17 week puppy still bitting and tearing clothes

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Mindy's picture
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Sasha is 17 weeks old.She has great temprement around other dogs. Friendly to other people.I have the problem.She does not do this to my husband.With me she all of a sudden wants to play ruff.She bites my arm ,if I turn away, she bites my clothes.I believe she is treating me like a puppy mate.I am SO tired of this.It is making me crazy! With our training ,she listens to me. I am home with her and keep her busy with training and lots of toys. She is usually good ,except for these out breaks.

KevinK's picture
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what do you do when she shows this behavior?

DJ's Dad's picture
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You need to be "the alpha" here.  Let her know that is totally unacceptable.

Lady Kate's picture
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I'm doing a lot of ditto-ing here.. Take charge and let her know you are the pack leader...

Mindy's picture
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I am standing tall,hands on hips..."NO".Nothing. Turning my back to her,letting her know I am not playing this game(that is what my trainer suggested).Thats when she nips my back side.I tried misting bitter lime.She does not mind the taste. Shacking a can of coins, seems to break her concentration , but I do not always have that on me .Never had this with other Dobies we have had,but Sasha is the yougest starting with us.I will try anything.I will tell you that at 6 weeks old ,she was seperated from her litter mates,when her mother stepped on her and a splint was put on her leg.Never had much puppy play time.We got her at 8 weeks.

Lady Kate's picture
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Hahahahhmeehaw.. Sasha is a Dragon Slayer. You had dragons in your pants!!..

What you are doing right now is not strong enough for this particular dog. She is not taking you seriously. Grab her by the scruff of the neck and tell her NO! and say it like you mean it. If she grabs your arm with her mouth wrap your fingers around her mouth so her teeth are touching her lips squeeze and tell her NO BITE! She is 4mo now and will only get bigger, you need to have control of her before she gets out of control. What can be tolerated at this age will definitely not be acceptable when she is full grown.

jeshykai's picture
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rnd's got it.. be more forceful.  I had this issue when I first got Steve that he would go nuts on me, try and trip me, tackle my feet, nip me.  I think I even have a thread on it.  I haven't had a big dog puppy in a long time and at first I was unsure of being TOO rough with him in corrections.  Oh, that's flown out the window.  I broke him of it by grabbing him and telling him no, forcing him into a sit, and then praising him for that.  When he gets too rowdy where he is trying to leap off of me to jump on the ceiling (I swear this is what he has in mind) I grab him and put him on his side.  I don't verbalize here, it's just my response.  He gets upset, once he's stopped struggling, up he comes and we find something else to do that doesn't involve trying to make mom break her neck.

Just don't let her get away with it.. you're trying, keep going, you'll find your solution!

Lori's picture
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Just like everyone else said - be more forcefull or try something else.

 

Rocky does not and never did respond to the nose flick no matter how hard or loud you yelled.  He still doesn't, he responds immediately to a water bottle though.   You have to find what works for you and your dog. 

 

Don't be afraid to grab him by the scruff of his neck either - just like a cat it doesn't hurt them, it's what their Mother would do to dicipline them.

Chinamom's picture
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Joined: 2010-11-09

I wanted to comment on this as we have a similar situation with our 14 week old puppy.  Gunnar is a happy, generally well-behaved puppy except when he's around our 9 year old daughter.  Our daughter has ADD, and for some reason Gunnar will jump up at her, rip her clothes and a couple of times actually bit her and drew blood.  She has to carry a tennis racket around to keep him away from her so he won't do this.  Was wondering if anyone else has children with ADD and dogs, and how you dealt with it.  Gunnar doesn't do this with anyone else.  We have tried to teach our daughter about being more forceful and showing him that she's the pack leader but when she acts more forceful that seems to agitate him more and he attacks her more.  Having ADD, she doesn't keep good eye contact, fidgets lots, and loses focus easily.  We're concerned that she won't be able to ever be alone with our puppy. 

Lori's picture
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Puppies are as rambuncious as kids and probably more energetic.  However, until he sees her as the Alpha or understands that is NOT acceptable he will continue to do it.  Keep after him about it and if necessary be more forceful.  He's only 14 weeks which means he's only 30-40 lbs.  Curb it now before he's 70lbs and doing it at face level. 

One more thing you can try is for YOU to teach him that it is unacceptable for him to do this. He needs to be taught what appropriate behavior is at this point. This is what most families are faced with when they have younger children.

I think if he were mine that I would put a prong or choke collar on him and have him hooked to me throughout the day, your pockets full of treats. When your daughter comes by have her tell him to sit and give him a cookie. I would be teaching him the word gentle while doing this. He need to know that anytime he is around children that he needs to be gentle. Take him to parks where he can hear and see children running,jumping,biking, screaming and playing. Do this as much as you can while teaching him what gentle is. You are in control and you are going to have to teach it. You can set things up later as your puppy gets used to being desensitized with children. I would have him on collar and have your daughter either jump around for a second while you tell  your puppy gentle and give him cookies. You can have  your daughter run by you again having it set up knowing that your puppy wants to jump and run after her, be quick for a correction and use your gentle command with cookies. Hard to explain, but hopefully you get enough of an idea to try it. The command I taught my dogs was gentle to the babies. My older kids hated this but remember it to this day being called a baby at 10 lol.

I'm a firm believer in desensitizing dogs to all kinds of things. Right now I have my daughter living with me that is due to have a baby at the end of this month. I have 3 Dobes the youngest is 11mo. We recently bought a baby doll that we have been wrapping in blankets carrying around, putting her in the swing, pushing the buttons and making her cry and giggle. My point in this is to desensitize the dog enough to this odd behavior that when the baby comes home it will be second nature to the dog. So far it is going well, I'm so glad we are doing this because this particular young male is extremely outgoing and wants to know everything that is going on. He is very fond of using his nose to prod things not so gentle and jumping up to see what is in your hands. So at least now he is a bit more familiar to seeing us walking around with this baby in a blanket and doesn't nose or jump up. He is learning what the word gentle is very slowly.

Chinamom's picture
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Thank you for your comments.  We have been working with Gunnar and our daughter.  I recently caught my daughter hitting Gunnar with a racket, so this could explain why he seems so aggressive with her and not to others.  We had a long talk about with her about what is acceptable behaviour around the dog.  Unfortunately, with ADD children they forget information very quickly.  So my husband and I have decided that she will not be allowed to be around Gunnar unless she is supervized by one of us.  Gunnar has actually started to calm down, doesn't seem to be biting or jumping up so much on her, but I believe it is because I am there and he knows that I'll not tolerate that behaviour.  I walk with him to the school and he is around many children and lots of traffic and noise.  He handles it very well and is very gentle with other children.  It is a constant learning experience with an ADD child.  I actually find Gunnar easier to deal with and teach, as he is much more receptive to listening and wanting to please me. 

I have another question regarding interaction with other dogs.  Does anyone find that male Dobermans seem to become targets for other male dogs.  My vet said that because of the way they walk - very proudly, with their ears up, other male dogs perceive this as a challenge.  We live in an area with lots of dogs, many who are not restrained and running loose, so sometimes its a challenge taking Gunnar for a walk, as these dogs will approach and act aggressively.  I'm considering taking a large stick or tennis racket with me to give some space between the dog and Gunnar and myself.  Gunnar, most of the time, is receptive and friendly but if the other dog acts aggressively then he will too.  I correct him immediately and try to move on but if the other dog is not restrained that can be difficult. 

Lori's picture
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I had a friend tell me he carries an umbrella with him (he's checks power meters) if an aggressive dog approaches he will open and close the umbrella a few times and that almost always scares them enough to keep back....and if necessary it can be used as a defensive weapon if needed.  He said most dogs will back away and just bark once it opens. 

 

the other benefit is, an umbrella is a very unassuming item to carry, it doesn't make you look like your carrying a weapon but it can be.

Chinamom's picture
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Joined: 2010-11-09

Good idea, will have to try that as carrying an umbrella here in Vancouver is a must anyways.  Never thought of opening and closing it to scare the dog away.

Lori's picture
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Might want to get Gunnar used to it also before you try that and scare the crap outa him too..:)

 

Pepper spray is a wonderful thing too if necessary - one time being squirted with that and you will forever be remembered and avoided...it also doesn't cause any lasting damage to the dog, just hurts for a bit and gives you plenty of time to keep moving.

cisco9510's picture
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I am going thru this with Cisco still. Any type of correction is a agame to him. He just doesn't seem to care. He wants to be as close as he can to me and cuddle up and i get kissy face when he is sleepy or we are calming down - but any time he is in play mode which is 90% of the time at this age I his mouth is coming for me or my clothes. I am going to address it this week w/ my trainer. I am at my wits end - I want to enjoy his puppyhood not be correcting him constantly.

Lori's picture
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It does get better but from about 14 weeks - 3-4 months - it's ALL mouth ALL the time. 

 

Rocky probably thought his name was No Bite for a while...

cisco9510's picture
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Lmbo Lori! Cisco probably thinks the same thing! He has good days where he barely does it and then others its a constant battle to get him to behave and listen! I find so much that he does funny. He will put his front paws up on the couch and bark away at me for attention and when we are outside and he hears the bigger dogs in neighborhood bark, its tail between the legs and running for the door!

Antoinette's picture
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I have had this with Snoopy as well. He is nearly 7 months and we have just about come out of it. THe only time he does it now is when hes over tired or if I excite him to much - I try not to as I dont want it to happen - I had been to lots of training and they were telling me to distract, change my hand for toy etc etc ,ignore- with your back to him - same thing he would bite my bum of course that gets a reaction who wouldnt with those teeth snapping around , so this  didnt work with him- then I was told that this is not acceptable and to stop mucking around this is a big NO . So I had to get more serious about it. In my mind it now became unacceptable- puppy behaviour or not I was told in no uncertain terms its not on. I started to get Snoopy by his collar and say NO Bite very firmly then just calmly- very quitely  but firmly hold him untill he settled- only took 10 seconds or so then I would let him go and if he didnt do it praise him. I also gave him a short time out a few times which did wonders- very short being 30 seconds outside. I think nowdays we are told by so many that we must use positive reinforcement - which is great most of the time - but I aslo think we have to be very very firm with things like this rather than mucking around trying to distract with toys etc. I have just joined a new obedience and they are brillant. Very much into praise etc but the trainer will not tolerate it if he sees the young dogs mouthing when excited or bored . Thank god we are now seeing light at the end of the tunnel thanks to the people here and a few others saying its not on and we should not be tolerating it at all I believe that once I changed my mindset and took a stance with Snoopy I won and he knows now. But thats not to say he doesnt still try on occasion. Good luck.