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Question
Posted by: Husky Fan | 2005/06/14

Thieving Dog

Hi,

I have a 8 year old husky that is a terrible thief, and it is getting worse. She does not only steal food from the counter, but she has in this last week alone stolen: Deep heat, Prodyl, razor blades, cell phone, chocolate and a cup.
She is not hungry, and she is obedience trained. I do try and put things away where she cant get them, but I sometimes will leave something on the dining room table, or in my drawers, and she will take them from there too. What can I do? I am so scared that she is going to poisen herself, and I am at my wits end.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberVet

Hi Husky Fan

This could be a learned behaviour. She has learnt that if she steals something, you either run after and chase her or you yell and talk to her. It all is attention. It does not matter if you smack her or scould her, it is all attention. Try and teach her to bring things to you. In other words, teach her to take a toy from you with you still holding onto it and ask/bride her to leave it with a treat. Make a huge fuss if she has. Once she has done that, teach her to pick it up 1m from you and bring it to you for a treat/reward. Make it very positive. If she steals something, do not run after her or anything, just ignore her, go inside, get a very special toy/treat and encourage her to come to you. When she does, do not grab at whatever she has in her mouth, offer her a treat/toy that she is allowed to have and if she takes that, make a huge fuss and remove the thing she is not allowed to have without any fuss. Then you can play with her with the new toy that she is allowed for a little bit. She will soon learn to collect things and bring them to you to get you to play with her or throw a ball for her.
Give me a shout if you need any further help

Regards
Candice
083 324 8423

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

1
Our users say:
Posted by: IDV | 2005/06/21

Has she got enough toys in a container?
Push the chairs in under the table.
Close your drawers and cupboard doors.
If you catch her in the act she need to be scolded very firmly as she needs to know who is the boss around there.
Does she get enough attention
Does anyone play with her with her toys.
Dog behaviour is interesting. Perhaps you should phone some dog phsycologist or ask your vet for the name of same.

Reply to IDV

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