OK. So I had Max for almost two years now - and he is now four. The prey drive is out of control.
He saw a rabbit on the other side of a 6 ft fence - he went up and over. A week later the rabbit wasn't even there and he went to the same spot looking for him and jumped anyways.
There was a bird on a wire and he just continues to bark excessively and try to climb that fence (much higher) to get a bird standing still.
Now, the rabbit thing. He saw one in the dark and proceeded to try to jump out of a car window that is half way down (for him to be able to have his head out as I drove) and got stuck half way.

It is just too much. When he sees these things, he doesn't bark as much as he "screams" or lets out loud long high pitched whine.

I just think he needs to be hunting or something - I am not a hunter - I wonder if I just don't make him happy. I take him for a hour and half walk each day, let him run in the park (fenced in tennis court) like crazy.
I guess my question is - Greyhounds chase rabbits for their "professional" living. How are they not rabbit crazy after they "retire"?! What technique is used - and could I try it? I see greyhounds in the area walking so peacefully and I have a maniac.

I am not sure anymore that I am providing the right home as much as I try. But then again, I think he would be a happy being a outdoor hunting dog, but not sure if his prey drive is even too high for hunting training. He could certainly do the "scaring up" of birds but not retrieve them, and if you did let him go in the field he certainly won't come back until he tires.
Frustrated.
Please no "howdy" beatings.
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Now, the rabbit thing. He saw one in the dark and proceeded to try to jump out of a car window that is half way down (for him to be able to have his head out as I drove) and got stuck half way.

Hopefully you now realize how incredibly unwise it is to 1) drive with your window down enough that your 2) unrestrained dog can get halfway out.
I guess my question is - Greyhounds chase rabbits for their "professional" living. How are they not rabbit crazy after ... - and could I try it? I see greyhounds in the area walking so peacefully and I have a maniac.

There is no "technique". A high prey drive greyhound is always a high prey drive greyhound. Have you ever seen a greyhound walking that suddenly sees a rabbit? Prey drive varies in all dogs, including greyhounds. My greyhounds, which are all indoor 'cat-safe', would chase, and probably kill, a rabbit in the yard. Or a squirrel, or even a cat. High prey greyhounds can be a real challenge to walk because they will lunge at wildlife. They do normally respect fences, though, and don't seem to realize that they could easily jump them.

Is it possible to put some sort of visible barrier on/in your fence? There are plastic strips that can be woven into a chain link fence, or perhaps some sort of fabric that you can put over the chain link so the dog can't see rabbits. His prey drive has been reinforced by seeing a rabbit, so you'll probably need to put him on leash even in the yard until he stops going over the fence. An overhang on top of the fence might be necessary. Electric fence on the top is easier and cheaper and quite effective.
The only other suggestion I have is to channel his prey drive by giving him a job. Agility, flyball, obedience, something.

Mustang Sally
Buzzsaw,
I am sure I can swap stories with you about prey drive. My sister has a Rhodesian X that she fished out of a ditch when it was a couple of months old. It was wounded either beaten or injured. She lives in S Fl. They use those kind of dogs for Hog Dogs. It is horrible as they get ripped up pretty good some times. Nothing will thwart their prey drive.
I know the same is true of your dog. It is ingrained in a dog from the day that it is born. It is not something that can be eliminated. My sister's dog has killed multiple small animals despite her maze of electic fences, chain link..etc.
My suggestion to you is exercise, exercise, exercise. My other suggestion is obedience training. I am not suggesting that your dog will pass on the rabbit at the sound of your command. However, you do need to have control of the dog before you get to the rabbit stage. My sister's dog is about nine years old and has not backed off a bit on the prey drive matter.
Just because a dog has strong prey drive does not make him a hunting dog.
Good luck with your dog. I wish I had more detailed info to give you. I am just sharing my sister's experience and what I have learned and read about the subject. I am not a dog trainer and have had no first hand experience with the matter.
Be Free..Judy
My suggestion to you is exercise, exercise, exercise. My other suggestion is obedience training. I am not suggesting that your ... of your command. However, you do need to have control of the dog before you get to the rabbit stage.

Exercise may help but not a lot, I think. You need to be able to call the dog off but you can't teach them not to be interested.
My most "I never expected my life to turn out like this" morning this winter happened when I heard barking from the yard that didn't sound particularly playful. I hauled butt out there and found Emmett and Slick taking turns doing the "I will now place my paw on your shoulder and bark my head off," "No, I will place my* paw on *your shoulder and bark my head off" thing, and as I went to put an end to that Eclipse trotted by, tail carried high in the air and a big bounce in her step and the back half of a rabbit in her mouth.

Melinda Shore - Software longa, hardware brevis - (Email Removed)

If you can't say it clearly, you don't understand it yourself John Searle
My most "I never expected my life to turn out like this" morning this winter happened when I heard barking ... in the air and a big bounce in her step and the back half of a rabbit in her mouth.[/nq]The personal tastes and preferences of dogs are interesting to me. Tasha always preferred eating critters from the back to the front. I'm sure I've told the story here about the squirrel half (front) that kept making an appearance on top of snow piles one winter until I finally disposed of it. And there was the time, shortly after my brain surgery, when I still had one eye patched, and Matty brought the squirrel head past me into the house.

("I don't have anything in my mouth...") Who knows when I might have found it had he not guarded it, growling at anyone who came near, which was unusual for him. Silly Matty didn't know what to do with the thing once he had it. I don't recall thinking that I'd never expected my life to turn out like this, but I do remember wondering who I could tell this story to...

Mustang Sally
in thread sighthounds & siberians (Email Removed) whittled the following words:

If I recall right, Buzzsaw's fence is solid wood 6 foot. It looks like a fortress to me. maybe the wood was only on the road side, I don't recall.

Buzzsaw does the best he can as far as exercise goes, but Max (in my opinion) does not get enough exercise (as much as he needs) I do think the commitment of Buzzsaw is exceptional, and he does the best that he can. I do think if Buzzsaw tried to rehome Max, the probability of finding a home that would give Max the kind of home/exercise he NEEDS is very low. Max is a very lucky dog to have what (and who) he has. I don't think Buzzsaw has anything to feel guilty about. In fact, he should be very proud of his Max husbandry.
As to answers as to how he can give Max everything Max needs? I don't have a clue, after being familiar with the area and laws where he lives.. I'm left in a quandry and speechless. I simply have no solution. Max is one lucky (and GORGEOUS) dog.
I do think I'd be adding an electronic boundary inside his fence to try to prevent further incidents of the Flying Max.
in thread (Email Removed) (Judith Althouse) whittled the following words:
My suggestion to you is exercise, exercise, exercise. My other suggestion is obedience training. I am not suggesting that your ... of your command. However, you do need to have control of the dog before you get to the rabbit stage.

I have Met Buzzsaw and Max. Max has been through obedience schools multiple times. Max IS obedient. Buzzsaw is a wonderful owner.

Max is a very high drive pitbull/mastiff type dog. gorgeous mahogany Brindle.IF Max lives her, I would take him for daily 3.5 mile 15mph runs on the ATV and take the sass out of him. But there are no public ATV trails in the area. Nor are there GOOD places to properly exercise him to maximum effect. Buzzsaw uses his local resources to maximum effect, but having a high prey drive/dog aggressive dog severely limits his options. It's so easy to see what Max needs and make recommendations, but not so easy to put them in effect.
Buzzsaw is not making excuses or disclaimers for what isn't being done, simply because he's already putting to maximum use, what resources are available to him. Buzzsaw is a very good and committed owner. Max just needs more.
If Buzzsaw gave up Max, he would probably be put down. Max is in a good place.
Howdy Buzzsaw,
Since you aren't a hunter then open field coursing is out. The next best thing would be lure coursing. You won't stop the prey drive but you will have a tired dog. A lot of the running dogs settle down a little. They seem to know they will get their chance to run. But all bets are off when you are around a lure or you are in the field when a jack pops up and it's another dogs turn to run.
Frank X. Morris http://community.webtv.net/Sulkhalil/ChimeandFriends
Hopefully you now realize how incredibly unwise it is to 1) drive with your window down enough that your 2) unrestrained dog can get halfway out.>>

Not to mention that stuff flying at dog's faces/eyes/ears is a really bad idea.
The only other suggestion I have is to channel his prey drive by giving him a job. Agility, flyball, obedience, something.

Yep. Not too many Grey's in flyball, but they CAN do it and if the dog is this drivey, that may be a great outlet.

Janet Boss
www.bestfriendsdogobedience.com
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