Need Advice with my Pitador
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Thread: Need Advice with my Pitador

  1. #1
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    Need Advice with my Pitador

    I hope this is the right place to post this.

    I have a Lab mix pup -- we think she might be a Pitador. I don't know her history before I got her, but she appeared to be in good condition (I was told she was abandoned). I think she's about 5-6 months old (?).

    Anyway, by herself, she's great. She's a bit hyper, but she seems to like me "best". She'll follow me all around the house, comes when called, sit on command, and calmly will play with her own toys by herself. My husband has to hold her collar to pet her, but will sit on my lap willingly, though I'm not sure she was all that happy about it (she sighed a lot, whined a couple of times for no discernible reason). She does smother me with kisses.

    The problem comes in with she plays with my other lab mix (a Labmariner). The Pit constantly tries to dominate the Weim, though the Weim pins her from time to time. When they are playing, she has no use for us. I can't walk them together because all they want to do is play. My Weim will try to cuddle with us and the Pit comes to get her to play again. I worry sometimes about how she likes to dominate things, even though we got her to be a companion to the Weim.

    They both have their own crates and are housebroken. The Pit is STRONG -- I had a hard time holding on to her to give her the puppy shot. She's very muscular and can be hard to handle. She tugs on the leash (a gentle leader collar seemed to do OK, but it took some doing). She makes me a little nervous, especially if she ever DID become aggressive (I've not seen her be aggressive to people, though she has left marks on the Weim's legs).

    We have small children (usually we let them play after the kids are in bed), so I gently play with her feet, ears, and tail to keep her used to be handled. One thing that bothered me, though, was one night I was trying to wipe the mud off her paws after going out, I gently had a hold of her leg (she was trying to go upstairs) and she yelped (seemingly in fear?). I also was rubbing her side and tummy while she was standing and tried to gently encouraging her to expose her belly and she yelped then too.

    We go back and forth on rehoming her. She's a good dog and the two lab pups get along (or seem to). I don't know if my instincts are telling me she needs a different home or it's my own insecurities. My husband thinks she needs obedience training (and I agree) but the only class I found in my area is $150, which a bit steep for us right now.

    Can anyone relate or offer any advice?

    Thanks.

    Need Advice with my Pitador-101_2636.jpg<<--photo of her

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  3. #2
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    Re: Need Advice with my Pitador

    She sounds like a normal, playful, 5-6 month old PUPPY, who hasn't been given a lot of boundaries or manner training. I don't mean that as a criticism.

    Have you checked out any of the stickies at the top of the forum pages? The one on NILIF would be good for you, as well as Doggy Zen. Both will help teach your pup impulse control.

    As for the play isssue, always supervise them. And, get to know her body language so you can separate them before she gets too excited and goes too far. Older dogs give young pups a little bit of leeway, they know they are babies and don't have manners yet. But, sometimes they lose their patience with them. This can help teach the pup manners, but, you still should keep close tabs on their play.

    Even if they didn't try to play too much, I'd still recommend walking and training them separately. It gives the older dog a break, and helps you work with the pup a bit more one on one. Plus, the older dog gets one on one time.

  4. #3
    Senior Member WheatenDaneMom's Avatar
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    Re: Need Advice with my Pitador

    Please do not call her a pitator, that is not a breed.

    Labmiraror... *shudder*
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  5. #4
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    Re: Need Advice with my Pitador

    I don't consider them a "breed". It's more shorthand than saying a "American Pit Bull/Labrador Retriever mix". Sorry if that offends you.

  6. #5
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    Re: Need Advice with my Pitador

    The lab mixes are about the same age, actually. I will have to look at the stickies -- I'm relatively new here yet.

  7. #6
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    Re: Need Advice with my Pitador

    My husband has to hold her collar to pet her, but will sit on my lap willingly, though I'm not sure she was all that happy about it (she sighed a lot, whined a couple of times for no discernible reason). She does smother me with kisses.
    Your husband should stop trying to force her. Allow the dog to completely dictate the pace on her own accord, if she's not in the frame of mind for affection then let it be. The sighing, whining, licking all sound like appeasement behaviours, aka 'please don't force me to do anything'.

    One thing that bothered me, though, was one night I was trying to wipe the mud off her paws after going out, I gently had a hold of her leg (she was trying to go upstairs) and she yelped (seemingly in fear?). I also was rubbing her side and tummy while she was standing and tried to gently encouraging her to expose her belly and she yelped then too.
    Again there is an element of force, inadvertant as it may be, in the case of muddy paws. Also keep in mind that an exposed belly is a very submissive and very vulnerable posture for a dog to be in. Many dogs will show resistance, understandably so.

    I don't know if my instincts are telling me she needs a different home or it's my own insecurities.
    Insecurities will easily transfer from you to your dog. You conquering your own issues seems like your dog's biggest hurdle at the moment.



    Be GENTLE, and be CONFIDENT that you, your husband, and your dog can accomplish this together.

  8. #7
    Senior Member WheatenDaneMom's Avatar
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    Re: Need Advice with my Pitador

    When the pit/lab is sleeping do you rub her a lot? My Wheaten had a lot of issues with being touched... face, back, tail and paws... ESPECIALLY being groomed... I spent a lot of time petting him while he slept over most of his body... just massaging. Whenever I got the chance during the day I work would on the troubled spots... over a few months none of it bothered him anymore. It took a lot of time and patience... and letting things be done on his clock.
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  9. #8
    Senior Member WheatenDaneMom's Avatar
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    Re: Need Advice with my Pitador

    She's really, really cute!
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  10. #9
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    Re: Need Advice with my Pitador

    They sleep in their crates at night. When they are out they very rarely ever lay down. When she seems more relaxed I pet her all over to keep her used to being handled.

  11. #10
    Senior Member a7dk's Avatar
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    Re: Need Advice with my Pitador

    Your dog is adorable, and looks a lot like my dog (also a Lab/Pit/also something pointy-eared in there but I don't know what mix). She also sounds like she has a similar temperament - very high energy, etc. How long have you had her? I can tell you that NILIF was extremely helpful for my guy, Hobbes. Extremely helpful. He learned to look for me or my husband for EVERYTHING in life and it strengthened our bond as well, with addiitonal training. As for being touched, Hobbes didn't have as much of an issue with it as your dog seems to, but he HATED having his nails clipped. We have dealt with that by taking out the nail clippers and just showing them to him while he's calm and lying down, then letting him sniff them. Eventually we worked up to rubbing the clippers on his body, just his back at first, until he got comfortable iwth that. Then we moved to touching his feet with the clippers. He didn't like htat at first, but eventually learned it wasn't anything to be afraid of. Then, later, we moved to actually using the clippers for their intended purpose. I assume he doesn't love this, but he now lets us do it.

    I think this kind of graduated exposure method would work for all kinds of touching. And seriously, read the NILIF and the doggy zen threads for impulse control - that advice is invaluable. See my recent thread "A brag thread on Hobbes" for more details about his progress using these methods, if you're interested.

    ETA: I forgot to mention that during the work with the clippers, we were constantly treating him, so that he would learn to associate good things with the clippers.

  12. #11
    Senior Member DustyCrockett's Avatar
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    Re: Need Advice with my Pitador

    Not all dogs like being touched in the same way. If she doesn't like being petted on top of the head, stroke her cheeks and neck instead.

    Most dogs don't like it when their feet are handled.

    At 5-6 months she's still a puppy, and puppy play includes all kinds of behaviors. It will probably be awhile before the puppy respects the other dogs wishes to not engage in play; it's your responsibility to make her stop.

    She'll want to focus on the other dog when you're walking, it's what puppies do, and why they need lots of good quality one-on-one face time with us both walking and training. Are you training her at all?

    IF you are afraid of the dog, the dog will know about it. It will either guess at what you're afraid of, and become fearful of that thing as well, or it will interpret your fear as a weakness. Either way, it won't make for a happy dog. None of the behaviors as you've described them sound alarming to me.

    Trust the dog, he knows what he's doing.

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