Katy on..male dogs and marking

With Katy’s permission, I open this topic for discussion. It’s an important, practical topic and I wanted it available for future reference. Ah! One of the many things I love about blog technology! The search bar! I’ll follow up, in the comment section, with my response and her return response. Both Katy and I welcome your input. Please share your own experiences!

Hi Debby,
I’m having difficulty with my male dogs.  Since we talked to Linda Thomas, Sadie has not once picked on Zeke again, and that is a relief. But Zeke and Wyatt are at it, now.  Zeke just seems to start a nasty fight with Wyatt for no apparent reason, at least none we can see.  Wyatt will be minding his own business and Zeke will start growling and jump him. If we try to intervene, we risk getting bit, but still, we try and break them up.  Zeke has a nasty scab on his head from their last fight.
And, now, both boys are “marking” on the corners of the bed.  I’ve washed the bedspread twice this week! 
And we had to just take up the oriental rug (my beautiful green one) because Sadie has peed on it so many times.  We have used a gallon of that enzymatic cleaner on it, and I called around to find out how much to have it professionally cleaned ($125-300), so we’ll probably just have to rent a machine and do it ourselves.  She also peed all over the guest room rug, which I could and did wash.  And Wyatt had marked on the corner of the guest room bedspread, which can’t be washed, but I “enzymed” it. So, they are banned from the guest room.  I’m just not sure what to do with these guys!  I had worked so hard to house train them, and thought we had it done.  Sadie has not, to  my knowledge, at least, peed in the house again. I’m not sure what started this last episode with her, because she was doing so well.  And they have a dog door available to them all the time, so that’s not an excuse. 
 But there is a dominance thing going on between Wyatt and Zeke, and I wish they would get it worked out.  I gave both a stern talking to, for what that’s worth, reminding them that they must always “squirt and pee outside”.  As far as I know, this is the first time Zeke has marked in the house since he was very young. (I check for wet penises to determine who the guilty party is, as soon as I discover it and I look often, now.  I have not witnessed any of these marking events, and I’m not always sure who “done it”.)  I do know that Wyatt covers Sadie’s urine with his own, and I did catch Wyatt in the act once, last year.  I thought Zeke and I had an understanding, as he had been so very good for so long.  He’s been pretty much 100% since he was about 9 months old, until now.
Any help or advice you can give will be greatly appreciated. 


15 Comments on “Katy on..male dogs and marking”

  1. lhasalhady says:

    I’d be all over Zeke and Wyatt. You’re the Leader of the Pack. Whatever their issues are with other, they need to know that it’s NOT okay with their Leader. I’ve got an extra copy of an excellent little booklet by Patricia McConnell that I’ll send to you. “How to be the Leader of the Pack…and have your dog love you for it!” Which address should I use for quick delivery? Implementing Leader of the Pack may not seem like it’s addressing the marking issues, but it very likely will. Dog Speak, so to speak. 🙂

    I would confine them to a smaller area in the house for the time being. Perhaps shutting off your bedroom too. Or confining them to the kitchen. Or whatever/however would work in the layout of your home. The concept is to step it (housetraining) back to basics, even if that means pretending like they’re puppies. If you can’t keep your eye on them, then block access to the problem areas. Or crate them.

    While it’s a pain-in-the-a$$, it’s not uncommon for dogs to regress/forget their formerly impeccable house habits. Which is why it’s handy to remember the baby steps originally taken to teach the desired behavior. As Leader of the Pack, simply back it up to the baby steps that worked in the first place. And rebuild.

    To break up a dog fight without getting bitten…and believe me it’s a skill I utilize! I grab the closest tool as I charge into the fight using the LOUDEST, DEEPEST, voice I can muster. HEY!!!! KNOCK IT OFF!!!! HEY!!!!! KNOCK IT OFF!!! If that hasn’t caught their attention by the time I’ve reached the fighting pair (and often it won’t), I take my tool (which is usually the shovel part of the pooper scooper) and from underneath their jaws, I bring it up between them to break up the fight. Now, realize the entire above scenario is done in seconds. It’s quick. It’s immediate. When I’ve separated them, I ‘take the space’, moving into their space. I may tap the ground with my tool, keeping them away from each other. Then each dog goes in lock-down, as I call it. Separated from the pack for at least several hours.

    Some years ago, my friend Athena was having problems with her two neutered males fighting for what seemed like no apparent reason. She implemented the Nothing in Life is Free regime (basically Leader of the Pack stuff) which helped the problem considerably. The dogs were crated when either she or Jimmy wasn’t there. Eventually they discovered the main behavior that caused the dogs to explode. Joyti herds by instinct. After the cat died, there went his herdee. So, he’d try to herd Shanti, who was far less tolerant of the behavior than the cat. Never mind that the cat could jump up, away from Joyti, which continued to keep Joyti enthralled, using his herding behavior. Shanti couldn’t get away when Joyti was in herding mode and would finally explode at Joyti’s bad behavior. And Joyti exploded back. I don’t recall if housetraining regressed during this period. Realizing Joyti’s herding was the fundamental problem, they learned to halt the behavior before it escalated into a fight. This is no longer an issue because two kitties joined their family about a year and a half ago.

    It would be curious to see, on video, the interaction between the two pre-fight. It would surely provide clues to the dynamics going on between the two, which would in turn give you another tool to stop the fight before it happens. Dog speak can be very subtle, but dogs rarely – almost never – enter a fight without full canine communication going on between the two.

  2. Katy says:

    Hi Debby,

    I did have a very stern talk with all three of them yesterday. Since Zeke was the main offender, he got the brunt of it. (He reacts to my verbal or physical discipline, which amounts to grabbing him by the scruff of the neck and talking loudly and sternly to him, with growling and spitting. I’m not sure if he’d actually bite me, but he acts like he wants to).

    They have all three been good as gold since yesterday. No fights, no bad behaviour at all. Getting along, playing, minding etc. Which is the usual scenario.

    When Zeke attacks Wyatt (and that’s an apt description) it usually goes like this:

    This happened the other morning, very early, before I was even out of bed:
    Wyatt seems to be minding his own business, laying down on his spot on the corner of the bed, facing away from Zeke. Zeke is near me, which is “his” spot. Zeke stands up, gets a certain look in his eye, stares at Wyatt (who is facing away from Zeke and unaware for the moment), and begins a low growl which escalates into a louder growl and then an attack, in just seconds. No amount of stern talk at that point will stop it.
    If I am in a position to do so, I will grab Zeke by the scruff of the neck (at which time he turns into a Tasmanian Devil) and stuff him into his crate for a time out. We have used whatever means possible to break up the fights, including using a “tool” to intervene. Wyatt is bigger than Zeke and usually comes out on top, literally. One fight ended with Wyatt with his whole front leg over Zeke’s back, and Zeke submitting.

    For the record, Wyatt has never initiated any fight, as far as I know, with either Zeke or Sadie. Sadie “disciplines” Wyatt for being a goober, but then, he deserves it.

    This has only been occuring since Sadie quit “bullying” and attacking Zeke, about the first of April.
    I’m sensing a dominance thing going on between them. Maybe Sadie was trying to be the boss, because I wasn’t (like she “told” Linda Thomas) and since I asserted my “leader of the pack” dominance over Sadie, she has been just fine (except for peeing on the green rug). Now, Zeke is trying to assert dominance over Wyatt, maybe?
    Wyatt, for all his “goofiness” does certain things which show he is no fainting violet. He’s a male dog, too.
    For the most part, 99% of the time, he and Zeke are buds and pal around together and play. In fact, since the conversation with Linda, all three have gotten along better. Then, this deal with Zeke attacking Wyatt has come up.
    I’m pretty sure the marking by both Z and W is related to this issue.

    The peeing on the rug thing with Sadie may be related to an incident in late winter when I fell asleep early one night and didn’t take them out to pee for their final nighttime ritual. I awoke about midnight and took them out (I take them out after dark because of Owls). Next morning, I stepped in a wet spot near the corner of the bed. We cleaned it with water and the enzyme stuff, but kept finding wet spots in the same general area occasionally, not daily. Then, in February, Leah and the baby, Ada Grace were here for a few days. After they left, I found pee spots on the white cotton rug in that room, and a place where “someone” had lifted his leg on the corner of that bed, right over a pee spot. I was pretty sure that was Sadie and Wyatt’s doing.

    I did put them in a confined place in the kitchen area for a couple of days after that. It’s hard to do, because Zeke barks non stop and Sadie joins in, too.

    We are being extra-attentive to their habits, making sure they go out regularly, and encouraging them with positive affirmations instead of negative sound bites, concerning their toilet habits. They are not pooping in the house at all.

    I’m hoping that just re-asserting my Leader of the Pack dominance might establish a more congenial behaviour among them. So far, so good, today, anyway.
    Thanks so much, Debby!

  3. lhasalhady says:

    This is happening on the bed, YOUR bed, while YOU’RE in it?!? I’d be all over that like…as that old song says, ‘spots on dice’. And I’d start with removing Zeke’s bed privileges for the time being, since he can’t sleep in bed according to MY rules (no shabby behavior in MY bed!!). Sleeping in his crate next to the bed would be appropriate.

    I agree, Zeke is making this a dominance issue. The worse fights in a pack occur in the B pack. To understand this better, realize that in a wolf pack, before a status-seeking wolf takes on the alpha, s/he must first climb to the top of the B pack. Many dogs are fine being at the bottom of the B pack, or even lesser. However, when confronted – like Zeke confronting Wyatt – most dogs will defend themselves. (As an aside, managing my own Apso pack, a dog that doesn’t defend herself/himself creates more problems than one that does. ‘Victim’ mode is dangerous because the other dogs will join the ruckus, ganging up on a ‘victim’.)

    I agree that the marking is related to this issue. Think about this…one or both are marking YOUR bed. Altercations do occur on YOUR bed. Man oh man, for the time being I’d probably crate both of them at night. No more shabby behavior will be allowed on or near MY bed!!
    For what it’s worth, I have to watch Yangsom for territory marking when there’s a ‘strange’ dog (and sometimes a ‘strange’ human) in the house. Often, just marking once will satisfy her animal instincts. While it’s not acceptable behavior for humans, it does seem to a nature-of-the-beast thing with canines. My home has a small area rug under the coffee table and another small Tibetan door rug at the main entrance. That is by design!

    I’ll get Patricia McConnell’s Leader of the Pack in the mail to you. Her books and pamphlets are full of useful – truly useful!! – information on living with dogs. You might consider getting her DVD, Both Ends of the Leash. It was available through my library system. It’s footage taken of her during a seminar. She utilized live dogs and video to make her points. Given Zeke’s Tasmanian Devil side, I think it’s important for you to watch this.

  4. shelley says:

    Boy, is this a thread i needed. I have 3 intact and 1 neutered male in the house and talk about a peeing contest!!! I sometimes get tired from the vigilance. My 10 month old Pon plays so hard with the smaller male that his tail got sprained. The oldest Pon disciplines him, but its constant sturm and drang. Luckily I have few females, but when Iris was in heat it took a lot of strategy. I have belly bands, but also a dog door, so that is even more tricky. I really like every one running together, so there lies the rub.

  5. Katy says:

    I’ll look for the video. I need all the help I can get. I’ll also re-read Pat’s books that I already have.
    They have all been good as gold for almost 48 hours now. We even had to leave them for about 4 hours today to make a trip into town. My only problem with crating Zeke overnight (or any time we’re home for that matter) is that he barks non-stop. He can outlast even the most diligent. I simply gave up on “crate training” him when he was a puppy because I couldn’t take it anymore, night after night, barking for hours. He never gives up! I used to keep them confined when we left them alone (all together, in the kitchen/entrance area, behind a gate, each with a soft side crate and water) because when we “run errands” or drive into Albuq, we are usually gone for at least 4-6 hours, and that just seems too long to leave them in small crates. They “earned” the privilege of having the run of the house by behaving behind the gate, then gradually during short trips to the PO, etc. until finally we left could leave them out for long periods with no abberrent behaviour. And they have been just fine until recently.

    (After the aforementioned fight on the bed, Zeke was unceremoniously stuffed into his crate for a lengthy time out, and he emerged properly chastised. It has been since that time that they have been behaving well.)

    As long as I’m admitting my total failure as an Apso Mom, here’s another problem I have that perhaps the Apso Bloggers can help me with:

    Barking! Zeke is absolutely the “barkiest” dog I’ve ever had to deal with. Until Wyatt came, he seemed to understand the command “Quiet!”, for a moment, anyway. But, it rhymes with Wyatt and doesn’t work anymore. (Wyatt comes running to see what I’m calling him for!) He barks for long periods, very loudly and insistently, whenever a stranger, or even acquaintance, comes to the door. I’m now using “Stop!”, which means stop whatever it is you’re doing in general, and that seems to be making an impression.
    I’ve tried gathering him up, putting him in his crate, closing the bedroom door (they have two sets of crates, the plastic ones with metal doors, in the bedroom and the soft-sides in the kitchen area) but he barks so loudly that even behind the closed door he distrupts conversation. Added to his frustration with not being able to accost the visitor is his anger at being crated, and, well, it’s pretty noisy.
    Yes, we have tried “door bell training”. But we have infrequent “real” visitors, and they quickly learned that the fun game of Dad ringing the doorbell gathered them a treat if they behaved. And they are quite good at sitting and waiting at the front door when we go out each morning to get the newspaper. They sit. They wait until I give the “OK!” to go out, even with the door wide open. They will do the same when the door bell rings, but can only “hold it” so long when they see fresh meat at the door.

    I’ve tried putting a note on the door, telling visitors to wait a moment until I put the door monsters away. Then, I must gather up, chase down, grab the unwilling door chargers and throw them into the bedroom, where the throw themselves right back against the door, barking furiously. I am a total failure as an Apso Mom.
    I’m really wishing I had a sound-proof room to confine them in when visitors come.
    When we had the Art Class Field Trip with about 30 people here, I put them in their hard crates, put them out in the car, in the garage, and closed the three doors in between them and us. Zeke barked for the whole 2.5 hours. I know because I occasionally opened the door to see how they were doing.

    And, yes, I did my very best to socialize him from the time he was about 13 weeks, when we got him. And I’m sure Debby exposed the puppies in his litter to many different experiences while she had them, as well. I took him everywhere and let him meet appropriate people, including lots of children at the school. Now, he is very fond of children and most adults. And, once he gets a chance to thoroughly sniff and approve, he will usually settle down and behave.
    It’s just getting to that point that’s hard. Some people he loves instantly; others, not so much. Some, never in your wildest dreams in which case he scratches, spits and growls).

    So, there it is. All that said, I love these dogs with all my heart! They are marvelous, wonderful creatures and 99.9% of the time, they behave wonderfully and are a beloved and treasured part of our family.

    I’m pretty sure the marking problem and fighting between Zeke and Wyatt can be solved, and perhaps already is, by my paying more attention to my role as Leader.
    I already am and results are already forthcoming.

    Is the barking issue related to my lack of leadership, also?

  6. SusanM says:

    Katy, I’m curious about the barking. When someone comes to the house and actually gets into the house, how do the dogs treat him/her? Are they still upset, or???

    As I understand the Apso’s history, they were bred to be watchdogs for the monks in the Tibetan monasteries. It’s hardwired in them to warn you that someone who does not belong is at the gates.

    My dogs do this with a vengeance. Any sounds outside at night and all four of them erupt off the bed and out the dog door…..barkety barkety bark until whatever it is has taken notice and left the premises.

    On the other hand, once someone is welcomed in they are all in favor and behave themselves…..except for Raji if/as/when it is a yet-unknown male.


  7. Katy, I went through much of the dominance issues with my 2 males. Marking only once, caught them, then used a belly band until I knew we were trained. I agree with all said. My trainer uses all the Pat Mcconnell, leader of the pack ideas. She also said routines must acknowledge alpha dog first. When I started doing that, feed alpha dog first, treat first, go through the door first…….a lot of my issues stopped. I am alpha over all but there is still a pecking order in the group. I learned to read my dogs, and the littlest hint of a tussel. It can be a look Taz gives a cat trying to walk across the room. I use an ugly verbal objection, clap, point at them, “knock it off”. I still have issues with Taz if something crosses his territory and threatens his space. I’m lucky Roman backs down . Julie told me if there’s a fight, break it up, remove the less alpha dog from the scene. I’ve been told once dogs are really comfortable with a home the apha issues often surface again. Also scold quick, then ignore the instigator for a brief time often works. They don’t like being ignored by the pack. When I’ve gotten bit, I scold quick, then walk away quick, ignoring the dog for a short period. Then go back and finish what we were trying to do. I don’t give a lot of affection but don’t scold again. Your not a bad Lhasa mom. Barking, same as yours, but with time “no bark” becomes a reward based behavior. Pick a word, your “stop” , when the barking stops, reward. I have a word, and a gesture, I point my finger (index!) at them. It’s amazing, watch them, shuffel their feet, and give a look, but stop barking. Don’t know if any of this helps. Have you tried crating the dog in the same room as the visitor? My guys are quieter if they can see me, there’s initial barking, I command enough, then my visitor and I can have a discussion. I do this with a lot of service people. Once the dog is quiet I often leash one at a time, walk around the visitor, then back in the crate., reward. My pockets are always full of treats. Behavior rewarded will repeat.

    A great product that kills urine odor–Anti Icky Poo………….you can google and find it. Works on cement, carpet, furniture. Have to let it set a bit., follow directions. I’ve tried the natural way with vinegar, cleaners. This stuff works. Even a hard floor retains the urine into the material……..this stuff penetrates the floor material.

  8. lhasalhady says:

    If the criteria for Bad Apso Mom is barking dogs and wildly inappropriate greeting behavior at the front door, count me in! Never mind that Yangsom is one of the naughtiest dogs I groom!

    With great effort, I could probably teach Eli, Yangsom and Vincent to greet people politely. It’s easier to put them in the bedroom, behind closed doors, for the first 10 or 15 minutes. Depending on the visitors, Yangsom may or may not be allowed out. Sometimes she nips at heels, particularly men’s heels. Guess she’s not only naughty for grooming…

    I wish the Beam-Me-Up-Scotty machine was a reality. We could all schedule training with Ana. Her Family Dog classes address greetings, both at home and out in public. She gives us permission to keep our dogs safe – emotionally and physically – from enthusiastic greeters. This is something I’d never heard of; usual approach was to make the dog tolerate such intrusions.

    After the Gompa dogs arrived, I decided to find an appropriate Tibetan word for Shut! Up! Camay! Ca! May! Although I use it almost daily, it seems to add to the cacophony rather than quiet the dogs down. Breakfast time is the noisiest. The dogs are outside as I clean the kennel and then dish out the vittles. I want my dogs to be good neighbors. I don’t like barking dogs. Yet, every morning the chorus begins several minutes prior to breakfast being served. About a month ago, with the young puppies joining in the Breakfast Yipping, I decided to make a good solid effort to address this. I’ve focused on the girl group as they’re the last to come in. It’s not 100% by any stretch of the imagination, but it’s better.

    Here’s what I did. And I did it without verbal communication (except for a few times I was frustrated – after all, this is confessions of Bad Apso Moms!). I stood right inside the kennel door, where the Girlee Gang couldn’t see me. I had to wait it out (which is the hard part as the dogs are impinging on the mountain solitude). The instant – the instant! – the barking stopped, I came through the door. Of course, the barking started again. Back in the door I went. I repeated and repeated and repeated and repeated and re…you get the picture. I can’t tell you if this took 5 minutes or 25 minutes. It seemed like forever, but I was determined. After the girls came in, I didn’t put food bowls down until, once again, they shut their mouths. I’ve repeated that every morning, with a few tweaks. I don’t go back inside the kennel when one of them barks. I simply stop forward progress towards the gate. And, for a few days I introduced an adversive. The Shaker Can. If a Girlee barked as I approached, I stopped and shook the can, which was held in my left hand above my head. I no longer need to have the Shaker Can with me; my left hand coming up above my head serves as the cue. The noise level has greatly decreased and on more than one occasion this week I’ve been able to go directly to the gate and let the girls in! Yeah!!

    There’s an excellent DVD titled Crate Games. It seems to me, with some imagination and creativity, Zeke could be taught to be quiet in the crate…using Crate Games. And putting his barking on cue. Ana has Grace trained to ‘speak’ at different levels. Speak! = bark. Whisper = softly. There was at least one noise level in between.

    Anyway, that’s all I have to confess this morning before I go out to feed and care for my own badly behaved dogs. Well…there is one last thing. When I’m truly frustrated, when I’ve had a particularly bad noise overload day at the shop, instead of Camay! I revert to really bad behavior myself. Shut! The! F^@*! Up!

  9. Katy says:

    OK, Bad Apsos Moms United, here’s how it went last night: Very bad night! They all lost bed privileges, maybe forever. Zeke started a fight with Wyatt on the bed near bed time; Sadie joined in siding with Wyatt against Zeke. Luckily, I wasn’t in bed this time! By the time I had grabbed nearest “object” to break it up, Zeke was on his back with Wyatt and Sadie on top. Broke fight up. Grabbed each dog and stuffed into crates. After about ten minutes the barking started. When I couldn’t take it anymore, and no amount of “STOP!” worked, I put them all, in their crates, out in Ken’s shop (coolest area farthest away) and just let them bark. Zeke and Sadie, mostly. At ten PM, I took them out, on a leash, one at a time, for final potty, then back to the crates in the shop.
    Z and S barked continuously until after midnight. Then, bark 20 minutes, quiet for 5-10 then bark again, for the remainder of the night, until 4AM. I hadn’t slept all night anyway, so I got up, took them out in same order as before (Sadie, Zeke, Wyatt, which is their Alpha order, I think) for a morning pee, and back to their crates until 6AM, barking continues, when we got up and did regular morning routine. It’s now 9AM and they, lucky dogs, are all sleeping. Ken and I are exhausted, but have a full work day to deal with.

    At this point in time, if I could accomplish getting them to sleep in their crates at night, I would consider that a victory.
    A lot of your good advice, I have done, am doing, already did, but will continue. Zeke knows that he can’t come out of his crate until he’s quiet, and he will shut up when I approach and remain quiet if I’m in the area. It’s as soon as I leave that he begins barking. And I do try and always deal with them in their Alpha Order, Sadie, Zeke, Wyatt.
    I feel a lot better knowing I’m not alone with these issues, that they are common to all us Apsos Moms. And yes, I did study the breed and know that they were sentinals and warning barkers. I expect that and don’t mind the initial barking. But I need a way to turn it off and keep visitors and dogs alike, safe and comfortable.
    I like the idea of putting them in crates and bringing them out one at a time. I think Kathy also told me that is what she does. My problem is usually worse when unexpected persons ring the bell. If it is a delivery person or some other person I can deal with on the porch, I just step outside. They can hear the barking and know exactly why I’m doing that. Sadie and Wyatt will usually calm down pretty quickly. And Zeke, if he knows and likes the person, will also. Zeke can meet some people for the first time, like or even “love” them, and bark only a couple times and act like they are long-lost friends.
    That has happened several times. He never forgets, either. Others, he is either indifferent to and barks for a while, sometimes a long while, but doesn’t challenge. But some people, enough that it can be a problem, he just plain doesn’t like and he challenges them with growling, scratching and “Tasmanian Devil” behaviour. And I have no idea who might set him off, if they have never been here before. Once I know, I can either a)put him up and just let him bark if I know they are coming, or b)never invite them over again. I’ve done both. And I respect his opinion. It’s just that I can’t be quite as canine in my dealings with persons he doesn’t like, ya know.

    As of right now, unless you all tell me different, I am planning on putting them into their crates tonight at lights out, kissing their furry heads, telling them all goodnight, and hoping for the best. But planning on a repeat of last night, by putting the offending continual barkers into the shop again if needed. I want them all to get used to being in their crates again, and sleeping in there from now on. I told them this morning that a paradigm shift had occurred in their lives. I regret taking the bed away from them, but I don’t want any more fighting on top of me, either. Maybe we’ll all sleep better, eventually.
    Am I damaging them in any way by doing this? They all seem fine this AM. Sleepy and hungry and thirsty, but fine.

    I will work with the information you have all given me; lots of good advice here.
    I’m already doing, have done and/or have forgotten some of what you all have told me. I know that this is just how Apsos are, and like I said before, I do love them all very much. They are sweet, intelligent, wonderful, “real” dogs, and I know that a lot of this behaviour is just a part of their nature. I’ll also try and find some “Anti-Icky Poo”!
    And, Mary, when I point my finger at Zeke and chastise him for anything, it makes him very, very mad! Big smile! He hates to be pointed at!
    And I was, at one point, trying to put Zeke’s barking on cue. That’s when I was using the “quiet” command. I had my poodles trained to bark on cue, both loudly and softly, for the same reasons, and could get them to be “quiet” also. Except when something really excited them, such as a horse and rider passing by, or another dog close by. Then it all goes out the window. Zeke is no different.

    Thanks for sharing all your situations, too.

  10. You sound so frustrated, Katy……….3 great dogs, with a snag in behavior. You’re maybe convincing me 3 lhasas might not be a great idea that I’ve been considering.

    My guys love their crates; my crates take up a third of my kitchen. Taz could do some landscaping in his, it’s so big. I accept this breed to be very territorial, proud. I’ve learned more than 1, you have to accept pack behavior is going to occur. You maybe do some of these things., or have tried and it doesn’t work with your dogs. My guys always get a kong with great treats in the crate. At trials, Roman is so reactive, stacking the crates is better, where he is up high. And I cover his crate. As someone approaches, I’ll say no bark. If I’m not right there, the crate sometimes levitates until me or someone quiets him.

    If I’ve had a bad day, don’t want it to go to the dogs, or there’s been bad behavior, they spend the night in the crate. They say dogs don’t remember , Taz never seems affected…Roman tends to hang his head if he’s had a night in the crate. I always feel bad. My bedroom window is right at Lhasa eye view at the foot of my bed……and I work nights sometimes…………any activity out the window creates 2 wild barking dogs. Like , Debby, I repeat my quiet command, sometimes now just have to say, HEY!, the activity stops. It’s taken severl months………but this morning, they didn’t bark at a service truck. And if I didn’t have a cat that destroys curtains, shades, yes , then I could cover the window. Guess I don’t want to pay for a bowel obstruction surgery for her…….her story is another eye roller……..

    I assume your guys are getting a good run, romp during the day………any good exercise done before bedtime? I know, your day is probably full.

    Oh, and my Taz gets quite irritated with me with any correction, finger pointing, or what ever. I can’t hardly touch his collar for a correction, so words and gestures have to work for him. He’s 13 in a few days, we’ve been through alot of learning together. And, Debby, so glad you mentioned naughty grooming behavior., ( I assumed you didn’t have any naughty dogs on the table !!) This dog has shown me teeth for 13 years everytime I groom his head……….I”ve tried everything. I get it done………..2 days ago, this proud, very arthritic Lhasa, showed me those teeth again for the head groom………….sorry, all I could do is laugh. I put the comb down, and laughed……..then we finished.

    And, Katy, when I’ve had enough, crated they go,……….I go to Caribou (coffee shop)…………you may be too tired and frustrated to see any humor. I just know I’m so glad I hung in there with all my issues, instead of sending Roman back………and so glad my dogs don’t have any bad habits like people do. And my trainer has beat this saying into us, behavior rewarded with be repeated……….

    So glad you shared your issues, think I’ve learned some things. Mary

  11. All dogs entering my house undergo crate training and sleep in crates at night. New fosters are assigned a crate in my bedroom and that’s where they sleep. If they fuss and/or bark, I put the crate next to my bed. Any noise will earn a sharp, sudden smack on the top of the crate accompanied by the command “quiet!!” While this is a PITA the first couple nights, they all learn “nite-nite” and willing go to their crates. I’ve had one dog that failed this regimen — she had severe crate anxiety and would literally go beserk in her crate. She got leashed to the nightstand, sleeping in a wicker bed — and went to her bed willingly to be tucked in with a blanket as the rest of the crew hopped in their crates.

    As a side note — hubby gets up some two hours before I do weekdays. The dogs don’t make a peep or even ask to be let out until I greet the day. The fosters learn this quickly as well. Tough love, Katy … and they won’t be “damaged” in the process.

    The “Tibetan door bells” are another matter, however! I use a squirt bottle and have learned to back them away from the door with body language. Once the guests are inside and introduced, they quickly settle down for the most part.

  12. Katy says:

    Thanks, you guys. This is all very helpful. The squirt bottle sounds very useful in lots of ways, including, perhaps, breaking up fights.
    We’ll give it another go tonight.
    And yes, Mary, I am feeling a bit frustrated. Probably because our adult kids and new grandbaby are coming in a few days, will be here for over a week, and we just don’t need snarling, fighting dogs to add to the mix right now. I am just hoping that this will all work out, and they will be friends, again. I’m certain that will happen. I just want it to happen right now!
    Best to you all! It’s very helpful, comforting and encouraging to have such a knowledgable community, willing to share.

  13. My last comment on this——-I was afraid to say I use a squirt bottle, everyone would think I’m really bad, all I have to do is pick up the bottle, and both of mine quiet, Taz does a little backwards moonwalk………..gives me a really dirty look. The shaker can didn’t work for my dogs. I think barking is a competitive nature for your attention., like a child interrupting adult conversation. I so wish I could use a squirt bottle on a few coworkers for excessive talking. With family, just try and keep the routine………..and as Debby said, it’s ok to keep your dogs safe from others……………and I love the phrase, Tibetan doorbells, gives me a new insight to their nature….this year, when we’ve had a guest, instead of being in a hurry and showing irritation to silence those bells, I’ve let them do the initial barking, then point and say quiet, and try and give a calmer attitude…seems like everyone is less stressed., they quiet down., and get their treat. It’s taken a bit of patience, for me that’s an ackomplishment.

  14. Katy says:

    We had a very peaceful evening and no fights last night on the bed. Ken wants the dogs to sleep on the bed, so we’ll go with that. Just, no fights allowed! Zeke “mad dogged” Wyatt once last night, I gave him a stern verbal and finger-pointing warning, and he backed down. I think, since most fights have occurred on the bed, that this is a territorial issue with Zeke. Poor Wyatt has a tiny corner of the bed and has even fallen off once. Maybe the answer is to put Wyatt in his crate at night, since he’s be best behaved of the three in his crate. But then, Zeke gets his way and doesn’t learn to share. Or is that too “human” a reaction on my part?

    We left them alone for over four hours today and no problems; they behaved well. And, I just put them all in their bedroom crates with promises of “wait in your crate for a treat” while I folded laundry on the bed, and that went very well. They do, in fact, all utilize their crates frequently with naps and chewing bones, etc. Zeke (and Sadie) just object to being “locked in”. I worked really hard for a time with Zeke when he was a pup to make him like his crate, and it is entirely my fault that I didn’t follow through with the training.
    I love the “Tibetan Doorbells”, too! That’s what they are. The squirt bottle sounds like it might just work, too. And the idea of crating them in the same room with guests.
    That might be just the ticket with the baby. When she was here before, they just wouldn’t leave her alone when she was on the floor, licking her ears, stealing her toys, etc. But they were very good with her. Zeke, especially, just loved her. Zeke also loves one daughter who’s coming very much, and likes the other. He’s never met the son-in-law, who is a big man, and Zeke seems very intimidated by big men and animals, so that will be a challenge. He’s a sweetheart of a guy and likes critters, so that should help.

    A good night’s sleep changes your whole attitude, and I’m certain this whole issue can be worked out. I’ve got lots of good advice apropos Apsos to choose from, now.
    I have the patience to do this. They have the smarts. We’ll work it out and all be the better for it. Happy Apsos all around!

  15. Katy says:

    Thank you, Debby! Just received the Patricia McConnell booklet on How to be the Leader of the Pack. I can already see its full of excellent and practical advice, some of which I’d known and some things new to me. All of it needful right now!
    Boys are still territorial over the bed and me; Wyatt spent the night in his crate next to the bed ater a “near altercation” (a most excellent dog!) and the night passed peacefully.
    I have been practicing some of these techniques (nothing in life is free, look away, and, instinctively, doing a type of “body block” or “take the space” thing, although Patricia’s advice and instruction is much more clear and comprehensive.
    We’ll get there. Already on the path. Thanks again.
    Oh yeah. We had baths and haircuts all around yesteday, including lots of time waiting in crates, and they did very, very well.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s