(Closed) It’s me or the dog.

posted 12 years ago in Pets
Post # 3
152 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2009

Oh my, that dog sounds horrible sweeney! I have no idea how you can even cope with a nasty terror like that.   I have two words for you:

 Cesar. Millan.   (aka  The Dog Whisperer)

 http://www.cesarmillaninc.com/  Seriously, if you get the channel that his show is on, then definitely watch it.   If you don’t, perhaps some kind soul can tape the program for you?   The man is amazing.  He takes in the dogs that everyone else has given up on, and turns them into well behaved, properly trained animals.  Maybe even write to him with your story!!

Honestly, that wee dog is running your household! He needs to learn that he is NOT actually the house leader, and if it takes a bit of tough love then so be it.  Cesar is the perfect blend of positive reinforcement, but with just the right amount of tough love to make it work.

It’s great that your Fiance wants to try another class with the dog.  There really is no such thing as "too old to learn" with dogs.  Your household needs to find something that works, and then the whole house needs to be consistent with it.  Consistency is key.  

Good luck! 




Post # 5
629 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2005

That dog would drive me crazy too.

Post # 6
55 posts
Worker bee

i’m afraid i have a different take on this than echo.

when you get a pet, you make a commitment to it for it’s life.  part of that commitment is taking care of it and training it, of course, but if you don’t, that doesn’t mean you just get rid of it because it doesn’t behave.  by now the dog should already have had the dog trained and should keep up with its health – but unfortunately, he doesn’t. 

 you need to be a part of whatever training takes place.  the dog will never listen to you if it doesn’t see you as "master" – and it sounds like you’re home more than mr. sweeney, so it’s important that you are able to make the dog listen to you.  find a trainer – a course, an individual trainer, whatever – and learn how to get a handle on this dog.  please don’t get rid of it – that’s what makes pounds full and, anyway, who would you give the dog TO if no one will take it?

Post # 7
55 posts
Worker bee

p.s. i know mr sweeney made the commitment, not you, and he SHOULD be the one to care for it…  i agree that he needs to step up and care for this dog he loves so much, but the answer is not getting rid of it altogether.

Post # 8
83 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: March 2008

Get the bark collar.  It’s much less cruel than being drop kicked into the middle of the street.

That and some serious training for the owners (not just for the dog).  Any dog can be trained at any age, but the owners have to be consistent and firm.  Also consider crating the dog away from your child during nap time. That way it can yap to its heart’s content without waking them.

Post # 9
95 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: June 2008

i agree.. you wouldn’t give up on a baby just bc it’s crying. you just make it work.  unfortunately shih tzus are temperamental which needs to be trained early on but that doesn’t mean there’s no hope.  i agree with bettina to have the dog trained but you being there with the trainer as well so u know to imitate the instructions.  Since you are home most of the time and you can help reinforce his training.  Your FH obviously loves the dog so for both of you to coexist and if that means you taking the reign and training Oreo, so be it.  Once he sees that you have Oreo under control, then another baby won’t be so bad in his eyes. There’s too many dogs at the pounds that don’t deserve to be there because of lack of love or lack of training.  Hope this helps!

Post # 10
220 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2008

Wow.  It sounds like you have your hands full, but its nothing that can’t be fixed.  Pets (even pains in the keister ones) have so much to teach us.  Patience, boundries, consistancy, responsibility, and compassion.

I’m sort of a soultions person, so please forgive me in advance if I seem like a cold hearted itch.  But here are a few resources that might help.   

Training – The dog is not too old to train.  Suck it up, take him to a trainer that guarntees results.  Don’t take him to a class.  Send him AWAY to a trainer.  It was the best investment we made.  If you can swing it, do it during the wedding.  Two birds with one stone!  Sounds like you need to watch SuperNanny & The dog whisperer.  Dogs are like children.  They need consistancy and united front.

We found our trainer at the international association of canine professionals

I had a dog allergic to grass, so I feel you about the allergy pills and shots.  One of the things we did was cook for him.  Brown rice, sweet potatoes, a package of cheap chicken thighs, and a children’s chewable vitamin from Costco.  That really helped with the allergies.  We used metal disposable pans from Smart & Final and I only had to cook once a week.  There is an online book called vet secrects or something that was a huge help.

Give my vet a call, it couldn’t hurt – Dr Michael LaPorte Town and Country 858-486-4800

Grooming issue – Go to PetSmart or Petco.  They aren’t that expensive.  I took my smelly basset once a month, and I washed him at home once a month to cut down on the cost.

That being said.  It wasn’t easy.  I really do feel bad for you.  Talk to you Fiance.  Don’t punt the dog.  Good Luck

Post # 12
11 posts

Oh I’m sorry to hear that but I’m going to agree with everyone else. Man I wish I wasn’t in your shoes at all, noisy dog and a toddler but please don’t give the dog away it’s really not Oreo’s fault so much as it is your Fiance. You two need to work out and do things together and like everyone else said and you said as well, tell him that if he does love his dog so much (which I dont doubt at all) why not just groom him?


Good luck and keep us posted!

Post # 13
273 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2008

I am very passionate about animals and currently own a Shih Tzu myself.  Granted I’ve been told that mine is rather passive and not the norm, he still gives me my share of aggravation.  He’s 3 years old and still has "accidents" in the house…although I’m convinced he’s just doing it for attention at times.  Having a dog is a lifetime commitment and is just like having a child except this "child" never grows up.  For their entire life, they must be cared for, fed, cleaned up after, and groomed, but in return they give unconditional love and loyalty.

It saddens me that a dogowner would consider giving away their animals because they cannot handle the responsiblities that come with it.  While every person is entitled to their own opinions and can do as they please, it breaks my heart to see that these people truly believe that they can resolve their problems by "giving" it to someone else. 

In my opinion, is it possible that you are actually upset that the dog is even in the house not because of the dog’s action/tempermant, but as a reminder of your FI’s past with another woman?  Sometimes animals pick up on the slightest mood changes and perhaps before one starts to blame the dog for it’s actions, we should look at our own actions and body language.  Are you perhaps sending signals to the dog that he is unwelcomed and hence his acting up?

These are just my thoughts as an outsider, but I truly hope that you do arrive at a resolution that does not involve giving the dog away as it truly is "man’s best friend".

Post # 14
1061 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2008

petsmart training SUCKS. i ended up getting someone to sit down with me one on one, spend some time with me and gordon (my lab-golden mix), and tell me things that i could do to make both of us (me and the dog) happier. she was like a dog shrink or something — $100 for 2 hours.

once i moved in with my Fiance, gordon knew: 1) who was the boss and who was the dog, 2) that he couldn’t get away with the crap he was doing with me, and 3) that we weren’t afraid to use the squirt bottle or take away his tennis ball (OH NO, THE HORROR!) when necessary. now we don’t yell at him at all — we talk to him like a person and use hand signals when necessary (unless he countersurfs or gets into the trash — then he’s getting yelled at!). bettina is right — it’s really a matter of training you, not training the dog! tough love is good for everyone!

Post # 16
60 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: October 2008 - Ceremony in a historic church, tented lawn reception at a golf and country club

I have a ten year old yorkie who thumps when he itches, is allergic to meat, wheat, grass, preservatives in shorts, and himself.  He scratches himself raw and creates open sores because of his allergies.  His dog food costs $150 a bag. He is super excitable and barks at the drop of the hat.  He jumps on the couch and beds when we’re not around, and chews up socks that are left on the ground.

 But he’s my dog, and I love him. 

 He’s part of the family, and family sticks together, no matter what. 

 Both you and your FI need to get it together.  Oreo is part of your family, and if you can’t control him, it’s YOUR fault and NOT OREO’S.  

It’s called CONSISTENT TRAINING.  It is BOTH OF YOUR responsibility to take care of him (vet, groomer, feeding, training, love. 

What if your three your old had bad allergies and had behavioural problems – would you scream at her, yell at her, and threaten to throw her outside in the snow bank with a sign advertising her availability? Some people would probably classify that as child abuse.  Think before reacting so violently towards your dog.

Having a pet is a responsibility and a privilege.  If your dog has special needs, that is a challenge for your maturity and resourcefulness.  Stop complaining about not being able to buy an elliptical because of the dog – buy an exercise video, take the dog for a walk, play in the park with your child – you are pinning too many irrelevent frustrations on a small animal.

 Yes, having a high needs dog can be frustrating – I have the same circumstances, but with training, proper care and attention, it is do-able, and you get SO many rewards – ie, the rewards that people seek in getting a dog in the first place.

If you are frustrated by your dog’s behaviour, think about how the dog AND your Fiance feels about yours.

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