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Does anyone have any suggestions for a dobe with a prey drive beyond reason. First a little history...............she's 16 months old, gets 45 min. of outside time in the morning and evening. That is outside time with me throwing a frisbee or ball. If the weather is bad - we use the treadmill. She also gets a 30 min. session of obedience work (just standard manners type). There are days that she gets all of this and then some but she is still bouncing off the walls. :pinkie: That I can handle (mostly). But her desire/need/want/obsession to "chase" things is driving us insane. I won't bore you with the standard things most dogs likes to chase - those are annoying and I'm working to get a handle on them. The one that is a real problem is with insects. Like flies! God forbid one gets in the house! She won't rest. And she's aggressive about it, not aggressive in the usual sense but aggressive to where she's actually moved furniture or knocked me down, trying to get to the "offending creature". It's a full body slam to anything that happens to be in her way. To show how freaked she is with these things, we thought if we made the noise ourselves (zzzzzzzzzzzzzz) she would get used to it. *HA* No desensitizing for her!!! She flips out but charges at our face like "oh god - that buzzzing creature has my mommies mouth". :help_up_2

Of course it was funny at first. But with warm weather arriving it's gotten to be a real issue. Even going for walks, most owners complain about them not heeling - not Widdy. She heels very well -- ahem -- UNTIL.............the first buzz noise and then she's completely zoned out. I've tried treats. I've tried commands (especially "leave it" and "look"). I've tried redirection. I've tried getting in her face. Nothing works. It's like she loses all senses when she thinks there's a bug around! :)

So I was hoping someone could/would offer an idea I hadn't thought of.
 

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How about a doggy park and an off lead run. I try to hike with Petey for 1.5-2 hours every single day...snow, rain, sunny....He is impossible to live with when he doesn't get out his energy. Every evening that I can, we go for another walk with a pack of dogs, there are about 25 dogs all together, and they don't all show up everyday or the same times, so every day he is able to get to know and play with different dogs. By the time we get home, he eats a little and is done for the day....and then we can have a peaceful evening with out him bouncing off the walls.

Carol
 

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Wow and I thought I had it bad :) Chi has an over the top prey drive also but I don't think she's as bad as Widders. Like you, we play frisbee or ball every day - she's also running 25-30 miles a week with me, we're still working on the treadmill :) Her big hang up is pigeons - the only thing she likes more than the pigeons is her frisbee - it's the only thing that will get her attention once she spots one in the yard, on the fence, in the field, on a walk. She used to bounce into the back sliding glass door to get to them (and these birds are either stupid or incredibly brave because they don't fly away at first sign of a crazy Dobergirl. No, they taunt her - waddling infront of the door, innocently cooing - maybe they are suicidal and are just waiting for me to open the door.) At any rate, she drove me crazy and about broke my hand several times by rushing out the door at an angle and slamming my hand into the wall.
One day, on a lark, we were on a walk and I just happened to have the frisbee. She saw a bird and went nuts, I showed her the disc and she calmed down - I threw the disc, life was good. It really didn't take very long before she associated the demon birds with the disc. We can now play a game on one end of the field with a flock of satan's flying spawn on the other without incident. I still have to make sure her attention is on me and the coast is clear before we go to the back yard (really don't want a smashed hand again) but it's getting better.
But maybe if you were to try to do the same thing with Widders. Find her favorite toy (frisbee or ball or whatever) and set it aside for this training - as in she only gets to see or play with this toy when a bug is around. Keep the ball handy, as soon as you hear a fly entice her with the ball. Now I know it's not ideal to have an excited Dobe rushing at you to play ball every time there is a fly in the house but after you get her to stop chasing the bug and start chasing the ball or frisbee, you can change the rules from fly=ball to fly=ball, ball=down stay for a bit, down stay=game of ball or something like that.
Good luck!!!!
 

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Once they get something on their mind, its hard to break their focus, isn't it. Breaking a distraction is hard, but not impossible. If you are doing training, look for a class that includes distractions training. That will give you some insight on how to break this. When my terror was young, she had the prey drive of chasing the cats when they ran, also the annoying barking for no apparent reason. I used a simple time out everytime she started to do this and didn't stop on the first command to stop. I would go get her and make her go to her crate. Once she was in, I waited until she settled done, pretty much laying down and then I counted to 30. Then she got to come back out and that incident passed and was no more. You will have to do this alot at first, but they will catch on. I always gave my "stop what your are doing" command first and if she didn't respond to that, she got the time out. Eventually she started to listen to my command because she knew what was going to happen next if she didn't stop, a time out.

The time out works for us, because it stops the current behavior, you break the distraction and she has to stop and settle down for 30 seconds. Alot of stuff goes through their mind in 30 seconds and the inital distraction is nowin the past. No longer than 30 seconds for the time out, because anything longer has no added effect. So if you can incorporate any variation of this in your situation, it may help out...Be persistent and consistent for this to work.

I would also consider mental stimulation games as filled kongs or my favorite game of hide-n-seek. They love it and it takes alot of energy for them to find you.
 

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how bout one of those remote control cars with a stuffie tied to it's back?
I want to find one and try it out on Doberkim's Rah some time soon hehehe

You could drive it around the yard and wear the dog out that way maybe?
 

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Does anyone have any suggestions for a dobe with a prey drive beyond reason. First a little history...............she's 16 months old, gets 45 min. of outside time in the morning and evening. That is outside time with me throwing a frisbee or ball. If the weather is bad - we use the treadmill. She also gets a 30 min. session of obedience work (just standard manners type). There are days that she gets all of this and then some but she is still bouncing off the walls. :pinkie: That I can handle (mostly). But her desire/need/want/obsession to "chase" things is driving us insane. I won't bore you with the standard things most dogs likes to chase - those are annoying and I'm working to get a handle on them. The one that is a real problem is with insects. Like flies! God forbid one gets in the house! She won't rest. And she's aggressive about it, not aggressive in the usual sense but aggressive to where she's actually moved furniture or knocked me down, trying to get to the "offending creature". It's a full body slam to anything that happens to be in her way. To show how freaked she is with these things, we thought if we made the noise ourselves (zzzzzzzzzzzzzz) she would get used to it. *HA* No desensitizing for her!!! She flips out but charges at our face like "oh god - that buzzzing creature has my mommies mouth". :help_up_2


So I was hoping someone could/would offer an idea I hadn't thought of.
Try doggie daycare to burn off excess energy. I generally don't recommend dog parks. Fetch with two balls is a good idea. Long walks, obedience, agility class, make her mind work as well as her body.

Training classes are very important. Good training classes at AKC obedience clubs or UKC clubs. It wears them out and also makes them think.

I have one with prey drive out the roof. Walks were a PITA for some time. But I used a training collar, treats, and made each dog, person, small furry animal, etc. mean look at me for a treat for awhile when he was a young dog. I was firm, but not mean. Just consistent that going crazy was not an option. It is important to start this BEFORE the really out of control behavior takes hold and they get in the zone. Start early. It took lots of patience and understanding, but it is very worth it. We trained daily, rain or shine. I could go into details, but really, it isn't as helpful as hands on training, as I don't know the behavior of you and your dog.

Also know the role you play. Your emotions and the way you handle and lead the situation makes a difference too. Dogs can sense emotions and that travels straight to them and can have an effect on behavior. This can work in both positive and negative ways.

You can't give up, you have to have more drive to train than the dog has for moving things. With a Dobe, this shouldn't be all that hard. They are generally eager to learn. I find if you can harness all that drive, the sky is the limit with them as they loooove to learn and have a job to do.
It takes lots of time, this isn't an overnight thing for dogs that have such high prey drive. High prey drive dog's natural instinct is chase, so you have to learn how to tap into their value system. Each dog has a system of values, with certain things being higher than others - for instance your attention, treats, a special toy, etc.

If you haven't experienced this type of behavior training before, you will need a trainer that deals with high energy high drive dogs. Then you will have to learn how to effectively respond every single time based on your particular dog. It is a commitment, but worth it. The dog is acting this way b/c she can.
She sounds like a fun dog overall though:) Cute name.
You might like this page: http://www.flyingdogpress.com/articles.html

Here are some good doggie behavior books if you are a reader:
http://www.booksamillion.com/ncom/books?pid=044669634X&ad=FGLBKS
http://www.dogwise.com/ItemDetails.cfm?ID=dtb745
http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbninquiry.asp?ean=9780553380392&z=y
http://cgi.ebay.com/Cesars-Way-Book...perer-New_W0QQitemZ220082382629QQcmdZViewItem
http://www.amazon.com/Dog-Listener-Communicate-Willing-Cooperation/dp/0060199539
*Disclaimer*Now all of these books don't agree, I don't agree with every part of them, they all have their own way of thinking and training, but this a beginning to help you understand different ways of thinking about doggie behavior and different ways of handling that behavior
 
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