New foster Sophia need some advice

i have a new foster who ive named sophia she arrived october 30th.

she is a beautiful little tri who was bred by priscilla weeks of attallah in new hampshire

sophia is 4 years old

owners health issues caused sophia to be placed with brat

my understanding is that when not in the yard sophia was kept for the most part in a crate.

sophia has a few issues that im not sure how to handle
was hoping for some advice 🙂

when sophias breeder left her with me she howled off and on for several hours, seemed quite distressed.

when i put sophia in her crate she howls (why is it that both fosters i have had howl when left ? 🙂

she gives new meaning to the term "velcro dog"

when i walk from room to room she walks a little ahead of me and so close she bumps into my leg while we walk looking over her shoulder every couple of steps to make sure im still there
i am constantly tripping over her

ive stopped changing my direction when walking to keep from walking into her and even the fact that i now walk right into her doesnt stop her from doing this.

she is food obsessed

open the fridge her head is in it
open a cupboard door her head is in it
ive tried closing them on her gently enough not to hurt her but to give her the idea its not a good idea to do this and she doesnt get it.

try to put a pill in my mouth and she has her nose on my fingers trying to see what i have

i push her away and she comes right back

im really getting tired of constantly being bumped by a cold wet nose looking for food

a trace of butter or something on my pants? shes licking them
stand at the counter to cook? she sits behind me leaning on my legs
ive almost tripped over her and fallen on the hot wood stove twice now while getting wood to put in the stove

if im sitting down she wants to be on my lap which makes it difficult to work, ive been typing today so she has been on my lap sound asleep for the last 2 hours

if i keep her from getting on my lap while working she will start chewing on anything that is near me, shoes, backpack etc etc she will pull files off the shelf start trying to crawl under the shelves, tries to worm her way into small little areas, getting tangled up with the computer cords, basically makes such a nuisance of herself that i cant get any work done.

she doesnt like the squirt bottle, but if use it to address all of these issues ill be squirting her all day long!

so anyone have any ideas about what to do with her?

i did go to planet dog yesterday and buy a little twist type toy that you can put treats into that amuses her for about 5 minutes
would appreciate any advice given
thanks 🙂

Okay I am laughing, you have to admit the picture is pretty funny.

Take the ONE issue that bothers you most and work on it. Get it corrected first, solid, then move to second. Please contact the BRAT coordinator.

Was Sofia formerly known as Bunny?

BRAT coordinators are a wonderful resource for foster homes. Have you mentioned the problems you are having to Roberta?

debbi j.

She's lost the people and world she lived in and now she's in a new environment with someone she doesn't know. She's very scared and insecure. Just be very calm, understanding, patient and caring. Give her some treats. Does she know sit? Take her for some long walks and tell her she's a good dog. She'll start to calm down over time.

Being food motivated is a good thing. Rather than just feeding her meals out of bowl, put her to work for her food so you can start communicating to her what you want. If she moves away from you even if it is only a few inches toss her some kibble so she has to move even further away to get it. If she lies down somewhere other than your lap, toss to her kibble. Play Its Yer Choice with her,

Try a Stuffed Kong to help keep her occupied when you need to crate her or want her to "Go to Mat". If she unstuffs the Kong too quickly, freeze it for more of a challenge.

Kong Stuffing Recipe
Use a large bowl to mix everything up and stuff as many Kongs as you have.

Equal amounts of dry dog food and canned pumpkin
Warm water
1 to 3 spoonfuls of canned dog food

First, soak kibble in some warm water to soften up. Then mix in pumpkin and canned dog food it should be very thick. Use a small spoon to stuff the mixture into the big end of a kong. (If you like, you may squeeze the Kong and add a biscuit or baby carrot across the top to create a little more challenge.)

@nobarkus:

She's lost the people and world she lived in and now she's in a new environment with someone she doesn't know. She's very scared and insecure. Just be very calm, understanding, patient and caring. Give her some treats. Does she know sit? Take her for some long walks and tell her she's a good dog. She'll start to calm down over time.

I couldn't have put it better myself and have nothing to add except to say my girl likes to sit on our knees at all times if we let her and it is lovely but can be tying. Unlike your foster i know she has no seperation issues so sometimes she gets to sit on our knees and sometimes not.

I was going to say, all that sounds like basenji personality to the power of 10! I think she just needs to adjust and calm down and feel secure again.. Long walks, good excercise will calm her down…. Be patient... It will be all right!!

thanks for all the advice
sophia doesnt seem to respect anything but a squirt bottle
i have taught her to sit, she of course takes her time deciding if its something she wants to do 🙂
the advice of working on one thing at a time makes sense

the most important part to work on right now is teaching her to respect peoples personal space

if im carrying a glass of water she will literally stop dead in front of me mid stride because she wants to know what i have in my hands, if of course end up tripping over her which cant be comfortable for her but doesnt deter her from doing it over and over and over

this behavior may sound cute but when im turning around from getting firewood and literally trip over her and almost land on the hot wood stove not just once but twice its really not that funny anymore
my roommates are getting tired of it, they are worried they are going to step on her or fall down the stairs to keep from stepping on her, she has to obsessively check out anything anyone has in their hands to see if its food and the roomies are getting tired of that as well
so i NEED advice on how to stop her from behaving this way

i guess if you spent alot of time in a crate you would be curious about everything and i understand that but…..

the only thing i can think of is to carry a squirt bottle everywhere i go and squirt her everytime she gets in the way and somehow i just feel like thats not the best solution
this morning sophia started humping my leg which she has not done before any ideas what that is all about?
so im going to bring this up with brat coordinator but wanted to throw it all out there to see if anyone else has had these issues with a b or might have good ideas about correcting the behavior
thanks for all the input so far 🙂

I can see how it must be so difficult when you are tripping over her but i think you are right in thinking it would be the wrong thing to do by spraying her everytime she gets in your way. I'm sure this would only teach her that it's bad to be around humans.
I'm sorry but i can't offer any advice, i'm sure the Brat coordinator will be able to help you.

This dog needs to practice impulse control. Its Yer Choice is one way to start helping her understand that sometimes the best way to get what you want is not to be right there grabbing at it but instead to back off and "say please". Another good one is "Say Please by Sitting" http://drsophiayin.com/videos/SayPleaseBySitting.mp4

Is Sophia underweight, or does she need more food?

By Sophia trying to take the lead wherever you go, and then by humping your leg, I think she's trying to assert herself as the leader. What about putting a 3 - 5 foot leash on her, and you "take the lead" when you are inside your home? That way, she knows that you are the alpha-mom, and she's got to follow you.

I would also have some healthy treats in your pocket, so that when you get to your destination (like the woodpile), you tell her to sit, praise her, give her treats, praise, praise, praise…. secure the leash on a log so that she can see you, but she's not underfoot? Once you are done, more praise, treats, etc. When you are in the kitchen, secure the leash on a nearby chair/table/kitchen handle, so that she can see you, but she's not right under your feet.

Thank you for being patient! She'll learn soon enough... it sounds like she doesn't know how to behave outside of her cage. 🙂

well i did talk to the brat coordinator today
it was really helpful to read all the posts here before discussing sophia with her

she seems to agree that although sophia is 4 years old spending most of her inside time in a crate means having the run of the house now is all new and very interesting to her sort of like being a puppy

i think poor impulse control would be a great way to describe her behavior
could i also assume that spending almost all of her time inside in a crate would cause her to depend upon her sense of smell more than sight?

when walking which she didnt get to do at her old home she doesnt seem to notice birds or squirrels, for a sight hound doesnt that seem a bit odd? at the dog park she has never chased or even seemed to notice birds and squirrels
perhaps getting her to start using sight more then smell might be useful?

brat coordinator seems to think i should carry the squirt bottle and use it to ask for space from sophia when im walking in the house,

she also thinks that a potential adopter might not mind the way sophia behaves, several people are already interested in her daughter so perhaps sophia might have a home soon

i will check out the video "say please" to see what its about appreciate the suggestion

would being recently spayed cause her to start humping my leg today? brat coordinator says its a sign of dominance i didnt realize females did this

I wouldn't keep using that spray bottle. Why don't you take her out for a long walk and wear her out? Exercise does everybody good.

sophia is about 20 pounds
she gets one cup daily of evolve dog food, i have tried giving her the entire portion in the am to see if she would eat it all and want more but she doesnt.
brat coordinator and breeder felt she was in good shape and didnt need more than the cup a day.
she has such short legs that if she put on any weight she'd look like a walking weenie 🙂

if i put sophia on the lead is it just the fact that she is on the lead and has to go where i go that makes her think im dominate? not actually walking behind me ?
i really like the idea of securing her within sight of me but not under my feet im going to try that and see how it works
wish me luck !!

Recent Spay would not cause her to hump your leg, I would agree with dominance and certainly, yes, bitches will do this

She needs much more exercise. A tired dog is a good dog.

Humping is dominance, male or female. Yes it is common with females.

In every situation, someone gets trained. Please view the posts and make sure you are the trainer, not the trainee.

Putting her on a lead and teaching HEEL helps to show you have control, that YOU are making her stay with you, and teaches her where her body needs to be when near you.

If you have to use the squirt bottle all the time, that isn't training… it is avoiding training through aversion techniques. Not saying the water bottle is BAD, simply it is short term avoidance of the issue.

Doesn't sit fast? Hello, you say sit ONE TIME, then you place the body into sit and say GOOD SIT. Going at her own pace is another measure of controlling you.

omigod she soooo thinks im her bitch

thanks so much for pointing out that she thinks shes the dominant one here not me

ive been viewing this as poor sophia left here by her breeder and feeling sooo lonely and insecure when in fact thats not the case anymore
we are in the midst of a power struggle here
wish me luck!!

Keep us posted! 🙂 Do you have any pictures of this girl? You two will learn together… it will be fun for us to watch from the sidelines. 🙂

She just seems to me tobe one insecure little girl - I notice that she's only been with you for just overa week. Be very patient but I wouldn't advise a water spray to get her to stop invading your space. You could make her believe that she should just keep well away. Perhaps she may need more tiime than some to learn that she doesn't need to cling to you all the time. Just work on building her confidence by teaching and reinforcing basic commands. Reward her for the 'good' things but please don't punish her for the 'bad'

@DebraDownSouth:

She needs much more exercise. A tired dog is a good dog.

Humping is dominance, male or female. Yes it is common with females.

In every situation, someone gets trained. Please view the posts and make sure you are the trainer, not the trainee.

Putting her on a lead and teaching HEEL helps to show you have control, that YOU are making her stay with you, and teaches her where her body needs to be when near you.

If you have to use the squirt bottle all the time, that isn't training… it is avoiding training through aversion techniques. Not saying the water bottle is BAD, simply it is short term avoidance of the issue.

Doesn't sit fast? Hello, you say sit ONE TIME, then you place the body into sit and say GOOD SIT. Going at her own pace is another measure of controlling you.

Respectfully, I disagree with some of this. I've had both male and female try to hump when they are "just" overstimulated – keyed up, hyped up. I dunno if I'd automatically see it as dominance -- or at least not as JUST dominance -- especially since she's been crated nearly 24-7 her whole life. I'd be very keyed up if I suddenly had so much extra free space under those circumstances.

I definitely would not be forcing a sit or really forcing anything other than "life-saving measures" with this girl. I realize there's a LOT to deal with here, but I'd be using the food and attention to shape her behaviors into more acceptable paths, period, and use the crate when you're feeling overwhelmed. She's not MISbehaving, not deliberately, not willfully, she's just doing things she knows to do. Please, please, don't see this as a battle of wills. It doesn't sound like it to me at ALL.

P.S. I'm armchair quarterbacking, yes. 🙂

Looks like your connection to Basenji Forums was lost, please wait while we try to reconnect.