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#1 of 9 Old 07-03-2011, 06:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi, I need help with our dog and I'd love some suggestions. She is a cheagle (beagle/chihuahua) and she is about two years old. We've had her for a year and a half, and she has to be one of the most destructive animals I've ever had! She has chewed shoes, toys, various electronic media, millions of crayons and markers, trampoline parts and furniture,etc... Our house has more gates set up than the Panama Canal. I have four kids, ages 8 months to 10 years, so my time is limited, but we all love her and we are really trying. We take her for walks 4-6 times a week - usually around a mile. We actually hav a dog park in our community, but we can't use it with her because she goes after other dogs. She isn't aggressive with us and she loves our old lab mix, but I don't trust her wit other people/dogs. Anyway, I don't know what else to do with her. She destroys dog toys (including red and black kongs) and then she eats them which worries me for her health. She doesn't play fetch, but she will play tug o war. What else can I do? Is she miserable? Oh, and she digs like crazy - has done major property damage. How can a small dog need so much exercise? Phew - help!

Thanks!
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#2 of 9 Old 07-03-2011, 06:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Forgot to add that we do have a fenced back yard as well, so she gets excercise out there with the kids and our other dog.
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#3 of 9 Old 07-05-2011, 09:01 PM
 
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Hmm, my mom found that leaving the TV on when no one was home with her dog reduced the amount of damage the dog did by chewing things during those times. Maybe that will help a little?

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#4 of 9 Old 07-06-2011, 05:15 PM
 
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Do you think the dog might be big enough to bike with? There are some pretty good bike attachments you can buy that keeps the bike really stable and a 20 minute bike ride is equivalent to a much longer walk. 

In summer, I bike very early and don't go very fast, but 30 minutes tires out my lab mix (he's around 2 as well).

 

Another idea is mental stimulation. Your 10 year old could do some clicker training with your dog, there are lots of good videos on youtube. That tires my dog out, too.

 

I can't believe your small dog can destroy a black kong!

I've always wanted to get a goughnut I think they're guaranteed...

 

 

 

 


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#5 of 9 Old 07-06-2011, 07:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the suggestions. She actually will run along with my daughter when she rides her bike or scooter, but I don't feel safe letting her go very far without me. Unfortunately, because the baby and my three year-old and my six year-old have to come on our outdoor walks, it kind of limits how far we can go. We just got a treadmill and we have trained her to walk on it (with me or my daughter). I'm hoping this helps. We thought that adopting a small dog would be so much easier - that is a joke! Our lab mix was 1 year old when we got him, and he has always been the easiest dog. Hardly chewed anything, was very reliably house-trained, and just sort of fell in with our routines. He lulled us into a false sense of security... Ha, ha. But, we've had other dogs with issues. I just don't know what to do with her because it doesn't seem like anxiety or compulsive behavior, just boredom. Okay, thanks again.

Tara
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#6 of 9 Old 07-07-2011, 10:18 AM
 
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OP-I'm sure you've tried this but redirection has always been helpful with our dogs.

We recently adopted a 85lb 2yo dog with a lot of puppy still in her. She gets bored from time to time and grabs a shoe or random toy the kids have left around. I simply ask her for the inappropriate chew toy and give her a dog toy that is appropriate. We have quite a few dog chew toys already in the house that our new dog enjoys however, when I got my first dog it meant buying several new toys at a time. I had a basket full of toys for her so she would ALWAYS have something to play with or chew on. It is an investment to purchase a collection of new dog toys but new toys and shoes once a month is also an investment. lol

 

GL and HTH.

 

Cate

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#7 of 9 Old 07-19-2011, 09:48 AM
 
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I agree that mental stimulation and training are the way to go - but it takes time!

 

One command that worked really well for our us is "Off", which means "don't touch it". Hold something attractive (not food - especially with a beagle mix - that would be pushing it!), like a favorite toy, just out of reach in front of her nose and say "Off" as she reaches for it. If she goes a few second without touching it, praise her, and give it to her, saying "Take it". Keep extending the time that she has to stay away before you give it to her.

 

Once she gets the concept, you can apply it to other stuff in the house - as she starts to grab a shoe or gnaw the couch, tell her "Off" (and physically remove her or the item, to reinforce the idea).

 

I had a Beagle when I was a kid, and she was dumb as a post, so I'm not sure this will work with your dog or not, but it's worth a try.


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#8 of 9 Old 07-20-2011, 12:25 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nd_deadhead View Post

I agree that mental stimulation and training are the way to go - but it takes time!

 

One command that worked really well for our us is "Off", which means "don't touch it". Hold something attractive (not food - especially with a beagle mix - that would be pushing it!), like a favorite toy, just out of reach in front of her nose and say "Off" as she reaches for it. If she goes a few second without touching it, praise her, and give it to her, saying "Take it". Keep extending the time that she has to stay away before you give it to her.

 

Once she gets the concept, you can apply it to other stuff in the house - as she starts to grab a shoe or gnaw the couch, tell her "Off" (and physically remove her or the item, to reinforce the idea).

 

I had a Beagle when I was a kid, and she was dumb as a post, so I'm not sure this will work with your dog or not, but it's worth a try.

I have to say I think this technique will confuse a dog. First you say she cannot have it and then you say she can. Which is it?

IME, you teach the dog which things are hers and which things are not. This has been fool proof with every dog I've ever owned.

I do agree with the command "off". We use it for keeping dogs off of furniture and people and it's quite effective.


 

 

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#9 of 9 Old 07-20-2011, 01:09 PM
 
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"Take it" is a separate command - kind of like teaching "Speak" and "Quiet".

 

"Off" means you can't have it until I say you can have it (if it's yours, like a toy or a bone). If I don't tell you to take it, you can't have it.

 

I used "Off" to teach my lab to stay out of my Mom's garden, to not chase birds or balls into the street, and to not step on a baby blanket when my babies were on it, to get off the couch if I wanted to sit in his spot. For him, it meant don't touch it, don't step on it, don't sit on it. In retrospect that wasn't very consistent (I should have used a different word for don't step on it, perhaps), but it worked well for him.

 

My Corgi figured out "off" with the same technique as well, but he is also a really smart dog.

 

I also taught both dogs "leave it", which is essentially the same thing, though I tend to use it more on walks, when I don't want them sniffing every little thing. I'm not sure one could ever train sniffing out of a Beagle!


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