Help training a toy motivated dog

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ReddyRoo
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Help training a toy motivated dog

Postby ReddyRoo » Tue Jan 15, 2013 12:10 am

Hi,

Ive been volunteering at a local dog rescue, most of their dogs are in a foster home but one Coal is in a boarding kennel so I walk him everyday for them. He has been with the rescue for over a year now so I thought to make him more adoptable I would start doing basic obedience with him on our walks.

The problem is he doesnt seem to want treats and he is very toy motivated. With my beagles when training down I had them in a sit and put the treat in my fist and brought my fist down to the ground in front of them when they went into a play bow I pushed my hand closer towards their chests and they went all the way down. With Coal he will stay in the play bow for a few seconds smelling my hand and then knocks me over and starts licking my face.

He is very toy motivated so I thought trying to use a toy would be a better way to teach him. Im just unsure of how to do it with toys. Any tips or advice would be greatly appreciated.

I have one more question Im just wondering if his love of toys is obsessive and a bad thing. He is so focused on toys that if someone is bouncing a ball in the street when we are walking he pulls and lunges and I can't get his attention and if there is a ball sitting in someones yard he just stops walking and sits and stares at it. I've tried also when I can to bring him to my place for a few hours on several occasions and all he does the entire time is pace and whine until he finds a stuffed animal to shred or a ball to tear apart and if he can't find that he will grab pillows or shoes or anything resembling a toy. I wanted to get him used to a home environment so he can be more adoptable. Any advice on how to get him to just hang out and relax will be greatly appreciated. I dont even know if it would be able to make much of a difference since I can't bring him home that often? I think in the 4 months that I have been walking him I was able to bring him home 4 times.

Thank you again and any help you or advice you can give me would be greatly appreciated I really want to get him in a home because he is an awesome dog!

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Nickdawg
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Re: Help training a toy motivated dog

Postby Nickdawg » Tue Jan 15, 2013 3:55 am

you are doing such an awesome thing working with him and walking him!!! someone else can give you advice on the toy thing but as far as at your house he is just so full of energy from not enough activity being boarded etc., that it is not unusual behaviour to me so I would focus on simple things at your house like sitting before going in and out, learning to stop and start play in a nice way (control of himself), etc. you could also get him if possible some work to eat toys so he is getting a mental work out as well as a physical one.

I mostly just wanted to post and say he is lucky you are in his life...

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Amie
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Re: Help training a toy motivated dog

Postby Amie » Thu Jan 17, 2013 11:56 am


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chinchi_&_chupa
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Re: Help training a toy motivated dog

Postby chinchi_&_chupa » Thu Jan 17, 2013 1:22 pm

:goodpost: Have you asked them to hold his food for the day until you get there? I have found Chloé to be WAY more into training if she hasn't eaten since dinner the night before. I don't mean starve him, but he might be more into the treats and willing to work for them if he's not full of food already.

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ReddyRoo
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Re: Help training a toy motivated dog

Postby ReddyRoo » Sat Jan 19, 2013 9:56 pm

Thank you so much for all of your advice! That premack article was very interesting. I still have questions though sorry if I am asking stupid questions but I just really want this dog to have a good shot at getting a home since he has been with the rescue for a year now and the entire year he has been in a boarding facility. I want to teach him down and just can't seem to get him to do it. I tried using treats and he doesnt normally get fed before I walk him he is just so happy to get out of the kennel that he doesnt care much for treats and would rather have a toy. Can I use a toy to teach him down? If so how would I do it.


Also how do I teach him self control in the house? On the rare chance that I do get to take him home I want to work on that because all he does is pace around until he finds a toy or something that he can rip up.

Also he is so focused on toys that he will jump up and try to grab things out of your hands that he thinks is a toy. We actually met Happy Puppy from this forum and went walking with her and Ruby and we took pictures when were done walking. When Jenna held her camera up he jumped up and tried to grab it and ended up head butting her in the face because he thought the camera was a toy.

I know its just teaching him basic manners but I really have no clue how to do this and Ive been reading through this forum and haven't seen much on training with toys instead of food. I did use Diane Jessops out to teach him to drop the ball when I take him to the park and play ball with him(I take him to a local park a few days a week and let him off leash in the fully enclosed handball court and throw the ball for him) and that worked really well.

Thanks again for your advice and time I truly appreciate it.

Here are some pics of Coal.

Coal and Ruby

Image


Image

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Shearaha1
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Re: Help training a toy motivated dog

Postby Shearaha1 » Sun Jan 20, 2013 12:01 am

You can use a toy or ball to reward any behavior that you can reward with a treat.
Instead of click--->treat, it's click--->toss ball, play tug whatever. The main difference is that you can't use a toy as a lure like you can with a treat. In which case capture. I'm sure at some point while you're with him he lays down. Click/mark when he's down and give him a treat then, if he'll take it, otherwise give him a toy he can chew when he's still in a "down" position.

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ReddyRoo
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Re: Help training a toy motivated dog

Postby ReddyRoo » Sun Jan 20, 2013 2:36 am

Thank you so much I feel so stupid I didn't even think of that!! Thanks again everyone for your help! If any one else has any ideas to help me make him more adoptable please feel free to share!


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