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  1. #1
    Thailand Expat
    Sumocakewalk's Avatar
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    How to keep former soi dogs from eating 'junk' food?

    I am hoping the experiences of other members can help me to alter the behavior of two former soi dogs that I've taken in as pets. Part of the problem is they became used to scavenging for anything they could find prior to them becoming pets. Even though they are well fed now, they still go after any kind of discarded food bits they come across. I'm worried that sooner or later they will encounter something that has either been intentionally poisoned or has become contaminated through carelessness.

    I have posted about the two dogs previously and some here may be aware of them already. One is a dog named Val who is very high strung and likes to run away at the slightest opportunity. We keep Val restrained by leash whenever she's outside for a walk.


    Bonnie was on her own for about 7 months before we took her in. For the past 6 weeks she's been going through a transition to becoming a pet. When I go out for a walk with Val, Bonnie goes along but not on a leash. She has not been trained to walk by leash yet and will not budge if one is clipped to her collar. I like the idea of her being able to run around on her own when we're out, but she constantly goes after discarded food.


    Whether on a leash or not, both dogs will go after the 'junk' food. With Val I can control the problem by keeping her away from it. Not so with Bonnie being unrestrained. At some point I may have to get Bonnie used to a leash as well.


    To complicate matters, my wife has a tendency to over feed the dogs. We are making an effort to cut back on the amount of food they get, but that is probably going to make the situation with them going after 'junk' food more difficult to stop.


    They are typically fed a combination of rice and different kinds of protein; chicken, pork or fish.

    Do you have any helpful ideas you can share to control their urge to 'dine out'?

  2. #2
    Thailand Expat Pragmatic's Avatar
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    It may sound cruel but it's not. Buy them a muzzle. They'll still scavenge whilst wearing the muzzle initially but they should stop after a period of time.


  3. #3
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    ^ yes the only way. or put it on a lead.

  4. #4
    I am in Jail
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    Its in dogs nature to scavenge,a lot of dogs will eat something even if full so the other can't have it.

    Billy suggestion along with keeping them confined to your own ground which I take wont have shit laying about for them to eat is the best bet.

  5. #5
    Lord of Swine
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    Take a spray bottle or squirt gun filled with water/vinegar.
    Every time she pulls the lead to some rubbish let her get to it then give it and her face a squirt.
    She will become more circumspect and when she starts hesitating call her on and give a little snack and some pats.
    Do it with each dog individually, can't train while they are getting in each others way.

  6. #6
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    Teach them table manners , they will soon desire decent food:


  7. #7
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    Train them to do their business off property, as canines will consume their own shit from time to time.

  8. #8
    Member Flaming Carrot's Avatar
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    Roll up some newspaper and whack them every time they go for the discarded food bits, try that initially before you go for the muzzle.

  9. #9
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    Thank you all for your suggestions.

    About the muzzle alternative, that suggestion reminded me that some time ago we had bought an inexpensive strap kind for Val to try to keep her from barking at night. It didn't work well for that so we stashed it away. I'll dig that one out and give it a try on Bonnie to see how she does with it.

    For the vinegar and water method, I am wondering if the vinegar would be harmful or painful if it gets in their eyes. That one might be practical to try on Val since she's on the leash and within range, if it would not be a problem for her eyes.

    In regards to teaching them manners, I like that idea too. I'll try training them to use proper utensils. Once they get used to that, when they are making the rounds we'll leave the utensils behind and that should deter them from scavenging like common animals.

    So far no problem with them eating their dog poo. I have noticed them going after the cat doo doo though. For reasons I do not understand, they seem to relish digging it up and chowing down.

    When I walk the dogs, I carry a cane as a dissuader for other roaming dogs that might not be so friendly. I occasionally use that as a reminder for Val if she starts to go crazy when seeing another dog or person. I try not to use it unless that seems like the only alternative. Carrying a rolled up newspaper might be a more gentle alternative, but I'm afraid that wouldn't do much to fend off another vicious dog. I am reluctant to hit Bonnie with anything as she is a very gentle dog. We've used a rubber flip flop on occasion to dissuade Val, and I usually wear flip flops while on our walks, so that might be another alternative.

  10. #10
    Thailand Expat Pragmatic's Avatar
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    You could also try a remote shock training collar. I had one for a barking dog and after a few shocks the dog had learned. After that i just put the collar on the dog when I went out .

  11. #11
    Pedantic bastard
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    Go find half a dozen episodes of "the dog whisperer". Slightly too "american tv" for my tastes, but the guy is a frigging genius with dogs.

    Broadly (!!) it is about instilling rules as to what is "their business" and what is not. We got a kitten in with an old dog, applied the techniques and the dog now simply ignores the cat (now not a kitten).

    Basically, when they focus on something, distract their attention (firm touch on the fore limb, tug on the leash) and get them refocus on you.

    really does work when applied consistently.

  12. #12
    Member Flaming Carrot's Avatar
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    If it doesn't work it is what nature intended. Throw them back to the landfill.

  13. #13
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    Feed the fvckers chewing gum and rat poison inside luuk chin, that will sort the buggers out.

  14. #14
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    Alternatively, just allow them to be dogs.
    They do what they do. It's written in their DNA.

    Attempts to make them human is futile because they're not.

    Stop trying to reinvent things that don't need to be.

  15. #15
    Member Flaming Carrot's Avatar
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    You can't take a mongrel in and make it a pet.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flaming Carrot View Post
    You can't take a mongrel in and make it a pet.
    This includes the wife.
    Try as you might....

  17. #17
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    Thank you for your further comments and suggestions. Here's a recent photo of the pair; Val on left and Bonnie on right. The foot and shoe in the lower right are the wife's.


  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gravesend Dave View Post
    Its in dogs nature to scavenge,a lot of dogs will eat something even if full so the other can't have it.

    Billy suggestion along with keeping them confined to your own ground which I take wont have shit laying about for them to eat is the best bet.

    I use this logic with my dogs. They are tethered when we are not around and then let loose when there is someone to watch. By now they are used to their surroundings and will not bark unless someone comes on our property.

    As mentioned, keep your property as clean as you can and keep the soi dogs out. All of this will not guarantee that your dogs do not eat something "bad", but I take things out of their mouth when I do not know what it is and verbally admonish them.

    My fear is not so much that they will eat something bad, it is more that someone will toss some rat poison on the property, for whatever reason, and they will find it. Lost my last two dogs this way.

    If you really want to learn how to break them of any bad habits, you can find dog training books at most large book stores. I bought the "Dog Whisperer" and learned some good methods of training dogs. It does have a section on how to train your dog to only eat what is given them by their master.

  19. #19
    Thailand Expat
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    I'll follow up with some review of the Dog Whisperer's advice. Looks like there are many videos on YouTube to choose from. I'll also check it out in book stores the next time I go shopping.

    About the electronic collar, that's an interesting device and I imagine it would be effective. I am concerned about the discomfort it would cause though, and I wonder how costly the device is. I'll keep an eye out to check for pricing on that.

    We'll also keep up on yard clean-up to get rid of the poo in a timely manner. The wife just bought a new dust pan to be used exclusively for poop scooping.

    I'll have to weigh the risks of letting Bonnie run free versus the possibility that she might eventually eat something nasty.

  20. #20
    Thailand Expat Pragmatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sumocakewalk
    About the electronic collar, that's an interesting device and I imagine it would be effective. I am concerned about the discomfort it would cause though, and I wonder how costly the device is. I'll keep an eye out to check for pricing on that.
    The discomfort is not that great. Okay the dog may jump a few times initially but you'll see results. As for price you can buy on Ebay for a tenner, including postage to Thailand. 300 Yard Rechargeable LCD 100LV Level Shock Vibra Remote Pet Dog Training Collar | eBay

  21. #21
    Thailand Expat
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    ^
    Thank you for the additional info. I'll have to see if this is available for purchase inside Thailand.

    I gave up my eBay and Paypal accounts shortly after moving to Thailand. I used to be a regular user of their services back in my home country, but after I moved here and tried to make some purchases, Paypal insisted that I create a new Thai account. That went OK until I attempted to make a purchase from eBay, then Paypal's automated security system would not allow me to pay for it! Even after talking with their customer service in Singapore and providing all the correct security answers to their service rep, they could not override the security check. Bye bye Paypal and eBay!

  22. #22
    Thailand Expat Pragmatic's Avatar
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    ^ I have never had a problem. Re-registered my Debit Card with my Thai address and away I went.

  23. #23
    Thailand Expat Pragmatic's Avatar
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  24. #24
    Thailand Expat
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pragmatic View Post
    I have never had a problem. Re-registered my Debit Card with my Thai address and away I went.
    Sorry for my whining about the eBay and Paypal situation. Back then I was using a credit card account from my home country, which was linked to the new Paypal Thai account. That's what threw their security system into a tizzy. In the end, it was the treatment I got from both Paypal and eBay that put me off permanently to using their services.

    I'll check out the Thai source you've provided. Thank you.

  25. #25
    Thailand Expat Exit Strategy's Avatar
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    I hope the best for your dogs. Have your read Colin Cotterill. He is a real person, great guy too, helped in around Lao fighting child abuse. Colin I hope your dogs are ok. I found the books at Asia Books - years ago - and after read the first one bought - it was dr. Siri, much later I found Ms. Juree, well I liked them all (well both Lao and Thailand series). Colin probably you never get to read this, it is a slim chance, but good luck and I appreciate. Good luck in South mate. I would love to have more books.

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