New Puppy, Continuing Struggles with Older Dog

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New Puppy, Continuing Struggles with Older Dog

This is a discussion on New Puppy, Continuing Struggles with Older Dog within the Dog Training and Behavior forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Dogs category; My lab/pit mix is just under a year and a half old. He is super high energy, requiring lots of walks and exercise. We recently ...

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Old 03-29-2018, 12:37 PM
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New Puppy, Continuing Struggles with Older Dog

My lab/pit mix is just under a year and a half old. He is super high energy, requiring lots of walks and exercise. We recently adopted a Great Pyrenees puppy, she's now around 15-16 weeks old. I feel like my older dog is too high energy for her. He is constantly trying to engage her in play, even when she isn't interested. He's very jealous, and doesn't let her come up on the couch to snuggle. He's downright annoying to her sometimes.

A certain experience has striked me with fear. We took them out to a park to play, and noticing there was nobody there, we let them off leash (this is a trusted area, no cars, not usually any other people or dogs, just lots of open space and ponds to run and swim -- our oldest dog has gone there for his entire life off leash with no problems). All started out well -- little one was following her brother around and they were playing in the grass and the water and having a great time, until my oldest dog got wayyyyy overstimulated and started running around her in circles, barking, growling, almost like play-aggression? He kept running near her so fast and knocked her over a few times, until she was screeching and crying and wouldn't stop even when she was clearly communicating that she was not enjoying what he was doing. It's like she's not high energy enough for him. She then tucked herself in between my legs for the rest of the outing and was no longer enjoying herself.

He doesn't understand when enough is enough, and constantly scares me with his over-energetic behavior.

Any tips?
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Old 03-29-2018, 01:02 PM
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Train him not to do it.

He's not going to stop on his own cos he's having fun so it's up to you to stop the behaviour before he gets over-threshold. Especially for the protection of your puppy. Cos otherwise it is likely to develop into a fight at some point and you don't want to have to try and get between two big strong dogs.
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Old 03-29-2018, 01:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Georgieboy View Post
Train him not to do it.

He's not going to stop on his own cos he's having fun so it's up to you to stop the behaviour before he gets over-threshold. Especially for the protection of your puppy. Cos otherwise it is likely to develop into a fight at some point and you don't want to have to try and get between two big strong dogs.
Any tips on how to achieve that? What commands should I teach? He has passed a basic puppy training obedience class, and we're working with her in the same class, then plan on getting them to do an intermediate class together.
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Old 03-29-2018, 02:38 PM
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In the puppy class, did they teach you any 'settle' cues? Those would be good to still use. If not, it would be a good idea to teach that. How do you get him to sleep in the house? Using that cue would be good to stop him from harassing your pup in the house.

On walks, when he starts 'playing' get his attention on you and use the time for some training. Mental exercise tires a dog more than physical. The less energy he has, the less time he will spend jumping all over the pup.

Your boy is coming to the end of his teen years so he should start to settle a bit more soon. But training will really help him to learn some manners. A lot of bull breeds are a bit deficient in that area! Mine certainly is.

If he does get near to his threshold, or she is showing signs of having had enough, body blocking will help. Get between them and talk to him to get his attention. Then lead him away. If there are two of you, one of you can walk the pup away. This teaches your boy that getting excited means play ends. It also teaches your pup that she can trust you to protect from the big bouncy bully. That will help with your bond with her a lot.
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Old 03-29-2018, 02:41 PM
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And with the couch, the second he growls you make him get off. And be consistent with it. Every time he growls, he goes on the floor. It teaches him that growling leads to the removal of the thing he is guarding. But don't let her up when you've put him down. Either both on the couch or neither on the couch.

Speaking of which, I hope you have a big couch!
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Old 03-30-2018, 05:25 PM
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Teaching the high energy dog an alternative behaviour is a great suggestion from the responses above however, he will still have that boisterous play style & high energy. He will still require a suitable outlet otherwise suppressing can lead to other undesirable behaviours.
Giving him separate playtime with other appropriate dogs that he knows should help & exposing him to other dogs' playstyle's that are confident and well experienced.
Your pup has clearly learnt to tell him off when she's had enough but he hasn't learnt when to listen so can escalate the situation.
I agree though you will need to intervene for the pups safety.
Hope this helps a little.
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Old 03-31-2018, 07:04 AM
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That's very true. Seperate playtime is a great idea.
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