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Discussion Starter #1
I know Berners are needy but Dakota ( now 1 year) is ridiculous!! I take her for walks just about everyday or to the park down at the river and play her favourite which is tug but nothing ever seems to be enough! She won't settle in the house but for a few minutes if someone isn't constantly petting her or showing her some kind of attention, and if we don't she goes to the door and literally bangs it with her paw til someone lets her out. Did we make her have this behaviour?? and if we did does anyone have any tips how to stop it? When I ignore her I feel guilty and I know I shouldn't feel guilty right?
 

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I would suggest working her mind. She sounds bored like she could be bored. Teach her some new tricks (specific names for certain toys) etc. When I was younger I use to baby sit kids who had a Berner (and then would dog sit just the berner too) and that dog was the opposite of needy. He was very laid back but every dog is different.

I also really suggest biking with a dog you can go at their speed and they can jog and jog. You can always put a vest on her too and put a bottle of water in it to help make it heavier. Apparently, when you put a vest on it becomes a job for them and their brain starts to think more. I use a k9 jogger and I like the one that you can take off and it turns into a leash incase need be. I have a lab mix and a rat terrier/pug mix that both can go at least 7-10kms a day and there is no way that I could give them that on a walk because the pace is much slower.
The rat terrier mix was from a puppy mill and was absolutly crazy for the first year shes starting to get over things I just got the biker in the spring and it is great to take them out with and then come back and do some training as they seem to be more focused (and tired)
 

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Get yerself a Golden Retriever, then re-ask the question.

I feel your pain! But all things come in time. You have a young dog who still has a lot of maturing to do. Certain behaviors have to be accommodated because of the dog's breed. If you wanted a dog who would be more respectful of your personal space, you should have gotten a German Shepherd. Dakota will get better with time and training (but maybe not better enough). You do need to be cognizant (and gentle) about suppressing the dog's essential nature, though.
 

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A one year old berner should still be taking it pretty easy with the physical exercise since they are a rather large breed. I wouldn't be adding any weight to her back or really long jogs. With the swissies we aren't even allowed to compete in hiking until they are at least two.

What I would suggest is starting her with drafting. She's to young for a real cart (that starts at 2) but she can start with a training cart. It's crazy amounts of fun and what berners were bred for so tends to come naturally.

http://www.bernerpaw.com/drafting/. You can also google Drafting Dogs and find more info. The first step is always going to be a good foundation of basic obedience so if you haven't had her in an obedience class that is where I would start. If she has done classes now might be a good time for a reminder course or doing some extra work at home.
 

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I have a book that's called 21 Days to Train Your Dog... I got it mostly for the list of tricks, and the pictures that follow the steps to take.

In it however, the author(s) make a feeble attempt to explain "dog" behavior. Fortunately for them, I don't believe they call them "alphas", lol, but they do mention that dogs are part of our pack, and we're the leader. We have to show them what to do, how to do it, and when it's okay to do it.

For instance, (in the book), they said- (along these lines), A dog shouldn't beg for your attention... Dogs shouldn't demand it... You pet the dog when you're ready to not when the dog wants it... Meaning, if your dog is pawing at your arm, or pushing against you, or weaseling onto you lap, and you're busy or don't feel like showing affection, you're to gently but firmly tell the dog "no" or "go lay down"... Something along those lines... There are days where I'm trying to read and Donatello will lay against my thigh then push himself up over my leg, stick his head under my book and try to push the book out of my hands... As cute as it is- Trust me- It's only cute one time. So I say, "no", and push him off and make him lay beside me.

I'm not saying that's the beat-all-end-all to your dilemma, I agree with the others that you should try more physically demanding exercise with your pooch... But I'm also trying to explain, that you shouldn't feel guilty for telling your dog "no" when it comes to attention.

Donatello gets plenty of exercise, physical and mental, he doesn't want or need for anything in his life... Which means, when I'm reading... LET ME READ! lol!

I'm not an expert, nor am I trying to sound like one, I'm just trying to give you some support. : )
 

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I have a book that's called 21 Days to Train Your Dog... I got it mostly for the list of tricks, and the pictures that follow the steps to take.

In it however, the author(s) make a feeble attempt to explain "dog" behavior. Fortunately for them, I don't believe they call them "alphas", lol, but they do mention that dogs are part of our pack, and we're the leader. We have to show them what to do, how to do it, and when it's okay to do it.

For instance, (in the book), they said- (along these lines), A dog shouldn't beg for your attention... Dogs shouldn't demand it... You pet the dog when you're ready to not when the dog wants it... Meaning, if your dog is pawing at your arm, or pushing against you, or weaseling onto you lap, and you're busy or don't feel like showing affection, you're to gently but firmly tell the dog "no" or "go lay down"... Something along those lines...
These techniques are all true and good things. However, to some extent, you just have to tolerate what genetics have made the dog. I only give my boy attention when either: a) I decide to bestow it, or; b) he asks for it politely (sitting w/o nudging or pawing). Fact is, though, he asks for attention quite a lot. Sometimes I tell him to get lost, but most times I give him what he needs. And he just needs more affection than "normal" dogs.

The other (good) side of the needy/pesty coin is that these kinds of dogs tend to take to training in spectacular fashion. Praise and affection function as primary motivators for a dog like mine (scoff if you like), and he is in his glory during training sessions because he has 100% of my attention. When the dog is getting demanding about your attention, it is a very good time to make her work for it. You can fight it and find yourself constantly correcting acting-out behaviors, or you can use it to your advantage.

To understand how motivated Rusty can get, you have to see his recall. He comes streaking back and literally skids to a "front" (note: be careful of collisions on slippery surfaces). I do a "field finish" (he doesn't come around behind me to heel) and he jumps up, spins in the air, and lands in the heel position when I give the command. He is alternately a complete horror and a total joy. He started out as all horror, but with time, the joy is clearly winning out.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for all the replies:) I (we) never did our homework enough when we got this breed, I just thought they were big teddy bears and liked to lounge around:rolleyes: Her obedience is quite well and I'm always working on that (mostly when she's around other dogs she constantly wants to play) she loves to find treats when I hide them outside. I new that this breed liked to be with their people but not constantly nudging your arm. If we pet her and stop, she looks at us and nudges. I don't work out of the home so she's always with me and if I go uptown and don't take her she finds a way out of the yard (which I still have to find) and "finds" people to be with, so I have to keep her inside when I'm gone or take her. I've been training her to do more tricks and her attention span isn't very long. She has a torn acl and hasn't limped for quite some time but I'm trying slow her down a little until we can get surgery done.
We used to have a Shepard mix but she was very reserved and liked her space. When she was a puppy my daughter was also young so I guess they kept eachother busy:D Dakota has me for her puppy years so I have to think of more things to poop her out.
Thanks for all the input, it's very appreciated:)
 

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Does she get much chewing action? With my Boxer, who is H I G H energy, I give him a big bone to munch on. It works their minds, their jaw, neck, and shoulder muscles, and afterwards, he almost always takes a nap. :D Oh, and if the newness of the bone has worn off, I'll smear a little bit of peanut butter into the crevices to get his interest and he'll continue gnawing on it long after the PB is gone.
 

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That craving for attention can be tempered by making the dog work for it......not just give into petting or playing.....actually go to work. I use that craving to my advantage by making them do obedience exercises. Heelwork, glove retrieves, articles, doodling...whatever they need to work on anyway. Once they realize they have to actually work for the attention, they're not so quick to ask for it.
 

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Does she get much chewing action? With my Boxer, who is H I G H energy, I give him a big bone to munch on. It works their minds, their jaw, neck, and shoulder muscles, and afterwards, he almost always takes a nap. :D Oh, and if the newness of the bone has worn off, I'll smear a little bit of peanut butter into the crevices to get his interest and he'll continue gnawing on it long after the PB is gone.
I second this idea... I give Donatello more things to chew on then I do actual doggy "treats" or "biscuits"... I agree that when they have things they chew on it's mentally exhausting as well as physical, lol.

Just like with us, we gab on the phone for too long we're ready to take a nap! : P
 

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She does like to chew her huge stick she has outside and I know she can entertain herself with her toys it's just getting her to do it. I had to leave today for a couple of hours and as soon as I came home she grabbed her tug and was all excited wanting to play, I didn't give in though, I told her to go lay down and she did and chewed on her tug and then after about 10 min. I went up to her and said "okay, lets play tug" so it was on my terms. I'm hoping this is the right way. I know alot of it must be boredom especially at this young age. I'm thinking of getting a backpack for her and not put too much weight in it yet to tire her out more on walks and such:)
 

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That sounds like a good approach, doing it on your terms. You got some good advice here.:)
 
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