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My son and family came over for dinner last night and their dog, Bang and Bobby played in the back yard together. They are close to the same weight but Bobby is a bit taller. Bang is 6 year old mix and plays and runs initially but Bobby, being the young poodle that he is, wants to play endlessly. We all watch them carefully and I would say there there is nothing terribly concerning. Bang would have moments of chasing and fun but just when it gets fun for Bobby, Bang is done. Bobby, is a pesky poodle though. After the racing and around and playing, Bang wants to be done and do his own thing, which last night, was “hunting” chipmunks and Bobby is just the “energizer” poodle and wants to keep going and going. While it wasn’t constant, I felt Bobby was often annoying, jumping forward and back to entice a game, a light nip and jump back cause Bang wouldn’t run and chase. Bang pretty much ignored him and other than the peskiness, we saw nothing concerning but I do know peskiness is not polite dog behavior. I thought we should put Bobby in the house but my son felt they were ok and wasn’t concerned and that Bang can hold his own. Bang barked once and Bobby backed off. I have no problem with a dog telling Bobby to back off.
Bobby is used to doggy daycare and he does great there so he is able to read and respond well to other dogs. I wonder if it’s their familiarity that Bobby acts like this more than with other dogs. So after my long winded description my question is this: Should I just put Bobby in the house or just let them be, as all all, they seem to be doing ok. Obviously, if things escalated they would be separated. I just feel bad for the peskiness. I know I can and probably should do more directly with him during these visits but I don’t get to see my son and family that often so I don’t want the focus to be on the dogs. I would like to visit my family rather than continually train, not to mention grandma has dinner duties too. We do keep a careful eye on them and let them know when they really need to back off. My son definitely keeps a careful eye on his dog. Anyway, in this particular instance I’d rather just separate them if really needed. Bang ignores well and they do play and take breaks, it’s just Bobby can be relentless. And honestly, when all is done, they are both happy and tired dogs. Appreciate any insights. Thanks!
Glad to see this post. Will be watching for advice as we have the same problem.Our 3 year old Spoo is getting better, but when he gets wound up he becomes pesky at the leash free dog park. He lunges at other dogs and barks in their faces, trying to get them to chase and play. They will play for a while, but when they are done and want to do their own thing Charlie won't quit barking and chasing. I have to put him on the "leash of shame" at the dog park. He does well at dog daycare, probably because it is a big group of dogs in a huge outdoor yard and there are always enough young dog's who are eager to play and wrestle. He then ignores the grumpy old guys and chases the willing young ones. He has never nipped, but is annoying and will not let up.

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It's possible that daycare has given Bobby marathon-level play stamina.

We used to interrupt Peggy and her friends every few minutes, just for 30 seconds or so, so they could regroup. If we didn't do that, their manners would quickly fall apart.

Now they self-regulate, naturally stopping and starting, with longer and longer breaks until eventually they're just chewing sticks next to each other. But then inevitably one will get a second wind and all hell breaks loose.

When they're tired they are quick to get rough and slow to back off. So the humans have to call it a day. This is typically at the 1-hour mark. When they were younger it was 30 minutes.

Since Bobby probably always has at least one willing (or maybe even not-so-willing) playmate at daycare, I'm not surprised he's not getting the message from Bang.

I'd do as suggested here and start teaching him what's expected of him: Play independently or settle. I know this will split your focus from your family, but think of it as an investment.
Thanks. What a logical assessment.

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Thank you everyone for your input.
I’ve been thinking about this a lot today and about Bobby’s training, experiences, etc. In reading your helpful responses it became very apparent we have a hole in our training. He’s quite well socialized in most areas and his overall training has come a long way, and he has taken several classes and has done well around the other dogs but politely playing in his own yard, he really hasn’t much practice with. It’s not for lack of trying. It’s funny, you would think in such a high dog neighborhood there would be plenty of opportunities but not really. He’s played with a couple neighborhood dogs in their yards and it was a positive experience but most folks are too busy, and schedules didn’t mesh. What he really needed and still needs is an older dog mentor but that just didn’t happen. I don’t know any. Bang is older but he is quite high energy himself but it’s a different kind of energy than Bobby. Bang blasts into our yard and runs all over like it’s his place. He can be a little hyper. We actually took a care of him for 5 months a few years back so I do think he thinks it’s his yard. A lot of his energy is about that and the wildlife in our yard.
We do a ton of impulse control training with with Bobby and have since he was a young pup but we can always do more!
Peggy the Parti, while Bobby isn’t in daycare that often, he’s only there for boarding when we go out of town, which isn’t often, and about 3 or 4 times a month to play, but that got me realizing that Bobby’s play experiences are basically always to play hard. They tell me he plays appropriately and when I look on the web cam, all looks good. But I also think it’s the deal where when one dog gets tired he finds another who will play then he can just go, go and go.
I will try and implement the suggestions shared but will probably mix it with some time out in his room if needed as I really need to focus on my family too. He’s actually really great with settle when he’s on leash and super good with this in obedience class, even when the dogs and handlers are in close proximity, so will apply this skill when Bang is over. Hopefully, he won’t have to go inside as I do agree he needs practice.
Thank you again!
I agree. When Charlie is boarded, there is a gang of big dogs in a huge fenced yard. Always a couple of energetic young ones, so he can just "use them up" and there are always more dogs willing to romp. The daycare owner says he plays non stop every time he is boarded.

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Try putting in in time out each time he goes crazy. Make sure that he has no toys. take him out after 2-5 minutes, like nothing happened. Use this tool to break any other bad habits. Being consistent will bring great results!
I have been giving Charlie time outs now when he gets too crazy at the dog park. Thanks!

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