He's not exactly "bad" per se...

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by Lothiriel, Oct 10, 2011.

  1. Lothiriel

    Lothiriel Crowing Premium Member

    Aug 30, 2007
    New York State
    My Coop
    ... Our 4 month old puppy (Australian Shepherd) has been very bad with chasing the chickens lately. I know, I know. Aussies are a herding breed and that's what they do. But Riley is being rough and will not stop. He has a few "issues" that we are trying to find a trainer to help us with, and one of those is not coming when called. He's got one of those personalities where he'll do it when he feels like it.

    One of my BSL has a huge dislike for him -- does a rooster attack with her feathers puffed up and kicks hard with her feet. But not even that will phase him! All the positive reinforcement stuff has not worked... We have read so many books about puppy training. It's kind of like parenting... All these different methods and supposedly the newest one is the best and works better than the old ones. It's getting to be quite frustrating.

    Is there anything we can do about it?? How can I get him to leave the chickens alone??
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2011

  2. Gmsg01

    Gmsg01 Chirping

    May 4, 2011
    West Monroe,NY
    He needs to be on a leash outside 100% of the time until he truly understands what a come command is. Calling him, and having him ignore you, only teaches him that being called means nothing. [​IMG]
  3. LotsaChicken

    LotsaChicken In the Brooder

    Sep 22, 2011
    Don't get disheartened. My little basset chased chickens (and caught a few) terribly as a puppy, but now you can lock her in a pen with the chickens and she won't chase them. You do need to correct it as soon as possible though. We just worked with her as a puppy telling her no, until she finally got that it was not allowed.
  4. user104534

    user104534 In the Brooder

    Aug 23, 2011

  5. Lothiriel

    Lothiriel Crowing Premium Member

    Aug 30, 2007
    New York State
    My Coop
    Quote:It's hard for him to be always on leash... But your point is very true.

    Quote:Sounds just like Riley... Lock him in with them, and he ignores them. But when he and they are out, oh boy....

    Quote:That sounds like a very good idea.... I don't think it sounds very mean myself, but I know there are some who may think so. It's not as bad as tying the animal the dog killed around it's neck for a couple weeks... My grandpa did that to one of his dogs years and years ago... It was gross, but it worked...

    However, I don't intend to let Riley get that far. I'll share that link with my family and I think we'll give it a try.
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2011
  6. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap Premium Member

    You could really harness that instinct with training and you will have your dog putting the chickens to bed after a while.
  7. xchairity_casex

    xchairity_casex Songster

    Feb 5, 2011
    dont feel discouraged this is male and when maless start appraoching sexual maturity they start to push boundries and not litsen tis common it happens even more so with un-nueterd males 4 months sure does seem young though doesnt it lol thats what i thought about my male dogs but tis very common the next 9 months or so your going to have a fight on your hands while he is testing what he can get away with and what he cant thats why you need to be strong and show him your not going to put up with this behavior be firm but gentle he is still learning i was just telling my bf the other day how i forgot what ti was like brining up a puppy it seems like every day your after them for somthing and every day your wondering "am i even getting thru to this dog??" and hten all of a sudden one day you notice somthing like he actually listens to what you say the first time or your not having to physically stop him.
    just keep correcting him everytime. try keeping him on a lead as often as you can try working with him indoors on basic commands if your not already.
    heres a good excersize for you to try get some nice treats handy and take him out on a lead take him right around the chickens and ask him to sit im sure if he loves to chase them he will be drawn to watching there every move.
    if he doesnt sit push him bum down. if he gets up to go after a chicken say "no" and push his bum down again then count to 10 if he can sit for a count of 10 praise and give him a treat but dont allow him to get up if ever he does get up push his bottom back down if he lunges or pulls or whines or grabs at the lead to chew just calmly say "no" and push his bum back down. only do this excersize for about 15 minutes in the begining as he is young and its very difficult for him to sit still after the excersize take him away from the chickens as your trying to teach him self control around them and you dont want to bore him but you also dont want him to think that he only has to have self control for a short time eh needs to have self control around them all the time. do this every single day maybe even several times per day. after a week he should have gotten the idea of the excersize and you can try moving him closer tot he chickens and increasing the count to perhapes 25 counts be fore rewarding.
    dogs have prey drive all dogs have prey drive when your puppy sees those chickens walking around running around it intices him to chase them were trying to teach him self control that just becuase he sees the chickens moving quickly past him does not mean he can go chaseing them.
    also after a few days i reccomend taking a step away from him but still hold onto the leash but always keep the leash very loose let it hang we want him to feel like theres nothing attatching him this will help later on when you un hook him from the lead and practice without it but dont try moving onto that point untill you trust him 100 percent.

  8. BorderKelpie

    BorderKelpie Songster

    Mar 1, 2009
    outside Dallas
    Tether and treats - tether and treats.

    He is attached to you indoors and out. Do not let that pup learn to ignore you. He is also rather young for harsh corrections. If you set him up for success now, there will be little reason for failure later.

    While he's tehered to you, he gets treats (really, really yummy ones) every time he focuses on you. If he looks at a chicken, he is rememnded (gently, with treats) to look at you, then mark and treat. You will do this for months, especially since he's already learning that chickens are fun and you can be ignored.

    You're goal is to become more interesting to him than anything else in the world. Without resorting to harsh corrections (at his age, that can ruin your relationship).

    Best wishes to you!
  9. LiLRedCV

    LiLRedCV Songster

    Aug 25, 2010
    Land of the Rain
    Don't give up! There are some great suggestions above for you. [​IMG]

    Another thing to try is get a very long reaching squirt bottle and fill it with 1/2 vinegar and 1/2 water. When he does something you don't want him to do, squirt him with it! Tell him very firmly, "NO!" or even, "DON'T!" just before you squirt him (always use one syllable words when possible as it simplifies things]/i]) We used to train Service Dogs (they have to be calm, cool, and collected around every possibility) and this squirt bottle with vinegar method that worked very well!!

    The vinegar reeks and they have sensitive noses and can't stand it. Even if you get him in the eye, it's purely organic so while their eye may water for a short spell, it's not really going to hurt him. [BTW - works on mouthy teenage kids too! [​IMG]]

    IF it gets to the point the solution doesn't work, add more vinegar to the ratio... or even a drop or two of Tabasco sauce.

    Side note: if he ever gets to digging in your yard and you can't figure out how to make him stop? Put pepper in the hole he's currently digging in. Dogs will inevitably put their noses in the hole they're working on in the moment, sniff the pepper, and start sneezing! After awhile, they'll start associating the two and stop.

  10. Lothiriel

    Lothiriel Crowing Premium Member

    Aug 30, 2007
    New York State
    My Coop
    Wow... You guys have given some wonderful input!! Keep it coming!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by