Absolute Chaos in VA

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Chaos-n-VA's picture
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Joined: 2010-09-22

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Hello All,

I'm a newbie to the forum and a fairly new Mom to my first male dobie, Chaos. I've had females in the past, (Sheba, Vixen, and Spicy, all red and rust). This is the first time I've ever had to research my dog's behavior or seek help from others with how to cope. I'm so happy I have a group to share my "issues" with. Chaos is not my only dog. I also have a male Black Russian Terrier. Angus turned 2 in May, and is so laid back and easy going. I think he's a cat in a large dog’s body. Angus weighs 105 lbs, and Chaos weighs 90. They play together very well, and Angus even tries to protect Chaos from other dogs when we're out walking. Chaos hasn't displayed any of the male dominance behaviors that I've been warned about, but I am on the lookout for it. As I mentioned, Chaos is my first male Dobie, so I have had to accept and adjust to the fact that he is very different than my females were. He's somewhat clumsy, will try to chew anything he can put in his mouth, and play is the only thing he has on his mind. I'm patiently waiting for the day he's will be two years old, and the "light bulb" will come on. I know he will be a wonderful dog. Chaos is truly a beautiful dog, on the large/tall side for his age, or so my vet says, but still beautiful. If beauty were brains, Chaos would be Einstein. Unfortunately, they are not and his behavior since turning one year old is driving me crazy.

I have 5 extra tall baby gates placed strategically throughout the house. I have 20 gauge steel fencing around the a/c unit in the backyard. Chaos chewed through the metal on the outside of the unit. We didn’t notice until the a/c stopped working and we called the repairman. He’s been to puppy boot-camp twice, and stayed with the trainer for 42 days. He didn’t grasp the basic commands, but he gained 8 pounds. I’ve been assured that this is all just typical male Dobie behavior. Just when I think we’ve turned the corner, some new odd behavior pops up. Most recently, Chaos has become fascinated with smelling any and everything. He can barely focus his attention on anything longer than a few seconds, before he's got his nose pressed to the ground, on people, or anywhere else he can sniff whether it's appropriate or not. He constantly smells Angus, particularly when he's relieving himself. It's getting to the point that I no longer let the dogs out in the backyard together when I know they have to relieve themselves. I'm not sure, but it looks as though Chaos may be trying to taste or drink Angus's urine. My fiancé thinks I'm over reacting, but this just doesn't seem normal to me. Could this be some sort of vitamin deficiency? Is it normal for young dogs to do this? When the dogs are outside together now, I watch them like a hawk. Chaos is not neutered, so could this me because of that? Should I consider neutering him? I’ve heard it will help with his wild and out of control behavior. We haven’t done it yet because it seems somewhat cruel to me, but if it will truly help me. I’m willing to have it done.

KevinK's picture
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Joined: 2010-07-15

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if someone told you that not grasping basic commands is normal dobe behavior, you should get your money back, and never talk to them again.  Where did you get your dog from?  

Also neutering is absolutely not cruel, if you don't intend on breeding or showing there's no benefit to keeping him intact, it can only cause problems down the road.  The only thing it will change is his desire to mate, it won't change his overall behavior one bit.

When he's doing something he shouldn't, what is your approach to correcting it?

jeshykai's picture
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Joined: 2010-09-02

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Trust me with all the neuters I've witnessed... it is the least painful procedure.  They wake up fine and the only problem they really have is the itching from healing.


I wonder if he's bored - with all the destruction.  That is more common than you think especially with really smart dogs.

Kevin had some good points.. it is not fair to blame it on the breed here - they are very smart.  He may not be grasping it because the manner in which you're using it isn't working for him.

The peeing thing.. smelling each other is a way of communicating.  I have three male dogs and they always sniff each other, each other's urine spots, etc.  I don't think it's abnormal at all.  When one of them sticks their head in and gets peed on.. it sucks because its bath time but thats about it.

If he likes scents so much you should consider encouraging it in a manner you find acceptable.  Eli and I are going to buy Steve a scent dummy from cabelas.com and teach him to "track" the scent of pheasant in our backyard because I think he will enjoy the game.

Don't get frustrated, every problem has a solution you just have to find the one that fits!

glengate's picture
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Joined: 2009-07-22

Neutering will definitely help with the obsessive sniffing.  He won't be nearly as interested in urine and other smells once that's off his mind.  It would also just be smart from the perspective of having 2 males, which is really a bad idea in the first place especially when they are both "guard" type breeds.  If Chaos isn't neutered because of your odd belief of it being cruel, does this mean that Angus is also intact?  I hope I'm wrong, but you're probably sitting on a real bomb of a situation there.  When they are both fully mature, there is probably going to be trouble. 

I don't want to be rude but if you're not even noticing that your dog is chewing through steel around the a/c unit, you're not paying enough attention to him and he's not getting adequate supervision.  The fact that you're also not dealing with him personally but sending him away for training also indicates that you're not in charge here.  He's not going to magically turn into a wonderful dog when he hits a certain age.  He will only become that with appropriate training (hands on with YOU) and with appropriate supervision and direction. 

Lori's picture
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Joined: 2010-04-03

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Sniffing pee is really nothing to worry about at all, he sure won't care if he gets pee on his head..haha  it's their way of getting to know each other, he's not licking it or eating it he's just smelling.   If both are intact then they urine probably smells different than a neutered dog due to hormones, etc.   I would def considering gettin him fixed or he'll be digging his way out of your yard to the closest neighbor dog every chance he gets.  Plus its really just better for him....

 

They are much like teenages at 1 yr - they will test you every chance they get including ignornig you, blatantly doing stuff they know not to do, etc.  You just have to remain diligent in your training.  It is a phase and it will pass but you have to keep strong in what you allow him to do or not.  Males are much more headstrong than females and they push the limit.  None of the behaviours you mentinoed sound in any way odd.  They are typical dog stuff - chewing, sniffing - etc...

 

You just have to get his attention and make him do what you want along with watching more closely to what he is diong.