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In the mornings I'm alone with my puppy Bailey (8 weeks) for anywhere between 30 minutes to an hour after my husband leaves for work and before my girls wake up. She will follow me around whining and whining. Sometimes she goes off to play with a toy but she always comes back whining. What she wants is for me to sit on the floor so she can crawl in my lap and chew on a toy.

I've been giving in because, it's so very cute, and I'm normally drinking coffee and reading something anyway and I can just sit on the floor and do it. Usually after 15 minutes or so she dozes off. I think this might be bad because first of all, I'm giving in to her whining. But also, she's very tiny now but will get bigger. Is this a puppy thing or will she be expecting to sit on my lap for the rest of her doggy life?

And I'm only asking this next question because I don't really understand much about dogs and why they do what they do - is this a dominance issue?

I'm her main caretaker and she follows me around a lot, but she doesn't greet with with the crazy, wiggly joy that she does my husband or next-door neighbor (where she was born). When she sees them she acts like they've been parted for years and will wiggle up to them and lay on her back, showing her belly for a pet. She also licks them like crazy.

When she sees me she wags her tail and comes to me, but she never lays on her back and gives me her belly. And when I reach down to pet her she tries to use me as a chew toy. She might lick a little but mostly she is trying to bite my hands or, if I pick her up, my face or collar.

Have a I made myself too available to her?

Any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. :)
 

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I'm her main caretaker and she follows me around a lot, but she doesn't greet with with the crazy, wiggly joy that she does my husband or next-door neighbor (where she was born). When she sees them she acts like they've been parted for years and will wiggle up to them and lay on her back, showing her belly for a pet. She also licks them like crazy.

Any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. :)
My year old girl Molly does this too and I think it's because I taught her to get all excited when my husband or kids come home. She knows the sound of the garage door going up and as soon as she hears it, she reacts. I get excited with her and we run downstairs to greet him/them. That's become her norm. Hubs doesn't do the same, however, so she hasn't been conditioned to react with the same excitement when I come home. She's still happy to see me & gives me kisses but she doesn't have the same level of excitement that she has when others come home. It could also have to do with the fact that I'm with her all the time while the kids are here just a few days every other week & hubs works all day so she's more excited to see them because they're more of a novelty.
 

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Holly gets excited when i get home, but she goes mad when my auntie, uncle and there dog come round, she also goes mad when my nan and grandad come round, but if i walk through the door with someone else she will always run to me, even if i am at the back she runs straight past everyone else and comes to me, oh she also loves my dad, well she loves everyone but you can tell who she loves more than others, so she may not greet you like she does some people but i sure she does little things that she does for you and no-one else.
 

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Once a dog gets used to sitting on your lap, it will expect this to be the norm always, unless you really actively train them not to. My husband tells me that his old Golden thought she was a small dog in a big package and used to sit on him when he was little (she'd crush me!, he usually says). My mum's Maltese does this too, and she's picky about who she wants to sit with, so if the wrong person picks her up, she'll just try to climb towards the person she wants to be with.

I wouldn't worry too much about him not being enthusiastic when he sees you. As it was pointed out before, he might just be used to your presence (he's with you all the time) and the rest of the family/friends he doesn't see as often. My mum's dog is usually not as excited to see my mum as she is about seeing me, but if my mum is gone for a week and then comes back, she gets so excited! If seeing us again is a party, seeing my mum again is like a live concert with fireworks! My mum denies this, but it's the truth.
 

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Once a dog gets used to sitting on your lap, it will expect this to be the norm always, unless you really actively train them not to. My husband tells me that his old Golden thought she was a small dog in a big package and used to sit on him when he was little (she'd crush me!, he usually says). My mum's Maltese does this too, and she's picky about who she wants to sit with, so if the wrong person picks her up, she'll just try to climb towards the person she wants to be with.
This is what I feared. Okay, I'll have to put a stop to it. Thanks everyone!
 

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I don't think the dog is trying to be dominant or anything. Sitting in your lap feels good. You're warm and cozy. Puppies like being warm and cozy. One of the things I liked about Hamilton when I met his litter is he ran right over and jumped in my lap. He'll jump in ANYONE's lap who is sitting on the floor, though mine is his favorite lap.

I think it's just personal preference if you literally want a lap dog. You could redirect to a dog bed or other appropriate place for sleeping, but personally, I like having a cuddly dog.
 

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I don't think the dog is trying to be dominant or anything. Sitting in your lap feels good. You're warm and cozy. Puppies like being warm and cozy. One of the things I liked about Hamilton when I met his litter is he ran right over and jumped in my lap. He'll jump in ANYONE's lap who is sitting on the floor, though mine is his favorite lap.

I think it's just personal preference if you literally want a lap dog. You could redirect to a dog bed or other appropriate place for sleeping, but personally, I like having a cuddly dog.
I agree with this 100%
 

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I don't think the dog is trying to be dominant or anything. Sitting in your lap feels good. You're warm and cozy. Puppies like being warm and cozy. One of the things I liked about Hamilton when I met his litter is he ran right over and jumped in my lap. He'll jump in ANYONE's lap who is sitting on the floor, though mine is his favorite lap.

I think it's just personal preference if you literally want a lap dog. You could redirect to a dog bed or other appropriate place for sleeping, but personally, I like having a cuddly dog.
Agreed. The puppy is like a baby right now, and like a toddler and then a child, she will likely get more independant as she matures. Just because you allow her on your lap now doesn't mean you have to allow an 80 lbs adult on your lap later. As a full grown dog, she can lay her head on your lap to be close to you or curl up beside you.
 

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When my pup Bella was this age she would whine like this too. It really gets to you after a while! You feel like they are not happy and you have to do something to fix it. Usually it's because they are bored or overtired or a combination of both. What I tried was experimenting with trying to find more exciting toys/chewies to keep her engaged. Also if you don't want to always have to let her sleep in your lap, try to make her a comfy little "den" somewhere where she will feel safe and cozy. Bella would always crawl under my couch and fall asleep now she is too big but she still will sometimes fall asleep with her head under there!
 

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She lies in your lap because she likes the comfort and security. I imagine that you like it, too. I would not stop it, if you like it.

Instead, teach her to do it on cue. This isn't a 'dominance' thing, just normal manners like you'd do with a child, because you can't spend all of your time on the floor.
1. Because Bailey is 8 weeks, give her 2 more weeks of spoiling her, letting her continue to sleep in your lap.
2. At about 10 weeks, when you're 'too busy' and Bailey whines, then bend down close to her (don't tease her), and say "No" in a quiet voice, then go back to breakfast. You can say any word that you like, she doesn't understand yet, but "no" will be easy to remember. If she keeps whining, ignore her.
3. When you are finished with breakfast, or if you can't ignore the whining anymore, then bend down again, say "No", then leave the room (if safe to do) for about 15 - 30 seconds - start with 15 seconds, the first time you try this.
4. If she stopped whining, then sit on the floor, say 'Lap' and encourage her to lie down with you. After 2 min., get up and go about your day. Don't worry if she starts whining again, the idea is not to sit down when she is whining. It's OK to sit down, and then she whines... for the moment.
5. The 'No' is not attempting to stop the whining. It only signals that you will no longer sit, while she whines. If you are consistent, then she will learn.
6. An extinction burst is when you try to get the pup to stop doing something (especially by withholding a reward, or ignoring the behavior). Bailey may start to whine more loudly ("Don't you hear me... I'm in great pain!!!") and yelp, when you start ignoring her. Continue to ignore her, or leave the room more quickly, when this happens. The extinction burst will stop in 3 days or fewer; be strong.
7. Once a day, at a random time, maybe like a reward, sit down and say "Lap" ... and allow it for 2 min. or so.
8. Also, if Bailey learns not whine, but to sit quietly and 'request' a lap dance :) then sometimes you can fulfill this silent, calm, quiet request. But not every time.

My dog will come pester me when I'm on the computer. Sometimes, I'll pet him, or glance at him to lie down, or say no, or say lie down. If I don't pet him, he has the option of how to respond, but he knows he can't pester me anymore. He may lie down by my feet, may go to another room, or may go to his bed to sleep. For the most part, if he comes back after 5 min., I will stop and give him attention, but that's an individual response based on years of understanding.

This may sound like, "Never play with your dog on his terms, only when you initiate it." It is NOT. This is not a dominance game. It is a method of communicating - first, what it means when you can't interact; second, how to request an interaction, politely ( as opposed to expecting it on demand).
 

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Thank you all SO much! I feel better about the whole thing now. This morning I had her in my lap again and I thought "well, a little longer..." :) I've noticed that she wants to sit on us all equally and that was my main concern. I didn't want her to be picky and I don't want her constantly demand her way about it when she's grown.

I don't think the dog is trying to be dominant or anything. Sitting in your lap feels good. You're warm and cozy. Puppies like being warm and cozy. One of the things I liked about Hamilton when I met his litter is he ran right over and jumped in my lap. He'll jump in ANYONE's lap who is sitting on the floor, though mine is his favorite lap.

I think it's just personal preference if you literally want a lap dog. You could redirect to a dog bed or other appropriate place for sleeping, but personally, I like having a cuddly dog.
I think, honestly, I do want a cozy lap dog, and I *know* my girls do. :)

She lies in your lap because she likes the comfort and security. I imagine that you like it, too. I would not stop it, if you like it.

Instead, teach her to do it on cue. This isn't a 'dominance' thing, just normal manners like you'd do with a child, because you can't spend all of your time on the floor.
Your posts have helped me so much with our puppy. Thank you!!
 
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