Puppy Tips please

posted 3 years ago in Pets
Post # 3
Member
1168 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

@Lollybags:  

Nipping for puppies in common. They just do it to initiate play. They have no idea how sharp those baby teeth are. I would just never allow biting to initiate play.

What has worked for me, when I have a nippy puppy: everytime they nip/bite/mouth I squeal (high pitched “eeek”) and face away from the puppy. Then when the puppy continues to try to initiate play, I continually do it. Do it in a calm, not exciting manor. If you move too quick he may think your playing and try to chase and nip even more. 

Its what a litter mate would do. (If you get up and walk away the puppy’s attention becomes distracted. 

I wouldnt use any harsh deterents like pepper or lemon. I wouldnt let him off leash until he was able to follow the rules/I would not allow the puppy outside unattended. 

Post # 4
Member
295 posts
Helper bee

For biting I just did the finger trick of pressing down their mouth. As for fdihmgging look into getting a kids sand box with lid to use as the appropate spot to dig. 

Post # 5
Member
845 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

@Lollybags:  What worked for us to stop the biting was to yelp in as high-pitched of a voice as possible, to sound like another puppy, and turn away from the dog for a few seconds. Once he was calm, we’d pet him, talk to him sweetly. He stopped the nipping within in a matter of weeks.

I wish I could help with the digging, but our dogs never dig and I don’t really know why. Probably because we live in the frozen tundra of WI! Maybe he just needs to get the majority of his outside time on walks or at a dog park rather than being out in the yard?

Post # 7
Member
825 posts
Busy bee

a) If you’re playing with him on the floor when he bites, ‘YELP’ — I mean scream loud enough to startle him. And immediately stand up, show him play time stops if he uses his teeth like that. If he continues to bite at your ankles or nip at you, leave the room for even just a minute. If he tries to follow step over a baby gate or close a door to make sure he can’t. The fun leaves the room when he doesn’t behave himself. If you’re just sitting on the couch with him or something similar, and he stats biting, firmly say no and then replace your hand with a suitable chew toy. Sometimes this involves literally shoving an appropriate toy in his mouth. Hang in there, be consistent and make sure all members of the house (and visitors!) know the rules. By 4 months old.

Kikopup is also an excellent online trainer and has videos on making your movements less exciting through clicker training. http://youtu.be/c77–cCHPyU

Basic obedience class will also help with this. 

As your puppy is four months old, please don’t hold it’s mouth shut even gently. He’s going to start teething soon (if he hasn’t already) and his mouth will become sore. 

b) Ours had a stage of this and NOTHING seemed to dissuade him. The only thing that helped was making sure he was tuckered out. Practice training, give him his meal in toys (Kong, IQ Ball, Kong Wobbler), to tire out his mind. Make sure to give him plenty of exercise (more than you think he needs, as he’s headed toward adolescence) and the digging should decrease. 

Since you have a terrier mix, make sure that he’s not hunting any burrowing animals in the yard. Walk around and make sure there aren’t any tunnels. If it still doesn’t stop, talk to your FI about creating a ‘digging zone’ that’s far away from the paving stones, but has loose soil (and is made fun and attractive with toys and treats) that is an ‘okay’ place to dig. Discourage digging anywhere else. 

Post # 8
Member
825 posts
Busy bee

@Lollybags:  I’d also DEFINITELY look into crate training. It’d solve the digging problem completely. It makes potty training easier, makes boarding at the vet or when you go on vacation easier, and prevents any unwanted behaviors in or out of the house. You can have your pup crate trained in a weekend most times. 

http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/virtual-pet-behaviorist/dog-behavior/weekend-crate-training

http://www.humanesociety.org/animals/dogs/tips/crate_training.html#.UtyAnXn0DL8

 

Post # 9
Member
1168 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

@Lollybags:  In that case I wouldnt blame a bored puppy, left alone in a yard for digging up holes. 

I also wouldnt recommend tying him up because as an active puppy he could entangle himself. 

Maybe hire a dog walker? or try keep him in a bedroom with the door closed. Puppies really are not meant to be alone more than 4-5 hours at a time. They are social beings and need someone around all the time to teach them how to behave. Bored, lonely puppies often develop troublesome habbits that become super hard to break. Im not being judgemental, I totally understand having to work. You could always do a puppy daycare center or pay a neighbor to watch him. 

Post # 10
Member
845 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

@Lollybags:  We crated trained our pup and I agree, it really helped with potty training and we never had to worry about him destroying anything. Puppies under 6 months can’t stay in the crate for more than 3-4 hours, but since your dad already comes over, that should help enormously! I drove home from work for lunch every day for the first 6 months or so.

Post # 11
Member
156 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

@Lollybags:  Biting – Your puppy is biting you because he views you as a friend, not his master. As horrible as that might sound, you need to establish yourself as “master” first, and “friend” second. Sure, puppies will get mouthy with their mothers, especially when they get super energized, but she’ll quickly stop the behavior by getting up and leaving. Even if the puppy follows, you ignore the puppy, or, she will take him by the scruff/shoulders, and gently pin him to the ground until he settles down. You can imitate this by making a soft ‘claw’ motion with your hand and holding him lightly, but firmly to the ground until the puppy stops wiggling and trying to mouth you.

Also, make sure you’re not ‘squeaking’ when he bites you. OW! or NO! in a high pitched voice can trigger a ‘prey’ instinct in a dog, especially with terriers! They’ll get more excited and bite more! I know it is really common for people to suggest this, but it is not recommended to make any prey like sounds with a prey driven dog. Yes, their littermates will do this to let them know that he hurt them, but you are NOT a littermate, you’re his leader. Leaders are NOT to be chewed on. Puppy needs to learn this.

Be careful with the redirect of chew toys, as you don’t want to make your puppy posessive of chew toys! Make sure your puppy knows that YOU control the toys, but don’t ever take the toy from his mouth. If he has the toy you want, slowly approach him, stop a little ways away, and wait for him to drop the toy. Then, slowly take the toy. Practice this early, and you won’t be tugging shoes out of your grown dog’s mouth.

Does he bite your FI like he bites you? If not, observe how your FI behaves around your puppy. When he gets up in the morning does he rush over to puppy’s crate and play with him, or does he go about his morning more routinely? To establish that YOU are Mrs. Incharge, before you cuddle and give affection to your puppy, let him outside for his potty break, let him run around and exercise his energy away, and THEN great him with love and affection. Be calm, yet assertive, in the morning when you first greet the puppy. It might sound cruel, but it is very matter of fact, and you will be able to establish your dominance over puppy. This will also come in handy once puppy becomes dog. Dogs LIKE leadership.

Digging – To redirect unwanted digging, give puppy a place TOO dig! Get a sand/dirt box, bury things with interesting scents in the box (like a ball with treats in it). Let him use his nose to find treats! Encourage and praise him for digging in the right spot, but don’t scold him for being a dog. Like you said, he’s a terrior, it’s part of his breed trait to be a digger, it is who he is! You don’t want to discourage him to be who is he, but you must control where he digs. When you go outside, leash him, leave a scented object burried in the sand/dirt, and let him sniff it out, guiding him to the location of the box. Let him sniff through the sand/dirt, and praise him for digging there. Continue this pattern of “guided” digging for a while, then slowly start letting him off the leash in the backyard, monitor him, see heads over to the box and starts to dig.

Surprisingly, this digging will also help with the biting/chewing too! He’ll have an appropriate way to release his energy, and will not feel the need to release his energy by chewing or biting! Maybe even get him a little swimming pool or go on 30 minute runs with him each day. These are all great ways to drain a puppy’s energy, and it sounds like you’ve got a high energy dog.

 

I do want to make a note of the “marking” you’re talking about. I assume he is lifting his leg to ‘mark’ things? This is a good sign you need to be ready to take him to the vet to get him neutered. You’ll be able to prevent him from ever getting those nasty hormones in his body that makes him full of pent up energy from not being able to breed. 

Post # 14
Member
757 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

@Lollybags:  have you tried a spray bottle with just water in it for the niping? that worked best with my two dogs (puggle and APT).  Also, try wasabi near the pavers!

Post # 15
Member
825 posts
Busy bee

@MeghanFly:  This is not true. These thoughts are based in dominance theory which has been widely discredited to the point it’s almost thought of as cruel. Your puppy already knows that you’re the boss. You take it outside, you give it food, you’re bigger, you’re stronger. That pinning strategy is called an ‘alpha roll’ and has been linked to aggression in dogs. You want all handling you be pleasant so that when you go to the vet and they need to open their mouths, check their ears — or if they have a scratch/sore/bite on their stomach that they don’t interpret it as something that is a display of dominance. 

http://www.apdt.com/petowners/choose/dominance.aspx

http://www.whole-dog-journal.com/issues/14_12/features/Alpha-Dogs_20416-1.html

Also — lifting legs is a trainable behavior. While most rescues are neutered by the rescue agency, it’s not anything to do with puberty or sexual hormones. Same with humping. I have a 19 month old unneutered male lab. He has never marked anything in the house, is not aggressive, has earned his Canine Good Citizenship training award, sleeps around the house unless I take him out to play fetch, plays well with other dogs and never ever humps other dogs. He will also never be bred. He’s in tact so that he gets to finish growing properly before he gets neutered at two years old. 

Post # 16
Member
156 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

@beeintraining:  I’ll have to disagree with you on this one, as I get this information from a more trusted source, and one’s I’ve witnessed firsthand. That pinning has been used multiple times to properly train a dog. People use it incorrectly, and agressively, which causes the aggression. You have to do in in a calm manner. I have seen multiple well-trained, happy, non-aggressive dogs, all trained in this manner, and I believe Ceaser Millan or w/e trains dogs in this manner too – so you’ll have your opinion, and I’ll have mine. I’m not about to get into a ‘spanking debate’ with you. 

I will say, though, that I solely disagree with your choice not to neuter your dog. That is very irresponsible of you, and you do NOT need to let him “grow properly”. Not sure where you got that from. But your dog needs but only get out ONCE and breed to further create a problem. I was not saying anything wrong with leg lifting, I was replying to the “But FI worked really hard to pave our yard and he’s getting disheartened about the dog flicking up dirt all over his pavers and marking them so it would be good to try and minimise it” comment. Pavers, last I checked, are outside the house, and it is normal for a house trained dog to pee outside. 

You and I are going to have to agree to disagree, as this is the last of this I will say towards you. But, in this time, I did look up a Ceaser Millan video, and he pretty much says everything I said… so, you have your sources, I’ll have mine. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ANpMApPnWCM

I’ve seen multiple other professionals do this, and it is what the dog trainer that comes to the local shelters to offer a puppy training class does. In fact, I have a friend whose mother raises golden labs as show dogs, and all of them have been trained in similar fashions, and all of them are perfectly fine with being touched. They are never aggressively touched – and you assuming that to be dominate is to be aggressive is wrong.

My parents use to breed working class GSDs, and they used these techniques too. You obviously have a more carefree take on raising a dog, so we’re obviously going to disagree on this. But like I said, reply if you want to, but I’m not going to get into a dog training debate with you. The OP asked for advice and she can feel free to chose the techniques she wants, and you certainly can go about keeping your intact nearly 2 year old dog, and risking unwanted breeding, but there is no need to keep this debate going.

@Lollybags:  “But FI worked really hard to pave our yard and he’s getting disheartened about the dog flicking up dirt all over his pavers and marking them so it would be good to try and minimise it.”

I read this as “and marking” them, as he was actually marking them. Did I read that incorrectly?

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