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Old 08-16-2012, 08:51 PM
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Finally decided to join!

Hello everyone!
I love all the advice on this forum and I decided to finally join after a bit of lurking. I am the owner of a wild 4 month old Husky x Golden Retriever mix named Thor. I was about 3 years old when my last dog was a puppy, so this is my first experience raising a puppy and boy is it a handful. I love him so much, and want the best for him which is why want all the help and advice I can get. And that is why I am here.
Instead of making two posts, I'll ask here. When should I get my dog neutered? After doing much reading on the internet, it doesn't seem wise to get a large breed puppy neutered at such a young age for health reasons. It also said that he should be neutered when he starts showing dominant behaviors like leg lifting to pee. I would wait for him to get neutered, but he's a really pushy puppy. It's obvious that he has the dominant personality and he always wants to lead. We work on this by training him, but I assume it will always be in his personality. My question is that if I wait to neuter him will his dominant behavior get worse?
We take him with a friend's adult Husky and my pup shows dominant behavior like jumping on top of him, mounting him, and biting at his face and ears and not letting go and a bit of growling too. If we don't neuter him and let him go through puberty, will he show true aggression to this older dog?
Lastly, we wanted to get him neutered early to pay the neutered dog license fee, but should I just pay the full price and wait to get my pup neutered later?
Sorry for the long post. I'm really happy to join the forum and finally become a part of it.
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Old 08-16-2012, 09:14 PM
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hello and welcome
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Old 08-16-2012, 10:36 PM
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Welcome! I can't answer the medical side of things, but I do know that certain behaviors will become more of a habit if the dog continues to practice them - and be harder to train away. For example, marking becomes more ingrained in male dogs if they begin to practice it.

FWIW, none of the behaviors you mention are "dominant" behaviors. You have a very rowdy puppy with bad manners. It's up to you to show him how to play nice with others. Think of it like having a two year old child with ADHD.

When he plays too hard, I would separate him, and give him a little time out (a few minutes for him to calm down, more if it's not enough).

Mounting is a fixed action pattern. Basically it is an ingrained behavior that all species have. It's practice reproduction. Just call him off or gently push him away, so that he doesn't have the opportunity to practice it and make it a habit. Some dogs like mounting more than others, and many dogs will do it when they are over-excited.

Neutering can help calm down some dogs; others it does nothing, so to answer your question "if I wait to neuter him will his [rowdy] behavior get worse?" Maybe. It's 50/50.

"If we don't neuter him and let him go through puberty, will he show true aggression to this older dog?" Not really. That's all training and management. If you train with punishments and aversives, the behavior can get worse. If you allow the dog to be rowdy all the time, he won't learn to be calm. Now, if he's around a female in heat with other un-neutered males, he would probably be aggressive, but in general neutering or not neutering isn't going to cause aggression or help it.

Personally I would neuter him now, so you don't have to worry about doing it later, you don't have to worry about unaltered females in heat, and for the chance that it might calm him down a bit. From what I understand of breeds and health, you don't really have to worry about size unless you have a giant (i.e. Great Dane or similar).
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Last edited by seebrown; 08-16-2012 at 10:41 PM.
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Old 08-18-2012, 08:38 PM
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Thanks for the great advice! He's a good puppy and responds well to training, but I agree with you that he is very rowdy. I will do my best to keep up on training and correcting his bad manners.
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Old 08-18-2012, 09:40 PM
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Not dominant, just a hyper puppy I had a malamute/lab cross and he was neutered at 10 months.
Welcome!
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Old 08-19-2012, 05:21 PM
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I'm definitely convinced now that he's not dominant, just hyper. xD
Did you have any problems with neutering your dog that late? For example, did he lift his leg to pee? Thanks.
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Old 08-19-2012, 05:24 PM
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Nope, none. He was just a good, chill dog. I also had my dachshund neutered at 16 months and he didn't lift his leg.
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Old 08-19-2012, 05:31 PM
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I have absolutely no helpful advice because I can't get past how frigging CUTE that guy is. Oh man. That face is just so precious!

My only advice would be to keep a copy of that picture on you at all times and look at it anytime he's driving you crazy because how can you not love THAT.

Edit: Okay, maybe a little bit of questionably helpful advice. I personally wait until the dog is fully mature before altering (except in Mozart's case because I signed a contract with the rescue,) so for a Golden mix I'd personally wait until at least eighteen months. That's up to you, though, there are pros and cons to both sides.
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Last edited by TorachiKatashi; 08-19-2012 at 05:34 PM.
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Old 08-19-2012, 06:05 PM
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Perhaps I will wait until he's more matured unless problems arise that will require me to do it sooner.
Ah. Thank you. I can't resist him either at times. I can be so upset with him at times, but I just look at him and he's giving me that face and I think, "I can't stay mad at you with that face."
I do have that picture and many others on my phone and I constantly look at them to make me happy.
This one is my personal favorite:
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Old 08-19-2012, 06:12 PM
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HI! I love this place too....an excellent and endless source of good info. And congrats on the puppy . He is SUPER cute.

About the altering question...there is still a little debate about the issue but I believe more science has shown there aren't any serious chances of issues resulting from altering before full growth is achieved. That's not to say there arent ANY risks but they are minimal and have more to do with the anesthesia and the surgery itself than any increased risks to health due to the removal of the organs themselves. I'm not a vet or anything...i just like to research stuff

Keep in mind that many vets have a policy of not performing these surgeries before 6 months. Some, it's 4 months.

Enjoy that puppy!
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