New Anatolian Shephard puppy - Questions

Cecilia's-herd

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Until Momma catches dog, tosses dog in chicken coop, beats dog with rolled up paper feed sack, yells, tosses chicken on dog and beats dog until dog is screaming for its life. Hahahaha! Here! Have another chicken! Swat. Swat. Swat! Gee I love rolled up paper!
“Leave it” is the most important thing to teach your dog in my book. And it needs to be STRONG. We didn’t have to beat any command into our dogs, but you need a strong bond and high value treats. I’ll link some YouTube videos later. We’ve got a tornado coming in.
 

Ridgetop

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Treats don't always work for LGDs. Our Anatolians will sometimes accept treats, other times they are not interested in them. Training Anatolians with treats does not always work. This seems strange to most people (it certainly shocked me!) but my Anatolians would not work for treats nor would they bait in the show ring for treats.

We also use the "Leave it!" command, however, once a chicken has been killed the "Leave it!" comes a little late.
It sounds like the "beating" Baymule is referring to is more noise and not so much physically painful beating. She is using a rolled up feed sack that makes a lot of noise and is not physically harmful. Her hysterical screaming, her anger at the behavior, and the feed sack noise as it slaps the dog is probably what is registering. The commands are not being beaten into the dog, the "beating is a punishment". The dog registers that their successful kill is not being celebrated by the beloved owner but has shocked, horrified, and angered the canine Deity. Also remember that she is saying that she catches the dog in the middle of the crime to mete out this punishment. If she is late on the scene, she restages it in order to catch the miscreant in the middle of the crime. She is not going off on them an hour later after the deed is over. They know what they have done to deserve this punishment.

Another thing to remember with some breeds of LGDs is that they are not as far down the evolutionary scale as hunting dogs, herding dogs, working dogs like Dobermans and shepherds, etc. They are in some cases closer to their primitive ancestors. These dogs were bred to following the grazing trails with their masters. They would not herd the sheep, but would patrol the outskirts of the flock to keep predators away from them. They dd this on the move and also when at pasture. They did not need the shepherd who might be on the other side of the flock to direct them to drive off predators, it was instinctive and those dogs that were best at it were valued and allowed to breed. Dogs that were timid, afraid, ran from danger, these were killed because in primitive societies you can't afford to keep a non-productive member. Guardian dogs that could not, or would not, guard were destroyed. Eventually this produced a less obedience trainable dog, but one that thought for itself, determined danger levels for itself, and went into attack mode without direction from the shepherd. In primitive times, and even into the 20th century these traits were valued. Now with more litigious persons ready to sue if your dog looks unfriendly, LGD owners really need to understand training methods that work on these dogs.
 

Ridgetop

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Our pup is currently only 6 weeks and is tiny as you can see from the pics, so she is in the house for now.

I think I would have asked the breeder to keep her until she was at least 10 weeks old. More time for her to bond with livestock if the mama is raising the p ups in the barn. I agree with Cecilia that taking pups away from the mom before 8 weeks can be harmful to their development.

She is a cutie. If you have a barn, I suggest you put her crate (or a second crate) in the barn for her to spend some time there outside but safe from predators. Eventually a pen in the barn for her to move around in. At her age and size she is a mouthful for a predator so can't be left outside alone and definitely not at night. As to putting her in with your pigs, she might be in danger from them also. Pigs can be dangerous to other animals (they are carniverous) so if you put her in with them, make sure that she has a place she can get into that the hogs can't follow her. This is a good idea for any puppy in a pen with livestock. I do it with my sheep and lambs too so the pup can get away if the mothers get nervous or the lambs too playful with a tiny pup.

If you are serously cinsidering getting inie of her littermates, it willhave tobe a male. Anatolians will be just fine with other Anatolians the same age and sex until about 2 years old. At 2, when they start to mature, they will begin challenging each other for dominance. Even littermates cannot usually be left together for life. Male/female pairs do well, as do same sex pairs that are several years apart. But be warned - male Anatolians can be extremely dominant to the point that they will assert themselves as the Alpha in the pack (the pack includes you and your family). Female Anatolians can also be very dominant, but male/female pairs get along better. Since this is your first Anatolian, I suggest you wait for the next litter to decide if you want another. Contending with those periods of Anatolian teen angst is hard enough, X2 would be horrible. LOL
 

Baymule

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“Leave it” is the most important thing to teach your dog in my book. And it needs to be STRONG. We didn’t have to beat any command into our dogs, but you need a strong bond and high value treats. I’ll link some YouTube videos later. We’ve got a tornado coming in.


I agree with the leave it command. But as @Ridgetop explained to you on your thread on what breed to get, it is merely a suggestion. As are the rest of commands that normal dogs happily do. LGDs are marvelous dogs, lifetime partners, but they may or may not follow a command.

Why did I set up my 2 dogs for the chicken lesson? Because Sheba had led the pack on guinea killing and I couldn't stop it. The guineas were wild, couldn't catch them and I couldn't spend every waking moment with the dogs. Sheba derailed the whole pack. I was at my wits end. I could lock up all the dogs, but then I would have no guardians. My sheep were more important than a bunch of wild idiot guineas that flew right back into the pasture that their flock mate had just been killed in.

Even Trip, my Great Pyrenees went on a killing spree. He knew better, had been trained and was and is a darn good dog. The day I caught him eating the second guinea of the day, I went ballistic on him. I chased him around the pasture, throwing the guinea at him. He finally jumped the gate and ran to the porch. heh, heh, heh, I closed the porch door and whalloped him with the dead guinea until its guts spilled out. We ran the length of the porch, I screamed, cussed, beat him with that durned guinea and a flyswatter. I finally told my husband, standing in the doorway, to be the good guy, and let him in the house. BJ then put him in the backyard where I left him for 3 weeks. Obviously, the scolding he got for killing the first guinea that same day did not impress him one bit.

So I set up Sheba and Sentry. I put them in the garden, let the chickens out and ran to go get something. In the few minutes I turned my back, they had a wonderful time. 4 hens were laid out, fortunately only in shock and not dead. Sheba was clueless. All the commands, all the training, all the scoldings were like pissing in the wind. Stubborn. Really stubborn. Yep, I put both dogs in the coop and beat the crap out of them with a rolled up paper feed sack. Sentry KNEW better, but went along with Sheba. Pack mentality. Sheba's breeder chose me for Sheba because she needed a strong leader. I don't beat commands into my dogs. I do take a rolled up paper sack to them for ignoring their training and killing poultry.

I have a strong bond with my dogs. I've had dogs all my life, trained them and they MINDED. Then I got Livestock Guard Dogs. As @Ridgetop pointed out, LGDs should be a completely different species.

I don't just start beating my dogs with a paper sack. I train, I'm exceedingly patient. It took me TWO YEARS to turn Paris from a chicken killer to a chicken guard. I never even showed her a piece of paper. Just changing the tone of my voice crushed her.

I reward with praise and approval. I correct, I scold. If they escalate their misbehavior, I escalate correction. Just as the leader of a wolf pack will attack and tear into another member of the pack, I will tear into a member of my pack. That almost never happens, but it is there if I need it.

I am the leader of the pack. It can be a savage pack at times. I have waded into a dog fight of two 100+ pound dogs and broke it up. What Ridgetop said about having only one male Anatolian, I do. But I have a male GP and a male Great Dane/Labrador cross. It can get tense at times. I am the leader. I am the ALPHA BITCH.
 

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Ridgetop

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Sorry to say but the Alpha theory is correct. The problem arises when people do not understand Alpha dominance for what it is. Many people think it means harsh, overbearing behavior that forces others into subservient positions. That is not true Alpha positioning. Alpha dominance is not brutal behavior.

Ignore the fact that we are talking about dogs and focus on family dynamics. There is always an Alpha dog and bitch or man and woman in a successful 2 parent family. The Alpha man and woman work as co-leaders of their pack (family) just as a successful wolf pack works. The children are not Alphas except in rare cases where the parents give that authority to them. And we have all seen examples of Alpha behavior in children and the destructive impact it has on such families. For any family dynamic to succeed there must be an Alpha. This does not negate the importance of the Beta personality or even the omega personality. They are all important within the pack but there must be an Alpha or the pack disintegrates.

The concept of Alpha behavior has been twisted out of context by many who do not understand the true nature of Alpha dominance. True Alpha dominance is not attained by shouting, physical aggression, or other aspects of physical dominance or brutality over a Beta personality. Alpha dominance is more a matter of personality combined with some form of charisma. It is a self-knowledge of one's own personality and ability to control. It does not have to be fought for or impressed on others. In humans it is known as leadership. A true leader is followed willing by the pack.

When training dogs the trainer must be an Alpha to his dogs. He is the leader. He/she speaks in a firm, calm voice. The true Alpha trainer does not tentatively ask the dog to perform a command, nor does he/she scream commands, but calmly states their command. The key to training is to make it impossible for the dog (or horse) to do otherwise than what you want it to do. Calm, firm handling and training are what combine with practice to produce a well-trained dog (or horse, or any other kind of animal). The pack where the dog is the Alpha is in trouble.

Alpha dominance is in the attitude of the trainer. The trainer knows he or she is an Alpha, their very bearing proclaims it calmly to the dog who accepts it as right. Unless you are more Alpha than your dog you will never be able to train your dog because the dog will not accept your authority. The dog will love you. The dog may obey you if you are handing out treats or food, but it will be with a tolerance that shows that it does not recognize your Alpha leadership.
 

Baymule

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I just watched out the window as Trip chased a rabbit in the garden, zig-zagging, then out the gate. Rabbit ran to the side fence where it bounced off the 2"x4" non climb wire and Trip snapped it up. For such a BIG dog (130 pounds) he sure can move fast. I found him chewing on the remains of a rabbit a couple of days ago so he is thinning out the population.

I went outside to show my approval. Lots of Good boy! and Good dog! He stepped between me and the rabbit and lowered his head. I petted and praised him profusely. He rumbled a low growl of warning at Carson and he kept well away. Trip is now laying down, enjoying his meal, with Carson keeping a respectful distance. :love
 

Cecilia's-herd

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Sorry to say but the Alpha theory is correct. The problem arises when people do not understand Alpha dominance for what it is. Many people think it means harsh, overbearing behavior that forces others into subservient positions. That is not true Alpha positioning. Alpha dominance is not brutal behavior.
Yes, yes, yes!
When I was training to be a trainer (redundant) they told me the alpha theory was wrong and we should be using balanced training. Which is exactly what you described. They must have changed the name because of stupid people who got the actual definition mixed up! Most people I know shouldn’t be allowed to have animals. Ruin everything for the rest of us and then we teach the younger people wrong!
 

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