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I've had my lab for a week now and love him. He is only 10 weeks old. I understand that puppies are very attached to their owners in their early stages, but I'm starting to think that he's a little too attached. If he is more than a couple of yards away from me, he comes running back to me. I love the attention he gives me, but it's so much to the point where he won't eat unless I'm literally right next to him. We could be in the same room, but still if I'm not close enough he won't eat. Also, I'm doing crate training with him. I put him in his crate whenever I go to work or have to go somewhere. I also put his food and water bowls in there with him. As soon as I leave, of course he cries for me, which is expected. But the entire time I'm gone, he won't even touch his food or water once. But he instantly starts to eat once I come back to let him out. Is this normal? How can I break him out of the habit, so that he knows he can eat whenever he wants without me having to be right next to him?
 

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He's 10 weeks old, you ARE his world. Hes bonding with you. In a few weeks, it will be about everything else except you. Over the next 2 years, his personality will change lots of times.

Take advantage of the fact that he wants to be with you and teach him to come on command. (every time he comes to you, whether called or not, you should give him lots of praise!) This will certainly come in handy when he reaches the stage where he wants to explore the world around him. Start teaching him sit, down (short 1-2 minute sessions - and make them fun). Next, he will want to play, then he will be exploring, then he will settle for a bit (around 5 months) and then he will get into absolutely everything he can find for about 6-9 months, then he will become more independent and then.......he will settle into a wonderful companion. These are all normal stages for a lab.

As far as not eating when you're not home and he's in his crate, it's fine. I've never had one that did.

Seriously though, I'm not one for clingy dogs, but make the most of this important bonding time. Give him lot's of love back. He is totally being normal.
 

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Make the most of the attention in these early days. As 3doglady says, there will be lots of personality changes and you want to get as good a grounding as you can now. Play lots of games and have fun but whilst doing that reinforce the recall, sits, drops, tug and fetch. Call his name and reward him everytime he looks when you call.
 
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