Acts different with wife

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Rob_103's picture
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Joined: 2013-02-18

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My dobe acts different with my wife when I'm not around. I can walk with him in a perfect heel position and keep him calm without any problems. When my wife takes him for a walk he is really hyper and not to crazy but she doesn't feel in full control. Something recent that happened was her entering an elevator after a walk. He sat down doing everything right and a women and child walked in scared at the site of him. My wife was explaining he is friendly nothing to worry about and he barked at the women. Now I know people may say he can sense the fear but this is the issue. Im in korea and big dogs are not something that people are used to seeing. I can get evicted from the building for people complaining that they are scared. He will never act like that with me but he tries to get over on my wife. I used a choke collar in training with him and my wife uses it when she is out to maintain control. What are some things she may be able to do to have a little more control? Thanks in advance.

Tannaidhe's picture
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Joined: 2013-02-25

I found that one of our biggest issues to overcome was that Jess would 'ask nicely' for Koko to do things...  which of course he -completely- ignored and was getting impossible for Jess to handle.  I (and our trainer as well) spent a little time training Jess instead of Koko haha...  to really 'bark' out the commands.  They are commands, not requests.  It made ALL the difference in the world and now Koko listens to Jess even better than me!  XD 

 

This may or may not be the problem in your case, but I would wager it is.  It's usually the difference in cases like this in my experience...  the wife (or not-as-used-to-dogs partner) will 'ask' the dog for respect instead of 'demanding' it.  Now, don't get me wrong.  I don't mean you should get mean or violent and certainly never try to physically force anything.  It's all about the attitude, not actions.

 

Also, mastering the art of redirection, though difficult, is really important.  For instance, when he started to bark at the woman - ideally just before he actually barked, but when she saw that posture starting - give a correction in a firm tone, then command him to do something, such a sit or down.  And again something else, and again if necessary, whatever it takes to keep his attention on her instead of the woman.

Max's Dad's picture
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Joined: 2013-01-16

Tannaidhe said it best. Max listens to me as soon as I tell him to do something, but when my fiance tries, he will blow it off. She'll let him out, but won't come in when she says. Then I bark my command, and he's inside real quick.

Now, she'll raise her voice, but he also will stay away when you're angry. So, your wife needs to not sound angry, but to have a command in her voice (something I'm still trying to teach my fiance), and then the results will be amazing to you.

As for the barking, I don't know what to tell you. I am lucky, and have a Doberman who doesn't bark unless absolutely necessary. 

emtowns's picture
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Joined: 2013-09-23

Hey Rob - we are experiencing something slightly similar with the barking. Bandit loves to bark, and will bark at anyone and anything that he can if I give him half of a chance to do so. Our trainer recommended working on obedience training with him in all sorts of different places (your wife should definitely do this with him because obedience work builds respect and it sounds like he is having trouble respecting her) I am working on this with my dog, as he is having trouble respecting me when we are outside. Remind her that she needs to be firm, but calm and positive. Tannaidhe is right on about rediricting - redirect the energy and focus to something completely different like a command and make sure she has plenty of high value treats to give to him when he listens in a situation like that!

Moravik's picture
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Joined: 2013-06-08

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i have th same thing with my dog kurckak ( he just turned a year yesterday!) he will only take orders from me and will only walk with me. My girlfriend cant take him for a walk at all or give him commands. he will just blow her off.

Rob_103's picture
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Joined: 2013-02-18

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I told my wife when she tries to take control of the situation act as if your giving a order and no emotion involved. She has started and has seen a difference. I told her the tone can't be a yell, this was before I posted the question. She is now taking the things I say a little more serious. Thanks for all the response. I'm also going out with her and the dog and giving commands with her next to me and she takes over and starts giving commands. He is already understanding that we are the ones in control not just me.

Tannaidhe's picture
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Joined: 2013-02-25

Awesome to hear, Rob!  Best of luck to all three of you, I am sure he will be a much better canine citizen for the extra work  >^.^<

talisin's picture
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Joined: 2011-02-25

I call the tone the "mom voice" it's the one that says I mean business without yelling, it's that one that we all knew meant "do it again and you will pay the consequences" but it was said so calmly that it scared you as to whether or not she would carry through, that's what I use with mine and they listen to me but not my husband, he let's them do things and gives up has no patience with them, I give them one command and I wait.... if they won't do it I wait... I will out wait them and they know that, and if they don't come on first call I GO get them and we walk back together that only takes once or twice before they come when they are called, it's like raising children only these children don't grow up so it's a constant reinforcement of the rules.

terrynbella's picture
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Joined: 2014-04-08

Yes..I found out with experience! our dobie, 5 months old, listened to my husband and not me. With training ...I now use my " mom voice" ...offer redirection...saying " no" one time, before using a time out. Makes all the difference, avoiding the frustration I was feeling! My husband works 24 hour shifts, so our dobie always tries to be the alpha when he is gone....stubborn !