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Training Question For Non-Grey


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I've got a friend who has adopted a 3 y/o male Golden Retriever. Max is a retired show dog and was accustomed to being in a nice kennel/run setup and also spent time in his breeder's home. He's been in his new home about 6 months. They have a nice back yard and Max is happy to go out to play, potty, and enjoy--provided he has a human escort. He will not go out or stay out on his own. They don't want to stick him out in the yard and leave him but they'd love it if he would at least go out to potty sometimes without having to have one of his humans keep him company.

 

So far they've tried going out with him and then edging slowly back toward the deck and the door. Max keeps an eagle eye on his human and races back if he thinks they are getting too close to the door. They tried letting him out and then closing the door, leaving him alone outside. He quickly pottied on the deck (on the grill actually :eek ) and then he wanted right back in the house.

 

They aren't sure how to approach increasing his comfort with being out in the yard on his own and I've not really dealt with this issue before. Any advice?

 

TIA

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Lucy with Greyhound Nate and OSH Tinker. With loving memories of MoMo (FTH Chyna Moon), Spirit, Miles the slinky kitty (OSH), Piper "The Perfect" (Oneco Chaplin), Winston, Yoda, Hector, and Claire.

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Well....

 

He's a pampered and beloved second hand dog. They should try to think of this as an adorable quirk!

 

With time and more trust, he'll probably be OK. If the worst issue they have is having to stand outside for five minutes with a beautiful sweet dog while he relieves himself....

 

You see where I'm going, don't you Lucy?

 

Maybe they should do some leash walks out of the yard? Helps with bonding. Great exercise for all as well!


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

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I guess I'm failing to see the problem.......

 

How many times a day is the dog having to go out? I never let my dogs be unsupervised in the yard, and even with five of them, a potty trip takes less than five minutes. The dog has probably never been alone in his entire life, so this isn't going to happen quickly or easily. They need to make the back yard a "good" place, with treats and some alone training-type desensitization. Can they give him a chew bone or some sort of treat that takes a few minutes, then leave him outside with it. They will need to watch him from inside so they can time when to go back out.

 

On the other side of things, have they just tried leaving him out there? Provided the yard is secure and there isn't anything dangerous, they can try ignoring him for a while. Depending on the weather, mine want to come right back in, too (both my boys hate the rain, too bad so sad for them!). Sometimes they have to stay out though, because I'm doing something.

Chris - Mom to: Lilly, Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

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Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom

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Guest k9soul

Just leaving him out might make it worse (IMHO), it might confirm his fears are founded about being left. I think I might try a baby-step approach of standing outside with him and then gradually standing closer to the door over time, until standing in the doorway with it open, and letting his confidence build.

 

I had a golden for many years and he had some timidity issues in general, but provide a toy or ball and he became a different dog. If he loves to retrieve as much as many retrievers do, I'd make the yard a place with a lot of retrieving games that give a positive association with it. I purchased special squeaky tennis balls that I only used when working with my golden (so that they stayed desirable and special) and I'd toss one closer and closer to a place that he was nervous to approach on his own. sometimes he'd pace awhile and nervously eye the ball but eventually he just couldn't resist and would go get it. I'd rinse and repeat over and over until he seemed more confident of that area.

 

I bet with time and bonding he will become more comfortable and confident.

 

And just because... my RB boy, Tommy

 

tommyrtrv8.jpg

Edited by k9soul
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Tommy is so handsome! I'm betting since the dog in question is a "retired show dog" he is not a BIT timid. He's spoiled. And like most Goldens, a love sponge!

 

My Kramer didn't EVER want to be alone. I couldn't leave him on the "spy platform" by himself or he'd cry and cry. George is perfectly happy to be out there all alone, sometimes for hours (I'm always right inside--I don't leave the condo). George is even OK if I got to the dumpster and he sees me leave the apartment and then sees me the parking lot! I think Kramer would have jumped off the balcony if I walked out the door without him!

 

Kramer was the LEAST timid dog I've ever known. He was just very, very attached to me.


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

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Guest k9soul

That's true, GeorgeofNE. Some people bought Tommy as a puppy and then wanted to get rid of him at 6 months old. He was living out on a chain :(. An in-law knew about him and thus he ended up with me. They really do tend to be velcro dogs, they don't usually have the independent nature of a houndie!

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I don't let my dogs out unattended so this pup's idiosyncrasy would be no issue here. But, lots of people do and want to. Life can be much easier if you can let the dog out in fenced yard for at least a few minutes while you run in the bathroom yourself, start the coffee, etc.

 

I'd probably treat this the same as other separation anxiety -- go out with him in the yard, leave for 30 seconds, come back, leave for 30 seconds, come back, leave for 60 seconds, come back, etc. until he starts getting bored with short leavings and then gradually increase the time.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

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Thank you for the thoughtful replies. I'll share them with my friend.

 

As a bit of clarification...she doesn't see this as a huge problem, just a quirk she'd like to work on with Max. She has no interest in leaving him out for long periods of time, just quick potty trips. Her description of her goal was just what Batmom said--to start the coffee or run to the bathroom herself. I think mostly she wants Max to be happy, safe, and secure in his new home.

 

Lucy

gallery_2398_3082_9958.jpg
Lucy with Greyhound Nate and OSH Tinker. With loving memories of MoMo (FTH Chyna Moon), Spirit, Miles the slinky kitty (OSH), Piper "The Perfect" (Oneco Chaplin), Winston, Yoda, Hector, and Claire.

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