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Hampton Bay
Jan. 14, 2009, 08:13 PM
OK, I have a large boxer/mastiff cross that has been living with me for about 2 months. She is a great dog, and initially was fearful of the horses. She would bark at them, try to get them to play, but if they came near her she would run.

As of yesterday, when she is let into the yard with the horses, she chases them, barking and carrying on, and is acting like she really wants a piece. The horses are downright annoyed, and they pin their ears and chase her right back. Obviously I am worried someone is going to get hurt. And it's probably going to be the dog.

Aside from just never letting her out of the dog yard, which of course accidents happen and I'm sure she will get out at some point, what can I do to help her get over trying to play rough with a 1000lb animal who wants to stomp her to death.

county
Jan. 14, 2009, 10:05 PM
BANG!!!!!

MunchkinsMom
Jan. 14, 2009, 10:17 PM
Shock collar? Might be worth a try. And cheaper than a vet bill (for either the dog or the horses).

Meredith Clark
Jan. 14, 2009, 10:20 PM
I use a shock collar for my boxer/pit/lab mix. She's very well behaved but if a horse does something out of the ordinary.. like roll on the ground, she losses it. She'll bark and chase them and NOTHING I do will get her to stop, when I try to catch her she runs from me and continues to go after them. I finally got her a shock collar. She gets one noise alert, and if she doesn't stop she gets a shock. I havn't had to actually shock her for weeks now.. she hears the noise alert and stops on a dime.

If I forget to put it on her she'll chase.. so now she doesn't leave the house with out it.

2DogsFarm
Jan. 15, 2009, 12:52 PM
Another vote for the shock collar.
Dog will not connect you with the correction, she will think:
Chasing horses = Nasty shock

county : Shame on you! :winkgrin:
(of course your solution is quite attractive to me if it were not my dog doing the chasing...)

Bluey
Jan. 15, 2009, 01:35 PM
Train your dog to mind what you say where there are no distractions and once the dog knows very well what you want, then train near distractions, be they cats, horses, other dogs, whatever, closer and closer, until you and the dog have an understanding of what you want and when and how.

Until then, no dog off leash, or they just think they can do what they want and learn that you can't make them.

A shock collar will work as long as the dog is wearing it, you have the control on hand and are there.
When you are not ready with it, the dog may again revert to doing what it wants.

I would train first and then, if you need to later, use a shock collar to reinforce what the dog already knows.
I never needed one to call a dog off, once the dog is trained in the basics.:confused:

Blinkers On
Jan. 15, 2009, 01:41 PM
I would expect behaviour would escalate if uncurbed. Mty mix does't get the freedom to be around the horses for the reasons you mentioned.

Hampton Bay
Jan. 15, 2009, 02:38 PM
This dog was a rescue from the county pound, and she has only been around people for about 4 months. She is just getting used to door closing and slick floors :)

I will try to do more work with her. She is very difficult to catch when she doesn't want to come in, so she isn't allowed out in the big yard very often, usually just when I am cleaning up the pasture and it is close to dinner time when she wants in anyway.

This girl is just not as food-motivated as my boys were, so it has been more difficult to do much work with her. She sits, but we are still working on everything else.

trubandloki
Jan. 15, 2009, 02:47 PM
Please do not just put a shock collar on the dog and go to town shocking it with out first teaching proper commands to the point that you know they understand what you are asking it to do.

CanterQueen
Jan. 15, 2009, 04:18 PM
If I forget to put it on her she'll chase.. so now she doesn't leave the house with out it.

Yup, this is the only problem I've found with the collar. He's good as gold if it's on, but if I forget it he's GONE!!!!!!!!

yellow-horse
Jan. 15, 2009, 04:31 PM
I had 2 dogs that iI did not trust around livestock, I never let them near livestock, I have no idea what they would have done but I didn't like the look they gave the goats when they 1st saw goats.
The dogs were kept penned or walked a leash, as much as I love having a dog that is a horse dog, some dogs just aren't going to be that, understand what you have and protect the dog from making a fatal error. I agree with training as well. My dogs had to learn when I opened the door, they did not bolt out, if i opened the gate, they did not bolt out, they learned when they go out they wait for the lead to go on.
Honestly, I never had either of these dogs get loose in 12 years, it's kinda like saying my 2 year old kid accidently got loose and wandered all over the neighborhood. I mean I know that can happen but its pretty unusual.

Lori
Jan. 15, 2009, 04:49 PM
Unfortunately, this is why I do not rescue dogs. It is a crapshoot whether you will get one who will be good or bad around livestock and if they were not raised correctly from the start. I have caged birds in my house and lost one in a split second to a rescued older dog. Lesson learned.....

Your dog should have been corrected right at the start when you say it barked at the horses and acted fearful. Now you are dealing with already escalated behavior.

I only recommend shock collars to people who know how to use them. You can cause problems/neurotic behavior if you don't time the correction properly. It is also possible to create the total opposite effect.

Your dog needs basic obedience from you and needs to listen to and respect YOU as alpha before you can work on behavior problems. It does not sound like she is there yet.

Long line and Herm Sprenger prong collar are my first correction of choice. My new pups are always on them (I work only large working breeds to begin with) and pretty much "self correct" when they get out of line.

mandalea
Jan. 15, 2009, 05:19 PM
My dog is like this, and has been sent to the vet twice with bruised ribs from being kicked by my horse.

Unfortunately, we haven't found a way to stop her doing this, so we figure one day she's going to end up at the vet's over night, and she'll learn.

I would get her on a lead, or a lunge line, and let her go as far out as she can, and when she starts barking, check her, and say "no", or "quiet"

Juneberry
Jan. 15, 2009, 05:36 PM
Unfortunately, we haven't found a way to stop her doing this, so we figure one day she's going to end up at the vet's over night, and she'll learn.

Problem is they don't learn. I have a very very very smart border collie mix, that just can't help herself when around the horses. She's fine when the horses are calm and everything is normal. but if the horses are having a good time or are particularly frisky she's out chasing them. None of my horses aim to hit or chase the dog back but she recently got a well placed kick to the head. her teeth lacerated her cheeks and gums and she lost her left eye. (it wasn't pretty) but now that she's recovered guess what? she's chasing horses again.

Time to invest in the shock collar!

mandalea
Jan. 15, 2009, 07:33 PM
Time to invest in the shock collar!

We bought one of those ones that spray citronella in their face when they bark.

It worked, for about 2 weeks, then she learnt how to turn it around, so it didn't do anything.

So we got those refill canisters for the toilet fresheners, and put it in the holder, and it worked, because she can't stand the smell.

Would be great if it wasn't smashed into thousands of pieces by an impatient horse!

birdsong
Jan. 15, 2009, 07:38 PM
I use a shock collar for my boxer/pit/lab mix. She's very well behaved but if a horse does something out of the ordinary.. like roll on the ground, she losses it. She'll bark and chase them and NOTHING I do will get her to stop, when I try to catch her she runs from me and continues to go after them. I finally got her a shock collar. She gets one noise alert, and if she doesn't stop she gets a shock. I havn't had to actually shock her for weeks now.. she hears the noise alert and stops on a dime.

If I forget to put it on her she'll chase.. so now she doesn't leave the house with out it.

the only solution IMO...horse equals pain

MunchkinsMom
Jan. 15, 2009, 07:44 PM
I use a shock collar for my boxer/pit/lab mix. She's very well behaved but if a horse does something out of the ordinary.. like roll on the ground, she losses it. She'll bark and chase them

Well, my neighborhood stray that we have been trying to catch for the past 6 months recently started chasing the horses also. Tonight I was out picking manure out of the pasture, when Angel (the stray) went a bit bonkers when one of my geldings had himself a roll, and started barking, leaping and then chasing when the two geldings high-tailed it towards the barn. I shouted at her, and it took her about 5 seconds to even realize I was there, and then she went an laid down. Shock collar is not an option unless we can catch her.

She used to be afraid of the horses, or at least never chased them, so this is new behavior on her part.

JaneeneSings
Jan. 15, 2009, 07:53 PM
We have two Great Pyrenees/Anatolian mix dogs to protect our goats. One of them is fine with the horses and cows, but the other one was a chaser. We were at the point of getting rid of her -- but she's a really nice dog. We did some research on this and here's what worked for us:

Take a heavy chain and attach a 5-6 lbs. piece of lumber, wood or pipe to one end so that it drags the ground. The other end attaches to the dog's collar. After a couple of months of her dragging this thing around and we were able to take it off, and she's never chased anything again. :yes:

The other idea was to do the same thing with a PVC pipe, but shorten it so that it knocks against their front legs when they run.

Good luck!

P.S. I AM a big fan of rescue dogs!

Fancy That
Jan. 15, 2009, 07:56 PM
We are buying our own horse property and moving our three horses and three dogs there.

Problem is, none of the dogs have been exposed to horses. And the big one (huge Rottie) chases and "attacks" animals on the television!!! I just hope it doesn't transfer to horses.

He doesn't chase dogs, he couldn't care less about strange dogs..very friendly. But he DOES chase cats and other animals that run away from him.

I just hope he doesn't get to wanting to chase the horses. We'll have a fenced backyard, so can always keep him seperated from them, if he's a nuisancce.

As for our two little Rat Terriers - I think they'll be okay? We'll see!

AKB
Jan. 15, 2009, 07:58 PM
One of our retrievers got kicked and split her lip after chasing the horses. The other retriever watched it happen. Now, neither one chases horses.

SuperSTB
Jan. 15, 2009, 08:13 PM
We have a Boarder collie/Rottie mix that was dumped and followed us home one trail ride. That was 2 yrs ago and she's still with us. :confused: (see husband). Anyway since she's got the collie in her and she's a good size... chasing horses is fun.

I refused acknowledgment of the dog actually. She's my husband and my sons dog and strictly outside (although I did house train her). She's a pretty dog but quite honestly I could live without her :) Anyhoo hubby and son were responsible for her training which has been minimal effort on their part to date.

She was also afraid of the horses at first. After a month or two she discovered how fun it was to bark at them. A couple months after that she discovered if she barks at their heels sometimes she gets a desirable reaction... And so she progressed to snapping at their heels and more recently snapping at the horses face.

Unfortunetly if the dog 'disapears one day', I am suspect #1.

I usually just crate the dog if I'm working horses since that's when the dog figured it's "Go Time". I crate trained and house broke her in the beginning because... well... I didn't want to keep the dog and I figure it'd definetly make her more adoptable. But I digress.

So once the 'snapping' at the face started, I have begun whistle training. I've trained other dogs (hunting and sporting dogs) so (embarassingly late to the game) have emplyed this with said annoying dog.

Buy dog whistle.
Get little pouch with treats.
Teach dog that whistle blow means dog gets treat.
(kind of sounds like clicker training huh? yeah clicker training is soooo not a new concept)
Then progress dog to learn sit, stay, heel with whistle/treat method.
Then move on to teaching away, fetch, and other little tricks.

I am currently working on 'no barking'.

So now I can work the horses and the dog will not enter the arena. She has also lessened the 'chasing' when horses are just turned out. We have a long way to go but then again I only work with her maybe 10-15 mintues every other day. I should work with her every day but sadly with 5 horses to work with I'm a wee bit scrunched for time. I also still crate her when I need too.

The dog whisperer mentions many times that these types of working dogs *need* a job to do. I'd like to teach her agility and probably cart pulling. Smart dog but I wish I didn't have to do it (the training)!

Bluey
Jan. 15, 2009, 08:19 PM
We are buying our own horse property and moving our three horses and three dogs there.

Problem is, none of the dogs have been exposed to horses. And the big one (huge Rottie) chases and "attacks" animals on the television!!! I just hope it doesn't transfer to horses.

He doesn't chase dogs, he couldn't care less about strange dogs..very friendly. But he DOES chase cats and other animals that run away from him.

I just hope he doesn't get to wanting to chase the horses. We'll have a fenced backyard, so can always keep him seperated from them, if he's a nuisancce.

As for our two little Rat Terriers - I think they'll be okay? We'll see!

Our rottie worked cattle, so she was well trained to mind.
Horses were off limits to her from the first time she laid eyes on them and she knew it.
The same with my current rat terrier, that goes with me to feed and never bothers any horse and will get out of the pens on command.

Here yesterday morning, obeying a "leave it", just in case, because I didn't know what she was smelling there:

http://i13.photobucket.com/albums/a298/Robintoo/Horses2-20-07836.jpg?t=1232068213

She was saying: Are you talking to me?:winkgrin:

Train and confine until you know your dogs know what you want and will heed your words.:yes:
Don't let them practice to do wrong and after a little bit, your dogs will be reliable farm dogs.:)

My first dog to train was a norwegian elkhound, that ended up being as sharp on cattle as a good border collie.
If those very independent pain in the behind dogs, as our vet called them, can be trained, a spitz herding dog with a terrier brain, ANY dog can.

Fancy That
Jan. 16, 2009, 12:25 PM
Our rottie worked cattle, so she was well trained to mind.
Horses were off limits to her from the first time she laid eyes on them and she knew it.
The same with my current rat terrier, that goes with me to feed and never bothers any horse and will get out of the pens on command.

Here yesterday morning, obeying a "leave it", just in case, because I didn't know what she was smelling there:

http://i13.photobucket.com/albums/a298/Robintoo/Horses2-20-07836.jpg?t=1232068213

She was saying: Are you talking to me?:winkgrin:

Train and confine until you know your dogs know what you want and will heed your words.:yes:
Don't let them practice to do wrong and after a little bit, your dogs will be reliable farm dogs.:)

My first dog to train was a norwegian elkhound, that ended up being as sharp on cattle as a good border collie.
If those very independent pain in the behind dogs, as our vet called them, can be trained, a spitz herding dog with a terrier brain, ANY dog can.

Blue - OMG, that pic made me smile. Looks just like my Ratties. I will definitely start by training them to heed commands religiously. Then see how they do if let out into the stable area.

I just hear so many stories about dogs chasing horses (and horses getting panicked -running through fences, etc) that I'm inclined to always keep the dogs in the large backyard and never let them out into the stable/pasture areas. We'll see how it goes!

trubandloki
Jan. 16, 2009, 01:52 PM
the only solution IMO...horse equals pain

The problem with horse equals pain is that it can lead to aggression towards what caused the pain (and in their mind it is the horse).

Teach the dog basic obedience. Sure you can use a shock collar once they have an idea what the command are and you shocking them is fair.

Do not take a dog and slap on a shock collar and go to town shocking them. It is very unfair and you might not like the results.

Basic obedience first.

Bluey
Jan. 16, 2009, 02:15 PM
Shock collars can be used to train, as a slight tap on the shoulder that means pay attention, that is how most trainers that use them regularly for signaling a dog far away, like field and herding demands.

They can be used as an aversive, to shock a dog away from something dangerous.
Our local field dog club has a rattlesnake dog proofing day a year and all kinds of dogs, from little poodle house dogs that have been encountering rattlers in their yards to hunting and other dogs are trained to avoid rattlers.

Up to now, when people bring a dog for a second time, there has not been a dog get close to the snakes again, so they remember very well.

The dogs are not shocked hard, they just jump back and away when shocked and don't want to approach again.
They don't yelp and struggle or become shy of anything but the rattlers in the area.

I don't know how someone would use them to keep them away from horses in some places and not others.
If someone is going to use one for that, be sure you have a plan and a good idea when you are going to use that shock and that the dog won't be startled and think that the bucket by the horse did it, or whatever and now be scared of buckets, but still not of horses.

jetsmom
Jan. 16, 2009, 03:32 PM
Unfortunately, this is why I do not rescue dogs. It is a crapshoot whether you will get one who will be good or bad around livestock and if they were not raised correctly from the start. I have caged birds in my house and lost one in a split second to a rescued older dog. Lesson learned.....

Your dog should have been corrected right at the start when you say it barked at the horses and acted fearful. Now you are dealing with already escalated behavior.

I only recommend shock collars to people who know how to use them. You can cause problems/neurotic behavior if you don't time the correction properly. It is also possible to create the total opposite effect.

Your dog needs basic obedience from you and needs to listen to and respect YOU as alpha before you can work on behavior problems. It does not sound like she is there yet.

Long line and Herm Sprenger prong collar are my first correction of choice. My new pups are always on them (I work only large working breeds to begin with) and pretty much "self correct" when they get out of line.



The problem isn't that it's a rescue dog, but that it is untrained. Even the best bred dog can chase livestock or do other bad things if it isn't trained.


The OP's dog shouldn't be off leash near the horses if it doesn't have a reliable recall. And the only way to get that is to train them (on a leash first/then long line).

yellowbritches
Jan. 16, 2009, 05:58 PM
This is #1 on the doggy sin list in my barn (followed extremely close by doggy sin #2, cat chasing). OP's dog obviously needs WAY, WAY, WAY more obedience work to even be reliable to listen without distractions, let alone around large "prey" animals. Don't let this dog around the horses until you have a good recall, leave it, etc. If good obedience doesn't do it, a shock collar (properly used) will.

At least the horses don't run. But she's going to get stomped on before too long.

ESG
Jan. 17, 2009, 08:10 AM
Don't let them practice to do wrong .:)


Bluey, incredibly well put. Words to live by in all aspects of our lives, IMO. :yes:

Twiliath
Jan. 18, 2009, 04:49 PM
The first problem with shock collars, is that you DO NOT know EXACTLY what the dog will associate with the shock. He may or may not associate the act of chasing horses with the shock. He could just as easily (and understandably in his mind) associate the shock with something else, such as the precise spot he got shocked. Or anything else.

The second problem with shock collars, as mentioned by someone else here, is that you may very well get an fear + aggressive response, as in, "that horse hurt me so I'm going to hurt it every time it comes near me. I'm going to bite first before it gets me."

It's so much better to teach the dog a reliable recall, leave it, and quiet commands. Also, as backwards as it sounds, praise the dog for barking and call him to you, then reward. Dogs are supposed to alert and be watchful. If you bark at them to shut up, you only increase their alerting/barking (read upset). If, instead, you praise them for barking and call him to you for a reward, you will get a much better result/response.

I have a dog I raised from a puppy, but didn't have horses at home until I moved when he was 2. He has a lot of German Shepherd in him and he likes to "help" me herd them by barking and chasing (but from the other side of the fence). A horse I don't have anymore used to instigate the chasing game with the dog! LOL!

I praise him and call him to me when he's in with the horses. That stops most of his barking/chasing behavior.