House training and biting!!!!!

Discuss behavior and temperament issues, including your favorite dog training techniques.
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birdfeeder77
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House training and biting!!!!!

Postby birdfeeder77 » Wed Apr 18, 2012 9:46 am

I just got little Charlie a few weeks ago from a local breeder. I got him at 8 weeks old and he is just over 11 now. Charlie is so very smart and has learned numerous tricks but he won't stop peeing in the house. I have done the strict crate schedule and i keep taking him out religously and praising him and giving treats and we always go out the same door to the same spot. Then we come in and play for a bit. It just seems like if he is not right there in front of me and getting constant attention he pees on the floor, even after we were just outside. I can be playing with him on the floor and he will run around to the back of the couch for 2 seconds and pee and come right back around. I just don't understand. He is so very smart and I can tell. What more can I do? I don't want to crate him constantly and everyone says crate him if you can't watch him 100%- well I am watching him but if he feels the need he runs for a split second where i can't see him and does it and comes right back. Help :-( I love him to death but my husband said I have to get rid of him if he keeps messing i our new house.

Also Charlie is very sweet, but not loveable at all. He is very indepenedent and does his own thing, wants you to play with him but doesn't want to be held and petted and rubbed and scratched. He bites constantly. I have tried EVERYTHING. I mean everything. I have been reading everything I can find online and tried it all. BUT, when i do these things he seems to get more aggressive and bites and snaps at me more. When I get him to stop physically biting me he sits there like an alligator and snaps at the air at me. He does not do this with my husband, and I am not light on punishing him for this behavior. I do the same thing with him my husband does, but it works for him. With me it's a game. Please, any suggestions? I am telling you I have tried everything. If Charlie continues to be bad, my husband will make me get rid of him!

I didn't expect this from a sheltie. His father was nice and calm and liked attention and his mother was a little high strung, but we were holding her puppies at the time. I have talked to the breeder and she has said, well I don't know what to tell you now....

Is it me? Could he just have a temperment issue? If I have to sell him to someone else, I am going to be devistated....
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LisaM77
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Location: Wellington, NZ

Re: House training and biting!!!!!

Postby LisaM77 » Thu Apr 19, 2012 3:00 am

Have a read through this recent thread addressing both biting and toilet training for a pup just a couple of weeks younger than yours at the time http://www.sheltieplanet.com/forum/post2513.html#p2513

You really do have to have your eye on them every second when they are that young. I didn't get Moose until he was 4 months so I'm not sure if going inside even though he has just been outside is 'normal' at that age. You would probably be better off fencing an area off - something bigger than the crate so he can play a bit, but not free reign and certainly not able to get behind things and out of your site. A play pen (kid or dog) is great for this, and just put some newspaper, or puppy pads if you're in to that) down for any accidents. 11 weeks is really young. Be realistic about your expectations and make sure your husband is too. And be very, very patient - those first few weeks are pretty hard work and seem to take forever.

Oh yeah, when you say you punish, think about what that might be achieving - it's already not getting the desired response. Better to simply ignore unwanted behaviour - at most put him in a time out (not in his crate as you want him to like going in there) but it must be immediate, and lots and lots and lots of praise and rewards (play/treats) when he does what you want.

Also, enrol him in a puppy class as soon as he's had all his vaccinations - good for socialisation for him and learning from others and experts for you.
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Wendy
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Re: House training and biting!!!!!

Postby Wendy » Thu Apr 19, 2012 8:58 am

Sounds like Charlie's behaviour is really getting you stressed.

I would confine him to somewhere without carpet when he's inside. Baby gates or Lisa's playpen idea should help with this. It sounds like you need to regain some control and not having to worry about the new house will give you a bit of a break.

If he's wetting in the same spot (behind the couch) constantly you may need to treat it with a particular cleaning agent. Apparently the smell of some cleaners actually stimulate them to keep using that spot.

Now the hard bit. I would suggest you ignore him a bit more. Your husband is obviously in charge as far as Charlie is concerned and he's doing battle with you for second spot in the house. I would suspect you spend a lot more time playing with Charlie than your husband. Caesar Millan wrote about this in one of his books and I tried it on my Curdie who wasn't very responsive to me at that stage. I know there's lots of different views about dog training methods but this one worked for us. The top dog doesn't constantly give attention, the lower status dog does. Charlie sounds like he wants everything on his terms even if he is only a baby.

Just remember the only reason puppies are so cute is to help them survive until they stop chewing up our prized possessions! Make sure Charlie has plenty of things he is allowed to chew on hand.

Good luck!
Wendy

Shatrin Beach Boy (Curdie)
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birdfeeder77
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Re: House training and biting!!!!!

Postby birdfeeder77 » Tue May 01, 2012 10:47 pm

Thank you for that reply, that is the first different suggestion I have had. I do spend every minute I can with him. I have wanted a puppy for so long and love playing with him. So when you ignore your puppy do you just get up and walk away? Put him in his crate? If I ignore him I risk him peeing on the floor. He has gotten better the last 2 weeks. Only one pee accident. He wasn't just going behind the couch he was going wherever he felt like it. I have the scent neutralizer spray too. He is still biting though. No doesn't work and I tried a different word like someone suggested and that didn't work. I do get stern with him, I dont just say no nicely. I just hope he grows out of this. Another person told me he is just teething worse than some pups. He has the kong toy and 40 other toys to chew but he just bites when you play and when you pet him and when you pick him up. It just doesn't seem to stop.
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LisaM77
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Re: House training and biting!!!!!

Postby LisaM77 » Thu May 03, 2012 2:12 am

Have you tried the yelping like another pup when he bites? He doesn't understand your language yet so you need to use a bit of his.

Moose has always had a million toys too, but his favourite when he was a little teething pup was an old croquet mallet head he found - basically a hunk of wood he could get his teeth in to. He would also pick up bits that had broken off the firewood and chew them too. So don't be afraid to let him chew on things other than those lovely (and expensive) plush toys. Twigs and random bits of wood never hurt Moose.
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birdfeeder77
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Re: House training and biting!!!!!

Postby birdfeeder77 » Thu May 03, 2012 10:56 am

Yes, I have also tried the yelping. He thought it was a game and would jump up towards my face. So I did it extremely loud and would move away from him or get up and walk away. He just follows me and jumps on the backs of my legs. But yes, I have tried the yelping thing. I have quite the biter! I have given him all sorts of strange things to chew on but still if I try to pet him or play with him he starts trying to bite me. He also started jumping on the backs of my legs when I'm walking. I know he's a herding puppy but I am either going to trip or hurt him if he keeps doing this. I have tried to increase his exercise thinking maybe he is bored or needs to expell more energy, but that wasn't the case either. I love him to pieces and he's so so so smart, but I am at a loss on the biting thing. The only thing I have not done yet is I guess they sell spray that tastes bad to dogs and I read somewhere that someone just sprayed their hands so when the dog tried to bite... It tasted bad. That is the absolute only thing I haven't done yet. And by the way, moose is the cutest little name!
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sadie&carson
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Re: House training and biting!!!!!

Postby sadie&carson » Thu May 03, 2012 9:36 pm

Carson was a horrible biter too, I got so frustrated that I wondered why I even got him (crazy thought). With some work and ALOT of exercise he has grown out of it, except once in a while and when he's in extreme herding mode, he will bite at your shoes and pants. I found that as he got a little older and it stopped more and more, I got less frustrated and that made it even better. Some just take time. I do suggest more exercise, maybe even some obediance or agility work! It helps them use their brains and keeps them from being bored. My Carson has mastered his jump and weave poles in 2 days and also did the dogwalk and the seesaw like a pro at the dog park! Over the weekend he also decided he wants to be a disk dog! ALSO he walks or runs with the bike everyday. So I suggest any or all of those activities. They have made a difference, a bored puppy makes up his own games.
RIP Sadie 7/14/2001 - 10/24/2012
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birdfeeder77
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Re: House training and biting!!!!!

Postby birdfeeder77 » Fri May 04, 2012 11:49 am

I actually am wondering if he just needs more mental stimulation. I have never seen a puppy this smart, and I am not just saying that because he is ours. I grew up and spent most of my life having a dog around and this dog is really something else. When he is having one of his crazy fits where he tears through the house and runs around the living room as fast as he can I take him out back and he runs around the bushes and trees like he is running an agility course. He weaves around them and goes back and forth and back and forth. I wish I had a larger yard so I could set something up. He likes to walk under our coffee tables that have a wooden runner underneath them, like he is walking back and forth on a plank.

But this Charlie really is something. He started dragging his bed around to where he wants to lay at. I put it outside on the back patio the other day and decided he wanted to lay in the sun so he drug it out to the sunny area of the patio. After some time, he got hot and drug it back into the shade. I could hardly believe what I was watching. The other day I left our pantry door open in the kitchen when I was cooking and he wandered in. His puppy chow bag is in there and I had my back turned and he barked at me. I turned around and looked at him and he pushed the bag over with his paw and looked back at me. Here his food dish was empty and I hadn't realized. He is only like 13 weeks old now, I was amazed at what he knows already. I wish they had puppy puzzle games or something for super smart dogs. The kong toy is nothing for him, no matter how much i stuff it he has figured out how to clean it out quickly.

I am happy to hear I am not the only one who has had a super biting puppy. It seemed to me like I have one like no one else has had. I have gotten a thousand suggestions of what to do, but I have done it all. I am not sure how much anyone realized this pup is biting!
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sadie&carson
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Re: House training and biting!!!!!

Postby sadie&carson » Fri May 04, 2012 2:32 pm

They actually do have puppy puzzles and games like that! I have seen them at pet stores and online. You hide treats in them and they have to figure out the puzzle to get it. They also have the treat ball that they push around with their nose and once in a while a treat will come out. They sell all of those online also. It definitely does sound like he's bored mentally. I know when Carson wants to go on a run, he runs over to the door, sits down, looks at me, if I don't notice then he gives a bark, then if I ignore him he hits at the doorknob with his paws like he's trying to open it, then if I STILL ignore him he lays in front of me and sulks (but I try not to ignore him) They are brilliant dogs.
RIP Sadie 7/14/2001 - 10/24/2012
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Ronna58
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Re: House training and biting!!!!!

Postby Ronna58 » Fri May 04, 2012 3:43 pm

How's the house training going? Getting any better? It takes time and persistence with some to get them to stop wetting etc in the house.

How is the nipping as well? Emma was quite the one for nipping. I tried just about everything to get her to stop. Part of it I think was that she was a singleton and didn't have siblings to teach her to back off. What I had to do on a very rare occasion was gently grasp her lower jaw, make her look at me and say no, bad, no bite. She did eventually grow out of the nipping, although she is a bad one for grabbing the pant leg, as is Natalie.
Ronna
Aberdale's Missy Emma Marie CGN NTD (Emma)
Aberdale's Smooth As Glass CGN NTD (Liam)
Aberdale's Unforgettable (Natalie) CGN NTD
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