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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
My brother and his girlfriend moved in together about 2 months ago into an apartment. A few days ago, they decided to buy a puppy for $85. From what they tell me, he is 3/4 husky and 1/4 pit bull. He's 2 months and, just from picking him up, I think he weighs between 20-25 pounds.
Earlier this afternoon (Sunday), my brother told me that Rocky (the dog) cries all night and that they can't keep him because of this (neighbors haven't complained yet, but he assumes they will). So he asks if it's okay to keep Rocky here at our mom's house until the "crying phase" stops (we live in a house and are surrounded by dog owners, so it shouldn't be a problem). Anyway, I don't even know what they mean by "crying phase". He cries in the middle of the night, but is that a phase? I went to work, and my brother picked me up and told me he had set up the dog in the sun room... and that he's gonna be around daily to take care of him. He told me that when Rocky cries, don't pay any attention. I don't mind it, but will it be confusing to the dog? I mean, I don't know how long this "crying phase" lasts for... but if it's for a few months, this is going to be home to him. And when they move him into his apartment, isn't he going to start crying for "home"? Plus I have two cats (one of which was my brother's), and they're gonna have to get used to him too.

What is your suggestion for the situation? Thanks in advance for any help, hope to hear from you guys soon!
 

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The "crying phase" is a phase that occurs after a pup has left its litter and moved into his new home. It's basically fear and loneliness... something of a rite of passage that every pet dog has to go through in puppyhood. It usually lasts a couple of weeks. Don't respond to his whining by letting him into your bed or out of his crate -- this will inculcate a barking problem as he gets older. You pretty much just have to ignore it.

I would have the puppy sleep in a crate while he stays at your place, and once the "crying phase" is over, move him back into your brother's house with the same crate. That should minimize any transitionary woes.

Do not leave him with the cats unattended. Huskies and cats generally do not mix well. If you must socialise them, supervise them with the puppy on a leash and the door open for the cat to escape if need be.

I do have one note of caution, which is that 2 month-old pups can generally hold their bladders for a maximum of 2 hours. That means the pup needs to be taken out every two hours, even in the night, to pee and poop outside. While the pup is staying in your house, this responsibility falls with you. You can leave him to pee and poop in his crate, but that's not very pleasant for you or the pup, and it will slow down housetraining significantly. So be sure to set your alarm.
 

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Hey rosemary, thanks so much for your advicfe. I felt so bad to just ignore it, but I figured that it would help in the long run (like if your kid cries and cries for candy and you give him candy, he's gonna know that he can cry to get more). It's just such a heartbreaking sound! I definitely do not plan on leaving the cats with the dog unattended, just hope that they can get along supervised. What is this crate you talk about?

And about the puppy's eliminations, my brother brought "puppy pads" which he put in the room with rocky. I don't know what the general opinion is on these, but he told me not to worry about it and that he would clean it daily.

The "crying phase" is a phase that occurs after a pup has left its litter and moved into his new home. It's basically fear and loneliness... something of a rite of passage that every pet dog has to go through in puppyhood. It usually lasts a couple of weeks. Don't respond to his whining by letting him into your bed or out of his crate -- this will inculcate a barking problem as he gets older. You pretty much just have to ignore it.

I would have the puppy sleep in a crate while he stays at your place, and once the "crying phase" is over, move him back into your brother's house with the same crate. That should minimize any transitionary woes.

Do not leave him with the cats unattended. Huskies and cats generally do not mix well. If you must socialise them, supervise them with the puppy on a leash and the door open for the cat to escape if need be.

I do have one note of caution, which is that 2 month-old pups can generally hold their bladders for a maximum of 2 hours. That means the pup needs to be taken out every two hours, even in the night, to pee and poop outside. While the pup is staying in your house, this responsibility falls with you. You can leave him to pee and poop in his crate, but that's not very pleasant for you or the pup, and it will slow down housetraining significantly. So be sure to set your alarm.
 

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The puppy pads are pads that your brother wants the pup to pee and poop on. In a perfect world, all puppies would come biologically programmed to recognise puppy pads and pee on them. Unfortunately, this isn't the case. If a dog is to be pad-trained, he needs to be taught that peeing on puppy pads = good and peeing anywhere else = not good.

The "crate" I referred to is basically something like this:



The puppy's "house", if you will. Crate-training is by far the most popular way to house-train. The basic principle is that the pup is confined when not supervised. This doesn't mean the pup has to be caged up all day. The time he is caged up is the time he can't be supervised, so the time he is crated is entirely up to his owners. Because he is confined, it prevents accidents (dogs instinctively avoid peeing in their sleeping area) or unwanted behaviour (like chewing furniture) from occurring, which will go a long way in training. I will spare you the intricate details because I think your brother should be responsible for doing this research. All I can say is that if you want a sun room that is not peed and pooped on, and chewed to shreds, a crate is your best option.
 

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What a brother! He's sticking you with the hardest part of owning a puppy. The first few weeks are always the hardest. When you do give him back he may have to do it all over again since its a new environment - just keep that in mind.
 
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