Guide To Australian Shepherd Training & Care

Rushing, Barking, And Occasional Nipping


We recently adopted a 4-year old Miniature Aussie from a shelter. She was initially with a breeder and we are her third owners. Something has been missed in her socialization. She is well-behaved in the house, has good recall and is a smart and loveable dog. However, although we have her on-leash behaviour pretty much under control, despite what we were told at the shelter, she has a high prey drive and unpredictably rushes, barking madly at approaching people and dogs and on occasion jumps and nips.

We let her off leash on the trails because she needs the exercise but this behaviour gets us into trouble and we are afraid she may actually bite someone. What to do? We even looked at muzzles today but she hates it and it is only necessary very occasionally.

Any training tips would be much appreciated. We have hired a trainer but have not made any progress with this particular behaviour.

Thank you, Valerie


Aussie Behavior Problems? Australian Shepherd Lover's Guide To Australian Shepherd Training & Care

Comments for Rushing, Barking, And Occasional Nipping

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never off-leash
by: Anonymous

I think it might help for you to enroll your dog in a class if you can find one that will deal with the kinds of behaviors you have described.
What I particularly recommend and ask you please to do is to stop letting your dog off leash on trails where there might possibly be other dogs. You are taking the risk of traumatizing someone else's dog and getting your own dog in trouble.

training bad behaviour
by: Adrian B

if you have "hired a trainer" and its not working then something somewhere is wrong.......
are they experts in their field ??.
is your training consistent ??,
is your training and criteria clear to the dog ??,
do not reward bad behavior. my suggestion is to contact our training school trainers here in Australia for some real help, www.thek9company.com.au
speak to either Cat or Brent Dry and mention my name if you like and this forum ....I am sure they can help you and your problem even this far away as long as you follow the rules ,
do you train regularly ? we train 3 times a week ....not because we have to but because we love it !!,

Suggest another trainer
by: Anonymous

Finding another trainer, one who specializes in behavior is probably your best solution. Also read up on this breed so you'll have a better understanding of the problem behavior such as nipping. I've owned two dogs with similar traits as what you describe. It was difficult at times because I was always weary about losing control and the dog biting someone. Fortunately, that never happened. But it can be a liability for the owner. Good luck, don't give up. Allow yourself and the dog more time to become more acquainted. Her temperament may change for the better once she gets to know you better and feels safe with her new family.

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