(Closed) Is my new puppy aggressive? Help!

posted 10 years ago in Pets
Post # 17
Member
109 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

In regards to the eating (and this is just my personal opinion, suggested by my trainer…not saying it’s right) To avoid resource garding, you don’t want to avoid them while they’re useing that toy/eating/whatever, becuase then it allows them to guard.

Instead, what was suggeted to us was get down and take the food/toy/whatever away while they’re using it and correct them when they growly, etc. They need to learn that it’s not ok to behave like that, and you can take it away whenever you want. If you teach DD to avoid during certain behaviours, it’ll reinforce the behaviour in the dog. Better to teach a new behaviour now.

again, just my opinion.

Post # 18
Member
4590 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2009

@7-9-11bride: I would also make sure your husband isn’t projecting his frustrations on him. He will feel his emotions, and not want to listen, and act out. I think that since he has more issues with you around than him, you need to be the one who does most of the hands on stuff with him, to make him realize that you are also alpha over him. Puppies are tricky with having little ones around as well…one thing you could try is not giving him any stuffed toys to play with, because he can’t differentiate his toys from hers. Try giving him Kong toys, and other hard toys. If he really loves stuffed toys, you will just have to diligent with your daughters toys to keep him from taking them.

I also agree with crate training, and to keep your daughter away while he shows this type of behavior. He is a high energy breed, so he needs lots of time to play

Post # 19
Member
4590 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2009

@Khumble: I agree with this, but I wouldn’t do it in front of DD, because you don’t want her going and taking his food away!!!  I’ve seen this done in aggressions tests, where they will use a fake hand and try to take away the bowl, or push the dog a little to see how it reacts

Post # 21
Member
3579 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

@7-9-11bride: I agree with previous posters that you need to get your DH on board. You can’t train the puppy alone – everyone has to be doing the same thing for consistency!

As far as the older lab goes I would step in! You gave her a chance to do it herself and she didn’t. I would stop him from humping and reward him for interacting with the older lab appropriately.

Also I would implement a feeding time. I understand that this is a big change for the older lab but I think it is necessary and isn’t a bad thing for her either! You can feed 2 or 3 times a day (you may want to start with 3 and move down to 2 – the puppy should be getting 3 at this age anyway) and leave the food down for 20 minutes – if they don’t eat pick it up and don’t feed again until the next scheduled time. And I would monitor feeding to ensure the puppy doesn’t eat the older lab’s food!

Post # 22
Member
3579 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

@7-9-11bride: Unfortunately, exercise around the house is not enough for most lab mix puppies. My boy is a year old today and still needs a TON of exercise. He gets a 20min walk in the morning and a 30-45min free run (at the dog park)/ or 25min round of fetch in the evening. Can you get him out for more formal exercise?

A theory I live by is “A tired dog is a good dog”

Post # 23
Member
4590 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2009

@FMM: I think feeding time is a great idea. We are really spoiled with our dog now, she only eats a couple of times a day, averaging about a bowl a day (about 2 cups total). We just fill up her bowl when its empty, and she eats when she’s hungry. But, I see the value in feeding time when they are young, especially when you have more than one dog. We are going to be in for it when we end up having more than one dog at a time!

Post # 24
Member
911 posts
Busy bee

Looks like quite a few bees have already answered and probably have said this, but he HAS to learn that he is not the dominant one in the house, you and your family are! He can be trained. I worked at a vet clinic for a couple years and have seen these dominant puppies become wonderful pets when the owners took the time to work with them. Talk to your vet about tips and options and see if you can get information on Puppy Classes for training.

Post # 26
Member
2357 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: February 2012

I definitely agree with the exercise suggestions– you need to wear this puppy out. Run him, play with him, run him again, and then play with him another time.  He does not have the same energy level as your older lab and the more you tire him out, the better he will behave. 

As far as dominance, you need to be assertive without being angry. You are the dominant one in this household and he needs to know that it’s not okay to growl. Correct him when he growls, correct him when he’s humping, and reward him for good behavior. 

Can you describe how he’s acting? When he snapped at your daughter was it an aggressive, raised lip, growling lunge? Or was it a playful waving-his-teeth-around sort of snap? If he’s raising his hackles, growling and snapping with an intent to bite, you need to get this under control quickly.

I would definitely recommend signing him up for training classes ASAP. Bring your daughter with you, if you’d like.  You’re also going to need to train her how to act around the puppy. Don’t let her discipline the dog and don’t let her touch food if she’s not old enough to train correctly.

Post # 27
Member
2357 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: February 2012

Also I want to second the suggestions for getting him on a routine.  You can set him up for success! Make everyday the same thing– he gets a walk when you wake up, he gets his breakfast when you get back from a walk, he gets to play at 2pm, etc etc etc.  He will quickly learn when to expect food and to sit before his meals and to know when it’s playtime.

(Sorry if this is disjointed, I’m at work and doing 4 things at once! Wink)

Post # 28
Member
27 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: August 2009

You have some great advice already.  Some of the behaviors of your puppy remind me of my youngest puppy Josie.  She is now a little over a year, but we had lots of issues with her when we first got her and really had to work with her.  I wouldn’t really worry about the humping so much…Josie would even try to do that to us and we would push her off and say no.  Then she would try it with our other dogs and they wouldn’t have it.  This is normal puppy behavior as far as I am aware. 

About the food.  Josie was the runt of her litter and I am pretty sure was pushed around a little.  The house she was raised in until about 4 months just had a bunch of dogs, and I think they all had to fight for food.  So when we got her she would scarf down her food as fast as she could and then go after our other dog’s food.  I was really worried about her being food posessive, so every morning/night for the first few weeks I would hand feed her so she knew her food was coming from me and I was her resource for food.  I would then make sure to keep her away from the other dogs bowls by separating her from the other dog’s until they were finished.  I did this for a while and eventually I began to just make her sit for her bowl and would stand in between her and the other dogs until everyone was finished.  If she tried to go steal their food I would say no real loud and block her way.  Now she knows not to eat their food and will wait until they are finished and walking away to go lick away any crumbs they may have left.

About the toy resource guarding.  I’m not exactly sure what the exact situation was with her growling when you pulled her away.  First, I wouldn’t physically pull her away.  I would teach her the “drop” or “leave it” command.  Have a treat or one of her own toys with you when you see her chewing on something she shouldn’t.  Tell her to drop and then let her see the treat/toy that you have.  She should drop whatever she was chewing on and take the treat/toy instead.  This works GREAT for Josie.  Now, even if she has a treat in her mouth, I can tell her to “drop” and she will.  Also, I know this will be difficult with a toddler in the house, but try to keep anything that she would want to chew on away from where she can get to it.  You are her resource for anything fun.  You need to be the one to give her a toy and be able to take it away.  Like someone else mentioned, the NILIF method works wonderfully.  When she sits and behaves give her the toy.  

If he is refusing to listen to you, keep a leash on him at all times and attach it to you.  He shouldn’t have free roam of your house quite yet.  Puppies at this age cannot be trusted and shouldn’t have that kind of freedom yet.  If you don’t want the leash attached to you, block off an area of your house the puppy is allowed, but keep the leash on.  That way when he is doing something he shouldn’t and he doesn’t listen to you, you can do a slight little jerk of the leash and you will get his attention again.  This also is good to do, so you always know where she is and what she could possible get into.  Josie is sitll in our sight at all times, and to this day she has never chewed up any of our stuff/furniture, etc.

One more thing.  I wouldn’t play any tug of war games with him.  I don’t know if you are or not, but I would stop any kind of aggressive/win/lose games.  

I could go on and on, so if you need anything, please feel free to send me a message.  

Post # 29
Member
598 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

@MrsSl82be: LOL if we did this, our dog would be 300 lbs. She has no shut off button!

OP – it sounds like he’s trying to find his place in your family.  When my hubby and I first started dating, his calm, mild mannered dog was humping my leg everytime him and I even pretended to get close (which we did a lot just to see her come running over).  I had to show her who was boss and she quickly learned she couldn’t do that anymore.  She knows I mean what I say, so she straightens up when I say “no” or “sit” or anything.  She knows hubby is a bit more lax, so she will push her boundaries with him, but when he’s firm, she listens well.  I think you need to stop being firm with him.  He needs to know what “No” means.  The tone of your voice is very important.  You may even have to give him a tap on the nose or butt along with it until he “gets it.”

Post # 31
Member
645 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

@7-9-11bride: Good to hear! I went to your other post and saw pix of him…OMG so cute.

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