Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Only Constant is Change

We've been nursing a little lameness in Coal's right hind for almost two months now. His esteemed chiropractor now thinks that he's either aggravating or causing this by his incessant spinning and antics when he is not working. So I've been advised to stop the spinning (fact is she begged me to stop it for 48-72 hours post-adjustment on Wednesday evening).

Changing the routine with Coal has not been easy. On sheep he is the serious kid with the pocket protector, white shirt buttoned up to the neck, and calculator in hand. Off sheep - a side of him that many folks do not see - he is a wild and crazy guy who loves to start chase-me games with Chief and runs constantly with a binkie (any available toy  or in a pinch a piece of wood or whatever), spinning in circles. He always spins the same direction and this activity is causing wear and tear on his five-year-old right hind leg. Sigh.

So I've been keeping him more contained with leashes, crates, and separation from the other dogs. I am seeking ideas on how to make this work on a more permanent basis. I've already gotten some good ideas (and some good humor) from the Facebook crowd. I'm throwing it out here as well.

The change in the dynamic with Chief and Rime has been the most unexpected part of this situation. Where I thought that maybe Rime was the instigator in a lot of the in-home mayhem, it actually must have come from quiet little Coal. Without Coal running circles around the dining room table, Chief and Rime are almost downright sedate. As they say, the only constant is on we go.

If you have ideas for keeping a border collie quiet, post in the comments. He really needs to stop this spinning and I am probably not a good enough dog trainer to accomplish that.

1 comment:

Shelly said...

If the spinning is triggered by something(or even if it's not) you could try training another behavior in place of the spinning...possibly something that isn't hard on the joints. For example you could try re-directing his behavior to some other "trick" whenever he begins to spin. The end result after doing this several times over a period of time would be that the spinning disappear altogether and would be replaced by a less aggravating behavior. Just a thought....good luck!