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8 month Saluki x whippet sofa digging

Discussion in 'General Dog Forum' started by Heloise, May 24, 2021.

  1. Heloise

    Heloise New Member Registered

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    Hello, I am new here and the owner of Ivy a lovely 8 month old saluki Whippet x. She is generally lovely, the 6 pm zoomies seem to have come back but I assume that's just normal teen behaviour.
    There is just one habit she has which she goes a bit crazy about when you try to make her stop, she digs in between sofa cushions, frantically, and of course getting nowhere!
    She digs in the garden but only a few holes and generally in the same spot so not to bad but the sofa digging is really a challenge. We have tried, throws, cushions, distracting her with favorite food and toys but nothing works! Any advice would be great :)
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2021
  2. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    Welcome :)

    You say she goes crazy when you try to make her stop - what does she actually do? It is a strop, or does she show signs of aggression?

    Also, is there anywhere in the house she digs where you don't mind her digging, e.g. in her own bed or a tatty old sofa?
     
  3. Heloise

    Heloise New Member Registered

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    Hello! Thank you :)

    She mostly does this during the 6pm zoomies when she is quite hyper anyway, she pushes herself on her side and rolls her ears back when I come by and tell her to stop, she will try a little mouthing and little growl if I try to physically move her away, it doesn't sound like much but she is generally very good so for her that means I am very annoyed with you and don't want to stop, generally if I persist she will run to the other sofa and dig there!

    We have an older sofa I don't mind her digging at so much but as the cushions are more loosely together so she doesn't dig that one half as much! same she can dig in her bed but as it's flat she doesn't bother.
     
  4. Hemlock

    Hemlock Well-Known Member Registered

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    First of all: she WILL grow out of this!

    Second of all, you are trying to keep the lid on a boiling pot. Zoomies are a fact of puppy life, and she can no more control herself at these times than a toddler can control itself out of a tantrum.

    Before it's time for evening zoomies, barricade your good sofa such as by putting some chairs on it. As she heads to the good sofa with that look in her eye, you stand in front of it body-blocking her, and redirect her to the old sofa. Throw some tiny treats on the ground next to the old sofa. You will have to do this repeatedly at first until she heads directly for the old sofa. without pausing at the new one. Keep your voice light and friendly. "Don't do that" is useless unless paired with "Do this instead". It takes time to build a new behaviour, so don't expect this to work after one or two times.

    Put an extra dog bed on the floor next to where you sit on the new sofa, so that once zoomies are over, she can sit at your feet. This bed must be sensationally comfortable - a blanket on the floor will not do!

    Remember she isn't doing this to annoy you.
     
    Heloise likes this.
  5. Rinkydinkydo

    Rinkydinkydo Well-Known Member Registered

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    Yours isn't unique in this behavior,many many sighthounds love doing this,its part of their character which I love. All I do is let them get on with it but give them a better alternative. I use folded up quilts for their beds,super comfy and easy to keep clean. More importantly easy for them to basically trash when the mood takes them. Easy to dig,roll around on and getting buried in. When they've done just fold them back up.
     
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  6. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    I'd also work on a really good 'off' for the sofa, using awesome rewards, and high praise for doing the cleverest trick ever. My dog thought this was so good he'd get on hubby's sofa if he heard him approaching, just so he could be asked to get off - which reinforced the behaviour even more.

    It might not be enough to work on Ivy for a while, but could be useful when she's a bit more mature and not quite so driven to dig.
     
  7. melb100

    melb100 Active Member Registered

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    Solidarity! We use a load of old towels, fleece blanket etc and she now makes her nest in that rather than digging her claws all over the sofa. As others have said, just keep reinforcing and she will get there.

    Having said that sometimes she still sticks her head in the gap between the cushions and we let her do that because she looks like a little weirdo and its quite endearing. But as soon as the paws come out, she's off.
     
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  8. Heloise

    Heloise New Member Registered

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    Thank you everyone, this is very helpful!
    It's funny she got so good last month, perfect recall, a lot calmer at puppy training etc... I wasn't expecting the teen phase quite so soon!
    We had a full saluki growing up it's funny to notice the difference with Ivy, though I don't know how much is her whippet half vs different personalities!

    I have attached a few picts as well :) by the way that's not the good sofa ! ivy 1.jpg ivy 2.jpg ivy 3.jpg
     
  9. melb100

    melb100 Active Member Registered

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    look at that perfectly regal pose in the second pic!! :D:D And the ears!!! :rolleyes::rolleyes:
     
  10. melb100

    melb100 Active Member Registered

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    I'll tell you one thing that did help with Aggie although possibly yours might be too clever, is during her evening play time we sometimes pre-emptively take one of her toys and play "hide and seek" i.e. put it on the floor with a towel over the top. She will then take literally 5-10 minutes digging around in the towel and never quite managing to get at the toy - never sure if its deliberate to extend the fun or she's just not very good :p Seems to get some of the digging out of her system, it coincided with her getting better at the settee but of course that could just be an ageing/ development thing. Anyway its fun to watch :D:D
     
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  11. Heloise

    Heloise New Member Registered

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    this is a great idea I will try that!
     
  12. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    I tried that with a tea towel and treats and Jasper just ate a big hole in the middle of the tea towel!
     
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  13. Hemlock

    Hemlock Well-Known Member Registered

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    She's a real stunner!

    Jasper problem-solves his own way.
     
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