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Does "high Prey Drive" Equal "uncontrollable Greyhound&#34


Guest jessie1234
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Guest jessie1234

Three weeks into our adoption of our 2nd greyhound and he is displaying some rather alarming behavour. On the morning walks he goes ballistic if he spots another animal, can be cat or dog, big or small. Even humans send him off! Today we met with a friend we knew and he went for their little fluffy while we were standing there talking. He is rubbing off on our dream girl that we have had for a year and now she is starting too!

Any feedback?

He is 3 years old, ex racer, retired due to injury.

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You need to attend a positive training school ASAP. He sounds more like a nervous guy who doesn't have any boundaries than he sounds like a dog with prey drive.

Colleen with Covey (Admirals Cove) and Rally (greyhound puppy)
Missing my beloved boy INU (CJ Whistlindixie) my sweetest princess SALEM (CJ Little Dixie) and my baby girl ZOE (LR's Tara)

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Guest fargosmom

A training class is a great idea, but you can also work on this yourself. You're still in the "getting to know you" phase of adoption with this guy, and part of that is establishing that you are the benevolent dictator. The concept of "nothing in life is free" will help establish you as leader of the pack - you can google the phrase for training ideas you can use at home. When out on walks, keep alert to his behavior as well as your surroundings, and at first try to avoid direct encounters with other critters. When you spot one, say across the street, watch his reaction and correct him with a stern "no" BEFORE he really starts anything, and if he gets wound up anyway do whatever you can to redirect him, moving away from the other animal. I did this with my girl (Zuzu likes to "talk trash" to dogs across the street - she thinks she's a tough chick!) but after a couple of times she's learned to (mostly) ignore dogs walking on the other side of the street. We're working up to direct encounters because she's still really easy to get going. You can also try, if he's really food-motivated, offering treats on walks IF he behaves himself when he sees another animal. You can definitely get through this but it will take a lot of your powers of observation; the key is to stopping him from getting amped up BEFORE he gets out of control, so he learns that you're in charge and you expect him to be mellow around other animals. Best wishes to you!

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Keep your guard up with all new dogs. I learn from the "oldies" at M&G. A new brodie came aboard,handler was warned of small animal cautions. Well,handler was chatting up a storm when a prized Peek happens by to close. Ms Jewel had enough leash to eat a good mouthfull of hair.She was so proud and looked like she sported a mustach! It is amazing to see the speed and they are called sight hounds for a reason

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Guest houndlover

High prey drive does not mean uncontrollable. It means he needs training...

 

i agree. daisy is a very high prey drive dog but when i say "leave it!" she does...whether it's a squirrel, dog, cat, kid on a bike. i did take her to obedience training but it wasn't b/c she is a high prey dog.

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Why do you mention high prey drive? Were you told that he is by your group?

 

The behavior you're talking about does not sound like prey drive to me. It sounds like a dog that is either, new - and spooky/freaky about everything, or a dog that needs proper socialization and training, or both. Probably both.

 

Forget prey drive. Not the issue. Focus on training. Positive reinforcement. Don't overwhelm a new dog with too many new things at once.

 

Slow down , back up, encounter ONE new thing per day, re-direct if the dog doesn't react well, then PRAISE and REWARD the dog when it does redirect it's attention to you. Don't overload with too many new things in a day.

 

Both my greys, and many of my fosters had high prey drive (we take fosters that can't go to fosterhomes with cats, etc) ... but - they don't act like this.

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Guest jessie1234

He is very obedient at home. He has been trained since the day he arrived. He listens to and has learnt many commands already at home, stay, leave it, lie down, come. He is fine at home with the family. When we first got him he was terrible on the lead, pulling, running etc...he is doing well on the lead now until he spots something. I am monitoring him all the time and correcting him immediately. He always has his muzzle on (NSW Australian Law) and I have an excellent martingale. He is very strong, he will NOT listen to me once he see's another being. My friend is a dog trainer who is due back from holidays in a few days. I just got a big fright this morning - although I didnt panic or loose my cool at the time.. When we got home I went to water :P

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Guest sorenkkg

Ditto on what is said above (not the newspaper or water squirting though!!! eek.gif )-- Haka was our first, and he's high prey, but what you are seeing and what he does are very different.

 

When we first got him though, like yours, he reacted to a lot of stuff-- squirrel in a tree, rolling garbage can, other dogs, cats, blowing white plastic bag. I think that's normal, and as above, you need to focus him on the walk, on you, keep moving.

 

Here's high prey-- you are in a mixed breed dog park, and he takes about 0 seconds to find a dog on it's back, or a small yippy dog, and within seconds it's in his mouth. NO growling, barking, or any alert of any type. Just- BAM.

 

Yes, he's a bit more keen on small fluffy things when we walk, but actually, he's pretty easily controlled on a leash, and he doesn't look at squirrels at all anymore. But we don't do mixed breed dog parks, we don't have a cat or small dog or small animals at all, and I clear the backyard before I let him out.

 

In any event-- even being high prey, there's still a huge difference in him from when we first got him to 6 months to 1yr in. Give him training, love, and LOTS of patience, and he will respond in kind.

 

smile.gif Soren

Edited by sorenkkg
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I have somewhat of the same problem. My adoption kennel said to use a squirt bottle of water, rolled up newspaper and muzzell (I am a terrible speller).

 

unsure.gif I would really really discourage any of the above! Seriously! You start hitting or squirting a dog for reacting to another dog and you will have major major problems.

 

I would recommend "Feisty Fido" by Patricia B McConnell. Or search any of Giselles posts on Look at That training.

 

 

 

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Susan, Jessie and Jordy NORTHERN SKY GREYHOUND ADOPTION ASSOCIATION

Jack, in my heart forever March 1999-Nov 21, 2008 My Dancing Queen Jilly with me always and forever Aug 12, 2003-Oct 15, 2010

Joshy I will love you always Aug 1, 2004-Feb 22,2013 Jonah my sweetheart May 2000 - Jan 2015

" You will never need to be alone again. I promise this. As your dog, I will sing this promise to you, and whisper it to you at night, every night, with my breath." Stanley Coren

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I have somewhat of the same problem. My adoption kennel said to use a squirt bottle of water, rolled up newspaper and muzzell (I am a terrible speller).

 

I'd like to know the name of the group that recommended a "rolled up newspaper" unless they're suggesting you hit yourself with it.

 

I actually am STUNNED to read this--

 

Stunned.

 

Of course my neighbor adopted a dog from a "well respected" group in my area, and they suggested that to curb their brand new adoptees whining in the crate they "bang on it--just to scare him into shutting up."

 

Argh!


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Susan,  Hamish,  Mister Bigglesworth and Nikita Stanislav. Missing Ming, George, and Buck

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Guest Drumhellergrey

Shorten the leash when you can anticipate when there may be a problem. If you are too late and the dog has already started to react, stop, and add a sharp "NO", once again shortening the leash.

 

I agree with what the others above have said about using the squirt bottle, or rolled up newspaper. You never want to hit an animal with anything, and squirting water only will confuse the dog. I recommend reading about training, and Patricia McConnell is good.

 

Best of luck to you.

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Guest jupiterooos

We are proactive on walks with our dog-aggressive boy. When a dog is spotted (hopefully by one of us first!) we pull him aside and give him lots of praise, petting, and treats as the other dog passes. I think it's starting to work - he no longer automatically freaks out when he sees another dog. It's my feeling that positive reinforcement works a LOT better with this breed than punishment.

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Guest MyBoys

All of the above, except for the water and rolled up newspaper. Short leash is important to maintain control, it keeps him right at your side while you are walking. Try taking him out to do training alone, walking past approaching dogs, keep him moving forward and don't allow him to stop, when you get past the other dog make sure you praise him and maybe even give him a small treat. I went through this with one of my boys and did this training over and over with him, he finally got it and our walks became a pleasure again. IMO, spraying water or using a rolled up newspaper is sending a negative message to your dog, that is a big NO NO.

Edited by MyBoys
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Guest burgerandfrey

Don't worry, but it will require training. Our grey who seems to have the higher prey drive is also more easily trained than our grey who doesn't seem to have as high a prey drive. Zeke can seem kind of spastic and uncontrollable at times, but he is sooo easy to train and now he is a very easy dog to walk. He doesn't get nearly as interested, in that way, as he did six or eight months ago when it comes to small furry creatures. Of course if a squirrel runs through his yard all bets are off, but he is now quite the gentleman when it comes to greeting small dogs on leashes. Leashes keep the smaller dogs from running, which only encourages a greyhound to chase. I think there is also something about the context of seeing another dog being walked on a leash that they sort of get after awhile. If Zeke sees a small dog in someone's arms (being carried like a baby or a toy) he pays more attention (in the past he used to try and jump up to grab the little dogs, but these days he just looks at them). But if the dog is on the ground and on a leash Zeke usually just ignores them, but sometimes he will do a sniff and greet.

 

On one of our very first walks with Zeke he tried to jump up and grab a woman's little dog right out of her arms :o Fortunately I had a tight grip on his leash and he didn't get anywhere close. These days I am not concerned about him doing any such thing, but just in case I tend to keep him on a short leash when it comes to greeting small dogs... and I would never let him play in the yard with a small dog. There is no reason why he couldn't go for walks with a small dog, or even hang around indoors with one (supervised of course). If we had a small dog of our own I'm sure he could be trusted after getting to know the dog, at least when it comes to walks and indoors.

 

 

 

Sean

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Guest BlackandBrindle

High prey drive does not mean uncontrollable. It means he needs training...

 

I have two very high prey dogs. Spud also has some fear aggression thrown in just for fun. Even standing four feet away from the little dogs they know not to go after them because we have worked with them since we've had them.

 

Your new guy needs training and you need to keep him out of reach of small fluffies in the mean time.

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Guest LindsaySF

It sounds like over-stimulation and reactivity issues to me, not prey drive. Especially if he's getting worked up over humans too. Most really high prey drive dogs don't flip out when they see prey, they actually freeze in place and stare, waiting for the prey to get close enough (or waiting for the right opportunity to pounce on it). They know when they are on a leash too, they know they can't take off after the prey. The dogs that flip out barking and spinning and acting wild have more of a self-control issue than a prey drive issue.

 

Training will definitely help. He is still very new to you, and things are probably very exciting and/or scary for him. I would limit his walks to less busy areas for now. Get him used to handling that before you increase the number of distractions.

 

Good luck.

 

 

 

~Lindsay~

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I'd like to know the name of the group that recommended a "rolled up newspaper" unless they're suggesting you hit yourself with it.

Don't laugh. When my Frosty was new here, she was just into everything and she refused to listen to me. One day I had just picked up the newspaper and I was a little frustrated when she wouldn't respond to me so I whacked myself on the leg with the paper. She came running. Who'd have thought?

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