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Hello everyone,

I really need some tips and tricks on this one. I have an 8 year old female ridgeback and 9 month old son who is obsessed with her.

I'd like to:
1 train the dog to be comfortable with the baby (she flees from him currently, except during play),
2 ignore his touches (under supervision of course)
3 learn to play gently with baby (paws particularly).

Important to know:
* The dog has never been into petting but likes to cuddle up on the sofa after dinner
* Im battling a partner who doesn't like the dog and keeps her and baby separate whenever he can
* My dog is generally obedient, knows basic commands, a few tricks and never shows signs of aggression but has become nervous to unexpected touches after being attacked twice by other dogs.
* My dog has a safe-zone: she can go in her crate if she doesn't want to be touched by baby
* The dog doesn't care about toys but likes physical play (running together, playing 'tag' etc) which is also how she tries to play with baby

many many many thanks

Im really hoping my little boy can grow up with a dog best friend!
 

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To get the dog to like the baby I would probably try to "click it in love with him".


Whenever the dogs looks at the child - click, treat.
When she stays calm, while the child comes closer - click, treat.
She watches him eat something but behaves - click, treats.


Basically, every time she behaves nice and calm around him, I would abuse my clicker and click the child nice to have around.




With getting touched by the child the same: His hand comes closer and she ignores it/ only looks at it - click, treat.
After a while, same with a touch.




There probably are additional things to do other will post, I'm sure and that can be combined or might even be better!
 

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Seems to me that often times when dogs don't get along well with children that the children need more training than the dog.

I like the ideas in the above post but your child is going to need supervision and will need to learn when and how to interact with the dog. If you don't do this, no amount of training the dog is going to get you to your goal.

Whatever you do NEVER leave the baby unattended with the dog.
 

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I would not try and get them to interact very much at this age. A nine month old does not have much control over what he does around the dog which could create problems. If the dog already does not seem to like patting that much from you, I would not force it to let the child pat it unless you are in complete control of both dog and child which is hard to do. Give them both time to get used to each other always under close supervision.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you guys for all the feedback so far!

With the baby being mobile, it's just impossible to keep them separate unless the dog is in her crate. Of course I am also teaching my kid boundaries, but a dog forum isn't the place to discuss that half of the equation :p

Does anyone have a link or a reference where I can learn more about clicker training? Never done that before but it sounds like a really good way to give positive reinforcement without fattening up the dog :D
 

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Thank you guys for all the feedback so far!

With the baby being mobile, it's just impossible to keep them separate unless the dog is in her crate. Of course I am also teaching my kid boundaries, but a dog forum isn't the place to discuss that half of the equation :p

Does anyone have a link or a reference where I can learn more about clicker training? Never done that before but it sounds like a really good way to give positive reinforcement without fattening up the dog :D
I came across this Ladies dog training course, she is quite famous in Stateside and has written articles in some of the top papers. She uses the clicker training method. She covers the following:

Potty training
Dealing with aggression
Jumping
Digging
Whining
Chewing
Excessive barking
Impulse control
Hyperactivity
Ignoring your commands

Check it out https://tinyurl.com/y548n827
 

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Thank you guys for all the feedback so far!

With the baby being mobile, it's just impossible to keep them separate unless the dog is in her crate. Of course I am also teaching my kid boundaries, but a dog forum isn't the place to discuss that half of the equation :p

Does anyone have a link or a reference where I can learn more about clicker training? Never done that before but it sounds like a really good way to give positive reinforcement without fattening up the dog :D
A clicker is just a two-stage rocket.

Positive reinforcement training depends upon giving the dog the reward within 1-2 seconds after the desired behaviour has been displayed.

You need to be alert, ready to reward and you need to offer the reward quickly (very quickly) so that the dog will associate the reward with the thing that it JUST DID.

Most people aren't mindful enough to do that.... hence the clicker. What the clicker does for you is buy time. When you see the behaviour you want to reward, you "click" and that gives you an additional 2-3 seconds to "fumble around" finding the reward that you want to stick in the dog's mouth.

So, in other words, the clicker gives you "4-5 seconds" to offer the reward instead of "1-2 seconds". That's ALL it does.

This can be (and is) VERY handy, but the misconception is that the click is the reward. It is not. You're still doing operant conditioning based upon the principles of positive/negative reward/punishment. Nothing has changed. The only thing the clicker does is buy you more time to offer a reward.
 

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While you are working on the clicker thing be sure that your dog has some places to go to that the child can't get to so it has a way to escape and get a break. It might take some creativity to create such a place but having a refuge will help the dog a lot.
 
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