What on earth are the Zoomies? Well according to Urban Dictionary, Zoomies are
When your dog runs around the house like crazy jumping on the couch, running up and down the stairs, and all over the house. It usually ends with them falling to the floor, panting like crazy and taking a nap. That s pretty spot on. Trust me. If you ever encounter the Zoomies, you ll know it. Zoomies are really just random bursts of energy and are completely normal. They are more common in puppies and young dogs, but senior dogs can Zoomie too! Some behaviorists and trainers refer to these episodes as FRAPs (Frenetic Random Activity Periods), but I think I like the term Zoomies a bit better. While getting the Zoomies is normal behavior, it can wreak havoc on a small house or apartment. If it s an issue, one way to avoid the Zoomies is to make sure your dog is thoroughly exercised. A tired dog is less likely to have a sudden energy burst! You can also learn what triggers your dog to Zoomie and perform that cue outside and off leash where there is more space. I wouldn t recommend triggering the Zoomies when your dog is on leash since dogs can move very quickly and erratically and could harm themselves or someone else.
One of Luna s major triggers is water. She always has to get her Zoomie on after a bath or after coming inside from the rain. I think it is part of her drying off ritual. Does your dog get the Zoomies? *drops mic* The A to Z Challenge 2015 is finished! See ya in May. Ok, please – get him off the Wagg food, its really REALLY crap food, and, the cereals and colours and sugars in it are quite probably adding to his behaviour. I realise it is a very cheap food and if you are out of work you are likely short of cash, so it does pain me to say to you, don\’t feed cheap food, as I know how tough things are if you have no money! If you can manage it, a sack of Fishmongers Choice from pets at home is around бе30, sometimes it is on offer – whilst I realise it IS probably about three times the price of Wagg, you will feed less of it, you will have to pick up less poo, he will be less zoomy, and he is also likely to be much easier to train. The next thing to do is to give him more mental stimulation, brain training in other words. You can break these down roughly into \’things he can do by himself\’ and \’things I have to do with him\’. Things he can do by himself: Raw bones, feeding toys, destruction boxes.
Kongs, buster cubes, squirrel dudes, there are all manner of food dispensing toys out there. Most of them are quite pricey so the cheapest option, is get a few 2 litre or 1. 5 litre pop bottles, also the plastic milk bottles (the semi see through ones are best) – cut a few holes in them so that bits of cheese, kibble, cat kibbles etc will fall out through the holes IF he rattles it around and flings it about. Destruction boxes are also cheap – cardboard box, newspaper, treats – wrap the treats in newspaper twists, stuff them in the box, close the box up, let him destroy it to get at the treats. Raw meaty bones – go and ask your butcher (also sometimes Morrisons supermarket has bones) for bones with a bit of meat on them (say its for soup if you think they will be funny about it being for dogs – some are, some aren\’t), these are recreational bones so you want BIG bones, nothing he can completely eat up. Puzzle toys – google the Nina Ottoson range, whilst these are pricey toys, they are WELL worth the money. Once you have seen them though you may be able to work out a way of making your own. You can play games where he has to find the hidden treat under upturned cups or bowls, you can hide things around the flat for him to go find (toys, treats etc).
Clicker training – a free clicker can be made from a jar lid, some lids have an indentation that makes a \’pop-pop\’ sound to show you whether the jar has been tampered with. Follow our clicker training guide in the Articles section and get free shaping him, a good game for staffies is 101 things to do with a box, where, once you have conditioned him to understand the clicker, you click and reward ANY interaction with a cardboard box (make it big enough but low enough that he can get in it, put a paw in it, sit in it etc etc). This game means he has to THINK, and a dog who spends time thinking is one who will shortly spend time sleeping! On walks – keep your walks short, and keep them to areas where you are less likely to see other dogs. Since you are off work at the moment, take him out for no more than 15 minutes at a time, but do it lots. Take some REALLY high value rewards with you, and constantly work with him on things like him giving you his attention, walking nicely on the lead, chuck in random cues for sit, down, matching your pace when you speed up or slow down etc.
IF you see another dog, give him lots of praise, big reward and create as much distance as you can between him and the other dog. The message HAS to be \’other dog = rewards\’, and you should NOT ask him to DO anything other than see the other dog, so no askng him to sit or telling him off, just shove a treat in his gob and turn around and get out of there! I would not throw sticks for him – sticks are dangerous – you can either buy rubber, fake, sticks (buy two! ), or use a ball (take two identical ones). If you have two identical toys to throw for him, you can trade him the one he has, for the one you are going to throw! I would keep him ona harness and long line for this game so that you CAN get him back quickly if you see another dog. You have a VERY intelligent dog here, and a very sharp, fast reacting dog too – people make the mistake of thinking that collies are easy to train, and that staffies are stupid, but this is NOT the case – collies whilst easy to train, will also learn a million and one things you DIDNT want them to learn, and staffies are actually often VERY sensitive and very clever dogs.