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Discussion Starter #1
I'm not sure if any of you remember the post I made about my neighbor's dog. It was about how often he's outside with no food or water. Plus he always had a prong collar on him 24/7. He would be outside during rain, snow, hot, cold, etc. Well, SPCA has forced the owners to remove his prong collar and put food outside for him. There's no dog house and he's still out there quite a bit, but I suppose everything else is an improvement.

Anyways, my boyfriend and I tend to go outside a lot to visit him. He's very affectionate towards us. He'll jump up on the fence and let us pet him, and he'll lick us all over and paw us a lot. When we go to leave, he barks and whines and when we turn around to go back to him, he puts his head back down on the fence and lets us pet him again.

Well, today he did something we never saw before. My boyfriend was petting him for a few minutes, and he was doing the usual licking and pawing. Then we had to leave, so we turned around and he barked again. We felt bad so we came back to say bye before leaving, and the dog put his face up close to my boyfriend's and licked him all over, and then put my boyfriend's arm in his mouth. He didn't bite him or anything. Just left his arm in his mouth. And this is a big dog. He's a german shepherd // lab mix. He could hurt my boyfriend if he really wanted to.

Why did he put his arm in his mouth? My boyfriend removed his arm, and the dog continued to lick his face and paw at him, but then he put my boyfriend's arm back in his mouth again.

Good or bad sign?

 

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Puppies do that a lot when they're teething and some older dogs do it when they want to play. It's something you want to train a dog not to do, but if he's not biting down, that's a good thing :)
 

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Puck loves to mouth when he wants to play, esp my feet, apperntly making me giggle like a school girl is super fun. But as long as he's not actually bitting it doesn't really seem like a problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
He's not my dog, so I didn't know what any of his behavior meant.
I just assumed because he lets us pet him and licks us, that he likes it.
So I guess the mouthing thing seemed odd to us and made us a little cautious, lol.
 

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Taking me a long time to train my pups not to mouth my fingers/hands. Really good bite inhibition is nice, but to train away this behavior entriely would be best. It's a play/affection thing.
 

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Mouthing is fine, especially if he's careful not to bear down with his teeth. He's being playful. Obviously, he was never taught proper manners concerning his mouth. Puppies do this all the time, but actual owners who care teach them not to do that. If you remove your arm from his mouth and either put in a chew toy or ignore him for 30 seconds, he'll stop it with time.

It's so nice of you to pay attention to him. He looks like a great dog.

Have you contacted Dogs Deserve Better? They have some great tips and talking points for dealing with these sorts of situations.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Maybe I'll go out and buy him a toy, or a ball. I was thinking about getting a ball, and throwing it into his yard to see if he would carry it back to me and play. But if his owners are never out with him, I'm not sure if he'll know what to do with the ball. :/

I've looked at the website, but I can't seem to find a link for me to contact them anywhere.
 

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He wants to play. You could get him a dog tennis ball or a hard rubber bone... and throw it into the yard. Either he will kinda fetch it for more throwing, or he'll lie down and chew it.
 

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I'd be careful about giving him a tennis ball due to the risk of him possibly chewing it to bits and eating some of it, what my guys did with the one and only tennis ball I gave him. If you can't be in the yard with him to stop him from eating it just in case you could cause him harm. Something bigger and tougher would be better if you don't know how strong a chewer/how destructive he is.
 

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Maybe I'll go out and buy him a toy, or a ball. I was thinking about getting a ball, and throwing it into his yard to see if he would carry it back to me and play. But if his owners are never out with him, I'm not sure if he'll know what to do with the ball. :/

I've looked at the website, but I can't seem to find a link for me to contact them anywhere.
Here you go:

DDB has moved to the new headquarters at the Good Newz Rehab Center in Smithfield, VA. We are up and running with internet and phones. Orders for merchandise or educational materials and books may now be placed and filled as before, thanks for your support at this very exciting time! Our new address is 1915 Moonlight Rd., Smithfield, VA 23430. Our new phone is 757-357-9292.
 

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I'd be careful about giving him a tennis ball due to the risk of him possibly chewing it to bits and eating some of it, what my guys did with the one and only tennis ball I gave him. If you can't be in the yard with him to stop him from eating it just in case you could cause him harm. Something bigger and tougher would be better if you don't know how strong a chewer/how destructive he is.
I second this!
I know any one of my crew will have a tennis ball peeled and shredded in seconds. They are not allowed to have them without supervision. The last thing you want is an abdominal obstruction caused by one. If anything, try a larger sized Kong.
 

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I totally second the Kong, especially the red ball. My 4 year old GSD works his jaws big time and the ball has substance and bounce to cover great distances.

I took over GSD ownership duties from my brother. He recently informed me that the GSD pup grew up in a feral environment, so mouthing was an issue. I did a combination of deny attention (short timeout) and give him a ball to chew and soon he began to lick my arm rather than bite.
 
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