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Old 02-16-2017, 06:50 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I'd be careful about luring or bribing with the peanut butter. And offer it only after she takes several steps. Get the behavior going first, then reinforce. That offering of something before the behavior can create a situation where the peanut butter on the spoon becomes the cue to walk. lol. Then you have to use it always in order to get her to walk. So, use it as a reward, not a bribe or lure. (jmo) If you feel in great need to use it as a lure, only do it about 3 times and then fade that out quickly. I think you can get the walking going in a playful way and then reward.

They do go through little spells of fear or weirdness. Don't give it another thought. Just take it in stride. Act confident and cheerful. You don't want her to read from you (or the leash) that something is terribly wrong. Lol. They will ya know...oh dear...what can the matter be?
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Old 02-16-2017, 06:51 PM   #12 (permalink)
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She was fine at 6 mos., Frosty is too.
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Old 02-16-2017, 06:55 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by lily cd re View Post
Hhhmmm, that is odd. When Lily was young and finally immunized and therefore street legal as I think of it, she would dig her heels in about not wanting to go certain places in my neighborhood. However I always could tell why she did it. Generally she was very clear on not wanting to walk past certain houses that had really crazy dogs where there was all sorts of barking, jumping around in the living room window, running at the door and the like. Rather than let Lily decide where we would go I used very nice treats to lure her at first, then I would treat her after she made it past one of those kinds of houses. Eventually she became very confident and relaxed when we passed those houses and even the craziness from the dog occupants of those houses calmed down too.

Could your pup be hearing, seeing or smelling a dog or other animal in certain parts of your neighborhood that is putting him ill at ease? For Lily that was definitely what she didn't like. She most certainly would have taken us home had I let her. Maybe you can lure Benji through those moments of misgiving a couple of times and then reward him for doing it without the lure. It worked for Lily.
It's possible something is bothering him, but it's really hard to pinpoint because we take different routes and I've tried luring but I don't think my lures were high value enough because they didn't work. I'm going to try the peanut butter idea to see if I can lure him past his discomfort. We've definitely had our "crazy" houses, but it doesn't seem to correspond- at least to me. Who knows though- it may be completely different in his little doggie mind. And he knows exactly where he is- it's uncanny. I've tried to fool him after a shutdown as we're walking home, I'll turn left instead of right so we're heading in the opposite direction of home to see if I can extend the walk a bit and he'll go about a half a block and realize we're heading in the wrong direction, and shut down again! How could a 4 month old puppy have a better sense of direction than I do? LOL
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Old 02-16-2017, 06:57 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I'd be careful about luring or bribing with the peanut butter. And offer it only after she takes several steps. Get the behavior going first, then reinforce. That offering of something before the behavior can create a situation where the peanut butter on the spoon becomes the cue to walk. lol. Then you have to use it always in order to get her to walk. So, use it as a reward, not a bribe or lure. (jmo) If you feel in great need to use it as a lure, only do it about 3 times and then fade that out quickly. I think you can get the walking going in a playful way and then reward.

They do go through little spells of fear or weirdness. Don't give it another thought. Just take it in stride. Act confident and cheerful. You don't want her to read from you (or the leash) that something is terribly wrong. Lol. They will ya know...oh dear...what can the matter be?
yes, thanks for the advice. I'll try to be careful with it. Yeah, I'm going to try to take it in stride too- no biggie, right? In a few years we'll just laugh about it.
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Old 02-16-2017, 06:59 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I had this trouble with Milo from the very beginning when we first started taking walks. He would not make it very far out of the driveway and then he would just stop and sit down and not budge. When we would turn to go back home he would walk right along. Pretty frustrating!

I brought it up when we were doing our puppy training classes. They did not have much for answers other than he may feel like home is a "base" for him and makes him feel more secure, and he is most familar there. I also took note of anything going on when he stopped, sometimes it was other dogs barking in the neighborhood other times it was crickets chirping! haha

However, I noticed walking in the trails and in the woods he had no problems, he would walk right along, it was just the road part. Poodles are kind of quirky and I really think they are so smart even at such a young age they want to observe and take in everything. Eventually Milo got better and better. I would try to encourage him to keep going with treats, if he made it far (like 10 steps hah) Id praise him. Other times it was a waiting game, I did not give him the option of walking back home, and would literally just stand and wait for him to keep walking. When I decided we would turn back it would be my decision, I would not turn back home when he just stopped. I did not want him to associate stopping and sitting with going back home and getting his way. It took a lot of patience but he eventually grew out of this phase. Ugh! Made for some VERY long walks time-wise but not in distance haha

Anyways that was my experience!
Good Luck!

Crickets chirping, yeah that sounds about right. I mean, what on earth? lol Thanks for sharing your experience. I might try the stopping and waiting thing tomorrow, and take some peanut butter as a back up plan. Thanks for sharing and for the reassurance!
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Old 02-16-2017, 07:05 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Do you think he might be smelling something - like another dog or perhaps a wild animal he doesn't like? Or maybe someone's pesticide/lawn chemicals?
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Old 02-17-2017, 12:27 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Dogs senses are so much more acute than ours - it is very possible that he notices things that simply don't register for humans. If he is refusing treats that he usually enjoys that would be a sign of quite considerable stress - I would concentrate on making him feel safe and confident. Whatever it is, it worries him, and your aim is to teach him that it s no big deal without risking frightening him more. With Poppy silly games helped - dancing and singing, or even just talking to her in an upbeat voice, anything that kept her happily focussed on me. Perhaps short walks, going just a few hundred yards in both directions from home, or sitting on a bench to watch the world go by. I think the instinct to head for home kicks in as soon as a dog feels anxious - Sophy, who is usually extremely confident, was very definite about wanting to go home NOW when she heard shooting until we worked on it. Now she comes for an ear rub, and sets off again perfectly happy (and I suspect that she thinks she is reassuring me, rather than the other way around!).
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Old 02-17-2017, 05:44 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Once again I will try to debunk the idea of fear periods. Ian Dunbar talks about the myth of fear periods in many of his seminars and workshops. The one and only study done that nearly everyone relies on regarding fear periods was very very flawed: very small number of dogs, very constrained and artifact laden conditions, etc. However despite it being bad science it lives on in books, training classes, here on PF and all across the internet that puppies have fear periods. So my question is do they really have fear periods where the fear is generated by them internally and innately or as I suspect in more puppies than not are we programming them to develop fears because we expect them to have fear periods and on seeing a moment of uncertainty in a pup decide this behavior marks the beginning of a fear period and then change our behavior because we believe we have a fearful pup on our hands? Without a triggering experience I don't see why we should assume that uncertainty about a circumstance indicates fearfulness. All of my dogs had periods of uncertainty about various things when they were puppies or adolescents but none of them had real fears. We encouraged them to feel that we were keeping them safe and they quickly gained confidence and moved on to face the next challenge better to cope with it for having beaten the previous unsettling circumstance. The main dog whose house Lily didn't like to walk past because it was such a pathological barking, lunging dog actually read her confidence as calming signals and changed his behavior when she walked by with me (a couple of woofs and no trying to jump through the living room window).
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Old 02-17-2017, 07:24 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Whether or not one calls episodes of fear "fear periods," or whatever Ian Dunbar thinks, I have experienced with dogs AND children that they seem to have episodes that may last from days to a couple of weeks where they're flat out different...weird, something scares them or makes them a little shy that didn't use to. It can happen all of a sudden with no apparent or obvious (to us) reason. I haven't been able to pin point any certain time in their lives that this happens. It's always seemed pretty random to me and sometimes extremely subtle or mild.

Sometimes these terms such as "fear period" bog people down, especially scientists because they get hung up on "there's no evidence." But I have lived it with puppy after puppy, even adult dogs and children...lots of experience with children. I refer to these times as "phases" and most people from time immemorial have. We all have heard people with children talking about their kids' behavior. "He's going through a phase." This is what I think it is. They have little "phases" where they regress in behavior or they become suspicious of something they weren't worried about before. It's all part of growing up and also part of changing, adapting. Nothing stays static. To adapt, one has to go forward, sometimes a little backward, a temporary holding back before going forward again. Something may happen in their minds to make them less equipped to deal with something and then they get back on track again.

So, I definitely believe that puppies have times where they become fearful of something and then spurt forward again regardless of science. I think Ian Dunbar is great. But I don't think science is the end all. I think it needs to be a definite part of the whole. And down the road human experience, including new science (lol) often proves that science had it wrong all along.
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Old 02-17-2017, 08:04 AM   #20 (permalink)
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I didn't know Ian Dunbar doesn't believe in fear periods! Kind of like the hierarchy debate. My dogs have always had a hierarchy, at least what I consider one (a small dog is almost always on top).
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