…science does work. This is what is going on…
Kai has had a definite decrease in teeth baring and growling over the course of the day. His triggers are tight transitions, dogs playing too rough, dogs approaching me when I am petting him, and, well, just general diva-ness. DEFINITE decrease in naughty face in these scenarios.
He still goes wild when I click and treat the naughty face and I can go through a bag of treats in no time flat. He will do a ton of evil looking behavior and then start with the trilling and sighing as he stares at the other dogs. Twice, he has touched his nose to their nose. If I had to guess, I think he’s conflicted. He knows what’s getting him the cookies but he’s not feeling aggressive. Just a guess.
His favorite place to sit used to be the chair in the den. All of the other dogs are on the floor and he’s watching from the chair, piping in with growls when he sees fit. But now he has starting laying on the floor. I actually tried to get him back in the chair because it’s much easier to see what he’s doing but he keeps going back to the floor. Why? Is he relinquishing his diva status?
When I click him for showing his teeth, he will also throw other behaviors at me like spinning, paw lifts, and more. This says to me that the teeth showing is an operant behavior for him now, separate from the emotions of being annoyed with the other dogs. Should I cue it? I think I might although I will wait until the month is up.
Yesterday I was in an awful mood. Kai growled and I just yelled for him to get out of the room. Not graceful or polite on my part but, hey, we all have bad days. I don’t think it affected anything but I wanted to mention it since it is an aberration from the original plan of always feeding him when he did his naughty routine.
Additionally, Kai is by no means a different dog. I don’t want to give that impression. He put a nick in the ear of one of the other dogs a few days ago, yesterday he chased another dog out of the room growling the whole time, oh yeah, there are plenty of incidents. It’s been hard to log since I feel like the real incidents are different than the ones that come pouring out as soon as I click and feed. Plus, I am horrible at keeping up with logs. It’s really hard to log, click and feed, observe him, and try to do something like cook food or watch TV.
It’s amazing that it’s only been about two weeks (I think). I’m excited to see how it goes from here!