over the issue and discuss the merits of particular approaches to the situation. Did you take the opportunity for this dialogue? What a great chance to learn more.

    I am not a Delta trainer and I dont believe in every approach they make take is the right one for me or my dogs, but they offer a huge amount of experience and in most cases love to share their knowledge. I have not called on the services of Barkbusters although I agree with some of their approaches and some I dont. The final consideration when training any animal (IMHO) comes down to what's best for the particular animal, not the trainers prejudices. The more I can learn from everyone's experience the more tolls I have in my training toolkit and hopefully that will lead to more enjoyable and efficient training. I hope I can achieve that WITHOUT EXCLUDING any ethical training methods.
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2007
  19. CordlezToaster

    CordlezToaster Member

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    despite all the bullshit in this thread, leave ya tv on for the dog to watch! work wonders for me! now we have a dog that watches tv with us.
     
  20. scon

    scon Member

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    This is great... I never thought I'd see a flaming match on the most appropriate institution to train your dog on OCAU. Keep it up!

    *SUBSCRIBES*
     

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