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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My puppy is now 7 months old and still thinks it is really fun to eat
everything in the yard. Weeds, Sticks, Grass, Berries, Rocks, EVERYTHING.
I've tried everything I can think of to stop this, but nothing has worked so far.
I have even talked with 3 different trainers and all of them say that it is nearly
impossible to rid a dog of that problem if that's what they like to do,
and they will probably just have to outgrow it, or have a basket muzzle on anytime
they are out in the yard. One even said to try a shock collar, but I'm not sure I want to
do that.

The reason this concerns me so much is because my dog has bad allergies.
He's on a special diet and when he gets anything in his system other than his kibble,
he gets sick from one end or the other.
Any suggestions would be great.

I'm so jealous when I look at all the great pictures of all your Dobies having fun
outside in the yard, and beyond. It's something that I just haven't been able to
do with him yet because he thinks everything on the ground, God put there
for him to eat. :rolleyesww:
 

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Holier Than Now
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I think we've discussed this before, but it sounds like classic Pica behavior.

I would hire a veterinary behaviorist and discuss behavior mod and medications to address any OCD component, follow with them, and reassess possible need (or not) for continuing meds if the behavior is becoming extinct.

As you know, this can be life-threatening behavior.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Looks like she's a vet within the same network as mine here.
They are closed for the next few hours for a staff meeting, so I'll give them another ring in a while.
I hope she can she'd some light on this because my vet just tells me to either keep him out of the yard, or muzzle him.
Yeah...he can run with a muzzle, if I can get him used to it, but that's all.
That's no fun for either one of us.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I think we've discussed this before, but it sounds like classic Pica behavior.

I would hire a veterinary behaviorist and discuss behavior mod and medications to address any OCD component, follow with them, and reassess possible need (or not) for continuing meds if the behavior is becoming extinct.

As you know, this can be life-threatening behavior.
Indeed we have.
Still having issues with it obviously.
He has gotten alot better with not eating rocks on the pavement
when we are out for walks, but take him off the asphalt for any reason....
Good Grief!
Even having him on a leash in the yard doesn't work.
 

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Is he a flank or toy sucker by chance? Flirt occasionally sucks and occasionally eats odd things. Iv'e seen a few studies saying they can be related.
 

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Hairy Dog, RIP Caesar, Katana, Kip, Capri
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I was ruminating about the possibility of manufacturing some kind of dog pacifier, when I realized--Kip is a tennis ball dog and he will carry the thing forever; he won't put it down to drink from a stream on a walk, even if he is obviously hot. He can't really pick anything else up when his mouth is full of tennis ball.

I wonder if there is some kind of toy, etc. you could encourage your dog to carry obsessively instead of eating things obsessively?
 

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How much is normal is this before it becomes an issue? Einstein is 10 weeks and loves to eat this certain dirt in our yard. Its on the same level as chicken breast how hard he'll pull towards it.
 

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Alpha SheepDog
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Teach him the leave it command.
When Nubis is in the backyard I keep him active with fetch and Frisbee. He has been good with not touching the few branches and rocks, but I also had to clear out any small branches. Lately, he us trying a new habit of ripping up the grass with his front teeth and spitting it out almost like a cow. I brought out the water hose and he gets a shot when he is trying the cow maneuver and he is starting to realize its like the squirt water bottle in the house and starting to grasp its not acceptable. Now I can tell him he will get the water hose and he thinks about it or drops the idea of ripping the grass and then I redirect him.
The beauty of the water bottle or hose, they are not out of your reach for correction, hahaha.
 

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Alpha SheepDog
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I was ruminating about the possibility of manufacturing some kind of dog pacifier, when I realized--Kip is a tennis ball dog and he will carry the thing forever; he won't put it down to drink from a stream on a walk, even if he is obviously hot. He can't really pick anything else up when his mouth is full of tennis ball.

I wonder if there is some kind of toy, etc. you could encourage your dog to carry obsessively instead of eating things obsessively?
Good point, Melbrod.
Nubis is generally running around now with his, ball, Frisbee or jolly ball in his mouth. So like you said its like a pacifier.
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Jeesh, I wish! He loves tennis balls, rubber balls, and his big Kong Squeaker Stick, but once he's out in the yard, forget it. He'll go fetch a few times with you, but then something just clicks in his head and it's nothing but eating the environment.
 

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Alpha SheepDog
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How much is normal is this before it becomes an issue? Einstein is 10 weeks and loves to eat this certain dirt in our yard. Its on the same level as chicken breast how hard he'll pull towards it.
Its an issue, the first time they do it and you don't want it to be habit forming. I find with these guys, you let them away with something a few times and its just that much harder to correct it. Out of sight out of mind is the best correction, hahaha.
I would try not letting him go near that part of the yard.
 

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Alpha SheepDog
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Jeesh, I wish! He loves tennis balls, rubber balls, and his big Kong Squeaker Stick, but once he's out in the yard, forget it. He'll go fetch a few times with you, but then something just clicks in his head and it's nothing but eating the environment.
You could try a long line.
When Nubis was way smaller, I would have a long line on him, and if tried eating stuff I would give him a thug/correction. If he tried a few times, I would march him in the house, for a timeout and back out again and the second he tried again, he would get a correction. He caught on pretty quick cuz he seen, we would go back inside, ending the fun outside.
 

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Alpha SheepDog
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He does great with "leave it" inside, but not when it comes to the stated above when outside. So stubborn.
No bcuz, you prolly are not within his reach, and he is smarter rather then stubborn and that's why he does it outside. That's my take on it.
 
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
That long line idea sounds good, That way he run and play a little anyways.
How long do they come, and are they expensive?

In regards to both though,
even when on a regular leash he doesn't respond to correction so to speak.
I end up having to literally pull him away from things and/or remove them from his mouth.
 
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