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Thread: Lab behaves with collar, but resists without

  1. #1
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    Default Lab behaves with collar, but resists without

    My 9 month old female lab is a bucket full of energy and drive. She is crazy for birds and retrieving. Here is my problem. I have had my hands full with obedience training from the beginning due to her extremely independent nature. At five months I introduced the electronic collar and she responded immediately and obediently from that point on -- as long as I had the collar on. But tonight (and at other times) I was so frustrated, because after I let her out to do her business, she picked up a stick and danced and barked at 20 yards, refusing to come, heel or kennel. I've learned not to chase her, but instead, simply walk back in the garage and ignore her. She usually comes in to see what I'm doing, but tonight no such luck.

    I don't want to put the collar on every time I let her out of the kennel (both because of the extra effort and because I don't want the contact points of the collar constantly on her neck). I thought some about trying and old e-collar without the points to see if she'll interpret it as her regular e-collar, but I have not tried it yet.

    Any suggestions on what to do?

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Senior Member copterdoc's Avatar
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    Many people think that once a dog learns when it is, or is not, wearing the collar, it becomes collar wise.

    But, the thing is that eventually EVERY dog that wears an e-collar, learns when it is, or is not, wearing it.
    However, they don't all become collar wise.

    Why not?

  3. #3
    Senior Member copterdoc's Avatar
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    A collar wise dog, has been conditioned to obey the collar.

    A dog that is aware that it is not wearing the collar, but still performs as trained, has been conditioned to obey the handler.
    The handler's orders can be reinforced with the collar. But, it's not the collar that the dog has been conditioned to respond to.

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    Senior Member Bridget Bodine's Avatar
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    "because of the extra effort" please............... the dog needs the collar on when ever she is loose , she is a baby and a juvenile delinquent . Be in control until it is habit. If you don't want to put he effort in , don't have any expectations
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    Senior Member copterdoc's Avatar
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    I'm not sure that having the collar on more often, is the best approach.
    There's an application issue here. And more application, isn't a solution for poor application.

    The BEST collar correction doesn't happen in response to an outright refusal. In fact, those are often the worst.

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    Senior Member gdgnyc's Avatar
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    I think that you need to learn to never give a command that you cannot or will not enforce. I think that this is especially important while building your obedience foundation in your puppy. My feeling is that good obedience takes time and patience to develop. What do you think the dog learns when you say "here", the dog disobeys, and you don't do anything because the collar or lead is not on? I own the dog that you are describing. I made the mistake that I think you are making. And it took quite a while to fix it.
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    Senior Member Mary Lynn Metras's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by copterdoc View Post
    I'm not sure that having the collar on more often, is the best approach.
    There's an application issue here. And more application, isn't a solution for poor application.

    The BEST collar correction doesn't happen in response to an outright refusal. In fact, those are often the worst.
    Great explanations!! You don't teach the dog with a collar.
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    Senior Member Wayne Nutt's Avatar
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    I think what you are experiencing is pretty normal. At first they may not obey without the ecollar but after a while they get conditioned to the commands and responding. And will come whenever called, etc., without or with the collar on. This has been my experience.
    For now make sure you are in a position to enforce your commands.
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  9. #9
    Senior Member Miriam Wade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jchristi View Post
    My 9 month old female lab is a bucket full of energy and drive. She is crazy for birds and retrieving. Here is my problem. I have had my hands full with obedience training from the beginning due to her extremely independent nature. At five months I introduced the electronic collar and she responded immediately and obediently from that point on -- as long as I had the collar on. But tonight (and at other times) I was so frustrated, because after I let her out to do her business, she picked up a stick and danced and barked at 20 yards, refusing to come, heel or kennel. I've learned not to chase her, but instead, simply walk back in the garage and ignore her. She usually comes in to see what I'm doing, but tonight no such luck.

    I don't want to put the collar on every time I let her out of the kennel (both because of the extra effort and because I don't want the contact points of the collar constantly on her neck). I thought some about trying and old e-collar without the points to see if she'll interpret it as her regular e-collar, but I have not tried it yet.

    Any suggestions on what to do?

    Thanks
    I agree with everyone in terms of not giving a command you can't enforce, but also have a question for you. What type of exercise schedule is your pup on? I'm not trying to make excuses for the pup at all, but am wondering if her experience is that she gets minimal time out of the kennel (except for training) to burn off some energy and just be a dog. This may be too touchy feely for some, but I think there's a lot of merit in taking a dog for long walks where they are safe off lead and letting them run. They learn to check back in to see that you are in range and do need to come when called, but for the most part it is "their" walk. They also come to learn that you are pretty great to be around and not all about obedience. Field dogs need a lot of physical exercise on top of mental stimulation.

    I walk my dog w/out an e-collar, but he knows that I still expect him to do what he's told when necessary-heeling when we see another dog, coon, deer, etc, I have his respect on those things and he's compliant, so with those and other exceptions it's "his" walk and I don't nag him. Just wondering if your dog needs a bit more room to be a dog outside the kennel.

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    Senior Member shawninthesticks's Avatar
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    From the op's explanation,it makes me think that the obedience training of here and sit with a rope and collar wasn't solid and they thought that once they got to collar conditioning it would all work out,so some things leading up to cc was looked over,maybe they should back up to the rope to formalize the commands.
    Shawn White

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