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New Aussie owner...and some questions!

Caitlin JonesCaitlin Jones Posts: 1,317Member
edited 15 November, 2009 in Australian Shepherd
Hi guys! Its exciting to see the breed forum is relatively active. : ) I'm a new mommy to an aussie, I adopted him officially from the shelter on August 5th after a trial month, and I love him to death. : ) I guess he was dropped off after a family bought him from a shady breeder who didn't inform them he was deaf/vision impaired. But he's a happy little guy, and you wouldn't know it. : ) For the most part his training has been pretty easy, he was an absolute terror when I first brought him home (Nipping to get your attention, stealing food off plates, bolting for doors, chewing things, walking on tables,) but he has VASTLY improved. He cannot seem to grasp hand commands (I think there is a possibility he just cannot see them well,) but when I switched to touch commands he seemed to respond really well. One thing, though, is his leash training. He is starting to get better with the pulling...but when there is a bike or a car passing by...all bets are off the table. I know this is pretty par for the course with a herding breed, but I was wondering if there was any way you could break them from the habit, or if its something I'll just have to learn how to deal with. (I do believe you can train a dog to behave no matter what their instincts are, but I have had trouble with this. I've tried distracting him, giving him commands and treats to stay calm while a bike is coming, introducing him to bikers when they are kind enough to stop and greet him, and with little success so far.) While he did not do so when I just got him from the shelter, he has started doing this with strangers as well, which confuses me because he never did this before. And I always allowed him to go up to strangers and greet them (if they wanted his attention,) and I've never seen one of them ever treat him badly, I just don't know why the attitude change. I'm just wondering what I did wrong. : ( But, all in all, I'm glad I was introduced to the Aussie breed, such lovable dogs! :c9 X posting partially in behavior forum


  • Kris DeanKris Dean Posts: 2Member
    edited 9 September, 2009
    Hello, Saw your post and just had to respond. I too, have a "lethal white" aussie pup. She is 4 months old and her name is Jasmine (Jazz for short). She is deaf too. I am glad to hear that you are having some good luck in training angel. I haven't had as much time to train Jazz as I would like due to some unfortunate things happening recently but I am working on it! I have 2 mini aussie male pups as well (Jazz is a standard). One of my males likes to chase cars and bikes, the other 2 pups don't. Haven't yet found anyway to discourage him as of yet. Jazz, however, is really good on a leash. Much better than either of the boys. I figured it was, because she is deaf, she didn't have the distractions of all the sounds in the environment. Maybe you just have to chalk it up to the individual personality of the dog. Just wanted to wish you luck and tell you I think you are great for coming to Angel's rescue. Hopefully, we can trade some tips in the future!
  • grace mendietagrace mendieta portland, orPosts: 30Member
    edited 15 November, 2009
    It is a lovely breed isn't it? even with the skin allergies and other issues that comes along it's all part of caring for one. I have the same issue with mine he's got strong herding instincts when we are outside trying to chase after bikes and runners, I consulted a trainer a couple of weeks ago when I went to a q&a at the humane society in my area and she mentioned to snap him out of it I should give him a treat and tell him to sit, he gets the treat, snaps out of it for a second and then goes back to barking and pulling, it works for a bit so I've been doing that. Maybe if you try it your angel will snap out of it and give you her full attention.
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