Social distancing and Lock down. Has it caused any issues with your dogs?

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Dawnspell
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Social distancing and Lock down. Has it caused any issues with your dogs?

Post by Dawnspell »

Since last Saturday Guernsey has returned nearer to normal. No new covid-19 cases for 36 days and no active cases for 10 days. Shops are open, schools going back, groups of 30 can gather from different households. Still work from home if you can and maintain social distancing as much as possible, but a lot more people, cars etc out and about.

This week I've had to drive my son to college as they want them to use public transport as little as possible. Jaspers morning walk has been in town area, I've noticed he's suddenly become very woofy towards people. It then made me realise that the past few weeks as we've come out of lock down that in general he has been woofier/reactive when out on walks.

3 main things that seem to cause it
1, People just appearing from around a corner. I think this is just making him jump since he's got so used to everywhere being quiet.

2, People doing odd things like keep fit star jumps on the beach, parks and children running around. Dont blame him on those :))

3, New for this week, people walking straight towards him. I'm assuming hes got used to people crossing the roads away from each other and the exaggerated arc walking around each other to avoid contact.

It just goes to show that the first 14 weeks of a puppies life aren't the only important ones for socialisation, older puppies still need it too. The lack of socialisation for Jasper over the past few months has certainly had an impact. We haven't had anybody come into the house either due to OH not being well. Goodness knows how he'll react when that happens, hes going to go berserk :))

Anybody else noticed changes in their dogs ?
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Oscar 12345
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Re: Social distancing and Lock down. Has it caused any issues with your dogs?

Post by Oscar 12345 »

We've spent a lot more time with Otto in the home so I have noticed that he is even more clingy/needy with the strokes, no real changes other than that. I totally agree with your comments regarding socialisation. A lot is said about those early weeks but I have found that the need for socialisation never stops with a schnauzer. They don't seem to like anything that is different so you just have to keep exposing them to everything really. Little boys bending down and picking stones up off the floor for example or someone sitting on the edge of the pavement, or a bike that is lying on the ground, anything out of the ordinary provokes a stare and freeze until it is absorbed and we can move on. Fortunately there have been so many joggers, cyclists, humans exercising over the lockdown that he doesn't react to them at all. As for dogs, well as you know a lot of our training has been avoiding those dogs he might react to so the social distancing has been going on for some time with dogs. :))
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Schnauzer Sam
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Re: Social distancing and Lock down. Has it caused any issues with your dogs?

Post by Schnauzer Sam »

I've been working from home since end of March and although I can continue to do so, I'm being strongly encouraged to return on Monday. Edie, in particular, just loves to be with me and will take a little while to settle when I go out so I'm pleased that my eldest daughter is finished from college until her nursing course starts in September as Edie finds her to be a reasonable number 2 :) Both dogs will be glad to have continued company.

I've been walking them both three times a day, even during the covid lockdown (we were allowed out for 2 hours a day) but today I walked in to St Peter Port and Rosie was a little uneasy at so many people being around.

Thankfully things have improved between Edie and our neighbours. With me being at home working and the fantastic April and May we had, I've had the doors open and the dogs were free to come and go. After a few days of managing Edie, her persistent alarm barking calmed down and the neighbours were able to come and go without any interference.

I think I'll take a while to settle back to work away from Rosie and Edie as they've been with me 24/7.
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Dawnspell
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Location: Guernsey

Re: Social distancing and Lock down. Has it caused any issues with your dogs?

Post by Dawnspell »

Seems humans get woofed at but not pigs :)) Jasper hasn't seen a pig since last August until this morning when we met a whole load. Not a woof, in fact he was touching noses with one at one point =))

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Our first family dog
Barney - Pocketpark Biali Eyebright 6/2/13 - 8/3/19 Gone too soon
Motto for owners who groom their own Schnauzers -"Never mind it'll soon grow back"

Oscar 12345
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Re: Social distancing and Lock down. Has it caused any issues with your dogs?

Post by Oscar 12345 »

Ok that's easy then, put the humans in the pens and let the pigs free.... sorted.
Man cannot survive with wine alone...
we also need a schnauzer.

Carrie_Brosio
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Re: Social distancing and Lock down. Has it caused any issues with your dogs?

Post by Carrie_Brosio »

Hey everyone, I'm in Argentina (though from NY) and have a 4 month old mini schnauzer, Milo. Here, in Argentina, puppies cannot go outside till they've had their vaccines. So this past week was Milo's first week out and he has literally been barking at everything and everyone.

This chat is encouraging in that I realize I'm not alone, but honestly, it has been very stressful for both my husband and me. We love him but it is exhausting and embarrassing.

Will he get better??
Last edited by Carrie_Brosio on 10 Oct 2020, 13:22, edited 1 time in total.

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zeta1454
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Re: Social distancing and Lock down. Has it caused any issues with your dogs?

Post by zeta1454 »

Hi Carrie, you are definitely not alone in trying to cope with a barking miniature schnauzer puppy! Mini schnauzers are vocal dogs to start with and they are quick to bark from excitement, anxiety or warning of strangers both human and dogs. Confining puppies indoors until they are several months old will make this more likely as they have passed the best ‘socialisation’ period for introducing them to new experiences in the outside world and many people are finding this a problem with the lockdown restrictions.

There are a couple of links here which may give some information that will help. One is from a clicker training website and there are other articles to link to from that page as well regarding barking and how to manage it:

https://www.clickertraining.com/node/3968

Using a clicker can really help when trying to improve focus in your dog to concentrate on you, to distract and signal reward for the desired reaction from your dog.

The other link is to the Puppy Culture site which has a radio interview with Jane Killion, founder of Puppy Culture, talking about puppies in the time of COVID-19 There is more on the interview than just this but the relevant section is about 15 minutes into the programme:

https://www.puppyculturestories.com/rea ... f56d4ced36

There are also some pointers to general activities that you can do at home to help accustom your puppy to different people and experiences on this link:

https://thebark.com/content/socializing ... 9-pandemic

Like many humans, our dogs are also experiencing stress at this time and it is especially hard for a young puppy. The first 12-18 months can often be challenging for new puppy families and the current situation across the world with social restrictions has made it much worse. Try to build a bond with Milo by doing as many fun activities and training at home, concentrating on getting his focus and attention even when there are exciting distractions. Until you can get and hold his attention, trying to divert him or modify his reactions outside the home will be almost impossible. It is not easy and will take time and patience but is really worth it to build a fulfilling and happy relationship with Milo for the years ahead :)
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Oscar 12345
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Joined: 02 May 2017, 11:28
First Name: Julie
Dog #1: Oscar RIP Sweety
is a: P/S Mini Dog
Born: 21 Dec 2002
Dog #2: Otto
is a: B/S Mini Dog
Born: 04 Jul 2017

Re: Social distancing and Lock down. Has it caused any issues with your dogs?

Post by Oscar 12345 »

Hi Carrie, to answer your question, yes it will get better. Leigh's advice is excellent and I would like to add some based on my own experience. Just a bit of background, Otto was a lunger at other dogs, he doesn't bark outside but when he was younger, the sight of a dog would make him freeze, then he would want to get to the dog and then he would want to aggressively lunge/snap at it. Every dog so I know how you feel when you say it is exhausting. I will give you one bit of reading advice and that is to read Janet Finlay's book The Other End of the Lead, many light bulb moments for me when I read that book. My own advice would be, regardless of how Milo is reacting, keep yourself calm, the lead loose, use soothing words and get the highest value treats that he loves. Never go out without your fabulous treat bag. Your boy needs lots of socialisation but, and this is really important, it has to be appropriate, it has to be on your terms in that he needs to be calm. Calm is your best friend and schnauzers when young tend not to be calm, they can be hyper, overstimulated and reactive, either barking or something else. Try walking him in areas where there aren't many distractions so that he can have a good old snifferoo, sniffing is calming, try throwing some treats on the ground to encourage the sniffing. Then plan your walks when you know there are going to be distractions, don't do too much at once because all the distractions add up to a over whelmed pup. If you can find somewhere to sit and watch from a distance, people coming and going, traffic, dogs then that is a really good way to expose your pup to the world. Finally, can you arrange puppy play dates with siblings. Something which I did not do will enough was to arrange for appropriate puppy playing, So socialisation is absolutely key and never too late, plan as much as you can and try not to overwhelm. Do you very best to make every experience positive and talk to him and reassure constantly. If you take the time and are patient there is no reason why you can't have a well adjusted young dog that is well socialised. Keep asking the questions if you have any and the very best of luck with your lovely little boy.
Man cannot survive with wine alone...
we also need a schnauzer.

Carrie_Brosio
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First Name: Carrie
Dog #1: Milo
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Born: 13 Jun 2020

Re: Social distancing and Lock down. Has it caused any issues with your dogs?

Post by Carrie_Brosio »

Thank you sooo much, Leigh and Julie! I'm going to check out all the links now. And the advise is super helpful. I definitely see a difference from the first day to now - he's still barking at people and dogs, but a little bit less! Julie, I love the idea of sitting somewhere for him to observe and sniff. I'm going to try that today!! :)

Thanks again!





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