Border Collie herding cars

Go Back   Dog Forum > Keeping and Caring for Dogs > Dog Training and Behavior

Border Collie herding cars

This is a discussion on Border Collie herding cars within the Dog Training and Behavior forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Dogs category; Please help. We have an 8 month border / bearded collie cross who loves to herd cars. Whilst she had started to get a bit ...

User Tag List

 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 05-15-2011, 10:09 AM
  #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Scotland
Posts: 3
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Border Collie herding cars

Please help. We have an 8 month border / bearded collie cross who loves to herd cars. Whilst she had started to get a bit better as I started to make her sit when a car came into view to stop her lunging after it, she has now decided that when a car comes she will lie down and not move until the car has passed.

I have tried everything from distracting her as soon as the car is in the distance, treating with food, bouncing her ball right in front of her, tring to block her view but nothing works. She just lies there and will not move until the car has passed. You can imagine how much progress I make on a walk if we have 30 cars passing. I do try to quite forcefully encourage her to move but she will not and I draw the line at dragging her along the pavement on her stomach.

I am at my wits end with this. Can anyone give me any suggestions? When we are walking where there are no cars she is good as gold.
Shelly is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2011, 10:47 AM
  #2
Senior Member
 
Tess's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 13,286
Mentioned: 57 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Well, this is certainly a safer expression of her herding instincts than actually chasing! She is using "eye" to direct the cars to do her bidding, just as she would do to sheep.

I'm sure someone will have a good suggestion as to how to help her let go of her obsession with the cars. It will probably involve working with her some distance from cars, and getting her attention/focus on you, then gradually moving closer to cars going by.

Meanwhile, I would say, if there is somewhere you can get her exercise away from cars, then go there! I think it is a bit of a human idea that we should walk our dogs along the sidewalk along a road, when a dog would get a lot more exercise in a big field somewhere and if possible off leash.
Tess is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2011, 11:01 AM
  #3
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Scotland
Posts: 3
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Tess, thanks for that.

I should have actually mentioned that at the end of every single walk, every single day, I take her to a grass area that ends 4 feet away from a fairly busy road. I spend 15 minutes with her doing recall with her ball where she is completely focussed on me. She is tethered so that she can only go to the edge of the grass and no further, however she shows no interest at all in the cars passing and does not even venture off the grass. However, if I then put one foot on the concrete beside the road with her, she again will just totally focuss on the cars and nothing will bring her back.

I live in the country with loads of fields where she gets great exercise but I would just like to be able to take her everywhere I go and at the moment, I need to be very aware if we are walking beside cars, a 10 minute walk is likely to take me 40 minutes!! It really is driving me mad as I cannot think of anything else I can do. From the time we got her (knowing the herding instinct collies have) I have spent hours just standing at busy roads trying to get her to accept not chasing cars. I have succeeded in that, however I cannot get her to the next level of actually walking when cars are there.
Shelly is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2011, 11:34 AM
  #4
Senior Member
 
Tess's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 13,286
Mentioned: 57 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
OK! I get it better now! I hope someone with herding dog experience chimes in here. For now, I might just try to avoid that situation as much as possible, as it seems to be very self-reinforcing for her, so the more she patterns staring at the cars, the more of a habit it becomes. Some relief may come as she gets older, but I agree with you, in that you need to tackle this somehow with a training program. She is clearly already very well "trained" to do this behavior the instant you put your feet on the sidewalk. Its fascinating! I wonder if, as you look back in time, exactly how that pattern was initially established... that is you put your feet on the sidewalk, and she goes into "stalk the cars" mode. Maybe there are some answers in there somewhere. Sometimes when I cannot figure out how to change by dog's behaviors, if I discover the origins of the behavior, I can backtrack a bit and design a plan to deal with it.
You sound very knowledgeable and like a very good trainer with your dog. This must certainly be a solvable problem and I wish I could be of more help!
Tess is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2011, 11:54 AM
  #5
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Scotland
Posts: 3
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Thanks for that Tess. Hopefully someone can come up with something else to try as it is not something I feel would even benefit of going back to obediance classes as they do not teach you how to deal with "anomolies" like Skye's issue!!! Fingers crosssed!!!
Shelly is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-15-2011, 10:43 PM
  #6
Senior Member
 
millitantanimist's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Southern Ontario
Posts: 707
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Someone scooped it, but I'll say it anyway . My suggestion would be to work on
and begin building them up around cars (i.e. start in your living room, move to an area with a parked car, start walking past the parked car, have a friend drive by you at 5kph while she sits, then while walking, then at 10kph, then 20kph etc. etc.). You want build up the attention cue until it's stronger than the drive to give "eye" and thus change her expectation of what she is required to do around cars.
Hope this is of some use
millitantanimist is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2011, 01:50 PM
  #7
Senior Member
 
emma09's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: KY
Posts: 1,565
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
All of the above suggestions sound great! I just wanted to say good luck to you, I know how hard it is to break herding habits.
emma09 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Border Collie/Lab mix Borador Dog Breeds 2 05-03-2011 03:28 PM
ACL tear in 13-yo border collie mix MeredithS Dog Health 0 04-17-2011 11:44 AM
Is he purebred Border Collie? Alethea Dog Breeds 29 11-25-2010 07:28 PM
Getting a border collie pup Lilbo Dog Training and Behavior 13 08-22-2010 06:24 PM
Nell, my Border Collie.... Lonewolfblue Dog Breeds 36 08-11-2010 09:28 AM


Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:00 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging v3.1.0 (Lite) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2014 DragonByte Technologies Ltd. Runs best on HiVelocity Hosting.