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Thread: Punishment or normal behaviour?

  1. #1

    Punishment or normal behaviour?

    Hello,

    I'm having a situation with my beautiful cattle dog, and i'm not sure if she's doing this on purpose to punish us (so to speak) or if its just normal behaviour.

    I've never had a dog before so i've got nothing to compare it to.

    She's an outside dog, however whenever we know we plan on being in the house for a long amount of time we let her in.

    However when we leave her outside, and we head to work, she has a tendency to chew on a few things we definitely don't want her to get at. And it's constant. My partner has had to change his trailer plug ten times because she keeps going through it.

    She has so many other things to chew, but she always goes to those ones.

    Also, i've noticed that if i keep her outside, due to guests coming over, or because i'm doing a big clean, she tends to sit near the door or at the large window just looking in for practically the entire time we're there.

    In saying that, I've noticed the more time she spends with us inside, or even out and about, the less 'destructive' she is.

    Is she doing it because we don't pay her enough attention, or is it cause she's just a pup (nearly 1 year old) or simply because she's bored?

    Any help on this would be greatly appreciated!!!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Waltham, MA, USA
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    35,967
    She's doing it because she is bored. As a cattle dog, she smart and has energy to spare. She needs a job! Or at least lots of things to do, how much exercise does she get every day? (A tired pup is a well-behaved pup.) How much training has she had?
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    California
    Posts
    11,551
    I agree with Karen. Try toys that make her work for treats. A Kong with kibble inside and peanut butter over the end. These things will only last a few minutes, but it will keep her brain busy.
    Maybe get her a friend so she's not all alone when you aren't home? I know I shouldn't say that, because dogs are not cheap. But that's part of the reason we got our second dog.

    Enroll in an agility class or flyball. Gives her a job and exercise.
    Our goal in life should be - to be as good a person as our dog thinks we are.

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Rhode Island; USA
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    16,690
    [QUOTE=lilrahme;2432746
    Also, i've noticed that if i keep her outside, due to guests coming over, or because i'm doing a big clean, she tends to sit near the door or at the large window just looking in for practically the entire time we're there.

    In saying that, I've noticed the more time she spends with us inside, or even out and about, the less 'destructive' she is.

    [/QUOTE]

    She sounds bored, and lonely, poor girl. Dogs are social creatures, they live in packs. YOU are her pack. Leaving her outside while you clean or entertain is like isolation to her. There's her pack having fun (she doesn't know cleaning is a chore!) and she is left out. It sounds like she doesn't have nearly enough time with you and your partner. She needs play time with each of you, as well as relax time. This doesn't mean she is indoors ALL the time the way my dogs are (mine are clearly indoor dogs, by breeding). You wouldn't treat a child like this, leaving them out and alone and once in a while letting them in, keeping them away from family and friends. Don't do it with her either. She is a member of your family!

    Taking up Agility or Flyball with her would be a great idea!

    As for chewing things, that too is because she is bored. If you have things you don't want her to chew, make sure they are out of her reach -- fence around them.

    Please do right by your precious doggie and spend quality time with her!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    St. Louis, Missouri
    Posts
    5,364
    Dogs don't do things to "punish" us; they do these things because they are bored, as previously stated. Do you exercise her? Frisbee, ball, swimming, etc, are fantastic ways to interact with her while tiring her out at the same time. Visit a local park or dog park! A tired dog is a good dog.

    If she is chewing things she isn't supposed to outside, maybe you should get a kennel or something to confine her from areas you don't want her to be?

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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    Happy Valley, Utah
    Posts
    12,554
    She's a puppy still....she's bored, bored dog = destructive dog. She's not doing it to punish you she's doing it because she's bored and lonely. I would get a dog run or something for her to stay in while you're gone so she doesn't destroy something that could harm her as well. Try getting a kong toy and filling it with peanut butter/treats and freezing it and giving that to her before you leave for work. But when you are home she should be allowed to come in the house whenever she wants, she's a family member, she shouldn't have to stay outside and be isolated from the family. The more time you interact with her the less bored/destructive she will be. Cattle dogs are herding dogs, herding dogs need jobs to do they are highly intelligent and bred for work. Try frisbee, agility, etc. something with her that will keep her busy and entertained.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Rhode Island; USA
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    16,690
    Quote Originally Posted by Jessika View Post
    Dogs don't do things to "punish" us; they do these things because they are bored, as previously stated. Do you exercise her? Frisbee, ball, swimming, etc, are fantastic ways to interact with her while tiring her out at the same time. Visit a local park or dog park! A tired dog is a good dog.

    If she is chewing things she isn't supposed to outside, maybe you should get a kennel or something to confine her from areas you don't want her to be?
    I would not suggest a kennel for this dog. The dog is already isolated, cutting down on its territory is going to back fire big time, and create even more issues. This is why I suggested fencing off the "bad" stuff instead.

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