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STARLASUE's Photo STARLASUE Posts: 1,505
3/17/10 5:42 P

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The pepper flakes keep Maggie out of the dropped seed AND bird droppings. Neither of which are probably good for her. :-)

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Sue

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DTCELLO's Photo DTCELLO Posts: 584
3/17/10 4:17 P

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Hi all,
thank you, Mary and Sue....I have heard from someone on another group that they put that decorated plastic sticky vinyl stuff on their windows so the dog would not be able to see the squirrels. My problem with putting up curtains (I have none) or other visual barriers, is that I LOVE looking out at the woods behind the house and all of the wildlife. I considered this suggestion overnight, and have decided it will not work for me.

However, the training issues struck home with me. My problem is that he has "learned" to do this destructive behavior because I am not always with him when he does this, and if I run into the kitchen when he has already started, it is too late.

I guess I will have to do what I did with my schnauzer when she was not potty trained....I will have to put him on a leash and keep him tied to my waist (a belt run through the leash loop) to keep my hands free for housework, and so that I can correct him as soon as he begins the behavior.

I have already taught him not to bark in the yard, with a combination of shock collar and commands. (I had to use the collar because my neighbor threatened my dogs because of barking and I had to extinguish barking immediately) Kurz will, however, bark when inside the house, and I actually want him to, because I like his "watch dog" behavior. (I take off the collar when he is inside) NO one is going to enter my door when an 80 pound standard poodle is barking wildly from inside the house!

By the way, he does bark when a person he does not know approaches the house or yard and he is outside. But, he will mind me very well when I am outside with him in the yard, and tell him not to bark. And, since my neighbor has been a problem, he is very rarely left outside for more than a few minutes, to get his business done.

I appreciate all the help, and will begin training him as soon as I get the bird feeders full again.

I will also use the hot pepper flake idea...AWESOME!!! Hopefully, this will discourage the squirrels. I have a question about this, however, won't the hot pepper flakes hurt the dogs? They sometimes eat the bird seed that falls onto the deck....or are they eating bird doo? YUCK!

By the way, an alternative feeder does not work to keep all the squirrels away from the deck. I just get MORE of them!!!

Thanks, everyone! emoticon emoticon emoticon

Edited by: DTCELLO at: 3/17/2010 (16:19)
Dena T.


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MHNGJR's Photo MHNGJR Posts: 1,674
3/17/10 3:45 P

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emoticon DTCELLO, I have a standard poodle also but I'm not so good with the training issues. Kohl behaves well (when he wants to :))
I enjoyed reading the other responses so thanks for the question.
Anyway, I'm new to the team also. Hope to see you around.
Heather and Kohl

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AQUAJANE's Photo AQUAJANE Posts: 1,365
3/17/10 11:01 A

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Welcome, DTCELLO! I appreciate your dilemma and liked Sue's suggestions. My current dog, Tara, isn't generally a squirrel chaser, or barker (except at me when I return--showing who's the boss LOL:)) IMHO, some dogs are more excited by squirrels than others, and age might matter too. And some squirrels seem to enjoy teasing dogs. My late toy poodle went crazy at one park where the squirrels love waiting for a dog to chase them, then running up a tree. Tara and my late senior poodle almost always ignored them.

As for feeders, last summer I didn't have a backyard squirrel (tomato) problem for the first time in years. Either the squirrel population was low because of a poor acorn drop the previous fall, or they got frustrated by my "squirrel proof" feeder. It might be what Mary has as well--it that clamps down and cuts off the seed supply when too much weight rests on the front rail/bar. That works much better than the prior baffles on top and below the feeder, which athletic squirrels accessed by jumping from the side fence.

Again, emoticon to you and your poodle! I look forward to hearing from you both.

Edited by: AQUAJANE at: 3/17/2010 (11:02)
MARY1313's Photo MARY1313 Posts: 5,448
3/16/10 11:11 P

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Sue is soo right! Since I have never had a problem in this area, I would go with what sue says as she is really good at the training!

Another thing, if you put a squirrel feeder out there and feed the squirrels, maybe they will stay away from the bird seed. and the red pepper flakes is a true thing as I use it too. I also got a bird feeder that when the birds light on the rail/lever they can feed but when it is a squirrel, they are too heavy and they push the lever down which closes off the availability of the seed.

Mary in Alabama

If I can quit smoking, I can lose weight!

"How beautiful a day can be
When kindness touches it!" - George Elliston


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STARLASUE's Photo STARLASUE Posts: 1,505
3/16/10 9:37 P

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Welcome

Mary has some good tips.

Behaviorally, There are two different ways to approach it. Both will take time and patience on your part. Game hunting is a strong trait in poodles.

One is to stop him as he begins to start the behavior. Rather than yell, get between him and the door and make him 'give space'. This is a technique advocated by Cesar Milan. And to be even more effective, make sure he has been exercised and is in a good calm place (& tired) before you start the training.

The other is to have a 'gold' treat. Something he really likes (turkey, chicken, etc) and use it to distract him. Unless he stops sits, waits, and looks at YOU, he does not get the treat. Timing is everything so he has to get the treat as soon as he does what you want. He may again go for the squirrel but hold the treat under his nose until you have his attention again. Engage his nose and eyes rather than a lot of talking on your part. And when he does good when first doing this don't give verbal praise as that tends to re-excite them. As he learns and isn't lunging and barking anymore, you can use 'good boy' in a calm not excited voice.

Both techniques are good ones and a combination may be effective, but the biggest thing is he is not respecting you as pack leader when you tell him not to do that. You have to reestablish that alpha position and impress upon him that he is not allowed to be destructive.

I have been guilty of trying to reason with my pups in the past to no avail. With our current pup, we work very hard on establishing the boundaries. She and we are all happier for it and we seldom have any misbehavior. As a pack animal she understands this is our home and she needs to follow pack rules. (MY home actually as I am alpha. hehehehe

We have a screened in patio and every spring we need to reinforce to Maggie that she can't charge the squirrels and rabbits in the yard (which may mean breaking through the screen) nor can she bark at them. We use the down, settle, wait in a firm, calm voice. If that isn't working we back her up. If that doesn't work she must go inside (on her own power, we do not drag her in).

If your pup in naturally alpha, you will have a more difficult time training him but it can be done.

Also, maybe you can discourage the squirrels from that area. Add red pepper flakes to the bird seed. The squirrels hate it and the birds love it. Squirrels don't hang out at the feeders where I have it added to the seed.

With patience and repetitive training you can do it. Good luck.



Edited by: STARLASUE at: 3/16/2010 (21:40)
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Sue

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I am happy, healthy, slender and prosperous.




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MARY1313's Photo MARY1313 Posts: 5,448
3/16/10 8:37 P

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Welcome! I am glad you joined here. there are several standard owners here and I know they will be able to help you. I just have a teacup. but I had a large dog before and I used a squirt bottle set on stream and squirted her in the face and comanded that she stop and down! in a very loud voice. get between her and the door. Also, You cuold put some clear hard plastic, they sell it at home depot or lowe's and paint something decorative like flowers or get stencils from Hobby Lobby. put the painted side to the wall. it will still show through and the dog can't damage it.

That's just my two cents worth.

Mary in Alabama

Mary in Alabama

If I can quit smoking, I can lose weight!

"How beautiful a day can be
When kindness touches it!" - George Elliston


♥ .* ) ..*) -::-
(. ;..♥ Sprinkling you ♥.*)
♥.*-::-. ;..♥ -::-
♥ .* ) .with a little♥.*)
♥.*-::-. ;..♥ -::-
southern hospitality.*) -::- ♥.*-::-. ;..♥ -::-
(. ;..♥ and positive pixie dust♥.*) <


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DTCELLO's Photo DTCELLO Posts: 584
3/16/10 8:16 P

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My Blog from today....I am listing the questions here also, to make sure I do not miss anyone. I just joined this group this minute. Hi everyone!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

We have a deck on back that is under the trees and on the north side of the house. I used to keep bird-feeders hanging from the railing. Of course the squirrels think the food is just for them and come and make a mess spilling it all over the deck. This gets my standard poodle very excited and he jumps up onto the back door (glass), barking and scratching to get out. As a result, we have some claw marks in the paint on the wall next to the door. Bummer.

If I move the feeders off of the deck, I will no longer be able to see the birds coming to eat, as our lot slopes down dramatically, and any feeders in the yard would be only seen from the basement. I am rarely in the basement.

I have not been filling the feeders for the past two months because he got so crazy, and because of the paint damage. I would like to begin filling them again, but do not want the damage to my house that the dog creates. I would like to paint my walls and not have to worry. I have tried correcting him by clapping and saying "no". loudly, but he is too excited to pay attention. I have also gone over and grabbed his collar and said "quiet" and "don't jump" (he knows those commands for the front door and usually obeys them) and taken him into "time out" in his room to lie down and calm down. He has not unlearned this behavior. There is no one local I can call....I have checked.

Does anyone know of a solution to this problem? I would appreciate any advice. thanks.

How can I train my dog to not jump on the door and wall when he sees a squirrel?

Dena T.


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