How Do I manage my pup's defiance

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How Do I manage my pup's defiance

This is a discussion on How Do I manage my pup's defiance within the Dog Training and Behavior forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Dogs category; My 7 month old currently has an issue with over reactive bursts of nipping and biting. They occur around the same time each night, somewhere ...

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Old 09-25-2018, 10:42 AM
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How Do I manage my pup's defiance

My 7 month old currently has an issue with over reactive bursts of nipping and biting. They occur around the same time each night, somewhere between 7:30pm and 9pm. She essentially reaches a point where all attempts of redirecting to toys have become useless, she simply ignores them and goes for my calf or arm. If I go into another room to give her a "time-out" she will sometimes then resort getting up on the couch and just sits there and looks at me when I ask her to get down. She is not perfect, but I know she is aware of what I am asking. If I engage her she returns to her biting or even growling at times. The only thing that seems to be effective is offering her a treat to get off and then having her sit lay down and stay for the treat. It really just feels like she is trying to get me to offer her food. Maybe that is giving her too much credit.
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Old 09-25-2018, 01:00 PM
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Crate her when she starts a tantrum. She might be getting cranky by that time of evening. Crating her for this isnt punishment- its like putting a cranky human child down for a nap- so dont make it punishment. Give her something to chew and in the crate she goes.
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Old 09-25-2018, 04:32 PM
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What breed is your pup? just curious.
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Old 09-25-2018, 05:20 PM
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That 7:30-9:30 pm is the "witching hour" for most puppies, for whatever reason. The "zoomies" or FRAP (Frenetic Random Activity Period) is really common in puppies, and sometimes older dogs too.

I would start looking for the signals that she is about to lose her marbles, and then instead offer her a long lasting chew (pizzle, bully stick) or even a frozen Kong. This can be done in her crate, or in a place you'd like her to settle, such as her dog bed/blanket. Hopefully after a few repetitions she'll start to associate that frenzied feeling with actually calming down.

As far as the getting off from a different room, how often do you ask her to get off the couch from a distance? Dogs are very good at taking in everything that is happening in the moment you ask them to do something (your tone, your smell, the direction you're facing, what room they're in, the time of day, any weird body movements you're doing). So sometimes when we think they're ignoring us, they really just don't understand what you're asking in that context.

For example, my dogs all have excellent sits, downs, and stands at a distance. Mainly for obedience purposes, but also for safety, so we practiced a lot. Then one time I asked for a trick from much further away than I have before. My dog sat there and stared at me. I took two steps closer, asked again, and it clicked.

Also, just because it is a small pet peeve of mine, make sure that you have two distinct cues for "Get off the couch" vs "Lay down". So many people just say "Down". You can have multiple cues for the SAME behaviour, but it is unfair to have multiple behaviours tied to the same cue.


Just a Rules Reminder: This is a Positive Reinforcement Forum. Suggestions of Positive Punishment or Negative Reinforcement are not permitted.
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Old 09-25-2018, 10:26 PM
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Since this is occurring in the evening I think it's related to being tired. She is the equivalent of a very young child, and puppies behave very similarly to children. They get tired and they get cranky and out of sorts. My puppy is about the same age as yours. Come 8 or 9pm she's had it and she plops down wherever she happens to be. She doesn't get grumpy or anything, but the older dog does. She's a 2 year old lab mix and when she gets tired she gets grouchy/growly and starts twitching around on the floor and makes grumbly sounds and kicks her legs around. It's pretty weird, but its something she's always done when she's tired. And if she happens to be somewhere that we don't want her to be she'll growl and snap when we try to get her to move.

I think if you just direct her to bed then your problems will be solved.
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Old 09-26-2018, 06:55 PM
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Yup, I remember all too well this stage with my Puma pup!!! It was as if at night, Puma suddenly went from sweet lil doggie to monster shark who was the crankiest, shark biting flash eating monster! So bizarre to watch and it happened, like you said, at night!

But like the others here have said--it is the whole over tired exhausted puppy syndrome. Time for bed, much like a tired out toddler. No need to try any calming/training at this point, just send sweet monster puppy off to her bed! I wouldn't mess with time outs or anything, she just needs quality sleep! And lots of it. Puppies need something like 18 hours of sleep per day.

When we saw this behavior start up at night, we would just say happily '"Puma, let's go to bed" and then lure her there with some treats and send her to her beloved crate. (She really does love her crate!)

We would leave her there with a nice dog safe chewie, tell her good night, cover her crate with a sheet so to keep the light out, and let her Z-Z-Z-Z-Z. When we checked on her she was always fast asleep, all curled up on her blankie looking like the sweet angel she is when she isn't beyond tired

Don't worry, this is normal, and your pup will grow out of it. Puma, now 8 months, takes her after dinner treats/chewies on "her couch" and then falls asleep until we wake her to go to her crate in our bedroom when we are all ready for bed. No more shark biting night monster! Yeah!!!!!!!
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adolescence, biting, defiant, german shorthaired, labrador

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