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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Cheerio you wrote below in the "Big Scare" thread that you do work poison proofing dogs. That topic is of great interest here in Portland, Oregon because we have the dubious distinction of having a mass murderer on the loose. Some of you in the states may have even seen this on TV as it made the national news.

Here in town there is kind of an off leash war in our local parks. Dog owners are jumping up and down screaming for more off leash dog park areas and the city is slow slow slow to respond to the request. Many owners are just letting their dogs off lead in all the parks particularly Laurelhurst park. As usual a few bad apples (dog owners) have not been in control of their dogs so people who are not dog lovers have been botherd by dogs.

Anyway, some freak of nature decided that the solution was to put out sausages laced with Paraquat (sp?) a strong herbacide that burns the dogs mouth and throat when they eat the poisoned meat. At least 12 dogs were poisoned. A majority of those dogs died, some quickly, some had to be put down after several days of suffering.

Cheerio, tell us more about your poison proofing techniques please.
 

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Nice seeing you back RR!
There are several method of poison proofing your dog. The most common in North America seems to be the one which requires someone to give a treat to your dog, and as the dog opens its mouth, the owner hit him on the nose. You then ask the person to offer the same treat but as he gives the treat, says the dog's name. As the dog takes the treat, he receives prays. Please, I am beging you, DO NOT use this method. There is nothing more painful for a dog than to be hit on the nose, especially for a hound. Furthermore, this method is far from being full proof as it is easy for any stranger to inquire as to the name of your dog, and also because it does not really protect your dog (despites what the advocates of this method says) from picking up a poison piece of meat.
Among the diverse methods, the one I prefer is the following:
You put a piece of electrical wire hooked up to a farmer's battery, on the ground, cover it with a little dirt. Take some THICK pieces of FRESH meat (the meat must be humid), and press them against the line, here and there. Wait for your dog to go get it. As long as the meat stays on the ground, it retains no charge, but as soon as the dog lifts it, he will receive a shock. The amount of the shock is very minimal,(I am sure that many of you as a child have put their hand on a farmer's electrical fence, so you know exactly what I mean) but it is sufficient to surprise the dog who will drop the meat.
You will want to repeat this exercise for 3 to 4 days, each time putting the line in a different area of the yard. Some people, conserned that their dog would be poison in his own yard, likes to put a line all around the back yard. But since what you are aiming to achieve is a dog who will never pick up or accept food from anyone or anywhere, you might as well place the line totally randomly.
Once you have done that for 4 days (usually, the dog will no longer pick up the meat by day 3 and definitely day 4), wait for a week, and redo the exercise. Your dog should now be poison proof.
I like this method for 5 reasons:
1- you do not need the help of anyone
2- the material is very inexpensive (the battery is between $40 and $60)
3- the dog although he may not like it, does not get hurt.
4- the negative reinforcement is NOT associated to the owner who suppose to love and protect his dog and not to hurt him
5- once achieve, the result is permanent.
I should also add that it is a great help in the training to make sure that your dog is never fed outside his bowl unless used as a training tool. If you want to give him a cooky, you should try to remember to put him in its bowl first.

Good luck
 

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Cheerio,

I have a serious problem with Lilly eating other dogs poop. It's almost impossible for me to stop her. I rarely let her off the lead anymore because of this and even when she's on the lead she still does it because there is so much of it around and she's so quick. The trainer where I used to take the girls for obediance has a e-collar that she trains people to use then lets them borrow it for a week. Do you think this would be a good idea as it would work in much the same way as the farmers battery idea. The only thing is I've always had a problem with the thought of using such devices, aren't they cruel?

I've tried the squirt bottle but she isn't bothered by being squirted in the face with water, infact I think she likes it (strange dog). Apart from putting a muzzle on her I can't think of any other solution.

Hubby tells me not to worry about it because it doesn't seem to upset her tummy so just let her do it
He said it's because I've made such a big thing about it that she does it all the more!!

He's probably right, so what do I do, just ignore her and hope she grows tired of it.



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Jennifer, Lilly & Rosa
 

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Jennifer, I am afraid that I am not in favour of e-collars, unless strictly used under the expertise of a good trainer and for very serious negative behaviours only.
Poop eating, called Coprophagia, is very common in dogs, especially puppies and adults during the winter months. Once believed to be attributed to some type of nutritional defficiency, the latest researches suggest that it is a needed behaviour in canine (including fox, wolves, coyotes...who also engage in this apparently delightful practice)in order to allow the production of a certain digestive enzym. There are more and more dogs with sever food allergies, "delicate stomach" or picky eating habits, and researchers have found a definite corollation between these digestive problems and the lack or absence of this enzym.
Having said that, there are a few health conditions which seem to provoke this compulsive habit: malabsorbsion syndrome, Cushing's Syndrome, diabetes, hypothyroidism, intestinal parasites, and also in dogs under Corticosteroid therapy. These however are extremely rare cases.
Usually my advise is to turn your head the other way, and to teach your dog that the proper order of thing is "1- kiss me and 2- go indulge"... However, when it comes to eating poops from unknown dogs, it is a problem. In SAR, because on occasion when we work in a park or in alleys behind homes, dogs tend to wonder off from their work smelling either garbage cans or dog's pees, we train the command "Leave it". I think this would be very helpful to your situation.
For this, you use the same method as the healing method.
1- Put your dog on leash and take him where you know other dogs visit.
2- As soon as he goes towards a poop, wait until he just about touches it, turn around yanking the leash,and tell him "Leave it". Once he is back beside you, bate him.
Usually, they learn pretty fast to come to you and ask for their treat as soon as they sniff or see a poop. And eventually, you will be able to tell him, as soon as YOU see a poop or realise that he is smelling something, to "Leave it" and all will be done.
Good luck
 

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RR, I just heard from a neighbor the other day about the mass murderer out there!! I think those "freaks of nature", as you so aptly put it, should be drawn and quartered. After they're fed their own poisoned meat!!
I hope they catch this pervert soon!! Be safe.
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
"Leave it" and "Give" are great commands.

Also, try a tablespoon or less of vinegar in the water bottle. Your pup will smell like Easter eggs for a little while, but it has more of an impact than just water. They associate the unpleaseant smell with the bad behavior (as opposed to just regular water which you provide them with to drink all the time).

Now we just have to show Milo the water bottle, which I think he would love to kill, and he stops his behavior.
 

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Cheerio, thanks for your help. I was guessing that you were gonna say not to use the e-collar and I'm glad you did really 'cause I'm not at all keen on the idea.

Lilly does know the "leave it" command as I taught her when she was young and have regularly re-inforced it. She will leave non-edible things she finds on the ground and will leave a toy that I throw when we play fetch but you can forget it if there's dog poop or food around. If I happen to see the poop before she does and I say it straight away she will leave it, and come right to my side for a treat. If she sees it first she just pounces on it and in one second it's gone.

It's difficult when walking two dogs at the same time to keep an eye on them both. I think I'll shall have to start walking them separately for a while and really make Lilly's walk a proper training session without the distraction of Rosa.

If only the people where I live picked up their dogs poop I wouldn't have a problem at all


Wendy, I might try putting some vinegar in the water bottle, thanx, but I am baffled as to why she would smell like an easter egg


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Jennifer, Lilly & Rosa

[This message has been edited by Jennifer (edited 08-12-2003).]
 

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Oh, Oh, I can answer that!! At Easter, lots of us use Paas easter egg dyd. The package contains these little tablets of different colors, which you dissolve each in a glass containing water and vinegar. Whenever I clean my coffeemaker, using water and vinegar, my kids used to ask me if I was making Easter eggs!!
 

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Thanx Genie, My DH has described to me in great detail about what you do with the eggs. Over here when we refer to easter eggs we just mean the chocolate ones that you buy...you can imagine now why I was so confused about them smelling of vinegar


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Jennifer, Lilly & Rosa
 
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