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I just posted a long response to my last thread, and while writing it, I was thinking that my poodle is spoilt! I would never have rewarded my children for outbursts/temper tantrums ect. as toddlers, by giving them their way.

One example that sticks out in my memory: my daughter was under 2 yrs. old. We went on a shopping trip to Wal-mart and I had a cart full of stuff. We went to check out and she had a melt down over buying a Barney stuffed animal. I said "no". She went full fledge velociraptor on me. Immediately, I left the grocery cart w/ a weeks worth of groceries, toiletries etc., went to the car, put her in her car seat and waited until she calmed down to drive home, with no grocereries, toiletries or Barney.

I never say "no" to Sammy. Not that he really needs it - he is not destructive in any way ,tries to please all the time, and is so loving. But, when he is upset, I don't stick it out ( ie - he doesn't like the crate, car seat etc. - out he goes ). I think I may be too worried about upsetting him. His reactions, which are limited to being confined/left alone are a bit extreme. But....like the kid that is scared of monsters under the bed, playing up to it makes it worse.

Do you think you spoil your poodle emotionally?
 

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No, I don't spoil my poodle. But I am almost obsessive about positive reinforcement, setting clear boundaries, and teaching good communication skills to try and prevent those tantrums before they start.

As you can imagine, this makes it very hard to leave Peggy with a sitter. When my parents watched her for a night last year, I left five pages of notes for them. Lol. A little out of control.
 

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I try really hard not to. I confess to sometimes not sticking to my rules when I'm in a rush and don't have time to wait it out. An example is when we get to the park and the car stops moving, Misha immediately starts whining. Ideally, I would wait for him to calm down, but I know there's a limited amount of time where the temperature is nice and it's still light out. So I let him out even though I shouldn't. Today it was raining when we arrived and it was actually nice to have an excuse to work on him calming down before leaving.

I do give in to what I consider "reasonable reminders." Meaning that if Misha knows I'm supposed to do something and he tells me I'm late, that's okay. Like if it's his wake up time and I'm sleeping late and he is reminding me to let him out. He'll usually just bark once. It's actually a special reminder bark that sounds different. I try to make sure he has time alone in his crate or pen everyday and to set good rules.
 

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I certainly spoil Asta but he is so much of a help to me, I consider him do with a spoiling. Food and grooming are the most where I tend to spoil him. He has got me trained.
 

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I don’t spoil my dogs, as I believe too much of anything is not healthy. A balance is needed. But they certainly do get the best medical care, higher quality food, regular grooming, a comfy bed and everything else is needed to be a happy dog. They are also very seldom alone due to life circumstances.

I have to admit I have a hard time saying no to Beckie sometimes though. Her cuteness factor is so high and she is a pushy little devil. But never when it comes to discipline or anything that would risk causing behavior problems. For example, I’m very strict with barking; that’s a big no-no. Thanks to my persistance, even though I’m surrounded by neighbors with barking machines, both my dogs are virtually silent.
 

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Emotionally...
-She's petrified of getting in the car because of motion sickness so I pick her up everytime and put her in the car. She's kinda big at 32-33#s now. It's one thing we have to work through still.

-A treat will be someplace she can't conveniently get but could if she tried. She'll bark, and I'll come rescue it instead of ignore it.

-Basil's a over stimulated fur-baby at the pet store that's 20 yards from our apt. When I plan to take her in to see the girls for treats, I don't wait long enough for her to calm down before going in. (Working on it..)

-On walks, she'll hop like a bunny to bite the leash or zoom a crazy child when we're walking across an intersection 2/3 times. I'm not sure exactly how to fix this, but by not addressing this behavior I feel like I'm spoiling her with no boundaries.
 

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Define spoiling... I feed my dogs the best diet I can, including cooking for them and making their treats to avoid digestive upsets. They get extremely good vet care immediately I suspect a problem. We walk at least twice a day whenever possible, and play rainy day games when it is too wet to be enjoyable outside. I choose walks to be within Poppy's capabilities while still being interesting enough to enthuse Sophy. Treat games happen regularly through the day. They have comfy beds, my lap and all the furniture to snooze on, and sleep on (or in) my bed at night. I try to give them as much autonomy as is consistent with safety and good manners, and there are very few areas where I lay down the law.

On the other hand there are boundaries, well understood by all after over 11 years together. I decide when it is morning; I don't like yapping; Wait means Wait; nobody gets out of the car without being given the release word; loose leash walking is expected; Do Not Steal the Cats' Food, etc, etc.

I think a lot of it is down to experience - you never really "win" in an outright argument with a toddler or puppy, you just use your superior strength and capability to force a conclusion. Learning to recognise signs of approaching storms, and heading off as many as possible with a fun game or a lollipop, is not so much spoiling as the sensible use of distraction, in my opinion. (Although once the bawling starts I am right there with you, Daabor!)
 

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Normie keeps destroying his toys. I keep buying new ones.

I'd have been more concerned about teaching my children to be careful with theirs, but how do you teach a poodle to think ahead? When I say, 'You ate it. Now you don't have it.' He just looks at me. And I order more.
 
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