Originally Posted by MPJJJ
We will be getting a cockatiel this week. Our dog is obedianced trained, he knows the basic commands. He has already shown an agression towards squirrels and cats. How can i train him to tolerate the bird, so that the bird can be free to roam the house as he does?
your dog is already showing a higher "prey drive" (this does not mean kill drive). Be prepared that having a bird may not work in your home. Prey drives are a great training tool that Service Dog Trainers look for. PD/Bomb/Drug dog trainers esp. look for this drive.
Back to the bird thing... you already stated that your dog has "aggression" towards smaller animals, a bird MAY be no different to him.
You may be able to correct him when/IF he goes after the bird, but remember, this drive can be very strong & go past training.
You may NEVER have a problem, but to be safe, I would never leave the 2 alone together.
I had a dog with a mild prey drive kill one on my cockatiels.
This dog had an Obed title also & never had a problem with cats.
I have 2 GSDs with high prey drives & we did get rid of all my DH's big birds to be safe.
You an try a water squirt as a training tool but again, I would not leave them alone unattended.
As I said, many folks can have dogs & birds with no problems at all but the issue of him showing prey drive toward the smaller animals really concerns me.