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Old 03-12-2011, 10:30 PM   #886
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The two dogs I'm training right now (both vids have a little obedience, then some protection/bitework).

Nikon
YouTube - Nikon 3 6 11 0001

Pan
YouTube - Pan 6 Months

Pan is 6 months. There was a show today but we didn't go because I'm busy packing.
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Old 03-31-2011, 07:25 PM   #887
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Our dog is traveling from the other side of the world!

So our dog is due to arrive tomorrow morning after traveling for well over 24 hours. We shipped her over from the island of Saipan in the central Pacific where we used to live. We moved more than a year and a half ago and she's been "looked after" (sort of) by friends. We'd been dithering for quite awhile trying to decide whether to put her through the ordeal (and us the expense) of shipping her over. We finally decided to do it because her situation in Saipan looked to be worse than whatever she might go through getting here.

Here's a link to a blog entry I wrote about our dilemma:

Here in America: Kimo in Crisis

Anyone have thoughts on what we can expect from her when she arrives? She was the perfect dog in Saipan--housebroken, never chewed on things, didn't bite or anything. I'm not sure if any of that will be true after the traumtic experience of this trip.

Add to all this we have a two year old son who shares our two bedroom apartment.

Thanks to anyone who might be able to provide some insights. I'm sure I'll be back here with an update on her homecoming tomorrow.
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Old 03-31-2011, 09:28 PM   #888
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Sean feel free to e-mail me if there are any problems (behavior, heartworm, etc). lies.rosema@dutchbingo.net
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Old 03-31-2011, 09:32 PM   #889
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Heh, heh. You got my hint. . .

Your PM box is always full and I didn't have your e-mail, so I was racking my brain as to how to get ahold of you. Then I thought. . .of course, the dog lovers thread.

I'm sure you'll be hearing from me. . . I'm kind of terrifed to be honest. My wife is more optimistic.
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Old 03-31-2011, 09:46 PM   #890
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Yeah I rarely use PMs (b/c I'm on several forums, mostly dog, keeping up with PMs on all would be a full time job) so I leave it full. E-mail is best.

Will she be seeing a vet soon? I ask b/c the post mentioned heartworm, and if a dog tests positive people tend to freak out, but she is an older dog, no? If she tests positive I would *wait* to do any treatment. Many vets will push for it immediately. Depending on severity though, it might be best to wait, especially if re-homing or surrendering to rescue is on the table (sometimes they will do this treatment), and if the dog shows stress from the move it would be better to settle a bit before treatment. Treatment can be stressful on them physically (like chemo for humans) and if she has other infection as the post mentioned I would treat those first before further compromising the immune system. Also you can get the treatments online, like from Amazon, probably much cheaper than the vet. I get 50mL of ivermectin for under $40 on Amazon. For monthly heartworm prevention this is enough for all three of my dogs for the entire year. By comparison, I'd have to pay my vet $6 per tablet, per dog, per month (and the solution I use from Amazon I actually dose 8 times higher than the tablets you get from the vet). The same drug is used for treatment but it is dosed differently. Make sure not to give her any heartworm prevention unless she is verified negative for heartworm (b/c if you give it at the lower "preventative" dose but the dog is HW+ it can be more damaging).
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Old 03-31-2011, 10:49 PM   #891
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There are various kinds of "exercises" one can do to reinforce a dog's trust and confidence with the situation of having a child around (along the same lines of exercises you can do with a dog that's guardy with food, or attacks electrical cords, or whatever). Lies could advise on things like that better than I could.

Some things that come to mind from my own experiences keeping a (dominant-natured and strong-willed, but not aggressive) dog and three small kids together under one roof, happily: Make sure both dog and child are as relaxed as possible before (re)introducing them--take Kimo for a walk first, for example. Stay calm and confident (classroom management experience can be useful here!) while overseeing them--remember it's natural and normal for a dog to be uncertain at first how to respond to an unexpected new "pack member," and that if you're giving off OMG-what-if-the-dog-bites-the-baby vibes, the dog may pick up on your anxiety and conclude that the child is destabilizing the household and needs to be "disciplined." Talk and show your son through the process of interacting properly with a dog: let Doggie sniff you first (from a respectful distance, which you should maintain between them, calmly and gently blocking or correcting Kimo and waiting for her to calm down as needed should she rush forward, growl, etc.); don't pet or talk to Doggie until she shows you she's ready for that by calmly presenting herself for petting (again, don't let Kimo excitedly lunge up to him, lick or paw him all over, etc.); talk to and pet Doggie quietly and gently, never with yelling or tugging; don't bother Doggie if she shows you she wants to be alone by turning away from you. Realistically, given your son's age, you'll want to monitor them whenever together at first--more on the child's account, in my experience; dogs learn faster than toddlers what the drill is, so long as your leadership is consistent.

Good luck! I really admire you guys for bringing her all the way out here.
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Old 04-01-2011, 12:20 AM   #892
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There's all these different things you can do and try, but really, when it comes to my own dogs and kids (not mine, don't have any), I go with my gut. If I feel like I need to have eyes on the back of my head to manage interaction between one of my dogs and children, then I probably do. I have two dogs I trust pretty unconditionally with children and two I don't - one that simply doesn't tolerate them, and another that actually likes kids a little TOO much and can get overly aroused in prey drive with them running around screaming, or wants to interact but doesn't know his own strength. The dog that doesn't tolerate kids I will never trust with children no matter how much desensitization I do with dog and/or child, or how much I enforce mutual respect, or how much I manage the environment. The other will be fine in time. For me it is something I feel out, and once I've done that there's not a lot of wiggle room for the dog to convince me one way or the other. But, having large, powerful, working bred and working trained dogs I hold them to a very high standard and there's no room for error. Even an accidental nip where a kid is playing with the dog using a toy, jerks the toy away at the last second and the tooth makes contact looks like an "attack" when your breed of choice has a black muzzle and black saddle.

Just off the top of my head I would give the dog her own space for a while to adjust and decompress. I would not show a lot of attention other than meeting her basic needs and only following through on interactions that she initiates (ie, if she puts her head in your lap, scratch it). I'm not sure I would even attempt interactions with the toddler until she has had time to adjust and you've been able to assess her health and mental state. Like I said, I don't have kids, but this is generally my protocol if I have to introduce a new dog. My dogs understand that I am the provider of all resources and with each dog I have a mutual trust and respect. Even with multiple intact males I do not have fights or spats, no food or resource guarding, not so much as a defiant sideways glance in my direction. If I were to add another dog to the household I would start by secluding that dog, letting it decompress, and building trust and respect before introducing other members of the household. Then if there is an issue between the dog and another person or dog, at least I have already laid the foundation of the dog deferring to me. Treat the dog the way you would appreciate being treated in that scenario - given some time and space, basic needs met, and very limited interactions except with the person(s) that you should learn to trust and obey.
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Old 04-01-2011, 02:47 AM   #893
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Liesje View Post
Just off the top of my head I would give the dog her own space for a while to adjust and decompress. I would not show a lot of attention other than meeting her basic needs and only following through on interactions that she initiates (ie, if she puts her head in your lap, scratch it). I'm not sure I would even attempt interactions with the toddler until she has had time to adjust and you've been able to assess her health and mental state...If I were to add another dog to the household I would start by secluding that dog, letting it decompress, and building trust and respect before introducing other members of the household. Then if there is an issue between the dog and another person or dog, at least I have already laid the foundation of the dog deferring to me.
I'll totally second this, to the fullest extent space allows--I initially misread Sean's post as saying they had a "two room" apartment, but looking again I see he actually said two bedroom apartment. Yeah, giving a dog "safe space" when introducing it to new surroundings (or people, or animals) is always preferable, especially as you said so that the foundation of your being in charge is laid firmly in place first.
Quote:
Even an accidental nip where a kid is playing with the dog using a toy, jerks the toy away at the last second and the tooth makes contact looks like an "attack" when your breed of choice has a black muzzle and black saddle.
I never let our kids play tug games with Falstaff, and as I said once before (I specifically remember this, because you then told me about "pressure points"! ), I'm not sure I'd do it myself in the future either, assuming we eventually get (another) 'bully'-disposition type dog--they can get fixated and frenzied so quickly with activities that engage their mouths in that way, and will keep 'attacking' the toy even if you let go and stop playing (teaching him to retrieve presented similar problems, and took a looooong time though he eventually got the hang of it). I'm sure that's not insurmountable or anything--some of the larger bully breeds do Schutzhund occasionally, after all--but in retrospect I don't feel I contributed anything positive by doing that with him.

Probably neither here nor there with regard to Sean's dog though...

When you say you "will never trust" one of your dogs with children, do you mean you don't trust it not to snap/bite in response to petting even if you're present and the child is behaving respectfully, or do you more mean its threshold for stimulation is relatively low and can't tolerate running, roughhousing etc. going on right next to it?
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Old 04-01-2011, 08:00 AM   #894
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Both, yolland, but they describe two different dogs. Kenya is best described as just plain being intolerant of children. I'm not sure if it is based in fear/insecurity, or a general dislike. There is something about small children, the way they often approach and handle a dog that she does not appreciate. She has never bitten a child but honestly that's because of careful handling on *my* part. She is also a dog that non-dog people cannot "read". She doesn't hackle, growl, or do any of the things people expect to see when a dog is telling them to "back off". She's an air snapper and will give a correction bite if she's backed into a corner (literally or figuratively). She is very much a one person dog that is actually very correct as far as German Shepherd temperament - very aloof towards others, has no desire to interact with anyone else. There have been several times I've let kids interact with her but it's clear she gets no enjoyment out of it. She also gets nervous when kids who are unsure of themselves around a dog try to approach. Then generally walk straight in slowly, staring at the dog, often reaching out above the dog and jerk their hand away if the dog moves to sniff them. Kenya can be kind of a neurotic nervebag and that sort of behavior makes her skittish and defensive. Since she has no desire to befriend people, it's relatively easy to keep her apart from kids, I just crate her or put her in a separate room and she's happier anyway.

Nikon loves kids but can get overstimulated if there is a lot of running around and roughhousing. He doesn't nip or bite, not an ankle biter by any means but he will start barking because he's very vocal and even a happy, play bark from him can sound rather menacing. One "issue" with my dogs in general is they don't have very good manners around people. They mind me of course but I don't spend a lot of time training them to sit with their butts flat when people come over, not to bark, not to jump up and lick people. With as many dogs and all the other training we already do, it's easier for me to put them away when company is over. Most of my friends and family don't like dogs anyway and I'm respectful of that. So, Nikon basically being a 75lb 2 year old puppy might get excited and jump on a visiting kid. He could knock someone over or scare them unintentionally. With age and maturity this improves on its own so I have no worries about him if I were ever to have kids of my own. When my friends kids come over, I crate him for a while and if they want to, we take him for a walk or I let them play tug or fetch with him. That way he has something to do. He has always loved kids though and he's learning some tricks for a demo for Phil's class (second grade).
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Old 04-01-2011, 09:15 PM   #895
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Well, she's here and so far so good. It's gone much more smoothly than I anticipated. She and Elijah have done fine so far--we just supervise their interaction and it seems to be fine. They're both a bit jealous of Mommy's attention but it's not been problematic.

She seems very much the same dog we left in Saipan, despite the rigors of the trip. Right now she's just lying down in the living room, relaxing much as she did back in Saipan. She doesn't seem skittish or upset or traumatized at all. She's also not unusually lethargic or sluggish. She just seems normal. We think she may have "held it" the entire 40 plus hour trip, because Barbara says as soon she got out of the kennel she went straight to some grass and peed for a very long time and thing defecated as well. Her kennel didn't appear to be soiled at all. That doesn't suprise me though, because even in Saipan, she seemed to go for very long periods without using the bathroom. I know it's not healthy for them to hold it that long but at least does appear that she will continue to be housebroken, which is a relief.

Her skin is in pretty bad shape, but should get better with time. She's a bit thin too. When she went to the vet in Saipan just before they shipped her, she tested negative for heartworms so that's good.

I'll be doing another blog this weekend with pictures and videos and let you all know when I post it.

Thanks for your thoughtful responses, both of you!
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Old 04-01-2011, 10:23 PM   #896
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Oh, and one question.

How soon is too soon to leave our dog at home alone?

We're wondering if we should take her with us when we return the rental car tomorrow morning, if we should go to church (Black Church tends to run long. We'd probably be gone three hours or so).
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Old 04-01-2011, 11:32 PM   #897
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Well, we've had our first issue. It's not really new. She did this in Saipan too. Anytime someone approached the house, including our neighbors who lived in the duplex next door she'd start barking.

Well, the neighbors upstairs in our apartment complex just go home late and that set her off just as it did in Saipan. She barked for maybe 5 minutes, not more than ten, not just when they went up the stairs but when she could hear them creaking around above us. Is there a way that we can get her to stop doing this? By some miracle she didn't wake our son, and she's quiet again now.

Just worried that she could become a nuisance if she can't get used to the traffic that comes with apartment living.
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Old 04-02-2011, 10:51 PM   #898
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How soon to leave home.....well I generally do right away b/c I want the dogs to adjust to my lifestyle ASAP which involves me coming and going without them. That said, two of my three dogs are crated when I leave. Coke has free reign of the house but he's quiet, laid back, and harmless. Nikon used to be free but randomly started chewing objects so he went back to being crated. Since we moved I've still been crating him or leaving him in the "dog area" of the basement (large, finished room that is just dog crates, dog beds, and dog toys). Pan is always crated when we leave b/c he's still very much a puppy and can be pretty destructive. Also I don't like the dogs roughhousing with each other when I'm not around. I don't think they'd fight but it can get loud and they start knocking into my stuff if I'm not there to tell them to cool it when it's too rough.

As for the barking, I'd give her a week or two to settle in. It's hard to really see their true colors right away. When my dogs get too barky I crate them away from me, sort of like a "social punishment", because I want them to know that I don't need them to alert me of *every* little squeak. If they start, I say "THANK YOU" after three barks or so and if they don't quit, then I just get up without saying anything, lead them by the collar to a crate or separate room, and put them there until they are quiet for at least 10 seconds straight. Pan is being really barky right now at our new house when he's outside. I swear he starts barking if a leaf blows in the wind. He's getting three strikes. I ask him twice to stop and if he doesn't, then he has to come inside and be gated in the basement until he calms down.
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Old 04-08-2011, 09:13 PM   #899
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Kimo is doing well at one week since her arrival. She's put on a little bit of weight, her coat looks better, and she's even more herself--scratching at the door to go out just like in Saipan (she's still learning that she can't just be let out into the yard like she could back in Saipan).

Barbara takes her out in the morning before work, in the early afternoon when she and Elijah come home, and for half hour walk or so in the evening.

So far she is doing really, really well. The adjustment has been much better than I ever hoped for.

Here's the link to my blog about her arrival, which I posted last weekend. I'll put up another one this weekend with more recent pictures.

Here in America: The Perfect Dog
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Old 04-09-2011, 03:51 PM   #900
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Glad to hear things are going well. She's a handsome dog, such pretty eyes.
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