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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-24-2008, 01:04 AM Thread Starter
 
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New dobie owner here in San Diego

Just saying hi to everyone. Many challenges going on with new dobie. First dog for me and he is a handful. His name is Rex and he is beautiful! We did basic puppy training months ago, he just finished doggie bootcamp where he was trained for two weeks ( he is one year old), got him fixed a month ago, so things are looking better but still pretty overwhelming. Sorry to sound like such a wimp. It just isn't coming natural for me at all. But, we're hanging in there. I'm always interested in what other dobie owners are doing to keep things peaceful.
Shirley
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-24-2008, 01:09 AM
 
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Originally Posted by 1stDobie View Post
Just saying hi to everyone. Many challenges going on with new dobie. First dog for me and he is a handful. His name is Rex and he is beautiful! We did basic puppy training months ago, he just finished doggie bootcamp where he was trained for two weeks ( he is one year old), got him fixed a month ago, so things are looking better but still pretty overwhelming. Sorry to sound like such a wimp. It just isn't coming natural for me at all. But, we're hanging in there. I'm always interested in what other dobie owners are doing to keep things peaceful.
Shirley
Welcome to the board....my only advice is as follows:

plenty of exercise is a big help....and if it's rainy outside I'll typically give my dobes plenty of things to chew to keep them occupied while staying inside.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-24-2008, 01:21 AM Thread Starter
 
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Hi. Great hearing from you. Yes, I understand the exercise thing is critical for dobies. He really loves playing with other dogs and I have none so that's usually what gets him in trouble as he manages to sneak of my property and heads up to my neighbors to play with his girlfriend. Then he won't come back when I call him or worse... he chases after a little neighbor lady with two little dogs in the car and she freaks out. I have a few acres here and can't quite get every hole patched to keep him in.

I'm getting a treadmill since our land is hilly and many neighbors up the hill allow their dogs to roam and it is nerve racking. Besides, with winter coming Rex won't want to go out and get cold. haha
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-24-2008, 01:24 AM
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Hi Shirley - Welcome from Poway! We have 3 - had 4, but our Alex died suddenly in April. Dobes are a handful - you need to understand that they are incredibly smart, intuitive, clever, and have uncanny senses of humor. They will outwit or out-last you if you let them.
Having someone else train your dog is like letting a nanny raise your kids - they get to know and respect the trainer, but that really has little relevance to you, unless you work diligently, daily, to be sure the dog knows you are its leader, parent, teacher, guide, captain.
They need a LOT of play, exercise a,d mental stimulation - so if you are up for it, consider something like agility, rally, canine good citizen certification, or some other intellectual challenge, plus a good daily exercise period - bike, treadmill, hiking, swimming, etc.
But - that said - there is nothing like a Dobe! They are fur kids. Ours sleep on the sofas and chairs, watch TV, prefer air conditioning, love to go places - they are total parts of the family.
Don't forget to post pictures!! - Lois

just saw your latest post - - - fence an area for him - you will be glad you did!! Your dog will be blamed for any trouble with other dogs, and you need to protect yourself. Dobes scare people, even if they are mush-babies. Make a large wood or chain link run where he can get some wiggles out. Then see if there are any dog parks - or make play dates with his girlfriend - but don't give him freedom to run - they readily learn that they don't have to listen to you if they are free. He needs a lot more training! CYA!!!

Last edited by lolonurse; 10-24-2008 at 01:30 AM.
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-24-2008, 01:38 AM Thread Starter
 
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Hi lolonurse in Poway,

You are right. He is great with his trainer. It is I who should have been in doggie boot camp for two weeks. As soon as I can keep him contained alot of my anxiety will be over. It is challenging thinking up ways to wear the energy out of this guy. The problem with the classes is that he has to stand and be good and do whatever is asked of him for two hours and then it's back home and it is like torture for him because he really wants to run and play. I am thinking maybe a doggie day care for days when I am gone from home for several hours. That way he can play, which is all he really wants to do anyway.

I was sure glad that he obeyed me today when I called him away from the rattlesnake that was peeking his curiosity. I had just climbed up on my well tank when I saw what was going on and couldn't get down fast enough. It may sound crazy but I think he could tell from my voice that I was really serious. whew!

Meanwhile, I am trying to figure out how to put pictures up. Soon I hope.

shirley
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-24-2008, 01:48 AM
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2 hours is WAY too long for a dog class - their attention span is like 15-20 minutes, then they get bored and restless. When my grandfather and I taught classes, we first of all would only teach them to people who were training their own dogs, so the people learned with the dogs, and there were short breaks in the hour, so the dogs could clear their heads.
The rule was that each student and dog had to commit to a minimum of 1, but preferably 2-3 10 minute practice sessions a day, following only the lessons already taught, and NEVER off leash until they had completed everything to advanced - then the off-leash training started.
It's never the dogs that are problematic - it is the people. Dogs LOVE to feel they are doing work, and being productive. When you train him, instead of "Good boy", try phrases like "Good job!" and "Good work!". Before you start the training session, say "Rex, do you want to do some work?" Make it sound like it's the biggest treat you could possibly offer him. He will soon race to you for the collar. Also - invest in a few really good Dobertoys, like a kong, a Wubba, and a nylabone!
So - where are you, that you have acres? I'm sick with envy!! lois
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-24-2008, 01:55 AM Thread Starter
 
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Hi Lois,

We don't do much leash work but I intend to focus more on that.

I live in Crest, it is county but they still call it El Cajon. I live on the second to last street on the south end of the mountain. My view here looks to the south towards Lyons Valley but really I see the valley where Sycuan casino is. It isn't bad in the day time but at night, it is bright!!!

Hey, I think I'm getting somewhere with the photos. Now to take more pictures, lol.

shirley
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-24-2008, 01:57 AM Thread Starter
 
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Oh, with all of the work I have to do out here, I have tried to think of ways to get him to help me. Cutting the fire break has been gruelling. If I could just harness some of the bales of brush to him and let him haul it back up the hill. I'd get arrested for animal abuse.

sw
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-24-2008, 02:10 AM
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Welcome to you and Rex. Actually you probably could think of a way to have him help you with the brush hauling and he would more than likely love it. Think of a wagon you could harness on him somehow to haul. I am not creative enough but I bet you could find something online.

With dobermans, they need the physical stimulation but the mental stimulation is just as tiring. If my dog were to go through 2 hours straight of training he would come home and crash for many hours. Even just short sessions would have him napping. Keep it a challange for him and change it up. He'll learn to not expect what is coming next and believe it or not become more tired (and better trained) due to the mental stimulation compared to the physical.

I work 3rd shift at home and Jordan goes to bed with my husband typically just after midnight. I get a nap in before getting the kids off but only a couple hours of sleep.
After the kids are off to school we'll do our walks and play catch to get him physically active and a short training session afterwards and he will allow me to sleep for another 4 hours (and sometimes longer) while cuddling up to me the whole morning. That is pretty good that he'll allow both my husband and I to get a good sleep in without him constantly waking us. He is also pretty calm before the kids get home. After they are home it is active until nightfall when he again becomes a couch potato.

It will get easier and you'll have an awesome relationship with your dog in the long run. He is still young and I've learned young males are a whole different species.
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-24-2008, 11:54 AM
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Dobermans are strong enough to be able to pull small carts, or drag litters. You'd have to have a harness that could hook up to either, and be balanced, and the training starts with them empty, and gradually adding some weight. They even make small "sulkies" for racing, but I don't know if I'd go there.

Leash work is important. Any dog like a Doberman, powerful, smart, intense, needs to be well trained on a leash. Plus, if he knows and follows all the leash commands, you actually could strap bundles of brush to him, and walk with him, while he drags the stuff for you! He'd probably be pretty proud of himself. Another thing people do to cultivate their dogs' sense of purpose is get a "saddlebag" that the dog wears, that you put bottles of water or other things in, so they feel like they are doing something for you - and on a hike or long walk, it comes in handy! (we taught our dogs to drink from a sport bottle - a lot of folks do)...

One last thing - they are SO smart. Talk to him a lot - tell him the names of everything. They are sponges - ours know the individual names of their dozens of toys, they know the names for different foods, TV shows, different birds (they chase crows, but welcome the woodpecker who comes and sits in the trees and talks to them!!) - they really become very complex and sophisticated, the more you talk to them.
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-24-2008, 11:55 AM
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Hi and welcome from PA. You came to the right place. I have owned Dobermans for the last 30 years and still have more to learn. Lots of information here and nice people. Lois
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-25-2008, 12:23 AM
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Welcome from North Carolina! Your Doberman is very handsome! You will learn so much from this forum and get lots of support. I admire you for coming out with your questions and admitting that things get a bit rough at times. PLEASE remember that it true for all of us as we have gone through puppyhood, health issues with our dogs, etc.

I have found that getting my puppy "hooked" on tennis ball retrieving is the greatest thing for burning her very high octane energy. I can run her like a racehorse and she LOVES it more than just about anything. I can't throw so I use a toy called a "Chuck-it" which enables me to really throw the ball a long distance. I make her execute an obedience command (sit, down, turn, etc.) before I throw the ball so the play serves 2 purposes - training and tiring her out.

When she was around 6 months old I first started training her to retrieve. I ensured her safety by using a long cotton rope which I attached to a brass snap. She had plenty of room to chase the ball but could not get away. I tied the end of the rope around my ankle so I could be hands free (it was tied over jeans to prevent burn if she ran off and pulled the line tight). After a while, she was hooked on the game and I could completely trust her to stay with me in my yard chasing and retrieving tennis balls at warp speed. That is when I stopped using the long line.

You can train your puppy to love frisbee catching or try one of the more organized sports like lure chasing. I love the informal options because I can always find an open area to throw some tennis balls and I can always take the long line if I am traveling or staying somewhere other than home (I always use the line unless I am at home or inside a fenced area).

Figure out how to burn up a LOT of his energy in a way that is not too stressful for you and please do hang in there!

THE BOONDOGGLE
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-25-2008, 12:39 AM
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One of our dogs, Willie, LOVES bubbles, (see our photos) and will do anything if I blow bubbles for him. I have used this to teach him to navigate our little obstacle course, jumps, etc... Alex was the same way about lasers, and would do anything if his laser light pointed the way! (of course, that really only worked inside, or when it was getting dark!) Rocky and Melody just refuse to be slaves to anything - no 'thing' is that important to them. Tennis balls and rope toys are good, but on their own terms! lol.
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-25-2008, 08:42 AM
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1stDobie-

Welcome to DT!

As you can see, there are many people here who are willing to share their knowledge and experiences.

Good luck with your boy. He is a handsome thing!

One of the most dangerous things that can happen to a child is to kill or torture an animal and get away with it.--Margaret Mead

Mythical Doberman Society #4.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 10-27-2008, 09:29 AM
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Hi and welcome from PA!

As a fellow first-time Dobe owner, I feel your pain. And yes, it can be a pain, but it will get better. We got our girl as a nine-week-old puppy and I know just what an intense experience Doberpuppyhood can be.

There are lots of great people on DT who have been involved with Dobermans for years and have a wealth of experience and knowledge. It can be a little intimidating for a newbie, but I hope you'll stick around for the advice and the support.


Dancing Star's You Are My Sunshine RN CGC TDI TT
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