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Hi guys,

I am a first time dog owner of an adorable 8 week old Rottweiler named Bane (from Batman). He has been great so far but I want to make sure I raise a good boy as Rottweiler's grow to be huge and I need to be in control of his behavior early.
Some questions I have:
  • Is eating grass normal, even right after eating a meal?
  • He is not responding to his name most times, sometimes he does come
  • What to do when he whines? Do I ignore it as I don't want him to develop separation anxiety if we are apart too long.
I am documenting our progress on YouTube as well if you guys want to see Bane.



Thanks,

Icky
 

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Cute pup.

- Eating grass is pretty normal. However, it can be a sign of an upset tummy. Whatever the breeder was feeding him, I'd keep him on it for several more weeks. He's had enough changes without adding a new food to the mix.

- He needs to learn his name before he can respond to it. Play the name game. Get a handful of treats. Say his name and give him a treat. No expectation of him doing anything, just his name and a treat immediately after. Repeat half a dozen or so times, several times a day. Eventually, saying his name will make him turn toward you in anticipation of the treat. Name = good things.

- Why is he whining? Does he need to go out? Does he need to eat? Is he thirsty? Is he too cold or too warm? Is he unhappy about being crated?

One thing I saw in your video is that you woke him up and then fed him right away. Taking him outside first is a better option. Puppies generally need to go out right after they wake up, after they eat, after they take a drink, after they've been playing for a while, and every 20 minutes or so just because. Also, either use a standard 8 ounce measuring cup for his food or else weigh it, so that you will have a better idea of how much he's getting. Start with the recommended amount of the bag, and adjust from there. If he looks too thin, add some, and if he looks too pudgy, cut back a bit.

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I've had Rotties for over 25 years now, a lot of them since I did rescue and fostered. He is a cutie and looks like a nice temperament to boot.

I agree with everything LeoRose said. Wouldn't worry about a little grass eating unless you use chemicals on that grass or he's doing it obsessively and vomiting afterward. Unless there was a break in the video and you did take him out first thing after opening the crate in the a.m., I'd change the way you're doing it and take him out as soon as he's out of the crate, then feed, then take out again.

There were a few other things I'd change. First, there's something hanging down into his crate (yellow leash?). Don't let anything do that. If he pulls it into the crate he can chew it. If it's fixed somehow and won't pull down, he could get it wrapped around his neck.

You're chatting away to him constantly. To a puppy, that's incomprehensible background noise, and you'll only teach him to ignore it all, including his name. Sure, you can talk to him a bit, reassure, etc., but don't just keep up a non-stop stream, and leave his name out of it unless it's something he should respond to. Then make it consistent and distinct every time.

LeoRose is right about name response. Wait until he's looking away but not with his attention focused on anything in particular, then say his name, loud and clear. If he turns to look at you, reward instantly. A clicker can help with this because it lets you mark the instant his head turns and gives time to get the reward to him after. If you're in corona virus lockdown, don't have and can't get a clicker, you can just make a distinct sound by clicking your tongue as his head turns toward you. You can use that sound for other things to mean, "Yes, that's what I want, reward coming."

It looks like the treats you're using are pieces of his kibble. Might try a soft treat a little tastier. Small pieces of hot dog or cheese work well.

Maybe just because it was on video, but you didn't praise him for pooping when he was doing it and give him a treat immediately. By the time you were praising, he might have thought it was for walking away from it or something else and it all blended in with the other chatter. Make your praise distinct and consistent and do it while he's squatting. Good boy, Bane!

You don't want him pulling on your pant legs like that and don't want to use anything negative to stop him, so distract him with something better. Carry a ball or some favorite toy, give it a little roll or short puppy toss or wave and get him involved with that instead of your pants leg.

Good luck and have fun with him.
 

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P.S. I just reread original post and saw "sometimes he does come." Name response is separate from a recall command. Start with the name response, then teach him to come. The resources LeoRose mentioned will give you ideas.
 
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