Advice Needed for training a 2ish year old rescue

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Just Whelped
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Advice Needed for training a 2ish year old rescue

Post by jwgilfillan20 »

Hi - I recently adopted a 2 ish year old male DS Max (although he may look exactly like one I have yet to get a DNA test, pics attached).

1. About me - probably the most important part as alot of this is going to be my own training lol. 40ish year old male living in house with fenced in yard in town Atlanta (yard is not huge, but just enough to play ball). My experience with dogs has generally included Labs and mixed breeds, but I've spent time around my buddy who has ex working dogs including a retired Navy Mal and a police DS. I am active and take the pup on walks/runs (more on that). I also have the time and commitment to ensure things are done to ensure Max has the best experience with life moving forward.

2. Max - he is a sweet heart that wants to please and actively trys to figure out what I want him to do. He was dropped at a shelter and I have no history. He gets along well with my Lab and also a 6 year old GSD that lives next door even when the GSD gets a bit jealous and wants to be the boss. I have no issues with him showing any signs of aggression or snapping etc with me. He doesn't mind me inspecting feet, surgery site (had a bit on an issue after nuetering). If I need to pick him up etc, very compliant and comfortable.

In contained and open spaces he is very obedient (plenty of energy and likes to get into anything, which is what dogs do LOL). The thing I believe I need to work on first involves leash reactivity including moving cars and other dogs when on walks. With cars he is ok until the "cup fills over with other stimulation". His reaction turns into continuous barking at them and acting like he wants to possibly chase them. I have been working on redirection with training treats - "Here" to get his attention and then a scatter of a few to get him to use his nose briefly why they pass. I do NOT use force to make him comply when it appears his level of anxiety/excitement runs over the cup - I do use the prong collar but am not trying to "man handle" him with it to get him to compliance. Dogs on leashes similar behavior and am working on the same type of approach.

People - doesn't seem to care one bit about others even out in public. I have noticed that he is fine with people that approach from the front but doesn't want them to get their hands anywhere near his neck (not really focusing on this right now as I control the situations he is in and this is easy to prevent). I have a basket muzzle and leather muzzle to use if I have to put him in a situation that I am not confident about like visiting a vet.

3. Where to I look for a good trainer that knows these types of dogs and can help me with the techniques. One thing I am implementing is a long walk at 6am so that cars on the streets are minimal and less possibility of dogs on leashes (minimize the exposure while I continue to get him comfortable with his new life). I also use a kennel/crate to help manage his excitement if unknown people come over and if I leave the house for extended periods of time.

What else should I be thinking about - I do have an e collar and have decided it doesn't do anything to help with reactivity (just gears him up so I will only use that in future for different training correction situations).

Open to any and all suggestions - HE is a sweet heart!
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Working Dog
Posts: 1371
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2014 2:11 pm
Tell us about yourself: I am: a father of 2 boys, a carpenter, hunter, runner. We have extensive experience with sled dogs, shepherd mixes, a wolf hybrid, and our current dog a 95# long haired Shiloh Shepherd. We added Endeavor in April 2016. She was not working out in HRD. I train for game recovery and general utility.
Location: central MD

Re: Advice Needed for training a 2ish year old rescue

Post by TimL_168 »

Hey man. I'll try to get back to read all this thoroughly after work. In general though, you want to think about engagement and training things for the dog to focus on!
Tim L.
Aurora(Shiloh) Endeavor
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