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I stopped by Berkleys veterinarians office this afternoon and was lucky enough to score some time with her and her colleague.  I told them what happened last Monday as well as talked about the dog's habits and they diagnosed the dog with "superiority complex".  

Berkley has the run of the house.  He is permitted on any piece of furniture at any time he’d like to be upon it.  He sleeps and hangs out on the back of the sofa, the back of the chairs and on our bed.  He also sleeps on his own bed but ends up in bed with us at some point during the night.  The vet told me that he considers himself to be at our level because of his “height” in the household (as in, he hangs out at a physically higher level than a dog ought to).  They then told me that it was time to “dethrone” him.

Dethroning involves: shooing him off the furniture with a firm “Off!” and making him “earn” everything.  I.E. he must sit before we put his food down, he must sit before we open the door to allow him to go out and he must not move until we tell him to, and he must never enter the house before us.  If he does not comply, we will have to introduce the leash (and not the retractable kind) to keep him where he is supposed to be.  

Berkley is a smart boy...he will learn quickly as long as everyone in the house understands and commits to this.  I have talked to everyone about it and they understand that we have to do this.  If he attacks again, i’m not sure i’ll allow him to stay here.

Oh, and one more thing the vet said...Berkley should lose his job permanently.  I should not permit him to be in the shop with me.  I’m not sure how i feel about this because, if he’s not with me while i’m working, he’ll be all alone upstairs for hours.  I’m going to think on that one.  He hasn’t been to work since “the incident” and he doesn’t even try to come into the shop.  I don’t even know if he WANTS his job back!



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Member Comments

    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Cindylouwho1966 wrote Apr 17, 2009
    • OMG that picture next to Paul is hysterical! Glad you talked to some experts. I have a feeling things will come around quickly.

      We have a few issues like that with Hannah. The gal who watched her last weekend said Hannah seems to think she is human. happy Her main issue of getting bossy and backtalking is when she wants a treat. I am finally standing up to her backtalking and then she goes away and occupies herself with something else.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Vikki Hall wrote Apr 17, 2009
    • I understand your pain and hurt. I also agree with what the Dr said about dethroning. They do need to know who the master is.
      But OMG have you looked at how cute these pics are?

      Ok back to seriousness...is it possible that he is sick? I’ve been told that is how dogs behave when they don’t feel well.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Daphne wrote Apr 17, 2009
    • Yea, Lu...i’ve laughed at that pic many, many times myself!  It, along with several others, only proves that the dog feeling as if he’s one of us should not come as a surprise.  We’ve over-indulged the dog...at our expense.

      Just like parenting...it’s not about the parents...it’s about what’s best for the child (or, in this case, the dog).



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Daphne wrote Apr 17, 2009
    • Vikki,

      He is a handsome devil, isn’t he?  His health is in check, he goes for regular check-ups.  The vet said she’s not shocked that he’d try to be the boss based on his behavior with her.  He’s very stuck-up!  LOL



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Vikki Hall wrote Apr 17, 2009
    • Who knew dogs could be stuck up? I thought that was reserved for felines only....



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Daphne wrote Apr 17, 2009
    • From the day he arrived, i have accused that dog of thinking he is a cat!!!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Encee wrote Apr 18, 2009
    • What a cutie, though!  I have a 5 mo. old female Yorkie that (we’ve learned mind you) can have very much the Queenly attitude!  

      We are following pretty  much what you mentioned here.  I’ve found that she is so surprised by us being firm with her that she sits right down like a little soldier!  Big change for us, and our two very peaceful, thank God, cats!  

      all the best to you,  

      Nancy



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Daphne wrote Apr 18, 2009
    • I told the dog this morning that he’s been the “4th child” for 5 years and NOW he’s going to learn how to be the family DOG!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Doreen XoXo wrote Apr 18, 2009
    • OMG.....he is adorable Daphne.  Keep us posted as to how Berkley is doing.  I hope it all works out for you.  PS....I think youve done a great job with him. He probably woke up on “the wrong side of YOUR bed” that day.

      Good luck.

      xoxo



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Deb Darby wrote Apr 18, 2009
    • That’s hilarious, and just like our Mollie! She’s extremely spoiled, but good. We let her sleep on our bed, too.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      (華娃娃) ChinaDoll wrote Apr 18, 2009
    • Daphne, remember dog has a pack order.  Now you tell him you are the boss and leader - he is demoted.  I like your use of term “dethrone” haha.  

      My husband used to train German Shepherd in the Army.  He grabbed them by the neck, pull them up with only 2 rear legs, then he shut with a firm “No“.  After they knew your real meaning of No, you don’t have to do that anymore for by that time, a firm No with just the voice command will do the tricks.

      It’s like disciplining a child.  I know we animal lovers are soft kind hearted.  We do need to set the limits though.

      Good luck and keep us posted.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Cynthia Schmidt wrote Apr 18, 2009
    • It’s so true, what Chinadoll says. They are pack animals and even the cute little fuzzy ones will be the boss if we let them. They are happier when the order of heirarchy is established and there are no questions about that.



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