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Thread: Lhasa apso experience

  1. #1
    Super Member onaemtnest's Avatar
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    Lhasa apso experience

    We've rescued from the shelter a 3 year old Lhasa Apso, 'Charley' he came to us very neglected with major eye infections, ear infections, extremely matted fur and toe nails so long he was walking on the sides of his paws. After multiple visits to the Vet eyes and ears are no longer infected and with his second trip to the groomer this afternoon he'll be even more handsome, I'm sure.

    Those of you that have Lhasa Apso dogs as we've never owned this breed before I'd like to hear your experiences. He seems comfortable around strangers, he doesn't bark so to speak in fact he's only barked very few times.

    He has one strange quirk, when he has fallen asleep, next to me on the floor, 'sometimes' when one of the cats who live here, is just walking by him he wakes up with a start...and will growl, sometimes bark and chase them, he stops short of actually chasing them far, it seems just to get them away from me. He's never connected and indeed I don't think his intention is to get them, as he easily could have by now. I've verbally shamed him for doing this, which he seems so very sensitive to verbal scolding then four or five days pass and he'll do it once again....it seems reactive and not vicious (does that make sense?).

    Oh and the other thing is he doesn't easily come when asked to, unless he thinks he's in for a treat, he's kind of like a cat in that he seems a bit independent in nature.

    So any advice or experiences, feeding ~ grooming etc... we'd love to have your input.

    Attached a picture of Charlie, he travels well and loves to 'go'...one trip he inadvertently got under the strap of the seat belt ... we'd clicked it so it would set off the tone with his weight on the seat...we thought it was a cute picture.


    Name:  Safety first Charley 4-2015.jpg
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    Smiles from Idaho,
    Onalee

    "What if you woke up today with only the things you had thanked God for yesterday?" ~ Michael Hyatt

  2. #2
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    He's adorable! I don't own a lhasa apso but everyone Ive met has been really cute and charming. Many dogs get startled while asleep, i think that sounds very natural what he does. things happen to rescue pets, some of them really horrible and they can't tell us. Sometimes those quirks fade away when they feel completely safe and secure and that no harm will come to them. best wishes for a wonderful life with Charley!

  3. #3
    Power Poster ManiacQuilter2's Avatar
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    I have never had this breed but had two Westies in my life time. The male I got as a puppy but Tess I rescued from the pound. It was obvious when I brought her home so had been abused. It took about 3 months when she finally stopped panicking when I entered the bedroom. She never wanted any love or affection (which broke my heart) but if I had any human food in my hands, I was her best friends. Just try to do your best.
    A Good Friend, like an old quilt, is both a Treasure and a Comfort

  4. #4
    Power Poster lynnie's Avatar
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    Charley is beautiful. I can't offer any advice, other tan taking in strays or rescues myself. they need time. thanks for taking this little guy in, he needs you. Just love him and give him time. by the way, my cat comes every time I call her.
    put off till tomorrow what you can do today, and if you procrastinate long enough, you may never have to do it.

  5. #5
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    He is so cute! Bless you for taking him in.
    Maybe he has some hearing loss. Our rescued dog wouldn't always come when called.
    We found out that he had some hearing loss.

  6. #6
    Super Member Jeanne S's Avatar
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    We adopted a 2 year old lab mix many years ago. If something would touch her, waking her from sleep, she had an automatic reaction of defense: a growl and snap as if to bite (which she never did though). Obviously she had been abused or kicked when sleeping. We quickly learned to always wake her with words, never touch. She never had the defensive reaction to being waken with sound, only touch. We loved her for 15 years, and she never 'outgrew' this defensive reaction. Maybe yours will adjust, but you might have to accommodate instead!

  7. #7
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Some of the Dog Whisperer's advice might be helpful. I have watched quite a few of his shows and it is amazing how quickly he can change dog behaviors simply by understanding what to do. I'm not an expert, but I can pretty much guarantee that the verbal "shaming" after he chases a cat is not going to work -- it will always come too late after the fact, so that the dog will not make the connection between the cat and the shaming. Basically he will feel punished but not understand what it's for. Any correction has to be done in a specific way and immediately (preferably before the behavior even occurs). My guess would be that you need to encourage "bonding" between the dog and the specific cats. There are techniques for doing this (I think clickers work for this kind of training -- on both the cats and the dog!). Actually, your best bet might be to consult a good dog psychologist for advice.

  8. #8
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    Did you know that seeing eye dogs are given a treat (like cheese) EVERY TIME they do what they're supposed to? Not just in training. I would think that it's a good plan to do that until he is accustomed o coming every time you call. May need to cut down on his meal amounts if training is making him gain weight.

  9. #9
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    I have 2 mini Schnauzers. We got both before they were 2 months old. Our little girl has never thought about biting or growling at us unless we hurt her while trying to comb her hair or clean out her ears. She is very tender. She sits near us on her own terms. Sometimes, she demands attention, but most of the time, she is just in the room.

    On the other hand....the boy has to be gently woken. He will growl and bite in a heartbeat. I can promise you he has never been abused in any way...spoiled, rotten dogs. They are both very good at ignoring us, very similar to a cat, if they don't think we are offering food.

    Almost all the small dogs I know are very cat-like. I love what you are doing with this little dog and know that you will have success. I am like the others, just take your time and let the dog come to you. Treats are the only way ours really pay attention to us. They are very independent.
    Sew a Little, Love a Lot & Live like you were dying!

  10. #10
    Super Member quiltjoey's Avatar
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    I love your adopted Charley! He looks a little sad in the picture but he is beautiful. He may just need time to depend on you and trust you. It is so sad that someone could treat him so badly. I am so happy he has found you to love him and care for him. I believe he will grow to love you. You are wonderful to take him even with his issues. But, hey, we all have issues! LOL!!

  11. #11
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    Very pretty dog.

  12. #12
    Power Poster Mariposa's Avatar
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    Bless you for adopting Charley! Hopefully his quirks will mellow with time. Perhaps with time, his personality will blossom, as he settles into a loving and stable environment. Happy trails~~
    Be a blessing to others, as you may entertain angels unaware!

  13. #13
    Super Member notmorecraft's Avatar
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    Laso's are not barkers as a breed, they do tend to be very quiet and some can be a little aloof. I work with German Shepard rescue in Scotland, we advise adopters that it takes up to 12 months for a dog to settle and trust you fully. Charley has had a lot happen in a short space of time, multiple vet visits, groomers, new home, new humans and cats. Be patient he is still adapting and by all means use treats you achieve more by rewarding and praising your dogs. My big boy was 15 months when we got him and had had a horrible time, it took him a long time to trust us and sometimes with rescue dogs you will only get them so far and have to accept their little foibles. Good luck with Charley and just keep praising and loving him.

  14. #14
    Super Member janedee's Avatar
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    Lovely little dog and well done on spending so much time etc on getting him sorted out - I don't know about the waking problem, as far as getting him to come back, continue with the treats, only needs to be 1 tiny bit, but, before you give it to him make a big fuss and praise him alot, then give it to him, you can then start to cut back and skip one or two, before you know it he will be coming purely for the pleasure of being praised.
    Also, you can get special harnesses for dogs in the car, they either clip into the seat belt or around the seat belt post, I use one for my terrier, so much safer for her and me.
    Last edited by janedee; 04-16-2015 at 10:37 PM.

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    Junior Member Laurajbr's Avatar
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    I have never had that breed, but I have a Pomeranian papillon mix who is a rescue. He will occasionally lunge at one of our cats but not the other. It seems to be food driven, based on the possibility that human near him has food. We worked with treats, one for cat, one for dog as they sat near each other. It helped, but of course, that is the cat who is not food driven.
    Petey, the dog is extremely food driven, and also prefers to "hear" the word come only if food is involved. Sadly, I am not consistent enough in the training of him. He had cancer treatment last year and is on borrowed time, so we are more focused on fun than training. Focus on the areas of training that are important, and enjoy him.
    When I am perfect, I will write a book and everyone can be perfect too. Until then I will just have to be gracious in face of imperfection, and ask the same of everyone else for my imperfections.

  16. #16
    Power Poster earthwalker's Avatar
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    Lhasa's are a wonderful companion. Like most of the asiatic breeds (Chow, Pekingnese, Shitzu...) they do tend to be a little aloof, not prone to silly behaviours and are very loyal companions. Quite serious little chaps, but really lovely. I would like one someday, but I have this habit of ending up with other people's nightmare dogs....you know the ugly little thing at the shelter with 101 problems.....

  17. #17
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    Very cute dog. Don't know anything about them but always wanted one. My daughter rescued small dog in vet's parking lot. He came in with a very positive attitude and was well accepted by the rest of our dogs, even the german shepherd. One of the Norwegian elkhounds who really never likes little dogs absolutely lets him do anything to him, including cleaning his mouth/teeth. He also thinks he is one of the cats and lets them rub all over him.

  18. #18
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    Sweet Charlie! I had my Llasa for almost 18 years she was amazing I always said she didn't know she was short! Llasas are a dominate breed if you aren't in charge they will be! You gave a big hint - he keeps them away from me - that says to me he is owning you - be careful. I suggest you read up on this breed they are so loyal and sweet but they will take over 1st the cat then people. You've got your self a beautiful little dog I hope you have a wonderful life together. (I remember Daisy).
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  19. #19
    Senior Member maryfrang's Avatar
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    OH, how cute little guy. I would have to wonder what he has been through. He was not treated very well and he is very skittish until he knows you only what to love and treat him well. Give him time and love. We had a dog that was beaten and we have him time and love. He was great around us after almost a year, but do not let someone come to the door or by our house, He protected us. He was a special dog and we had him for several years.

  20. #20
    Senior Member Onetomatoplant's Avatar
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    My dad got my mom their first Lhasa 30 years ago to replace me when I left home. She lived until she was 18 years old, and a year or so after she passed they got two more. Though I tease my parents, 1) for replacing me with a dog, and 2) for choosing a rag mop of a dog, they are fabulous dogs! They're smart and have great personalities. As to your dog's guarding you from the cat, I would talk to your vet about it. There are things you can do to convince the dog you don't necessarily need to be guarded.

    Have fun with him - he's a cutie!
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  21. #21
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    Charley is adorable. I have a Shih Tzu about 14 months old. To get him to come inside I have to give him a tiny treat.If he doesn't want to come in when the neighbor dog is outside, I take the treat out for him to smell. I tell him he has to come in to get the treat. I never give treats outside.
    I tell him often that I am the boss, he is not. He is very cute and smart, he seems to understand but, needs to be reminded often.
    I rescued a long legged Chihuahua from Humane Society five years ago. I have been able to change some bad behaviors but not all. She has to be caged if no one is in the room with her. Chairs have to be pushed in or she will get on the table. She is much better if I remember to cage her.
    She is Cookie my avatar picture.
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  22. #22
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    Lhasa's are great, but they like so many animals who have had hard lives care this with them. So as far as the growling and making the cats go away after they wake him up, this will take time (and it may never totally go away, but will get less and less). Charlie may have had some BAD experiences with trying to sleep and having others attack or try to attack him. He is still learning the lay of the land at his new home, so the cats need to learn that he doesn't like a lot of closeness when he's sleeping. I have found that Lhasa's are very "Soft Hearted", so they do care there feeling on their paws (so to speak). As for being a little aloof, part of this come from his history and the bread (being a guard dog as well as his former life). Over time your little guy will find his place in your household and things will be much easier for all. Good luck and enjoy

  23. #23
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    Sounds like he is going through a bit of settling in issues. It may take him a little time to understand that this is his forever home. Charley may have some hearing loss due to all the infections. My Clem-does these same things when he gets startled. I've had him for 17yrs and he's very use to his furry buddies disturbing his naps and so far this is the only older aged dog symptom he has.. You will want to brush him often they are shedders and this special time will help the bonding process.

  24. #24
    Super Member MaggieLou's Avatar
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    He's a cutie. I've had several Lhasas. They are great dogs. Good watchdogs but not aggressive. They will bark if they think there is a threat. It will take time for him to overcome being mistreated which he probably was. Just continue to love him and he will come around. I've been considering getting another one since our last greyhound passed.
    Margaret

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  25. #25
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    He is still probably reacting toward what he's been through. All of our 7 dogs have been rescues, Our little Brutus was seen by DH thrown out the back window of a car on a heavily traveled industrial road. He did let them have a piece of his mind. Then he saw DH and basically asked to go home with him. My sister had a apso and a cat. The apso did the same thing. She would just say to him it was ok, like No No, It's Ok. They appreciate the new surroundings but never really forget the abuse. It's a scar that stays with them just the same as humans have.

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