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Hurely just turned 2, he's a 42lb mini Aussie. He's a great guy, well socialized, good with people and dogs. And he loses it with the TV.

It used to be that if he saw a dog, he'd bark. Then it was cats, horses, and any animal. We would tell him "off" and it worked for a while.

Today, he reacts to anything on the TV: animals, action, movement, suspenseful music, babies crying, and even Kevin Bacon (I paused a show as Hurley started barking, and he stood there barking at KB's still shot).

The HDTV is on a 3ft stand, he isn't at eye level with it. I got headphones recently so he can't hear sound from the TV, which seems to help a little.

When we want to watch anything now, I have treats ready. I watch Hurley to intercept any reaction to the TV, command "come, sit, look (at me)" and reward. This has helped, there's an increase of him looking away from the TV to me, but he doesn't last too long. Inevitably, he will lose it, have his front paws up on the stand, and bark/go after what he sees. He can't hear me, will not respond. I pause what's playing, get up and stand between him and the TV and guide his attention away, which takes a few attempts.

Since it seems that he can react to anything on the TV, it's not clear I can focus on a specific stimulus to work with - other than the TV itself - and I'm not sure how to approach that with desensitization. What other ideas can you share to help with this situation, both with training and with our coping?

We are coping by appreciating that he wants us to read more.

Thanks!
 

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I'd probably just eat more popcorn, and make it the special snack I share while we're all calmly watching the tv. Intermittent reward schedule would help, and be easy to do. Toss treats just for chilling by the tv.

It might be worth jotting down what's going on in the house and on the tv when Hurely does react, just to get a better idea of things to CC to everyday as well.
 
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