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Discussion Starter #1
My lab mix puppy spends everyday with me and has all of my attention most of the day. He gets lots of walks and playtime. The big thing is when he does something and I tell him "no" he will scrunch up his nose, let out a small bark and then continue doing it. If my husband tells him "no" he listens. What am I doing wrong? I feel that I say it stern enough but I am not always effective. I am really afraid he will become an aggressive adult who does not listen to me. I am having him neutered in 2 weeks and am wondering if this will help.
 

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Try saying "YES!"



Seriously though, you're soon going to get a barrage of comments on more constructive things to do than to yell "no".
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I don't yell. I am not sure what else to say when he is biting me or blankets. I just get so much conflicting advice depending on who I ask. Even professionals seem to disagree.
 

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My rule of thumb is puppies can do no wrong. Thus there is no reason to tell the pup no. A simple "eh eh" or something similar should suffice to tell the puppy "I don't like that, please stop" I would simply remove the blankets or yourself when he is biting you, or stop the puppy from doing so by picking him up (if he is okay with that) or moving him away.
 

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Distract the puppy by giving him something appropriate to bite on - a toy, chewy, etc. and praise him if he starts biting/chewing on it. Make an abrupt 'ackt, ackt' sound, or yelp loudly like another puppy would if it were bitten, when he bites you. Then all play needs to stop for awhile after you're being bitten, so he learns that biting stops everything that's fun. Get up and walk away from him - into another room, if necessary. Praise like crazy for good behavior/chewing/biting on desired objects. Puppies NEED to chew. Provide him chew toys for him to relieve this need.
 

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Eh Eh is more of an interrupter. People tend to over use No so that it loses it's effectiveness as an interrupter and dogs don't really generalize well enough to understand all our various meanings for it.

IMO it's best to use an interrupter and then tell the dog what you want them to do such as sit, lay down, leave it, drop it etc.
 

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Once they become teenagers I tighten up my discipline. With baby puppies it's more about prevention& redirection then it is about punishment. Your puppy prolly thinks you are playing. Instead of being all confrontational about it, just yelp (like another puppy) when he bites anything you don't want him to, a couple of "yelps" & if he doesn't heed them then stand up & turn your back, if he comes around & barks or play bows this is an apology , accept it & continue play... Rinse/repeat
 

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Eh Eh is more of an interrupter. People tend to over use No so that it loses it's effectiveness as an interrupter and dogs don't really generalize well enough to understand all our various meanings for it.

IMO it's best to use an interrupter and then tell the dog what you want them to do such as sit, lay down, leave it, drop it etc.
Exactly, thanks for answering that question for me, couldn't have done it better myself (seriously :D )

Also, when people tend to say no to puppies and dogs they tend to lower theirs voices more are louder than if they just went "eh eh." People are conditioned to do this because when people discipline children that is usually what happens (my own theory). When I say "eh eh" its more like I am talking to a baby, my voice doesn't lower much but is an interrupter if the puppy bites.
 

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Does my dog really know the difference between "eh eh" and "no"? Don't they do the same thing?
You do, and how you say things, even unintentionally, is important. "no" means nothing to a dog and way too much to a human. Dogs don't generalize. Suppose you use "no" to mean "don't bite me" then you say "no" when the puppy chews on your undies. Well, that's one confused pup, because he's not biting you.

Work smarter, not harder. There are about five million things you don't want your dog to do and just a few you do want him to do. It's much easier to teach him the few things you do want him to do as opposed to the many, many things you don't.

For the record, I'm now the third generation of no-less dog owners in my family, and we've all had well behaved dogs, including grandpa's parade of Dobermans.
 

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My puppy hates "no"
Me too. It's a personal thing with me, but I actually cringe when I hear other people use "no", or even "eh eh" for that matter. So this gives me an idea of how dogs likely feel about the (over)use of these words too, in a sympathetic way.

I try to avoid, best I can, anything that has a tendency to deflate the dog. And in most cases, kind actions will speak so much louder than unencouraging words ever can, IMO.

As Amaryllis mentioned ... best to teach the dog what it is you DO want him to do rather than a cacophony of negativity and no no no's.
 

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Dogs don't understand that our words have multiple meanings. They can't generalize that No means don't chew that, and stop doing that, and be quiet. Here are common situations in our house that could result in a 'no'

- Hamilton is hanging onto the leg of my pants while I try to walk
- Hamilton just stole a tissue
- Hamilton is poised to chase the cat
- My entire arm (seriously how does he do this he's 13 lbs?) is in Hamilton's mouth

The actual responses are:

- "Eh Eh!" Distractor noise meaning GET THE HECK OFF MY PANTS DOG!
- "Drop it!" meaning "Whatever is in your mouth, get it out of your mouth!"
- "Leave it!" meaning "Do not touch whatever it is you're looking at!"
- "Ow!" then ignore him for a minute.

Also, we do everything we can to just prevent possible "no" situations from happening! This includes trying to keep him tired and stimulated.

Does your dog have alone time in a safe place (pet, crate, etc...) every day? If you're home all day every day doing the dog's bidding, how is he going to learn to entertain himself quietly? If he's always bugging you to provide all sorts of entertainment and constant companionship, you'll hit a lot more "no"s than if he can go and play with a toy by himself sometimes.
 

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For nipping and biting, you can look at the Sticky: The Bite Stops Here , in the new owner forum.

To word some of the explanations a little differently, the distractor No, or Eh, Eh will only distract the dog... then you need to re-direct him by giving him something else to chew on, or by then giving him a better behavior to perform... This is roughly what other people were saying.

Also, when you ignore a dog, try to make a point of dramatically looking away from him. You might even turn your back on him. For the first few times, no longer than 15 seconds.

If you 'ignore' a Lab, he will 'get in your face,' play bow, and bark at you. He is trying to tell you that he is sorry for doing whatever that hurt your feelings... Praise and pet him... and be prepared for another nip... he doesn't understand, yet. He doesn't know exactly what he did to make you ignore him. So, every time he nips, you need to make the same sound (Yelp, Oops, Ouch, Ow ... pick only one and have everyone use it all the time.), then ignore him the same way... and in about 3 days or faster, he'll slowly nip softer and softer...
 

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Just to add my opinion on "no":

No, to humans, is a negative word. It can be a negative answer to a question, or it can be restrictive, it can be a reprimand, etc. But, it's ALWAYS negative. It's NEVER positive.
And, as many have said, "no" has so many meanings and can be used in so many situations.

When we tell someone, or even a dog, "no" what we really mean is "that's wrong, don't do that" or "that's bad" or any number of things. The thing is, dogs don't think in terms of right/wrong, or good/bad. They DO think in terms of what works for them and what doesn't work for them.

So, there's this disconnect between us and dogs, when we say "no" we are usually not just trying to interrupt, we are also subconsciously attaching a judgment (negative). And, humans can't seem to understand WHY their dogs don't stop when they tell them "no" or why they don't understand when they tell them "no". The reason is, they're not getting the hidden, attached meaning.
To them, "no" means nothing more than "eh" or "ah ah" or "uh uh" or "hey". But, many of us, when we say no, we expect them to get that no means it's wrong. All they get is that you made a sound.
Now, if you make the sound, and then go on to give further instruction, you have a chance of giving them a better concept.

Plus, lots of times, if a dog doesn't respond right away, "no" becomes "no no NO NO NO NONONONO!" which makes even less sense to them! :)
 

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Just to add my opinion on "no":

No, to humans, is a negative word. It can be a negative answer to a question, or it can be restrictive, it can be a reprimand, etc. But, it's ALWAYS negative. It's NEVER positive.
And, as many have said, "no" has so many meanings and can be used in so many situations.

When we tell someone, or even a dog, "no" what we really mean is "that's wrong, don't do that" or "that's bad" or any number of things. The thing is, dogs don't think in terms of right/wrong, or good/bad. They DO think in terms of what works for them and what doesn't work for them.

So, there's this disconnect between us and dogs, when we say "no" we are usually not just trying to interrupt, we are also subconsciously attaching a judgment (negative). And, humans can't seem to understand WHY their dogs don't stop when they tell them "no" or why they don't understand when they tell them "no". The reason is, they're not getting the hidden, attached meaning.
To them, "no" means nothing more than "eh" or "ah ah" or "uh uh" or "hey". But, many of us, when we say no, we expect them to get that no means it's wrong. All they get is that you made a sound.
Now, if you make the sound, and then go on to give further instruction, you have a chance of giving them a better concept.

Plus, lots of times, if a dog doesn't respond right away, "no" becomes "no no NO NO NO NONONONO!" which makes even less sense to them! :)
Exactly, very well put.
 

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I have a Newfoundland named Ozzy. He's a wonderful puppy of 7 months and 110+ lbs. Good in public, loving and gentle for the most part. But when he wants a bone and another dog has it, he'll sit about 5 feet from them and bark repeatedly at them. This is seriously aggravating. I'll call out to stop, and usually say, "Ozzy, annoying!". Because it is. Sometimes that's enough, but if it isn't, I'll stand up from my desk and say, "Ozzy, I'll kick your ass!". Sometimes at this point Ozzy will sit down and bark at me, to which I usually hold up a fist and say something like, "I'll beat you!". If that's not enough to get the message across, I'll come out from behind my desk with fists up and Ozzy romps over to play with me. I wrestle and love on him a bit and that usually distracts him from the bone he was trying to get by means of attrition. Yeah, it's a silly song and dance we go through, but it amuses us both, and results in cessation of the problem behavior, so I'm cool with it.
 

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NewFoundlandOwner - your last post here made me laugh :laugh:

Truthfully reminded me of myself with my grandkids. When they are bickering back & forth with each other and ignore my "stop it" "knock it off" then I drop the bomb - "If you guys don't stop this, I am going to rip your lips off". THAT usually gets their attention and we all start to laugh and they try to talk as if they had no lips ;)
 

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If your partner is having success with "no", but you aren't, look very carefully at everything he does vs everything you do when you are correcting.

Are you bending over to say "no" while he stands straight?
Do you have a different facial expression?
Does he pull the dog away when it doesn't listen to "no", while you become frustrated?
Do you repeat the command?

Also look at how the dog behaves toward you vs your partner in other situations - is this the only area where there is an issue listening to you, or does he walk better with your partner, or obey other commands faster? This will help you figure out if there is an alpha issue in general, or if there is something specific about this command.
 
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