Teaching an old dog a new trick

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raccoon city
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Teaching an old dog a new trick

I have a Cardigan Welsh Corgi named Charlie.

He's eleven years old.

Here's a recent photo of him:

charlie_77th_bday

He doesn't really know any tricks, but my sister has taught him to do one thing that might be against his nature.

She has taught him to kill mice and rats even though he is very friendly otherwise.

Corgis are herding dogs, not terriers, so he's not really a natural at it.

We have Desert Pocket Mice and Desert Pack Rats around here, and we consider them to be vermin.

Every time he kills a rodent he gets a treat, so he's very enthusiastic about it.

Most of the rodents that he gets are ones that get caught in a "humane" trap.

I know it's not very humane to just kill rodents, but that's the breaks.

Yesterday we had a rather large rat in the living room, and Charlie tried to get it, but he didn't get lucky.

Hopefully the rat decided to leave as it is not welcome here.

Has anyone else taught their pet something strange?

Lightbringer
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Joel The Cat (stray) knows when I take my car to work, and about the time I’m coming home he parks himself on my stoop waiting for food.

Never saw him wearing a watch, so…

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Couchmaster
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I would have figured Charlie was a natural at killing rodentia. Good dog! Looks like a keeper and a sweet family member.

Muto
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My friend Jimmy has a dog that looks like yours and it is a great dog and loyal companion.
Had a black lab once that would nail rat before the cat would see them.
One time squirrel got in and the cat wanted nothing to do with it but that lab nailed it at lightning speed.
Miss that dog.

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manithree
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Our Border Collie mix rescue can close the back door on command. There’s an old jump rope tied to the doorknob, but, hey, without opposable thumbs, he needs a little help.

Several of his other tricks are good for laughs, and I think putting the treat on his nose and making him wait to flip it off and catch it in his mouth until I tell him to is even more impressive. Border Collies live to learn new tricks.

Lightbringer
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manithree wrote:
Border Collies live to learn new tricks.

I used to drive one crazy with the “Got your nose!” bit.

He could never figure it out.

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jeff51
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Many years ago I had a girlfriend who owned a Belgian Shepard (?).
A gorgeous black long hair. He was amazingly well trained.
He did the open the fridge and get can of pop trick.
He needed a rope on the handle.
He always brought a Coke or Pepsi – Never a beer.

He would leave people food alone – if you told him to.
One Thanksgiving we had a great dinner.
In the kitchen were the remains of the Turkey.
He got the thing off the counter and he and the Cat had a really good time.
His look said – Err – sorry – But you didn;t say not to.
The Cat just ignored us.

That same cat taught himself to open doors with lever handles for door knobs.
He also use to take a running jump and land in a hanging wicker chair.
It would swing back an forth and make a unique noise.
He never did it when anyone was in the room.
Made us nuts until we figured out what the noise was.
Girlfriend move away. I had that cat for 21.5 years.
I still miss him.

Then there is this….

All the Best,
Jeff

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https://imgur.com/s8bPiLh

we taught the cat to sit in a chair at the table, since he just walks across the eating and food surfaces as he pleases. if he behaves he gets a treat. so far so good. i’ve taught him to stand on his back legs and walk like a human.

never fear shadows…it means a light shines nearby

Deputy Dog
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I’ve trained dogs to do many things, but that usually means modifying natural behavior. That’s probably happened to your dog. All dogs will naturally have the drive to chase pray, killing small rodents is natural behavior.

I’ve trained two to find guns and ammo.

raccoon city
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UPDATE:

There was a foul smell in our kitchen.

My entire family could smell it, but my sense of smell isn't that great (luckily) so I didn't smell it.

At first we thought it was the dirty dishes in the sink.

Nope.

It turned out to be the rat!

It crawled under one of our refrigerators and passed away.

The dog didn't get to chew it up, but the rat may have had a heart attack.

Honestly, we don't know why it died, but we are glad that this rather large rodent is out of our house now.

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Hope it hadn’t jumped a ship from China. (or a package from there)

xfenry
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I have a beagle named Raphael and he has a little weakness. He loves to catch and kill squirrels, even though I didn't teach him that. As soon as I make the sound that squirrels make, he starts looking for her. But I haven't tried to teach her such cruel games at all. We've once had a squirrel in the attic and I've been very afraid that my Raphael would make a bloody scene from a horror movie. I haven't wanted to clean the whole house after that. I haven't been able to run it on my own, so I've written https://treasure-coast.aaacwildliferemoval.com/squirrel-removal. They've responded very quickly to my request and caught the squirrel in just one hour. But only my Raphael have been dissatisfied with their service.

turkeydance
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“Has anyone else taught their pet something strange?”

no.
they do the strange
on their own time.

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We have a cat that my daughter taught to play fetch and return a beauty blender to your hand for another throw. The cat enjoys it.

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Mraz
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“Has anyone else taught their pet something strange?”

My standard schnauzer does NOT hunt/kill mice, rats, squirrels, birds and cats. That is strange Smile

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Mraz wrote:
“Has anyone else taught their pet something strange?”

My standard schnauzer does NOT hunt/kill mice, rats, squirrels, birds and cats. That is strange Smile

Mine does chase away and hunt anything that does not belong in our garden (according to the dog). Outside she is more relaxed. I think it has something to do with nature AND nurture. But she can catch a tennisball at any speed and angle. A previous Schnauzer of mine jumped into the bushes for apparently no reason, and returned a few hours later totally covered in mud, etc. But that one was not inprinted as “social” by the breeder as the one I have now. I’ve had one or more Schauzers since winter 87/88 and I think this one will be our last (active) dog

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Dirty Water Guy
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We have an 11 YO rodent hunter dog named Charlie also, so well loved as you can tell by my avatar. His kill ratio is diminished as he ages, but man does he try, he’s just slowing down a bit.He’s a lab-pit mix, best friendly doggo ever.

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Name: Flecki (something like patches in english). He’s 13, german spitz mix, and knows the meaning of ‘left’ and ‘right’. He dislikes simple commands, instead he prefers whole sentences. Of course he’s a mice killer and loves to dig for them (and moles, unfortunately).

Survived a ruptured spleen (tumor) earlier this year, has a broken shoulder since his early years, and lots of food allergies. Hates vets. Hope he survives me, but that’s unlikely.

The only chance to take a good photo is when he’s too tired to either inspect the cam or just go away. He learns new things as (in his opinion) necessary. Will see him again tomorrow Smile .

Smile, you cannot kill them all.

Mraz
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Henk4U2 wrote:
Mine does chase away and hunt anything that does not belong in our garden (according to the dog). Outside she is more relaxed. I think it has something to do with nature AND nurture. But she can catch a tennisball at any speed and angle. A previous Schnauzer of mine jumped into the bushes for apparently no reason, and returned a few hours later totally covered in mud, etc. But that one was not inprinted as “social” by the breeder as the one I have now. I’ve had one or more Schauzers since winter 87/88 and I think this one will be our last (active) dog

Mine barks and talks (mumbles) all the time but is the most playful and social dog ever. Even around agressive dogs he just tries to play with them and never engages in conflict. He’s almost never on a leash, know to stop at crossings and walks near me to the park or forrest. Then he dissapears only to be found playing with kids or searching for the perfect stick (that I need to throw a bazillion times). Really a wonderfull pet.

He also hates swimming. Playing in the lake is OK as long as his paws are touching the bottom but swimming is a big NO NO.

Henk4U2
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Mraz wrote:
Henk4U2 wrote:
Mine does chase away and hunt anything that does not belong in our garden (according to the dog). Outside she is more relaxed. I think it has something to do with nature AND nurture. But she can catch a tennisball at any speed and angle. A previous Schnauzer of mine jumped into the bushes for apparently no reason, and returned a few hours later totally covered in mud, etc. But that one was not inprinted as “social” by the breeder as the one I have now. I’ve had one or more Schauzers since winter 87/88 and I think this one will be our last (active) dog

Mine barks and talks (mumbles) all the time but is the most playful and social dog ever. Even around agressive dogs he just tries to play with them and never engages in conflict. He’s almost never on a leash, know to stop at crossings and walks near me to the park or forrest. Then he dissapears only to be found playing with kids or searching for the perfect stick (that I need to throw a bazillion times). Really a wonderfull pet.

He also hates swimming. Playing in the lake is OK as long as his paws are touching the bottom but swimming is a big NO NO.

In pre-COVID times we use to go to the sea with our dog(s). Big fun, running after thrown stick’s etc. But when the wave pulls back she only goes after the stick until the water comes to her belly, and then stops. No matter what we try to lure her. So we all urge my wife to go in and fetch the stick. And she does, most of the time.
All of my Schnauzers were non-swimmers. Well they can, if surviving is on the menu, but not voluntarily. We walked along a deep ditch totally covered in duckweed. And my dog jumped in, thinking is was moss…. Ever heard of the frase “walking on water”? Well, thats how fast she came out.
My dog used to be rather ADHD, and she is addressed for that a few times by other dogs. So now she is quite reserved in getting to know other dogs. With one exception: other Schauzers: from miniature to giant. Don’t know if they have a distinctive wiggle or something like that, but it is very touching to see how they happily meet and greet.

You are a flashaholic if you are forced to come out of the closet, to make room for more flashlights.

Mraz
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Tref (my SS) “voluntarily” swam few times, two when he jumped out of my canu because there were dogs on the shore and rest when chasing sticks went terribly wrong. Few days ago he got a limber tail after swimming, first time I ever heard of that syndrome.

While he loves all dogs he makes friends with other schnauzers super fast. Must be something distinctive or instinctive.

They really are a special breed, so much character in 20 kilograms of pure energy.

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Bengal my 3-year old housecat protects me from spiders. He sees me going after them with a broom all the time. My wife missed one the other day which freaked me out. He leaped into action and kept his paw on it until my wife got rid of it. Getting bitten by a black widow at 8, and being attacked by a rather muscular 2” one at 10 and watching my cousin’s skin dissolved by a brown recluse puts me off of them as pets

never fear shadows…it means a light shines nearby

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Not really unnatural for a dog…..but many years ago I had a dog named Sig that was a small german shepherd mix.

We lived with 2 roommates and a couple times a week we’d buy a 12 pack of beer and share it (not with the dog).

Sig learned to “kill” the box when we were done with the beer. She would attack the box like it was her mortal enemy. At random times during the destruction of the box I’d yell “STOP” and she would instantly sit and stare at me until I said “KILL” again. She didn’t get the treat a until the box was flattened (no corner left).

That was pretty entertaining after a few beers, and she learned that aggression was ok – only when I said so.