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Old 01-08-2013, 07:17 AM   #41 (permalink)
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I would do as fjm suggests work up to it slowly. Work on the self control at home and build the duration or attention and impulse control before testing her in public. I wouldn't stop taking her places, but until you feel she is more reliable just tell people she is in training and that you would prefer that they not greet her hands on. There are still times when I deflect people that way. If I know one of the dogs is tired or maybe doesn't feel great I tend to keep people away from them.
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Old 01-16-2013, 06:53 PM   #42 (permalink)
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Milliesmom, I am having the same problem with my spoo. How is it going now with the biting? My spoo just turned 12 weeks and my arms and feet are covered with bites. I have tried pretty much everything except the lunge and growl. Just wanted to see with you since you had the same problem if it has gotten better with you.
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Old 01-16-2013, 07:08 PM   #43 (permalink)
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People, this is something that most healthy, happy puppies do.

What have you tried so far? You say you tried almost everything but what does that include? And for how long did you give the methods a chance? How consistent were you?

Why would you ever lunge and growl at your puppy? That's not a good method to try. Either you'll make your puppy afraid of you or you'll reinforce the biting by making it more fun.
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:38 AM   #44 (permalink)
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Puppies are very excitable and the more flustered you get the more charged up they get. As msminnamouse said some of this is normal puppy stuff. By the time the pup is 12 weeks old that maternal correction thing is way in the past. Although it might work for some pups for some it will backfire and then you have made a new problem. I would stick with being very consistent about staying calm and asking the puppy for calming behaviors randomly. If you can redirect the pup to a sit or a down reliably they can't jump up and bite you at the same time. The key to it that I found is really truly being calm yourself. I know that is a big ask, to be relaxed when you feel like you are under assault. But until I learned to be really calm even in the face of crazy behavior I didn't make any progress on this front when Lily was little.
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Old 01-17-2013, 07:05 AM   #45 (permalink)
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I found the biggest change to training my dogs came when I stopped talking, and concentrated on communicating by body language, or simply shifting my weight. It was amazing how much better the dogs understood me when I stopped talking at them!
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Old 01-19-2013, 05:27 AM   #46 (permalink)
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An update on Millie... her biting became pretty bad. The methods that you guys were giving me just were not working around strangers so I took her to a different trainer. I know a lot of people on this forum are completely against anything but positive training.

The trainer I went to uses many different methods of training....including A LOT of positive reinforcement. He put a very small prong collar on Millie with blunt edges. Now I know a lot of you disagree with this but Millies biting was not normal puppy behavior, she was becoming very sassy in her biting and would bite very hard. I tried the prong collar on myself first to get an idea of how it felt(I pulled as hard as I could), and I was fine with giving it a try. Anytime Millie came to bite me or anyone I would tell her "No", and I would pull very lightly on the leash. Now let me tell you Millies reaction....she was happy, her tail was wagging, and she politely shut her mouth and allowed people to pet her. I have zero indication that she is stopping because she is afraid of what might happen if she bites. Many people also say this it will make her more aggressive. I disagree, our trainer told us in the 35 years of dog training that he has not one dog has been hurt or become aggressive. The prong collar(like any tool) is not abusive in itself, it is only abusive if you use it wrong. I am not saying this method is for everyone, but for me, and Millie, it was a great method. Millie now actually knows what "no" means. Everyone always said not to say no to a dog because it sounds like a bark to them. Well I think dogs are smarter than that and once Millie understood that no meant no or she would get a tiny correction, she has been a way better dog. She also allows small children to pet her now.

After just one week, Millie is a happier dog. She WANTED to be pet by everyone and she just didn't know how to contain her excitement so she bit them. Now she understands that biting people is not ok and she is able to meet MANY more people.

I'm not saying this to start an argument and I know why many people disagree with me....dog training methods can cause very emotionally filled debates that end in judgement and name calling. I just wanted to share what worked for me and my dog in this situation.
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Old 01-19-2013, 05:51 AM   #47 (permalink)
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I bought that collar for Lou, she likes it, calms her down. I never use it, because its hard to buckle, but when i did use it I pulled on it extremely gently and she listens, never seemed scared, she already was an amazing dog but she greeted people too excitedly, jumping, so thats why i bought it... Its almost like a "mom" gently putting her mouth around her neck to let her know that whatever she was doing was not ok. Some people abuse dogs, but i dont and I think if used very gently its ok (personal opinion)
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Old 01-19-2013, 06:00 AM   #48 (permalink)
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I am glad you have had success. Yes there are people who use positive methods only and i absolutely respect and admire their work, but there are other tools and as long as you understand how to use them, the potential consequences of their misuse and are fair in how you apply their use then I don't see any problem. I have pinch collars for both of my dogs, but also only decided on their use after a careful discussion with a trainer who I trust (a person with decades of experience with poodles in obedience and conformation) and a demonstration on myself of what they felt like.
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Old 01-19-2013, 03:41 PM   #49 (permalink)
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I am not a fan of pronged collars but I am even less a fan of biting dogs. I am glad you are seeing an improvement in her behavior. I think you were wise to seek another trainer since you were not having success in curtailing the biting behavior with your former trainer. Hopefully as you continue to work with her you can phase the collar out.

DQNY I have not heard of the lunge and growl method; I actually thing the lunge part is a little over the top. I have had great success with a emotive yelp or an irritated growl however. It did not make my puppy frightened but he did get the message that I was annoyed. I did not have this issue with Swizzle but as a puppy my Aussie was very mouthy- my breeder warned me when he was a puppy that this is a trait with Aussies and she stressed how important this is to get a handle on it when they are still puppies. I very rarely used a growl, I found yelps worked great. You really have to sell it though and sound injured. Usually that would get the puppy snuggling and licking by way of an apology.
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Old 01-19-2013, 03:46 PM   #50 (permalink)
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Why bother to ask for advice if you're not going to implement it?? There's no way you tried every suggestion in the short amount of time since you've been given it.

Hope your training choices don't come back to bite you in the backside. I've worked with countless cases of redirected aggression when people use these methods and tools. It's enough to break a soft dog but other dogs don't break and get reactive when the owner fails to keep issuing harsher and harsher corrections. Of course the guy you're paying to train your dog won't claim anything other than success or people wouldn't hire him.

Good luck with all that.
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