Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.
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Thread: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

  1. #1
    Junior Member Shilos_mom's Avatar
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    Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    We have an 8 week old mixed breed (boxer, lab, shar pei) puppy. He was given to us when he was to young to be away from him mom we already know that so please dont slam us for that. Our boxer mix passed away in September, my sister's friends had a litter shortly after. My sister wanted to get my boys a new puppy and Im guessing her friends were fed up with having the puppies there so they gave them all away between 5-6 weeks old. Im sure thats where his aggression is coming from bc he was not able to play with his brothers and sisters the way he should have. We understand its now up to us to put the dog in order. I know all this I just need to know HOW!!!!

    I located a puppy socialization that meets every Tuesday for an hour from 8 weeks to 5months and we intend on starting that will him asap. We have 3 small children and they get excited around him. We are working on teaching the kids they need to be calm and gentle with Luka but at the same time I need Luka to know its NOT ok to growl and snap at them.

    Normally there is not a problem but when there is its bc they are picking him up to put him back in his kennel, he growls very aggressively and turns trying to bite. When they put him down I then try to pick him up and he does the same to me. Im sure there could be a million reasons why he's doing this, scared, intimidated, ect but I know its not playing!

    We have had 2 other dogs in the house since my boys were born Luka is the 3rd. We have never had an issue like this before so we just want to get in control of the situation before it gets any worse. After the socialization classes are over we will start another training class. We want Luka to be a member of our family.

    Any help would be great, If you have a site you can point me to a book I can read. Anything tip I welcome them all. However as I stated above Im not here to be slammed bc of the age of the dog. Thank you!


    ETA: I should have been more clear in my wording. The boys are not picking him up to pick him up and walk around the house. They are more or less ushering him pack to his kennel. Supervised the entire time. hes never more then one or two inches off the ground. Just enough to get over the bottom of the kennel. I dont have some crazy idea in my head that Luka should be perfect around the kids but with training for both luka and the kids I know it can happen as I had 2 dogs that were wonderful with them. Its just been a while since we had a puppy in the house and we have never had one that reacted the way he does when the boys are helping him to bed or when i pick him up
    Last edited by Shilos_mom; 11-20-2010 at 11:50 AM. Reason: adding info

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  3. #2
    Senior Member upendi'smommy's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    As a general rule, eight week old puppies aren't aggressive they're infants essentially. I wouldn't let your children pick him up period, you say you have small children and for one I wouldn't trust them not to drop the puppy. You're right that he was seperated too early and as a result most likely didn't learn proper bite inhibition from his mom/littermates. (It's also important to remember that all puppies are essentially little land sharks.) Anytime your puppy puts teeth on skin you can 'yelp' and turn away or make any high pitched noise really and end all interaction immediately. It sounds like your puppy needs to learn bit inhibition.


    just tell him that
    "Our relationship is dysplastic, and unless you're willing to supplement it by getting a job to lessen the pain, it's time for a hip replacement"
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  4. #3
    Senior Member Conard10's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    I can totally empathize with you! We brought home an 8 week old chocolate lab (Rudy) that we were convinced was "aggressive". The mother dog experienced some health issues so the pups were not with their mother from age 4.5 weeks-8 weeks....so our pup also missed out on those critical weeks to learn how to play and what behaviors are not acceptable.

    Rudy's biting and growling and made it almost impossible to exercise her. Whenever we tried to play with her she would bite. When we tried to get her accustomed to a leash by walking her around the yard she would constantly jump up and bite the leash....when we tried to get it away she would growl and snap at us.

    At first we weren't that concerned b/c Labs are naturally very mouthy puppies...but it kept getting worse and I got scared that we had a bad dog! We started puppy preschool and even the trainer admitted that Rudy was displaying behavior that was worse than a typical puppy.

    We tried everything!!! Started off with consistently saying "no bite" whenever she bite us. Tried ignoring her by walking away...but she would jump at our legs and bite the back of them. As things got worse we decided to try the whole alpha/dominance thing....holding her down on her back and waiting until she relaxed to let her up. That did NOT work...she would get back up and act even worse.

    Everyone we talked to (experienced dog owners, our vet, trainer) said that it's extremely rare for an 8 week old puppy to be aggressive. She was most likely playing, but never learned how to play appropriately. So we decided to actually videotape a few of her "episodes". This help so much because it did look more like rough play than actual aggressive.

    We decided to buy a second crate and put it in the living room to use as her "timeout" crate. Her regular crate was in the bedroom and we did not want to make it a "bad place". Placing her in the timeout crate for 5-10 minutes or so when she acted up actually worked better than anything else.

    Our trainer also suggest that we bring Rudy to her facility to interact with her adult dogs. I know that there are risks to exposing your pup to other dogs before all vaccinations, but her facility was very clean and her dogs were vaccinated. Her dogs were not at all aggressive, but they would correct Rudy if she played too hard.

    Her biting/rough play behavior went out from 8 weeks - 4 months. I know that probably doesn't make you feel better, but it did take us a while to figure out what worked to correct her behavior.

    The timeouts in the crate and learning from well-behaved adult dogs is what worked best for us....I know that each dog is different.

    I will say that now I know it was NOT aggressive and I think it's extremely rare for a puppy at 8 weeks to actually be aggressive. It may seem like that at the time, but I think it has a lot of do with your pup being taken away from mother/littermates so early. This makes things a little more difficult for you, but I bet it will get better.

    Rudy is 7.5 months old now and a wonderful dog! She never bites or growls and understands how to play.

    Good luck!

  5. #4
    Senior Member LazyGRanch713's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shilos_mom View Post
    We have an 8 week old mixed breed (boxer, lab, shar pei) puppy. He was given to us when he was to young to be away from him mom we already know that so please dont slam us for that. Our boxer mix passed away in September, my sister's friends had a litter shortly after. My sister wanted to get my boys a new puppy and Im guessing her friends were fed up with having the puppies there so they gave them all away between 5-6 weeks old. Im sure thats where his aggression is coming from bc he was not able to play with his brothers and sisters the way he should have. We understand its now up to us to put the dog in order. I know all this I just need to know HOW!!!!

    I located a puppy socialization that meets every Tuesday for an hour from 8 weeks to 5months and we intend on starting that will him asap. We have 3 small children and they get excited around him. We are working on teaching the kids they need to be calm and gentle with Luka but at the same time I need Luka to know its NOT ok to growl and snap at them.

    Normally there is not a problem but when there is its bc they are picking him up to put him back in his kennel, he growls very aggressively and turns trying to bite. When they put him down I then try to pick him up and he does the same to me. Im sure there could be a million reasons why he's doing this, scared, intimidated, ect but I know its not playing!

    We have had 2 other dogs in the house since my boys were born Luka is the 3rd. We have never had an issue like this before so we just want to get in control of the situation before it gets any worse. After the socialization classes are over we will start another training class. We want Luka to be a member of our family.

    Any help would be great, If you have a site you can point me to a book I can read. Anything tip I welcome them all. However as I stated above Im not here to be slammed bc of the age of the dog. Thank you!


    ETA: I should have been more clear in my wording. The boys are not picking him up to pick him up and walk around the house. They are more or less ushering him pack to his kennel. Supervised the entire time. hes never more then one or two inches off the ground. Just enough to get over the bottom of the kennel. I dont have some crazy idea in my head that Luka should be perfect around the kids but with training for both luka and the kids I know it can happen as I had 2 dogs that were wonderful with them. Its just been a while since we had a puppy in the house and we have never had one that reacted the way he does when the boys are helping him to bed or when i pick him up
    Books and websites (and these forums) will help tremendously, but I would start calling around to (puppy friendly) trainers and getting their input as well I would stay very clear of anyone who suggests you alpha roll this young puppy; and let us know how the puppy socialization dates go. That in itself will probably help. Has the pup been wormed? (I've handled baby kittens who hated being picked up when they were wormy; it might be a shot in the dark but it's worth a mention).

  6. #5
    Senior Member Cracker's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    Lots of good advice so far.

    I would also make sure that the boys (you didn't mention their ages) NOT be in charge of putting puppy in his crate. Period. If it is that stressful for the pup (he obviously hates it) they should not be put in the position to have to deal with a snapping pup..for both the pup's sake (they may hurt her accidentally) and for their sake (she may hurt them).

    Have you conditioned the crate to be a happy place only? Have you worked on puppy going in on a cue rather than being "put" there? He is not too young to learn how to do this.

    I would shape it with a clicker, but you can shape it using a lure and reward system:

    Get a small number (8-10) pieces of small bits of high value treat. Tiny pieces of hotdog work well or chicken etc.
    Have the piece in your fingers, sit next to the crate with Luka, door open. Lure him in with the treat, say YESSS and reward him. Wait for him to come back out or lure him back out (without rewarding it) and then lure him back in again, say YESSSS and reward. After doing it three or four times with the lure actually in your hand, use the same hand (which still smells like the hotdog!) and put it in the crate, say YESSSS and reward from the stockpile. Repeat three more times, we're up to six now. Then for the next four SAY "CRATE" (or word of your choice) BEFORE using the same hand motion, YESSSS and reward. Take a break.

    If you do this once or twice a day for five minutes or so (and whenever you are crating the pup, ie cue word, handsignal, reward) you will end up with a puppy that goes in ON CUE without needing any physical handling to do so. Make it a game (google "Crate Games" for more ideas for this) and make sure he always has something awesome in the crate to chew on or feed him his meals in a kong in the crate etc.

    Other than that I would recommend you work on conditioning Luka to accept handling (from adults only for now) that is similar to being picked up. Feed while your hand goes on ribcage, feed while hand under belly, feed while hand under bum area and then gradually work up to slightly lifting him and so on. The food happens WITH the touch. No touch, no food. He sounds like a pup that will need a lot of handling conditioning so be sure to use the same process with touching ears, mouth, tail, anal area and paws/nails NOW so that if you ever have to give meds, do treatment or grooming things you are already ahead of the game.
    Maggi and Cracker, Dog about Rosedale


  7. #6
    Junior Member Shilos_mom's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    Good advice everyone thank you!

    Luka has been wormed I think that was one of the questions

    Luka does not mind his crate he has a bed in there an toys.... What hes doing has only happened a handful of times twice when being ushered into his crate and when Im going to pick him up when the kids are not even around. I assume he see/hears me coming but maybe he does not and gets scared. I did some research before posting here and I along with the first poster "think" he needs to learn his bite inhibition. Luka is around an older dog of mine and he seems to know who"s boss in that situation. IM really hoping getting him into socialization classes will help him! Ill will trip all the other tips listed as well!

    The boys are 5 and they are not " in charge" of caring for the puppy they help care for the puppy. Take him out let him in put him to bed ( he loves his crate, just does not like to be touched it seems) feed him water him and play with him. All under close supervision and with my help[/ The first time Luka did this to the boys I thought they hurt him and brushed it off ( not him getting hurt but his growling and snapping) and explained to them they had to be VERY gentle with him the second time it happened was the last time they helped to put luka away. I dont want Luka or the kids getting hurt but Its more then that bc I know they are not hurting him.

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    Senior Member spotted nikes's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    Don't punish the puppy for growling at the kids. Remove the kids or puppy so he'll stop being stressed about them. You do NOT want to teach him not to growl as a warning, because then you end up with a dog that will bite without warning. Never let the kids and puppy be together unsupervised. That means, if the kids are with the puppy, you are there beside them, or in the room watching them...not cooking, cleaning, leavingthe room to go to the bathroom.

    Don't let the kids put him in the crate. He is stressed about the kids handling him. teach the kids to let him come to them, and pat him, but not pick him up. He's telling you as loudly as he can, that the kids stress him out and make him uncomfortable. Kids can have that effect on dogs, especially ones new to a family or puppies. Don't let the kids pick him up, period.
    Spay or neuter your pet! Founding President Of Thread Killers Anonymous.

  9. #8
    Junior Member Shilos_mom's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    Quote Originally Posted by spotted nikes View Post
    Don't punish the puppy for growling at the kids. Remove the kids or puppy so he'll stop being stressed about them. You do NOT want to teach him not to growl as a warning, because then you end up with a dog that will bite without warning. Never let the kids and puppy be together unsupervised. That means, if the kids are with the puppy, you are there beside them, or in the room watching them...not cooking, cleaning, leavingthe room to go to the bathroom.

    Don't let the kids put him in the crate. He is stressed about the kids handling him. teach the kids to let him come to them, and pat him, but not pick him up. He's telling you as loudly as he can, that the kids stress him out and make him uncomfortable. Kids can have that effect on dogs, especially ones new to a family or puppies. Don't let the kids pick him up, period.
    OK WOW!!!!
    I DIDNT punish the puppy for growling at the kids!!! I NEVER allow my kids and the puppy or ANY animal for that matter to be alone together!!!! The puppy must be stressed out by me to then bc hes gone after me more then he has them when they are not even around!!! Sorry but you cant put the blame on my kids for this one I was using them as an example bc Im concered for them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cracker View Post
    Lots of good advice so far.

    I would also make sure that the boys (you didn't mention their ages) NOT be in charge of putting puppy in his crate. Period. If it is that stressful for the pup (he obviously hates it) they should not be put in the position to have to deal with a snapping pup..for both the pup's sake (they may hurt her accidentally) and for their sake (she may hurt them).

    Have you conditioned the crate to be a happy place only? Have you worked on puppy going in on a cue rather than being "put" there? He is not too young to learn how to do this.

    I would shape it with a clicker, but you can shape it using a lure and reward system:

    Get a small number (8-10) pieces of small bits of high value treat. Tiny pieces of hotdog work well or chicken etc.
    Have the piece in your fingers, sit next to the crate with Luka, door open. Lure him in with the treat, say YESSS and reward him. Wait for him to come back out or lure him back out (without rewarding it) and then lure him back in again, say YESSSS and reward. After doing it three or four times with the lure actually in your hand, use the same hand (which still smells like the hotdog!) and put it in the crate, say YESSSS and reward from the stockpile. Repeat three more times, we're up to six now. Then for the next four SAY "CRATE" (or word of your choice) BEFORE using the same hand motion, YESSSS and reward. Take a break.

    If you do this once or twice a day for five minutes or so (and whenever you are crating the pup, ie cue word, handsignal, reward) you will end up with a puppy that goes in ON CUE without needing any physical handling to do so. Make it a game (google "Crate Games" for more ideas for this) and make sure he always has something awesome in the crate to chew on or feed him his meals in a kong in the crate etc.

    Other than that I would recommend you work on conditioning Luka to accept handling (from adults only for now) that is similar to being picked up. Feed while your hand goes on ribcage, feed while hand under belly, feed while hand under bum area and then gradually work up to slightly lifting him and so on. The food happens WITH the touch. No touch, no food. He sounds like a pup that will need a lot of handling conditioning so be sure to use the same process with touching ears, mouth, tail, anal area and paws/nails NOW so that if you ever have to give meds, do treatment or grooming things you are already ahead of the game.
    Thanks so much for the advice!! I think some practice with handling is great!!! I will try the crate games too just to make it more fun for him. He does not mind being in there but he does not know how to go in on his own yet unless Im tossing in food or a treat which I dont always have handy.

    Im not sure what if anything the people who had him his first 5-6 weeks did with him if anything at all so I know I ahve my work cut out for me. How he is behaving is something Im completly unfamilair with as our two previous dogs never did this so thank you!
    Last edited by Shilos_mom; 11-20-2010 at 05:03 PM. Reason: Automerged Doublepost

  10. #9
    Senior Member Conard10's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    Quote Originally Posted by spotted nikes View Post
    Don't punish the puppy for growling at the kids. Remove the kids or puppy so he'll stop being stressed about them. You do NOT want to teach him not to growl as a warning, because then you end up with a dog that will bite without warning. Never let the kids and puppy be together unsupervised. That means, if the kids are with the puppy, you are there beside them, or in the room watching them...not cooking, cleaning, leavingthe room to go to the bathroom.

    Don't let the kids put him in the crate. He is stressed about the kids handling him. teach the kids to let him come to them, and pat him, but not pick him up. He's telling you as loudly as he can, that the kids stress him out and make him uncomfortable. Kids can have that effect on dogs, especially ones new to a family or puppies. Don't let the kids pick him up, period.
    I don't know if I agree with this. We aren't talking about an adult dog that is already aggressive and you want a "warning" growl. We're talking about a young pup that needs to learn how to behave.

    I would not want to allow a pup to growl and for that pup to grow into an adult that thinks that behavior is ok.

    I'm not saying there should be severe negative punishment if the pup growls, but with consistent training I think it should be taught that it is not appropriate behavior.

    I highly doubt that an 8 week old pup is actually growling to warn people that it's about to bite. I think it's just really rough/inappropriate play (or let's hope so).

    Maybe it's just me, but I would never tolerate a puppy or dog that growls at me or a member or my family.

  11. #10
    Senior Member Cracker's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    Spotted Nikes did not mean to sound critical or assumptive in her posts regarding the growling. So please don't take it that way. Her advice IS spot on.
    If puppy feels the need to freak out when handled, then it is unsafe to do so until conditioning has been done to change puppy's mind about the scaryness of it. The early history of the pup is spotty, since they felt the need to remove the pups from their kin so early it is likely that not only did pup miss out on the dog/dog socialization/play/bite inhibition part of his early weeks but also likely never had any true positive human handling...he was removed from his kin during his first fear period, this can affect temperament. He's still young enough to turn it around but it must be done positively.
    Puppy is very likely to be freaking because he's scared. Young kids, no matter how gentle can be frightening and frightened dogs GROWL and bite. No matter what age.

    Conrad,
    I'm sorry to see you wouldn't "tolerate" a dog or puppy that growls. Punishing or supressing a growl is a dangerous thing in any dog. A growl is only the first communication that something that is occurring it frightening, hurting or worrying the dog. It is a warning and is an appropriate one. Getting rid of the growl means respecting it, figuring out WHY the growl occured and removing the trigger, not the communication itself. Dogs who have had their growl supressed (at any age) move up to the next stage, a warning snap in a socialized dog or a full on bite when they feel uncomfortable or threatened. This is not a desirable outcome.

    Dogs bite. Any dog can bite and any dog can do damage. Socialization, training and learning and respecting how dogs communicate prevents you ever having to be in a position to be bitten.
    Maggi and Cracker, Dog about Rosedale


  12. #11
    Senior Member spotted nikes's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    Thank you Cracker.
    Shiloh's mom- I honestly wasn't trying to be critical, or say you aren't a good owner. But not punishing a growl is very important, and many people come on here, and want to stop the growling with discipline, instead of removing whatever is causing the growl.
    And since in your prior posts you were saying the kids put him to bed, and that's when he growled, I would suggest they don't put him to bed, and you limit their interactions to petting under direct supervision. And while you say you always supervise, many people feel that being in the same room is supervision, but are actually cooking/cleaning and not watching the interaction 100%. It's really importanat to do so, as kids WILL try to pick up a puppy, or if you are really watching him, you can see from his body language that he is feeling uncomfortable, before he ever growls. A cower, droopy ears, tail brought in close to his body all signal unease.
    Keep a bunch of treats handy a lure him to where you want him to go, or have him come to you instead of you going to him (and reward), to get him to do things. Have the kids call him to them and give treats. Teach the kids to teach him to fetch, to have good interactions. The distancing and returning will help alleviate the puppy's fears, as opposed to the kids sitting all around him and reaching for him.
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  13. #12
    Senior Member LazyGRanch713's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cracker View Post
    Spotted Nikes did not mean to sound critical or assumptive in her posts regarding the growling. So please don't take it that way. Her advice IS spot on.
    If puppy feels the need to freak out when handled, then it is unsafe to do so until conditioning has been done to change puppy's mind about the scaryness of it. The early history of the pup is spotty, since they felt the need to remove the pups from their kin so early it is likely that not only did pup miss out on the dog/dog socialization/play/bite inhibition part of his early weeks but also likely never had any true positive human handling...he was removed from his kin during his first fear period, this can affect temperament. He's still young enough to turn it around but it must be done positively.
    Puppy is very likely to be freaking because he's scared. Young kids, no matter how gentle can be frightening and frightened dogs GROWL and bite. No matter what age.

    Conrad,
    I'm sorry to see you wouldn't "tolerate" a dog or puppy that growls. Punishing or supressing a growl is a dangerous thing in any dog. A growl is only the first communication that something that is occurring it frightening, hurting or worrying the dog. It is a warning and is an appropriate one. Getting rid of the growl means respecting it, figuring out WHY the growl occured and removing the trigger, not the communication itself. Dogs who have had their growl supressed (at any age) move up to the next stage, a warning snap in a socialized dog or a full on bite when they feel uncomfortable or threatened. This is not a desirable outcome.

    Dogs bite. Any dog can bite and any dog can do damage. Socialization, training and learning and respecting how dogs communicate prevents you ever having to be in a position to be bitten.
    I don't really agree with physically punishing growls, but I check them AND realize the dog is getting PO'ed.

  14. #13
    Junior Member Shilos_mom's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    Luka is at it again!!! We were outside and some of our neighbors came outside so I picked Luka up and was finishing up talking to the neighbor. I was holding him for a few minutes and he was fine then he starts growling at me and snapping. No doubt he wanted to get down.

    I think he thinks he's in control of the situation but that cannot be the case. I have never dealt with anything of the sort before.....

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    Super Moderator cshellenberger's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    Quote Originally Posted by Conard10 View Post
    I don't know if I agree with this. We aren't talking about an adult dog that is already aggressive and you want a "warning" growl. We're talking about a young pup that needs to learn how to behave.

    I would not want to allow a pup to growl and for that pup to grow into an adult that thinks that behavior is ok.

    I'm not saying there should be severe negative punishment if the pup growls, but with consistent training I think it should be taught that it is not appropriate behavior.

    I highly doubt that an 8 week old pup is actually growling to warn people that it's about to bite. I think it's just really rough/inappropriate play (or let's hope so).

    Maybe it's just me, but I would never tolerate a puppy or dog that growls at me or a member or my family.
    Conrad, a growl is a growl no matter WHAT the age of the dog. It means the same thing, it's either a warning or it's an invatation to play (pitch dependent). teaching a pup not to growl is a HUGE mistake as the growl is a NORMAL part of dog communication just like a tail wag, ear pin and play bow.


    Shilo's mom,

    I suggest you read and USE the following training threads/excercises to help you teach the pup the manners he's going to need to be a part of your family.

    The Bite Stops Here

    Rev Up/Cool Down

    Targeting AKA "Touch"

    As far as reading material, look here. thereare some great books including books you can get your kids to help train the pup (which can be a bonding experience for both children and the pup.

    (Reccomended reading...)Reccomended reading

    Quote Originally Posted by Shilos_mom View Post
    Luka is at it again!!! We were outside and some of our neighbors came outside so I picked Luka up and was finishing up talking to the neighbor. I was holding him for a few minutes and he was fine then he starts growling at me and snapping. No doubt he wanted to get down.

    I think he thinks he's in control of the situation but that cannot be the case. I have never dealt with anything of the sort before.....
    DO NOT pick him up, PERIOD if you need to restrain him, train him to be on a LEASH (at this age I reccomend using a halter, not a collar to fasten the leach to in order to prevent damage to the neck). He is letting you know he does NOT like being picked up, respect that or you will create a fearful dog.
    Last edited by cshellenberger; 11-21-2010 at 01:32 PM. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
    Carla
    "A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control" Proverbs 29:11

  16. #15
    Junior Member Shilos_mom's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    Quote Originally Posted by cshellenberger View Post
    Conrad, a growl is a growl no matter WHAT the age of the dog. It means the same thing, it's either a warning or it's an invatation to play (pitch dependent). teaching a pup not to growl is a HUGE mistake as the growl is a NORMAL part of dog communication just like a tail wag, ear pin and play bow.


    Shilo's mom,

    I suggest you read and USE the following training threads/excercises to help you teach the pup the manners he's going to need to be a part of your family.

    The Bite Stops Here

    Rev Up/Cool Down

    Targeting AKA "Touch"

    As far as reading material, look here. thereare some great books including books you can get your kids to help train the pup (which can be a bonding experience for both children and the pup.

    (Reccomended reading...)Reccomended reading



    DO NOT pick him up, PERIOD if you need to restrain him, train him to be on a LEASH (at this age I reccomend using a halter, not a collar to fasten the leach to in order to prevent damage to the neck). He is letting you know he does NOT like being picked up, respect that or you will create a fearful dog.
    You say dont pick up period?? I dont foresee that being a good solution to the problem. Hes needs to be carried into the house.. he does not walk up stairs. He needs to be carried to the outside to use the potty otherwise he pees on the floor. ( we have tried walking him out but its just to far and I cant move his crate any closer) he needs to be picked up to be put into the puppy yard, picked up to be put in the truck, picked up to be put on the vet table... there are to may places where he needs to be picked up just not picking him up to make him happy wont work.

    There has to be a way to train him thats it ok to be picked up... not by the kids but me, my husband, the vet, the groomer??? I cant have a 70-80lb dog that growls and snap when we need to pick him up.
    Last edited by Shilos_mom; 11-21-2010 at 01:40 PM. Reason: typo

  17. #16
    Super Moderator cshellenberger's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    The ONLY time I'd pick him up is when neccesary and you need to desensitize him to it, I would not hold him off the ground for any amount of time, it's unneccesary. He needs leash training any how ans now is the time to get him used to it.
    Carla
    "A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control" Proverbs 29:11

  18. #17
    Junior Member Shilos_mom's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    Quote Originally Posted by cshellenberger View Post
    Conrad, a growl is a growl no matter WHAT the age of the dog. It means the same thing, it's either a warning or it's an invatation to play (pitch dependent). teaching a pup not to growl is a HUGE mistake as the growl is a NORMAL part of dog communication just like a tail wag, ear pin and play bow.


    Shilo's mom,

    I suggest you read and USE the following training threads/excercises to help you teach the pup the manners he's going to need to be a part of your family.

    The Bite Stops Here

    Rev Up/Cool Down

    Targeting AKA "Touch"

    As far as reading material, look here. thereare some great books including books you can get your kids to help train the pup (which can be a bonding experience for both children and the pup.

    (Reccomended reading...)Reccomended reading



    DO NOT pick him up, PERIOD if you need to restrain him, train him to be on a LEASH (at this age I reccomend using a halter, not a collar to fasten the leach to in order to prevent damage to the neck). He is letting you know he does NOT like being picked up, respect that or you will create a fearful dog.

    I love the rev up cool down!!! That is something we are going to start asap with LUKA... He LOVES chasing the boys around and they like it too until he catches them and is ripping their pants..... If I tell him no he stops for a minute and sits by me but he just glares at them like they are his next meal. So for sure this is going to be an exercise we start now!! We will be keeping the kids and him apart while outside until we have a handle on this

  19. #18
    Senior Member Cracker's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shilos_mom View Post
    You say dont pick up period?? I dont foresee that being a good solution to the problem. Hes needs to be carried into the house.. he does not walk up stairs. He needs to be carried to the outside to use the potty otherwise he pees on the floor. ( we have tried walking him out but its just to far and I cant move his crate any closer) he needs to be picked up to be put into the puppy yard, picked up to be put in the truck, picked up to be put on the vet table... there are to may places where he needs to be picked up just not picking him up to make him happy wont work.

    There has to be a way to train him thats it ok to be picked up... not by the kids but me, my husband, the vet, the groomer??? I cant have a 70-80lb dog that growls and snap when we need to pick him up.
    If you start the conditioning NOW you WILL have a dog that tolerates it, maybe even LIKE it. But for the time being you have to ensure he is only picked up when absolutely necessary AND that you reward him while doing it. As for picking him up when the neighbour comes by, this is not one of those times..on a leash and halter and stand on the leash so he has no ability to jump up on them. In puppies, leashes are your best friend for management purposes.
    Maggi and Cracker, Dog about Rosedale


  20. #19
    Senior Member KcCrystal's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    You say he's has Shar-pei in him? Sassy was the same way when she was a puppy I learned not to pick her up and carry her. Some dogs do not like to be picked up. Shar-pei have a very "differant" personality. And they are not good fits for first time dog owners. Even mixes. They're just hard dogs to figure out.

  21. #20
    Junior Member Shilos_mom's Avatar
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    Re: Aggressive Growling and Snapping in an 8 week old puppy.

    Quote Originally Posted by KcCrystal View Post
    You say he's has Shar-pei in him? Sassy was the same way when she was a puppy I learned not to pick her up and carry her. Some dogs do not like to be picked up. Shar-pei have a very "differant" personality. And they are not good fits for first time dog owners. Even mixes. They're just hard dogs to figure out.
    Yes he has shar pei in him. I believe the mom was a lab boxer and the dad was a boxer shar pei. Both mom and dad are great dogsand were raised around children. Im not a first time dog owner. I have had a min. of 3 dogs at all times with as many as 8. The 8 was before I was married and kids though.... We are going to try to figure him out thats for sure!

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