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Birds and Dogs, What Can I Do???

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PythonzEve
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Birds and Dogs, What Can I Do???

Post by PythonzEve » Wed Sep 08, 2010 11:46 am

I searched the forums almost sure I'd see a post like this one, but I couldn't find one. If there was one somewhere that I missed I'm sorry.

Ok so I just got Sukha, my IRN near a month ago and I really want to take him everywhere in the house with me, but I worry about my two dogs. Most of all my Miniature Pinscher who has a very high prey drive and will chase birds and squirrels outside, though my Doberman will follow along on the Min Pin's chases and has learned a bit from him, though no where near the same extent of interest. Right now Sukha's cage is in the office which is the 2nd most popular room in the house (other than bedrooms for sleeping). I've read not to put them into THE most frequented room, but one that is visited frequently and this is the most calm room as well as far as calm activity, indirect sunlight and no drafts (other rooms have overhead fans that my husband likes to keep on for circulation). The dining room is also attached so he can watch us eat (going to work toward him eating with us) and has french doors into the kitchen so he can see what's going on there, as well as the same doors that go into the living room. Another reason I chose the office is that I can close off the office/dining area with these doors and let him romp about without having to worry about my dogs or my 2 year old son messing with Sukha.

The dogs were acclimated to the cage before Sukha came home, and they are allowed in the office under supervision, but I still can't trust them together with him out of the cage and don't know if I'll ever be able to. I'm making a play stand to go out in the living room but all that's between the living room and the kitchen where the dogs are mostly (where their kennels, water dish and dog door are located) is a baby gate that he can climb through or flutter over even though his wings are clipped. I just envision him playing with me or on his play stand and somehow ending up with the dogs in a frenzy to play with the little blue thing that's moving erratically. When I had birds before I had a dog that didn't go chasing anything but squirrels and I could trust her with my birds, rabbits, hamsters, lizards, snakes, cats and so such, but I don't feel the same trust for these two, mostly the Min Pin as I've seen him catch a squirrel and shake it as hard as he could until I got him away from it and he goes after birds with the same vigor.

Do I keep him only in the office area and limit his experiences with me (not ideal for him), do I lock the dogs out when he's out and about with me (not ideal for the dogs), do I buy muzzles for them to wear when he's out and about? Sukha is still working on a constant step up, though he usually does it for a nice treat when in the mood. But he is still anxious to be away from his cage and I have to physically block him with by body if I don't want him to flutter back (usually landing on the floor in front of it). I've seen people saying take him to a neutral location, but I'm still trying to get him to stay on the computer desk not 6feet away from the cage without getting anxious. If I go towards one of the doors he bobs back and forth with his shoulders out as if to say "lemme go home please" and I feel bad...

Blah, just a bit frustrated as I'm trying to judge training, raising and spending time with 2 dogs, a bird and a toddler without favoring any one too much, though my toddler does get priority.
Jessica

If one refuses to learn and maintains a closed mind, one is thus trapped from the procession of life in their own archaic self-imprisonment. -Jessica McNeely

Because my Rice Crispies told me to! -Unknown

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Lilly
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Re: Birds and Dogs, What Can I Do???

Post by Lilly » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:12 pm

Funny you ask this, I have a Chihuahua and like you MinPin he is also prey targeted, if he sees a bird or anything for that matter he will go mental to chase it or grab it! My cat also regularly brings presents home too and happily leaves me headless presents on the door mat.

Strange as it may seem both completely ignore Gomez my IRN!! I can sit him on the floor and my cat and dog just walk up.. sniff him and walk away!! :shock: I was surprised but I think it comes down to me being the boss and me accepting Gomez as part of the flock/pack.... they are just uninterested!

The problem I DO have is when Gomez 'chatters' it starts my Chihuahua off howling.... you can imagine the loud shrill chirping and then the high pitched howl.... Jeeeez! my neighbour must love me hahaha!
I guess from outside all you can hear is.......
"CHIRP" "PEEP" "SQUWAAAAK" "UOOOOOOOOOWWWWWWW" "OWWWW" "OOOOOW" "PINKY SHAAAAAAAT UPPPPPP WILL YOU!" :lol:

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ellieelectrons
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Re: Birds and Dogs, What Can I Do???

Post by ellieelectrons » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:42 pm

I think you should record that and upload it!

Ellie.

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Lilly
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Re: Birds and Dogs, What Can I Do???

Post by Lilly » Fri Sep 10, 2010 11:21 am

It's usually a morning thing, I will try record it the next time :lol:

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PythonzEve
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Re: Birds and Dogs, What Can I Do???

Post by PythonzEve » Sat Sep 11, 2010 8:22 am

I forgot to mention I have trained the dogs in "drop it" and "leave it" commands, but I'm still nervous about if I can't get there in time or perhaps if the Min Pin get so focused on the "prey" he doesn't listen. Would introducing them with muzzles on the dogs first be the best/safest way other than through the cage? I don't have muzzles for them yet, so I'd have to go get them.

Later on I want to flight train Sukha (he already shows pretty good flight skills for being clipped) so he can get away and fly around the house as he wants/needs to and get away from toddler and dogs, but for now do I just keep him in the one area?
Jessica

If one refuses to learn and maintains a closed mind, one is thus trapped from the procession of life in their own archaic self-imprisonment. -Jessica McNeely

Because my Rice Crispies told me to! -Unknown

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PythonzEve
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Re: Birds and Dogs, What Can I Do???

Post by PythonzEve » Mon Oct 04, 2010 8:08 am

I still haven't gotten any comments about anyone that has actually trained their dogs or about me using muzzles yet eh?

Sukha now comes into the living room and stays on his perch. For a safety measure I put a blanket on our child-gate so it is a solid barrier when he's out. Angel our Doberman can look over and see him but he can't flutter high enough to get on top of the gate or over it.
Jessica

If one refuses to learn and maintains a closed mind, one is thus trapped from the procession of life in their own archaic self-imprisonment. -Jessica McNeely

Because my Rice Crispies told me to! -Unknown

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Melika
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Re: Birds and Dogs, What Can I Do???

Post by Melika » Mon Oct 11, 2010 10:22 am

Simple. I put the fear of God into all our dogs. *cough*

What I mean is. You put the bird on the stand or in a small cage on the floor and bring the dog in and you sit on the floor forcing your dog to lay next to you. Every time your dog so much as looks at your bird, you discipline. That doesn't mean hitting! You can do the Cesar Milan thing- touch the neck and hiss/chhhhh- or touch and say no. The touch is important. Whatever vocal thing your dog will respond to (not his name) is what you'll use (as long as it's short- please never do the singsong "nononononNONOnonono" thing.. one "No." is enough). You'll want to be forceful and what you say you say deep. Volume doesn't matter (ever notice how dogs respond well to a man's voice? Deep and commanding is what you're going for).

Don't worry about your bird for now, ignore the bird. Your focus is on the dog. You'll have to do one dog at a time for now. If your dog just begins to move his head to watch the bird, you discipline.

Next stage the dog will ignore the bird. This is what we're going for. Now you can talk to your bird, keeping an eye on your dog too. The dog will want to see what's going on- TOO BAD. His new rule still applies, he's not allowed to look. Discipline as often as necessary. You're not hurting the dog, it just takes repetition and patience. Never lose your cool. This is all a very easy and simple thing you're doing- plus you're spending time with both at once! This is a positive thing. Dogs need direction, you're giving it. What a good master/pack leader you are.

You'll move on to more and more interaction with your bird, and it will get easier and easier for your dog to ignore the bird. Just keep one hand free so you can immediately discipline. Do this with both dogs separately and then with both of them with you. Depending on the dog, your experience with the dogs, the training they've had up to now, this can take one day or a week. If you're 100% consistent I can't see it taking longer. Once your dog begins ignoring, you can usually discipline from the other room, just keep an eye on the dog. The real trick to dog training is consistency.

Over time, he won't have to ignore but that will depend on the dog. There are two ways a dog looks at a bird, one is with casual interest and the other is with intent. The look with intent is the bad one. This is usually with ears completely forward toward the bird and an overall stiffening in body, perhaps slightly held breath. The earlier you catch the look, the better. You want to break his focus.

Your final test will be holding your bird and getting him to flap his wings. I do this by dropping my hand not too slowly but fast enough to encourage my bird to flap. This is the most important test and training tool. When a bird flaps it can trigger that dog's instinct to go for it. So you're conditioning your dog to ignore that instinct. Your dog should give no more than a quick glance at a flapping bird. That's all you'll allow. This is the step that will likely take the longest as here you are conditioning against instinct and not just behavior. Just stick with it and keep your cool. (:



I have done this over the past twenty-two years with all our dogs as they come into our home. At present we have four dogs, all which can be left alone with roaming birds- even the mini-dachshund. In fact, we raised the birds to not be afraid of the dogs and the birds are the aggressive ones now! They steal bones and toys the dog is playing with and go out of their way to nibble on doggie toes. I think they laugh inside when the big bad doggies go running.

The dogs kill anything outside they can get their jaws around. But they know if it's inside, it's MINE and off-limits to them.
Of course same goes for any food I leave on the sofa if I have to run upstairs for some reason. Consistency right? :lol:

In respect of reasonable caution: A dog should ever be left alone with a bird.
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I've been called 'birdbrained' before, but somehow I don't think this is what they meant. say:hah-nay

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