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karwask

Greetings from Eugene, OR!

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karwask

Hi All,

I recently adopted Jack: a 12 year old guy from Willamette Humane Society rescue in Salem Oregon. I'm a guinea pig gal most recently and before that, it was black labs all the way down. So...this business of having to manage a terrier is quite a thing. So far, given that I have some experience with reward-oriented training, I'm off to a decent start managing him.  With that said, there are lots of things I want to do better to have the best life with him possible. 

One technical query: How come I'm only able to post one picture and why is it so big? 

I just posted to an old post on this forum about grooming with some further questions.

I found two books suggested here and will get them for my Kindle regarding terriers and pigs flying and will read up with those:).

Most pressing question at this point in time: How to keep Jack busy? He is super smart and responds well to having to use his mind and solve puzzles. He likes the "Bento Ball" which holds kibble, and/or a treat/disc to chew on to help with keeping teeth clean, and, of course, he responds well to peanut butter in his kong but that's all I have found so far to occupy him. 

Do you all use chews or bones? So far, he didn't go for the flavored nylon bone I got for him. Is rawhide OK? Bully sticks, etc? What works for you?

Short of appealing to his food-oriented side, I imagine doing some more obedience training/tricks might be helpful? 

All thoughts/suggestions are most appreciated.

thanks and so happy to have found this group,

karen

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pkcrossley

congratulations on homing a most handsome guy. it looks like you are in for an adventure --with great rewards.

if jack is not iron-clad with "sit" and "stay," try to get him that way. you are reading a book on terriers so you will understand the issue --they want and need boundaries they can understand and leadership they can trust. sit and stay are essential tools, and if you have them you can handle any situation.

as for keeping jack busy --the foundation of the program is to get jack tired by the end of the day. i would suggest walking, walking, walking. if you have an enclosed yard (only if), fetch fetch fetch. as a mature guy jack is going to have a much better attention span than a younger dog. but it will still always be easier for him to get his attention on you if he is not bursting with energy every evening.

congratultions again. the eyes just make me melt. 

 

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bradl

I cannot recommend obedience training for terriers enough. They love it if you keep it quick and interesting for them (they don't do 'rote' training). At 12 Jack is probably very smart with a good vocabulary reading humans. 

You are also on the right track with mind games. They love them. Hide and seek is a good one. And as pkcrossley wisely suggested, don't underestimate the enjoyment and stimulation value of a good walk or fetch session. At 12 Jack may be slowing down a bit but a mile or so every day if possible would probably be the highlight of his day for a variety of reasons.

There is a Cairn club in the PDX/Vancouver area if you get up this way periodically. Events and activities when we have them are posted to the club site www.crctc.org. Not yet listed because we haven't been assigned a day yet, but for example at the big January dog show at the Expo center we will have a Meet the Breed booth for an hour one of the days. I think we requested Friday (Saturday is also possible).  Once we know the date and time, that will be on our calendar.

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sanford

Congratulations! Jack sure is a handsome cairn! Many folks offer rawhide chews to their dogs, but I had a bad experience when I saw Ruffy struggling and pawing at his face because a piece had softened and glued itself to the roof of his mouth. It was not easy for me to dislodge it! They shouldn't chew rawhide unattended, if at all.

Like you, I've had great success with interactive treat-toys keeping Ruffy busy. Nina Ottosson (online) makes some very good ones at varying levels of difficulty. They are well-made and durable, but cost $$$. After Ruffy figured out the puzzles, the challenge was gone, and although he still continues to use them, it only takes him 2 seconds to find the hidden treats.😀

Ruffy's favorite interactive toy is the cheapest -  a small, empty plastic water bottle with the cap removed and a few small treats inside. I scrunch the top part of the bottle to prevent the treats from coming out too fast and it keeps him busy for a long time. (Poland Spring seems to have the thinnest plastic and he seems to like these best).

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remltr

I would not recommend bully sticks. Although they would keep Jack busy, you run the risk of Jack having broken teeth.

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JoJo

My Pepper really likes the nylabone that is Y shaped and the knobby one that is shaped like a bone.  LOL for some reason these chews got a lot better after a labdoodle pal got them started.  I like the Himalaya brand hard cheese chews for a special treat.  Get one size up and I only allow her about a 30 min session each time.  I wouldn’t leave her alone with one, but supervised a Cairn and a ping pong ball are hilarious, especially on a slippery floor.  She gets lots of exercise chasing it around, hard to catch.  😂

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Hillscreek

Hello handsome Jack.

Nylabone shaped like the ones Pepper has were good for Angus. Chasing a "chuckit" ball good also. Tennis balls not good as he chewed the furry stuff off.

I got the cheaper Kyjen puzzles for Angus. He enjoyed them but as said above once he figured them out - even the supposedly difficult ones - he took a very brief time to find the treat no matter how I mixed them up.

Do not recommend bully sticks or rawhide as can get stuck in throat or elsewhere.

Best thing of all of course was hunting the the fields off leash which we can do out here in the wilds. Unfortunately not an option for everyone. In my experience daily walks important wherever one might live. Visits to dog parks a possibility depending on where one lives also.

Obedience class can be fun if trainer understands terriers - especially cairn terriers! I did not go as not a suitable one near us. But I did do lots of basic training as others mentioned. Especially  'sit' 'stay' and 'leave it'. Made it a game - doing a minute or two here and there. Always asked for 'sit' before meals, or putting on leash. Of course since Jack is a grown up fella he may know all this but reminders are always useful.

Best of luck with your new friend and welcome!

 

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karwask

OMG, I'm overwhelmed by excellent suggestions and advice. Much appreciated one and all.

I had a feeling that I should stay away from the bully sticks and rawhide and will. Love the ideas presented here for toys and puzzles and will do the treats in a plastic bottle right away:). 

RE: activity/walks.He sleeps like a rock all through the night, could be as much as 10 - 12 hours and slow to get up in the AM, so not sure more exercise is the answer? I started him at three 20 minute walks including a significant uphill and the trainer gal I saw one time said that was too much for an older dog? Now it's shorter but three times a day with 1/2 of the hill. Don't have fenced yard for playing outside.

I like the idea of attending a class and will see what my options are. I already have him sitting before charging his food bowl and working on stay and down. Appreciate the caveat that the trainer understand terriers/Cairn's. 

Thanks for the info about the Portland area club, will look out for opportunities there. 

wonderful!

 

 

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Hillscreek
2 hours ago, karwask said:

Don't have fenced yard for playing outside.

Me neither - used a long line. Always outside when Angus was as many wild beasties about like deer bear coyote foxes etc.

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Kathryn

You have gotten some good advice so I won't add to it now.  Just have to say that I have always had a soft spot in my heart for those blond cairns with chocolate eyes...😍

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pkcrossley

"Now it's shorter but three times a day with 1/2 of the hill." sure that sounds fine. he is clearly getting enough exercise. he is at the age where you have to not stress the hips and back. looks like a magnificent specimen. 

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Dempsy's Mom

Jack looks like a sweetheart.  Thank you for adopting him.  Yes - partial to blonde cairns, but love them all.  Welcome to the cairn world! 

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Idaho Cairns

Neat rescue find!!!  Our first Cairn was an adult rescue and she turned out to be the criterion that we have used to gauge all the other Cairns that we have had in our lives.  We learned from her and another Cairn rescue that the Cairns we brought home from the shelter were not even close to the Cairns we ended up with six months to a year from the time they arrived.  After a few trials and errors (on both our parts) the dogs adjusted to our routines and requirements and adjusted very, very well.
In my experience Cairns are super adaptable  little dogs, smart, willing to please, but with an independent streak that can catch a new owner off guard if they are not prepared for it.  
I have no problem with obedience training if for no other reason than the socializing advantages--being around other dogs is good for Cairns.  Also the exercise is important--Cairns can be slothful if you let them be.
In any case, good on ya for pulling this good looking little guy out of the confusion of the rescue situation, be patient and understand that your Cairn will probably be a much better pet than you ever imagined he could/would be.  Enjoy--I envy you the journey.
 

Edited by Idaho Cairns

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karwask

Thanks so much Idaho Cairns,

In the relatively short time that I have had Jack, everything you say has and is coming true. I am loving this breed so much that think for the future it will be the way for me to go. Who knows, once Jack is fully online, I would even consider a second rescue or older one to have and to hold. You might be hearing from me re: that:). Much to figure out first about how Jack is with other dogs. 

What you say about him being a criterion for the future, yes, yes, and yes. This is the case. And, I feel very lucky that I think he must have done some training in the past. He is amenable to being in the crate, eats in there, sleeps in there but some work to do to get him happy being in the crate in the car with door closed. I've just started to work on loose leash walking today and realize that he already gets it just with gengle tugs and words to walk alongside me without pulling and I haven't even had to bring out the treats and clicker to get results! I only just tried for the first time, "let's go!" when he saw something disturbing and started to bark and found instantly that just turning around abruptly and using those words had him cease and desist = a freaking miracle! Able to get him to stop barking in the house, with distracting him and doing a bad job of teaching him "look" to get him to attend to me but bad job seems to be good enough to minimize barking. 

There are compelling reasons why he is not a good candidate for a class so I did  try two consultations with a trainer but her suggestions are too complex and there are wonderful resources on YouTube that, with the clicker and food and love reward methods, seem to get very fast results and are easier to implement so I'm going that route. So far, I really like the approach of kikopup on there:). I'm coming to understand, for the first time, how to attend to the dog and understand that he is feeling stress and what to do to make him feel safe and mitigate that stress. Therefore being punishing or harsh, even just with words, is something to not do at all or keep to a minimum. I reserve my harsh words, like an emphatic "no" just for when he is barking:) for example. 

Having Jack here is saving my life. I now have to walk every day and, boy of boy, what a difference that is making in my aches and pains and arthritis. I, literally, would just not do it otherwise. In addition, being recently retired, feeling a bit lost and directionless with too much unstructured time, having Jack gives me just the right amount of daily structure and reason for being. Really enjoying learning and figuring out best ways to manage and support him, not to mention how much it's a whole new shopping category. I think I've tried every kind of chew toy to find what might work for him:). 

What  a joy!

I am a lucky girl!

 

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