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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello Everyone!

My name is Jena Marie, I am 24 years old. I am currently living in Tennessee.

The new puppy, Lucy is about 10 weeks old. She is a Labrador Retriever and not even mine. My brother in law got her for my sister for Valentines Day and I ended up taking full responsibility (This has happened before with my siblings cat who are now mine). I walk, feed and even clean up her messes.

I moved in with my sister to help her take care of her three kids because my brother in law is in the military and now that she has a puppy I am taking care of the puppy too. I have never had my own dog before, we had two family dogs when I was younger but my mom took care of them so I don't know what is normal.

My brother in law says Lucy has separation anxiety from me because when I go somewhere she will cry, even if it is leaving her alone in a room for a few minutes. When no one is home I put her in a large crate with a toy, a puppy pad and sometimes food and water if we are going to be gone at feeding time, she seems to be fine when I first put her in there but when we get back we can hear her crying all the way outside. I heard you should give the dog something that smells like you while you are gone so I put a shirt in the crate with her. She gets so excited when she sees me that she sometimes pees. My brother in law says she should be shut in a room by herself to get over her separation anxiety. I thought maybe Lucy is just attached to me because I was the first one to hold her and comfort her because she was scared in the car. Also, my Grandma said all animals have been attracted to me since I was a little kid because they can sense what kind of a person I am and that might have something to do with it. Is this separation anxiety? Should she really be left alone in a room? I feel like this is a bad idea because she isn't potty trained.

She chews on EVERYTHING. Even if I give her a bone, I have given her a old stuffed animal that she loves to chew on and she chews on the shirt that I gave her. I also got her a puppy teething ring but it seems like she loses interest in everything she can chew on very quickly and wants to chew on the coffee table, area rug, couch, toys, shoes sometimes cords and my laptop. I told everyone to pick up their shoes and make sure there are no toys on the floor or cords visible but they aren't used to having any animals around so they don't. Whenever my brother in law is home and Lucy is chewing on something he will flick her or tap her in the face, even lightly kick her, if she still doesn't stop he will put her in her crate as punishment. I don't agree with his methods and it really upsets me, my sister doesn't agree with how he treats Lucy either but no matter what she tells him he doesn't stop. How should I get her to stop chewing on the things she shouldn't be chewing on?

When Lucy first came home with us she was the sweetest puppy but she has started growling and biting. She often tries to chew on my hand and if I tell her no she just does it again. She has been nipping at my brother in law, sister and the kids for about a week now but never me. Yesterday she started actually biting me hard enough that it breaks the skin some. How can I get her to stop biting? Is my brother in law the reason she is acting this way? I have a fear that he is going to turn her mean if he keeps treating her the way he does.

At 10 weeks how well should she be potty trained? When we first got her I took her out whenever she woke up which was normally every hour. My brother in law gets mad when she has an accident so I try to really watch her so I know when she needs to go out. At night she seems to be a lot better, she went from waking me up every hour to going out at 10pm, 12PM, and 4AM but after 4AM she wants to go outside every hour again and if I am even a few seconds late (If I am cooking or helping one of the kids) to taking her out she will have an accident. Is this normal or am I potty training her wrong?

We are looking into getting her trained, if she starts the training classes will any of these issues stop?

Thank you so much for any help you can give me!
 

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Hello and welcome!

Ok, I will try my best to answer your questions.

1. She is 10 weeks old and is a baby. Her bladder is teeny tiny and she cannot hold her pee or poop for long. At that age, going every hour is common. One rule of thumb for puppies, take her outside to potty when she:
a) wakes up from a nap
b)10-15 mins after she eats or drinks
c) right after a play session

2. Accidents happen, she is still learning. Buy a good neutralizing spray like Natures Miracle and use that on her accidents. It will get rid of the pee smell and she won't associate that as her potty spot.

3. Labs are very mouthy. When she puts her teeth on you, say OUCH! No bite, and put a toy in her mouth. When she gets too hyper, she's probably over stimulized. Put her in her crate without a word. This isn't a punishment, she needs to calm down and probably will nap. Hitting her, kicking her or whatever will not stop the biting. She needs to be taught that humans are not chew toys and this takes time and patience.

4. Chewing things that she shouldn't. Tell her no bite and put an appropriate chew toy in her mouth. You can also try Bitter Apple spray on the surface of the no-chew stuff.

5. As for getting her to like her crate, make it an awesome place to be. Feed her in it, play games with her in it, leave a KONG filled with treats when you leave.

Hopefully this has helped a bit. :) I have two labs myself so I know all about the mouthiness! Haha
 

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My brother in law says Lucy has separation anxiety from me because when I go somewhere she will cry, even if it is leaving her alone in a room for a few minutes. When no one is home I put her in a large crate with a toy, a puppy pad and sometimes food and water if we are going to be gone at feeding time, she seems to be fine when I first put her in there but when we get back we can hear her crying all the way outside. I heard you should give the dog something that smells like you while you are gone so I put a shirt in the crate with her. She gets so excited when she sees me that she sometimes pees. My brother in law says she should be shut in a room by herself to get over her separation anxiety. . .Is this separation anxiety? Should she really be left alone in a room? I feel like this is a bad idea because she isn't potty trained.
I doubt it's separation anxiety. Sounds more like a baby that's being kept alone. Babies get scared when they're alone, and forcing her to stay alone won't help it.
Also, she should only have enough room in her crate to stand up, turn around and stretch out comfortably. If she has enough room for a pee pad, she will learn to go to the bathroom in the crate, and this will make potty training A LOT harder.


She chews on EVERYTHING. Even if I give her a bone, I have given her a old stuffed animal that she loves to chew on and she chews on the shirt that I gave her. I also got her a puppy teething ring but it seems like she loses interest in everything she can chew on very quickly and wants to chew on the coffee table, area rug, couch, toys, shoes sometimes cords and my laptop. I told everyone to pick up their shoes and make sure there are no toys on the floor or cords visible but they aren't used to having any animals around so they don't. Whenever my brother in law is home and Lucy is chewing on something he will flick her or tap her in the face, even lightly kick her, if she still doesn't stop he will put her in her crate as punishment. I don't agree with his methods and it really upsets me, my sister doesn't agree with how he treats Lucy either but no matter what she tells him he doesn't stop. How should I get her to stop chewing on the things she shouldn't be chewing on?
She's a puppy. Puppies chew on things, and not just when they're teething. It's what they do and Labs are bad for it. They are BIG chewers. When she chews on things she's not supposed to, take them from her/away from them, and put a toy in her mouth instead. The goal is to make the appropriate things to chew on more fun than the inappropriate things to chew on.
The things in bold... the first one, they need to step up. This puppy doesn't know the difference between right and wrong and it's hard to teach them it. If they're too lazy to pick their stuff up, then they're going to have it destroyed every time.
The second, this is going to do one of two things:
1: Create a dog that is fearful of being touched, which can mean eventually she will start to defend herself, and make her hate her crate.
2: Make her bite back harder, and make her hate her crate.
He's quick on the road to ruining his dog.


When Lucy first came home with us she was the sweetest puppy but she has started growling and biting. She often tries to chew on my hand and if I tell her no she just does it again. She has been nipping at my brother in law, sister and the kids for about a week now but never me. Yesterday she started actually biting me hard enough that it breaks the skin some. How can I get her to stop biting? Is my brother in law the reason she is acting this way? I have a fear that he is going to turn her mean if he keeps treating her the way he does.
Again, she's 10 weeks old, she's a lab. She's going to bite and nip, growl and play. When she does this, put a toy in her mouth. This, again, shows her what's appropriate to chew on. If she persists, get up and walk away for a minute or two. Eventually she will learn that when she gets too rough, the fun will stop and she will learn her boundaries.
Any rough handling will make it worse.


At 10 weeks how well should she be potty trained? When we first got her I took her out whenever she woke up which was normally every hour. My brother in law gets mad when she has an accident so I try to really watch her so I know when she needs to go out. At night she seems to be a lot better, she went from waking me up every hour to going out at 10pm, 12PM, and 4AM but after 4AM she wants to go outside every hour again and if I am even a few seconds late (If I am cooking or helping one of the kids) to taking her out she will have an accident. Is this normal or am I potty training her wrong?
She won't be, at all. Puppies are BABIES. They can't even control their bladder until about 6 months. They can't tell when they have to pee or not. She should actually be going out every 30 minutes or so. After she plays, after she eats/drinks, first thing in the morning, last thing at night, once during the night and regularly throughout the day.
When she's out of her crate, watch her. Don't let her out of your sight. If you catch her going, just calmly pick her up, take her outside and praise and mark (say 'go potty' or whatever) for it. When you can't watch her, put her back in her crate.
When you take her outside, don't let her play, don't let her horse around. If she doesn't go within about 5-10 minutes, she goes back inside, in her crate for about 10 minutes, then back out to try again.
Don't punish her for going in the house. Don't tell at her, don't make noise at her, don't flick her, tap her, kick her, hit her, nothing. This won't teach her a thing. The only thing she will learn from this is 'oh they don't like it when I pee' so she will hide to pee instead. Which is worse.


It sounds to me like this family had no business with a puppy, no offense. Your BIL is going to have to accept the fact that this puppy is the equivalent of a human baby and not only that, but she has no ability to speak or understand english.
Would he hit or kick his child for having an accident? Would he hit or kick his child for putting something in its mouth that it didn't know it shouldn't? Hopefully not. He shouldn't with this puppy either.

As she gets older, once she finishes her vaccinations, she's going to need exercise too. About 30 minutes of walking in the beginning. Then as she gets older step it up to about 45 minutes, then up to an hour. As an adult, she will likely need an hour to an hour and a half of solid exercise a day.
You guys are going to find that Labs, while good dogs, are a hard breed to own in the beginning. They're A LOT as puppies -puppies are enough as it is- then at around 7-9 months they start to go into a teenager phase where it'll feel like they've forgotten everything they've ever learned. During this, you'll have to be patience and consistent with her and you may have to re-teach some things.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Thank you for helping me out, I have been meaning to get on here to reply back but Lucy keeps me pretty busy! I told my sister and her husband everything you both said and they have been working on it. It's not perfect but sometimes it is better.


They still get upset when she cries when she is alone though, my brother in law refuses to believe it is because she is a baby and doesn't want to be alone.

Chewing the carpet, coffee table and just about everything else has gotten better but she has now put a hole in the couch which my brother in law is really mad about and her dog bed, which I say it's her bed let her do what she wants to it and she has ruined three blankets. She rips the blankets apart at night while I am sleeping, should I put her in her crate at night? I am just worried that I won't know when she needs to go out if she is in her crate. She put a hole in one of my niece's school shirts too. A trainer (not her trainer, my brother in law says it is pointless to train a dog at her age) told me when she bites or chews say NO BITE very firmly and spray her with water, that only worked for a few days. When we first started doing it she hated water but within a few days she was loving the water and it didn't work anymore. She doesn't bite me anymore but she still nips at the kids which I think it because they get her overly excited but then everyone gets upset when she is overly excited. She is paying less attention to shoes too.

We got her a KONG and she liked it the first few days but now she doesn't play with it.

At first she had a cloth pop up kennel but she tore a hole in it and kept getting out so my brother in law duct taped it up. She had so many accidents in it that the smell just wasn't coming out so I threw it away and got her a wire kennel which she seems to like a lot more but I think she might have anxiety while she is in it... I'm not sure. She pants a lot and everywhere she steps there are little wet paw prints like she is sweating. I put all of her favorite toys and the stuffed puppy that she never goes anywhere without in there with her. She also cries a lot when she is in it and jumps around which makes a lot of noise and my brother in law and sister get mad about that too. Should I put her in it more so she gets used to it?

She has gotten really good at potty training. She goes out before bed at around 8pm and then will wake up to go out around 5 or 6am. Once in a while she will wake up around 2am but it doesn't happen very often and during the day she goes out every two hours. She even goes to the door when she needs to go out, the only time she will have an accident is when I don't see her go to the door. She is such a quiet dog that she doesn't bark when she needs to go out. I am almost tempted to put a bell on the door and teach her how to ring it. lol
Why would I put her in the crate if she doesn't go to the bathroom, HollowHeaven? Is it for punishment or so she doesn't have an accident?
A friend of mine told me to pick up her food and water a few hours before bed so she didn't need to go out so much at night but when we took her to the vet they said she was underweight and we needed to free feed her.

Do you have any tips on getting her to walk next to me? She pulls on the leash so hard that it sounds like she can't breathe and once she even threw up. I read online to get her to walk with me to turn and go another direction when she is pulling in one direction but every time I do that she starts to pull in the direction that I turned to so I turn again and she gets really excited and started jumping and doesn't listen to me.

I have taught her how to sit, stay and come. She even knows to sit nicely when I am opening her crate, even when she is over excited (She never listens when she is over excited) she will still calm down enough to sit while I open the crate and stay until I tell her to come out. She won't follow commands if my brother in law, sister or the kids try to tell her to do something, is it because I am the one who works with her on it?

I don't think my sister, her husband and their kids should have any pets though. I am moving to New York with my boyfriend at some point and I hope to take Lucy with me since my sister and her husband don't really seem like they want her.
 

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Why would I put her in the crate if she doesn't go to the bathroom, HollowHeaven? Is it for punishment or so she doesn't have an accident?
So she doesn't have an accident. The crate should never be a punishment. Making it a safe, fun place will keep her out of trouble. She won't be able to get into things which should save her from your BIL's wrath.
If you're worried about her going out at night, set an alarm for yourself to wake up at least once to try and take her out.
For her crying and nervousness in it, take the training a little slower. Put her in it for shorts amount of time, then let her out. Slowly increase the time until she's used to it. Kikopup on YouTube has some videos about it.

For the Kong, try stuffing it with different treats each time she uses it. Sometimes with chicken, sometimes with peanut butter, sometimes with- well, you know. Whatever she likes.

Do you have any tips on getting her to walk next to me? She pulls on the leash so hard that it sounds like she can't breathe and once she even threw up. I read online to get her to walk with me to turn and go another direction when she is pulling in one direction but every time I do that she starts to pull in the direction that I turned to so I turn again and she gets really excited and started jumping and doesn't listen to me.
Get her a no-pull harness (they clip in the front) and begin training her to walk nicely on a leash. Every time she pulls hard like that she's doing damage to her neck.
Here's a link to a video by Kikopup on youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sFgtqgiAKoQ
Her videos are great and have helped my dogs a lot with pulling. They hardly do it at all anymore which is greeaatttt.

For her going to the bathroom, try taking her out a little later at night. This may remove her need to go in the middle of the night.
You can teach her to ring a bell. I know quite a few people who do have the bells.


She won't follow commands if my brother in law, sister or the kids try to tell her to do something, is it because I am the one who works with her on it?
Yes. The way they treat her, their attitudes towards her, of course she's not going to listen to them. You're her provider. You teach her, feed her, walk her, and spend time with her. She might like them, but I'm willing to bet you're the one she loves.
If they want her to listen to them, they need to be a little nicer to her and work with her more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
My brother in law already uses it as punishment... maybe that is part of the reason she doesn't like it...?
Okay, thank you! I will check out those videos!

I got a bunch of different treats for the KONG and she still doesn't like it. My sister said it might have something to do with Lucy having a accident and poop got all over it so she left it outside in the rain and then washed it. Do you think that might be why?

I looked for a harness but there weren't any that would fit her, they were all way to small or for an adult dog. I will keep looking though.


I have been trying to get my sister to work with her so Lucy will listen to her too but so far, not happening.

Also, my boyfriend's parents got a dog from a rescue shelter for him, we aren't sure what breed he is just that he has some Jack Russell Terrier in him. We think he is 4 years old and he is extremely hyper, the only commands he seems to know is if he chases the cat and my boyfriend yells NO he will stop and if we pat our knee he will come and he doesn't walk on a leash very well. Can we train him even though he is 4 years old? I heard you can't train an older dog.
 

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Hello, hello!
I am new here too!

And a good luck to you & your dog!
 

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My brother in law already uses it as punishment... maybe that is part of the reason she doesn't like it...?
I'm willing to put money on that possibility. The most you can do is try to counter condition what he's done. He's made a monster out of it, you should try your best to make it as fun and as good as possible.


I got a bunch of different treats for the KONG and she still doesn't like it. My sister said it might have something to do with Lucy having a accident and poop got all over it so she left it outside in the rain and then washed it. Do you think that might be why?
It could be. Try buying a different one for her.


Also, my boyfriend's parents got a dog from a rescue shelter for him, we aren't sure what breed he is just that he has some Jack Russell Terrier in him. We think he is 4 years old and he is extremely hyper, the only commands he seems to know is if he chases the cat and my boyfriend yells NO he will stop and if we pat our knee he will come and he doesn't walk on a leash very well. Can we train him even though he is 4 years old? I heard you can't train an older dog.
You absolutely can train an older dog. The first step is to make sure he's getting plenty of exercise and mental stimulation as well as a good variety of toys. Once he starts to settle in and get into a good routine of exercise and work he may start to listen better.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Tonight for her "quiet time" I put her in the crate for a few minutes and she ended up falling asleep in it for 2 hours. I found that she sleeps better at night when she is away from everyone else closer to bed time and sometimes in the afternoon she starts to pace around the house so I think it gets to be to much for her with all the kids running around. I take her in the bedroom with me and she lays down next to me and just relaxes.




Okay, I will buy her another KONG when I look for the harness!




Okay, that is good. How do we mentally stimulate him?

Thank you for helping me so much, I am looking forward to learning. My boyfriend wants to start fostering animals once we get married so I really want to learn everything I can. Sorry if I ask a lot of questions.
 

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Okay, that is good. How do we mentally stimulate him?
With training! Teach him thing, play games with him that work his mind and his senses. Changing up his walking routine every now and then is a good way since it will give him new sights and smells, hiding treats around the house and having him find them, getting him puzzle toys.
 

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With training! Teach him thing, play games with him that work his mind and his senses. Changing up his walking routine every now and then is a good way since it will give him new sights and smells, hiding treats around the house and having him find them, getting him puzzle toys.
Oh okay! I thought he needed to be mentally stimulated before he was trained. Thank you! We will try that.
 
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