Aggression in 5 month old puppy
DogForums.com is the premier dog Forum on the internet. Registered Users do not see the above ads.
+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 21

Thread: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

  1. #1
    Senior Member ILuvLucy's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    288

    Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    Regarding our 5 month old rotti mix - she's been putting her paws up on the kitchen counters and table and taking things. When I get between her and the counter (to "own" the counter), and walk towards her to back her up, she tries to bite at me.

    What else should I be doing? I can't keep her out of the kitchen, because the kitchen is where we normally keep her - it's a big room though.

    I appreciate any advice.

  2. Remove Advertisements
    DogForums.com
    Advertisements
     

  3. #2
    Senior Member Dogstar's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Texas, USA
    Posts
    4,072

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    This really doesn't sound like aggression. What makes you think it's aggression versus rough play?

  4. #3
    Senior Member Annamarie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    2,340

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    I wouldn't walk towards her to make her back up, that's more likely to be perceived as a threat than a correction.

    I would just teach her "off" which means get your paws off whatever you're touching now.
    Manager of a three ring circus. One tantruming toddler, one hyper min pin, and fostering a chunky old lab.

  5. #4
    Senior Member rosemaryninja's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Singapore
    Posts
    4,966

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    I really wouldn't be so quick to attribute this to aggression, especially not in a puppy that's 5 months old. When it comes to puppies, nipping or biting usually means play more than anything - they haven't 'grown up' enough to conceptualise aggression, so to speak.

    Supervision is very important - never leave her unsupervised in the kitchen while there is stuff on the counter for her to steal - to prevent unwanted behaviour from being rehearsed. When you're supervising her and she puts her paws up on the counter, give her a 'No!' or an 'Off!'. Some people use a spray bottle or a can of pennies if that isn't enough.

    Does she know 'Leave it'?
    -Melissa
    Life is never dull with a Beagle

  6. #5
    Senior Member TooneyDogs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    4,423

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    She's pretty young to pick up on that body language. You will probably have to use the more direct approach of slapping the counter/table or stomping your foot on the floor and backing that up with a strong "NO!" You'll need to be consistent to teach her that those things are off limits.
    Other tactics...and I'm not endorsing these.....never had to use them.....trapping the counters/table with mousetraps; trapping with a stack of pans that will fall over if touched; a squirt gun; throwing a rolled up magazine in her direction. I'm sure others have tried some different methods that have also worked.

  7. #6
    Senior Member ILuvLucy's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    288

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    Thanks, everyone for your help. Maybe I'm looking too hard for aggression in her because my vet keeps drumming into my head about the "dominent behavior of the rotti".
    I will continue to be vigilent in the kitchen however!

  8. #7
    Senior Member Dogstar's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Texas, USA
    Posts
    4,072

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    Get a new vet! Seriously.

  9. #8
    Senior Member Annamarie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    2,340

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    ouch don't use mousetraps! those can take fingers off!
    Manager of a three ring circus. One tantruming toddler, one hyper min pin, and fostering a chunky old lab.

  10. #9
    Senior Member melgrj7's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Upstate NY
    Posts
    3,804

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    I wouldn't walk towards her when you get between her and the counter, she is probably feeling threatened and is trying to defend herself. Simply getting between her and the counter is enough. Make sure you don't leave anything on the counter, because if she is constantly getting rewarded for going up there, it will never stop. If she is really bad about it, you can get a scat mat and put it up on the counter. It gives a static shock when touched (it feels like when you rub your socked feet on a carpet and then touch a doorknob). Its better for her to think the counter bit her, than for her to think that your not letting her have anything yummy or do anything fun.

  11. #10
    Senior Member rosemaryninja's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Singapore
    Posts
    4,966

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    Quote Originally Posted by Dogstar View Post
    Get a new vet! Seriously.
    Agree completely. He sounds like the type who believes Rotties only belong in the care of thriller-movie villains.
    -Melissa
    Life is never dull with a Beagle

  12. #11
    Senior Member ILuvLucy's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    288

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    Yes, I will probably take that advice about getting a new vet.

    She also tries to bite when I stop her from chewing on this little rug we have by the door, and when i get her off the sofa or chair (off limits in my house).

    Seems like she's a little kid who gets mad when i stop her from doing what she wants.

    Otherwise, she is very smart, playful, and walks really well with me on a leash. She is not food aggressive, but is very food motivated.

  13. #12
    Senior Member Dogstar's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Texas, USA
    Posts
    4,072

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    One thing to keep in mind is thta your pup is at a mouthy age- and Rotts can be REALLY mouthy puppies- and may be seeing your physically interrupting her as an invitation to wrestle. (The Rotts I've known have all ADORED shoving-type games as puppies- admittedly, I'm not THAT experienced with the breed, so that's only 3.) Have you thought about redirecting her rather than physically interrupting her?

    What I would do is this (assuming you're using clicker to train- if you're using lure/reward type training, I'll re-write these.)

    Condition her name to be a 'watch me!' cue by saying her name, clicking and treating when she looks at you. She doesn't have to come- you can actually play this game with her across the room and toss her a treat. If you don't want to use her name (if, for example, a family member prefers to use her name to call her or scolds her by name), you can use whatever (watch, face, look, eyes- it doesn't matter as long as you're consistant). But take a handful of tiny treats (pea siezed chunks of cheese, whatever) and say the word, click, treat- 30 times (this should take you about 3 minutes), 2x a day. You don't care about SUSTAINED eye contact- but you've got to click when she is LOOKING at you- not after she's turned back to whatever she's doing.

    After three days, you should have a dog who, when you say your watch cue, is INSTANTLY all eyes on you- because CHEESE WILL BE FALLING FROM THE SKY shortly. Throw her the treat, and then remove whatever she's chewing on- when it's not in her mouth. If she leaves it to walk a foot away for the cheese? It's fair game. After you've taken the forbidden item away, take her and go do something- train sits and downs, play with one of her toys, or go for a walk- redirect her into a positive activity.

    One thing to watch out for is that you don't inadvertantly condition "mom says my name, mom takes away my fun"- that's why you go do something else- OR "I chew things, mom takes me for a walk!". To prevent this second one, when you catch her chewing on one of her own toys? Descend on her iwth a handful of cheese, tell her she's a good dog, and walk away. If she follows you hoping for more cheese and training? Ignore her. (But c/t when she goes back to her toy!)

    The book "Control Unleashed" has a lot of great strategies for teaching a dog to love learning and working with you, and I'd highly recommend checking it out. I used it as foundation training with my spitz puppy and I'm VERY happy with it.

  14. #13
    Senior Member ILuvLucy's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    288

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    My Puppy (Lucy) is actually fun to train. She learns really quicky. I've been using little treats since she's so "into" food.

    I will try to redirect her using "watch me". We're trying to use her name only with "come".
    However, I've not been using a clicker - only the treats.

  15. #14
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    78

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    Ooh...this one could be a challenge if it's not taken care of promptly. A friend of mine has a 135 lb stud male German Rottweiler. She told me how many people don't understand how important leadership is in that breed. They are challenging, and thickskinned.

    Being that they are so food motivated and smart, a combination of lure and reward and clicker training can be a good option for you. Start at the couch. Don't push her off, but command her "Off". If she doesn't know this command yet, lure to the ground with a treat, click exactly when she has all four paws clear of the couch, and then give her the treat. You can cut out the clicker, but it really is great at capturing the exact behavior you want. (Try getting a Karen Pryor Clicker Kit...I have one and it was amazing for fine commands like "Look" at my eyes.)

    Once the off is being performed effectively from the couch (and people if she is a jumper), use it at the counter. As soon as all four paws touch the ground, give her all the praise in the world, but remember...do not push her off! Physical touching can be seen as attention, praise, or a challenge to their authority. Essentially, you want her to think everything is better on the ground...the toys, treats, touching, and play.

    One question...do you allow her onto the couch? I've noticed that many puppies get inadvertantly confused because owners allow them on the couch from the get-go. Use the couch as a tool and reward. Make it off limits at first, allowing you to teach the off command for anything. When the puppy becomes more mature, you can invite them up...but still tell them to get off successfully because they know that trick. I find that this makes the couch a treat, promotes calmness when there, and clarifies to the dog when it is allowed. If the couch is allowed at first, any vertical space is questionable at least, if not permitted in the puppy's eyes.
    *(Another cool thing - doing this training allowed us to move our puppy from our old apartment where being on our couch was allowed by invitation...to our new place where she is not allowed on our roommate's furniture. There was no confusion. She has not been on the couches at all in the 2 weeks we've been here.)

  16. #15
    Senior Member Dogstar's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Texas, USA
    Posts
    4,072

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    I *would* not lure an off behavior- you can very quickly end up training 'I put my paws up, Mom hands me a treat'.

  17. #16
    Senior Member ILuvLucy's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    288

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    OK, so her biting is part of her still just being a puppy? And i should not consider it aggression?

    I think I can distract her pretty easily with treats. I can distract her some of the time with her toys - it depends on what the situation is.

    My daughter really wants to play with Lucy, but it often gets a little rough, and she ends up crying. Should I not let her play with her? She is truly an animal lover (as are most 10 yr. old girls). Or, should I not let her play with Lucy unless I am too.? And, I think that Lucy really loves the attention from my daughter also.

    PS - I really appreciate your attention to my problem

  18. #17
    Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    78

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    Quote Originally Posted by Dogstar View Post
    I *would* not lure an off behavior- you can very quickly end up training 'I put my paws up, Mom hands me a treat'.
    It's a fine line, for sure. That's why the clicker helps immensely. But there are a rare few dogs that will simply stay put on a couch no matter how many times you say off or encourage something else. The point is to not give a treat until the dog reaches the floor. In their mind they are rewarded for the most recent action (touching the floor) and if you convince them that touching the floor at all times is better, they will generally stay off of things. Make the right thing easy or fun, and the wrong thing hard or boring. Getting treats and praise on the ground is fun. Laying on the couch getting ignored is boring. The idea is to reinforce fun on the ground at any time, not just after they have been innappropriately on something, and the dog will naturally know that the ground is where to be.

  19. #18
    Senior Member ILuvLucy's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    288

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    Usually I just take her by the collar and pull her (gently) down to the floor. I also yell "off!". Sometimes she jumps right back up on to another chair/sofa. Sometimes when i take her by the collar she tries to turn her head and bite me.

    If instead i show her a treat and lure her to the floor, I'm pretty sure she would get off.

  20. #19
    Senior Member Annamarie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    2,340

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    even my min pin will do that. say he's trying to climb on me to cuddle and I'm doing something and can't, and he's not listening, it's guaranteed that the minute I push him away he's going to put his mouth on me. it's not really an aggressive thing, it's more a wrestling thing.
    Manager of a three ring circus. One tantruming toddler, one hyper min pin, and fostering a chunky old lab.

  21. #20
    Senior Member blackrose's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Lafayete, IN
    Posts
    1,865

    Re: Aggression in 5 month old puppy

    Since you also said she'll "snap" at you when you try to stop her from chewing on your rug (She also tries to bite when I stop her from chewing on this little rug we have by the door, and when i get her off the sofa or chair (off limits in my house).)
    She could be doing that (and the counter/snapping thing), because of resource guarding. That is an intirely different issue than normal puppy mouthing/play and must be dealt with accordingly.

    I just don't think she's mouthing/snapping at you because of play. What is her body lanuage like when she snaps at you? When Chloe roughhouses she'll go into a playbow before she comes barreling up to me growling and nipping and I'll push her back. But if I push her away from something she wants (she resource guards) her mouth puckers up and her eyes get hard. If she were to snap in that situation, even though I pushed her, it most definitally wouldn't be play.

  22. Remove Advertisements
    DogForums.com
    Advertisements
     

+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Quick Reply Quick Reply

Quick Reply
Message:

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
SEO by vBSEO 3.5.2 ©2010, Crawlability, Inc.