Poodle Forum banner

1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
We've had our nine week old puppy for nearly a week now, and while he's doing wonderfully at house-training and crate-training, he's just started barking frantically every time I leave the room. Even when he can clearly see me over the puppy gate, he goes into a frenzy of barking. Today he started barking whenever my sons left the room too. We are not 'replying' to the barking, we turn our backs, and we're trying to return over the gate only when he's quiet - but honestly, as he gets more and more worked up, it gets really hard to reward a moment of quiet. And occasionally I need to do something where I can't have him tethered to me.

Is this normal..? How do we help him? All the positive-training books suggest a) don't reward barking with attention, b) turn your back, c) reward quiet, and d) teach 'speak' and 'shush/quiet'. He's still a little young for d) given he's only mastered SIT and IN YOUR CRATE and OKAY.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
6,292 Posts
At 9 weeks, I'd hesitate to call that separation anxiety. Puppies are hardwired to follow you around. You're asking him to do something that does not feel natural to him.

So instead of following (or trying to follow) his people, what would you like him to do when you're not in the room? Have you taught him this yet?

I find that's the kindest, most efficient approach, even if it takes a little extra time at the start.

So with Peggy, I wanted her to chew. I would get her excited about whatever yummy thing I was holding, tether her to a fixed spot in our living room, wait until she was sitting and licking her lips in anticipation, and then give her the chew. I'd then do chores, coming and going from the living, careful not to stay out of sight for very long. Very fluid.

At first, this might literally be just seconds of absence. You need to watch your puppy: Did he stop chewing? Does he have one eye on you? Okay, keep moving around doing things nearby, but don't go out of sight until he's reliably working away at that chew.

If you do this well, you can build up quite quickly to leaving the room for minutes at a time. Just don't let your puppy finish the chew while you're still out of sight.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Thank you much! It’s so hard to know what’s normal. I am definitely giving him chews, but when he realizes I’m going into the kitchen, he drops them and streaks for the puppy gate in distress.

I will go on being patient with him. I had some success getting him to sit and quieten for a moment this evening before I came back over the gate.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
140 Posts
I'm no dog expert, but I think if you just give it time and persistence, then it will get better as puppy acclimates and bonds to you.

Just to try and put it in perspective, your puppy was just separated from mommy and the birth litter. It's been with you for 7-10+ days. New everything. New smells. New sighs. Nothing familiar. New family. It was probably pretty traumatic so I'd be a little bit clingy too. Basil was.

Take a deep breath and have faith that it will get better over time even if it feels like no progress is being made. Some things with a puppy aren't as easy as fixing a chain on a bike or replacing windshield wipers.

Keep in mind that 3-5 minute puppy training youtube videos don't yield instant results in real life (dangit!!.. maybe except for "sit")

I'm willing to bet you're trying your best too. You're on the right track.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,774 Posts
Its puppy behavior but sounds like you are following sound advise, if you give in to this and go back while he is barking he will develop separation anxiety, just ignore him and go about your business. If you need to go into the room just go but don't look or speak to him. Whenever he is quiet pet him or give him a treat. He will become accustomed to your coming and goings and in time will stop the barking. Just don't give in, I know how hard that can be even yelling at him to stop is rewarding to him.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
I wouldn’t yell. He is so obviously distressed. I just can’t open a hot oven door with a tethered puppy!

Thanks so much for the reassurance that this is normal. Was wondering if I’d done something to my mellow, confident puppy!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,774 Posts
My daughter has a shih tzu puppy at the moment, she is an adult who lives at home. her guy has just started this about a week ago. For me he stops fairly quick as he already realizes I just keep doing whatever I'm doing and do not even look at him. Since he stays in my daughters room, he will bark after her , yesterday he was insistent and she said be quiet sternly, I told her nope..he just learned the he got your attention by barking crazily. So she finally left the room and was in and out a few times. He got better as he realized it wasn't helping his need LOL I think we have another few days of this, on and off. LOL
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
I'm working on this too (Diyo is 11 weeks). I give him something yummy, point the laptop camera at him and carry my phone so I can see him. I try to pop into the room before he gets too upset - keep flitting in and out. It's exhausting, and my life is this puppy at the moment. BUT - it's better than it was two weeks ago.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Thank you for all the advice. I keep flitting in and out in front of the barrier and if he's sitting and quiet, tossing treats at random intervals while repeating "Quiet! Yes!" It really seems to be working. When he does start barking, I turn my back and repeat "Sit! Quiet!" until he does it, and then treat him again.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top