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Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys,

I have just come back from the park following a slight incidence and thought I should post my concerns.

I have a boisterous, good natured 10 month puppy, that (by the looks of things) can not read body language, human or canine.

Ever since I had my puppy (since 3/4 months old) it was clear that he had trouble reading, or refused to read, my body language or for that matter listen. There would be times when he'd frustrate the hell out of me and I just wouldn't want to be in his presence - everything in my body language expressed this - and yet he'd continue to bother me in the same way that lead to the frustration (e.g. I'm doing something and he's getting in the way, so I push him away (and put him in the sit position). He would continue to keep coming back no matter how frustrated I evidently became.) He's a little better now, but sometimes still refuses to listen or read my body language.

This problem also extends to other dogs. I have tried my hardest to keep him away from volatile canine interactions in order to discourage ANY canine aggression. However, I feel that this may have had a negative implication. This being, my dog just can not tell when a dog does NOT want to play.

Today, my dog was running about in the park, off lead. He saw two dogs in the distance (one off lead, the other leashed) and he bolted over despite my calls for him to come back (this is something I am working on trying to prevent - recall is something we are yet to master but we're working at it). Instantly, the leashed dog displayed his displeasure at his presence, and yet my boy continued to run around trying to entice the leashed dog to play (the dog off lead was more than happy to oblige). I eventually got hold of my boy, apologised to the owner and we left. My dog wasn't phased AT ALL by the incident, he just wanted to play more!

Not reading my body language is a small issue, but not reading another dogs is a far greater one that needs solving.

Any ideas or suggestions, please?
 

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He should not be off leash if his recall is not reliable. If you have yet to master a recall you should not be letting him off leash in places with distractions that are setting him up for failure. Him running off and ignoring you calling him, then getting a reward of playing with other dogs just enforced him not to return when you call him.

And it sounds like he's being a typical teen Doberman male. He needs more training and socialization with other dogs.
 

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Any attention is better than no attention at all. If he can get you to push him around and stuff, it's better (in his pointy headed brain) to get that than nothing.

I would suggest working on a default behavior you want him to do. If you're busy, and don't want him in your face, work on a "Go to place" (go lay down, etc.) so that you can say that instead of "no". That way, once he's learned it, it's a clear command and something he knows is rewarding for him to do.

They can be very very frustrating, that is true. Sometimes I swear it's on purpose, other times I know it's really not. We were just discussing how hard it is to stay mad at Elka, and how ultimately pointless, as she would never know why.


He should not be off leash if his recall is not reliable. If you have yet to master a recall you should not be letting him off leash in places with distractions that are setting him up for failure. Him running off and ignoring you calling him, then getting a reward of playing with other dogs just enforced him not to return when you call him.

And it sounds like he's being a typical teen Doberman male. He needs more training and socialization with other dogs.
This.
 

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@Dobelove

You're right. I tried explaining this to my partner, but she rightly pointed out - how is he going to receive sufficient amounts of exercise (walks are not enough for my boy, unfortunately) or interact and play with other dogs (in a controlled manner) whilst leashed? It's quite a dilemma.

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Agree he's not ready for off lead time unless alone with you in fenced area, or on a long line at that park. Not fair to other people and dogs who are victims of your boy's friendly "assaults".
My dogs are trained to ignore other dogs but an unleashed dog up in their face brings out a raging bark fest- and fully understood by me. Cheers would most likely escalate to a flattening of said youngster...
Your boy is a normal Doberteen and you need to keep up the training and classes. Is he is a class where he can walk in and understand he is to focus on you when he would really like to also play? I'd work on teaching him self control and it goes without saying he's lost all off leash privileges unless in safe fenced area until his recall is more reliable.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I would suggest working on a default behavior you want him to do. If you're busy, and don't want him in your face, work on a "Go to place" (go lay down, etc.) so that you can say that instead of "no". That way, once he's learned it, it's a clear command and something he knows is rewarding for him to do.
We do this now, but unless he's tired it's only a matter of time before he's back to doing the thing we told he not to do. As my grandma would say, he's hard-of-hearing.
 

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Your boy is a normal Doberteen and you need to keep up the training and classes. Is he is a class where he can walk in and understand he is to focus on you when he would really like to also play? I'd work on teaching him self control and it goes without saying he's lost all off leash privileges unless in safe fenced area until his recall is more reliable.
I have recently relocated and have an appointment with a local class tonight. Self control is something he has very little of, despite my efforts. He doesn't really have a motivation (food/praise/toys) once he's distracted, which can make training challenging.
 

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We do this now, but unless he's tired it's only a matter of time before he's back to doing the thing we told he not to do. As my grandma would say, he's hard-of-hearing.
Oh yes, they'll try to second guess: "Was this good enough? Was that long enough?" The trick is to calmly and firmly redirect and outlast him. And it is a trick!
 

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It sounds like he just has a good case of the doberteens. Hang in there, he'll make it through. Although they seem to be smarter on the other side. :) Odin likes to obey commands on technicality. For instance, if told to 'down' or lay, he will do it.....but if there's a toy he wants, he will army crawl to it. While on the couch if you tell him to sit, he will put his butt on the top of the couch, but will still be standing with his front feet. LOL granted this is not every time and a repeated command usually gets the desired effect. Good luck and remember to have fun! He'll be grown before you know it.
 

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Sounds like overall self control and impulse control. I would go back to basics, maybe enroll in an obedience class for the two of you. For other dogs find good dogs that will tolerate him and not escalate and have him on a longline. remove him BEFORE he gets too overwhelming. release to play repeat repeat repeat
 

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Easy start to self control.... Make him "wait" for his dinner or to go through a doorway .

Mine have to sit and wait until I say "okay" in order to dive into their meal . If he gets up, pick up bowl ( might have to pick up 10x the first day)... same for door , crack door and if he gets up, close door and resit him again . He will learn sit=food or door opens

My puppies all do this by 4-5 months of age. It's about the only thing I teach strictly as all other things are games and play at that age.
 

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I agree that he is just young and that he should spend time with dogs that are good with body language.

An interesting story, my reactive GSD, for whatever reason, never seemed to learn dog body language around here. So both he and I learned calming signals together....lol. For him, the trainer used old dogs to teach him. He's still reactive, but so much better, and clearer in his signals to the other dogs.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Odin likes to obey commands on technicality. For instance, if told to 'down' or lay, he will do it.....but if there's a toy he wants, he will army crawl to it.
Haha! We've seen this. We call it the military crawl.

Good luck and remember to have fun! He'll be grown before you know it.
Thank you. Although, it's not much fun at the moment, but it's getting better.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
Sounds like overall self control and impulse control. I would go back to basics, maybe enroll in an obedience class for the two of you. For other dogs find good dogs that will tolerate him and not escalate and have him on a longline. remove him BEFORE he gets too overwhelming. release to play repeat repeat repeat
Thanks for the advice. Having snapped two leads (one of which was a Julius K9), and bent a ground anchor 90 degrees, I may have to find an alternative to a long lead.
 

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@Dobelove

You're right. I tried explaining this to my partner, but she rightly pointed out - how is he going to receive sufficient amounts of exercise (walks are not enough for my boy, unfortunately) or interact and play with other dogs (in a controlled manner) whilst leashed? It's quite a dilemma.

Sent from Petguide.com Free App
Before our baby, when we were still fostering/training for a local rescue, we would use a long lead with the dogs. This way they have some freedom to move around, but, the human still ultimately has the control.
 

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Easy start to self control.... Make him "wait" for his dinner or to go through a doorway .

Mine have to sit and wait until I say "okay" in order to dive into their meal . If he gets up, pick up bowl ( might have to pick up 10x the first day)... same for door , crack door and if he gets up, close door and resit him again . He will learn sit=food or door opens

My puppies all do this by 4-5 months of age. It's about the only thing I teach strictly as all other things are games and play at that age.
We do this religiously. It's two things he does instinctively. In fact, from what I remember, the sit and wait for food was the thing he picked up the quickest. I wish all his training was that easy.
 

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Thanks for the advice. Having snapped two leads (one of which was a Julius K9), and bent a ground anchor 90 degrees, I may have to find an alternative to a long lead.
How about a lunge line for horses? I have walked/ran LeeLoo on a 25' line that's meant to work horses. She hasn't broke it, but she does make a mess of herself in it. Imagine a kitten and a ball of yarn.
 

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How about a lunge line for horses? I have walked/ran LeeLoo on a 25' line that's meant to work horses. She hasn't broke it, but she does make a mess of herself in it. Imagine a kitten and a ball of yarn.
AWESOME idea! I have no idea what it is (I'll Google it) but if it's used for horses it must be strong. Thank you.

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Some can come with cheap snaps so be sure to look at the specs on it. I generally use Stateline tack for online purchases. My favorite line is my Clinton Anderson line. Strong snap, nice yacht line that limits rope burns. That one I've put to the test and it's done wonderfully with the horses. I think it's around 20 feet long, but they aren't cheap.
 
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