So discouraged! Housebreaking, biting

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So discouraged! Housebreaking, biting

This is a discussion on So discouraged! Housebreaking, biting within the Puppy Help forums, part of the Dog Training and Behavior category; Hi all! I've had Cobber for only a few days, but I already feel like Sisyphus (the guy who is doomed for all eternity to ...

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Old 05-22-2013, 06:16 AM
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Unhappy So discouraged! Housebreaking, biting

Hi all!

I've had Cobber for only a few days, but I already feel like Sisyphus (the guy who is doomed for all eternity to roll a boulder up hill only to have it roll back down).

I know Cobber's a baby, he's 8.5 weeks, and I understand that any time he poops/pees in the house, it's my fault. I get that. And he's actually the 3rd dog I've raised from a puppy, so I'm not totally new to this.

But ... wow! Here's how this morning went. (He's doing great in the crate at night - we get up once at 2am then right back to sleep.) I get up, feed the cats while Cobber's still in his crate being quiet. I let him out and we go straight outside. He pee'd, I praised and treated, he pooped, I praised and treated. He ran to the door and we went inside. And he ran to the base of the cat tree and pooped all over it.

I crated him (no getting mad) so I could clean it all up, then we went back outside. He knocked my coffee over. No biggie, I can make more. We go back inside, he pees.

I'm feeling very much at the end of my rope even though he's been here only 6 days so far. For every good outside potty, there's a backslide inside one I don't see any signals for. I think I'm watching like a hawk, but somehow he manages to pee and poop anyway. I guess I need to crate him more? I feel like that's so unfair to him, but I see no alternative. We spend as much time as possible outside, but the heat gets to both of us after awhile.

Then there's the biting. I'm instantly yelping and putting a plush he likes or a stick or any toy into his mouth. Or trying to divert with a toy before he even looks at my skin. But it's like he wants my flesh more than anything. He deliberately lunges over anything I have in my hand and clamps down on my wrist. From the moment I get up, he's at my shoes and ankles. I don't know how to stop him.Peeling him off while saying No! just makes him growl and try harder. I crate till he calms down, but it starts over as soon as I let him out, no matter what exciting toy or treat I offer.

And all the stuff that we had fun doing the first day or two (walking around the neighborhood) seems uninteresting to him now. He just plops down and doesn't want to go or do anything (except chew on me).

ANYWAY, I could seriously use some cyber reassurance that I'm not the only person who has this set of problems with a new puppy!

The main difference between now and when I had other puppies (besides the fact that all pups are different) is that I'm divorced and on my own now. I was hoping that wouldn't make such a huge difference, but in the past couple days, I've start to seriously wonder if I've made a huge mistake here. I don't want to admit defeat. I want a wonderful companion dog that I know this pup can be. But I'm really feeling down!

Words of encouragement would be so nice to hear
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Old 05-22-2013, 07:17 AM
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I've not tried it yet myself. But I have been told that putting vinegar on your hands (or where the dog bites) is a way to make them stop if nothng else works. It's not harmful to them and they hate the taste. The way most people here would advise you to get them to stop biting is to stick a to in their face. If they still bite, isolate them. Be calm. Don't shout, not even "no" or "off". Say nothing. Shouting encourages them. You could also try geting the dog to sit and try calming it down with "calming signals" (yawning, blinking your eyes slowly, licking your lips or looking around the room calmly).

My puppy gets crazy some times. And it's very discouraging. But she is getting better. Slowly. VERY slowly. If she goes bananas I either crae her or put her outside until she calms. But I try to excersize her enough that she doesn't go cray cray on me.

I'm curently reading a book about how to teach your dog to track. It is an awesome book. It says that tracking is a great way to teach your dog to focus, it says it helps a lot when you're training a dog. It also says people should be carefull about excersizing their dog too much. They don't always go nuts because they've got too much energy, it is often because they are bored. Tracking tires your dog out much quicker than excersizing (jogging, bike rides, long walks), and they don't gain too much more stamina. Dogs love tracking, it's a fun game for them. The reason the author cautions against excersizing the dog too much is that you are just making the problem worse because the dog gains more stamina. It's important to keep the dog healthy and fit, but they don't have to be able to run a marathon (unless that's what you want from your dogn ofc).

Anyway! Puppiues are crazy. You have already raised 2 puppies before. You can do this!!!

I also wanted to say this: I am rasing my dog alone. It is a lot of work. I have had days where I have thought "I can't do this. What have I done?" But it's not impossible. It wil get better. Goto puppyclass. Meet other dog owners. Tell them about the biting and tjey always have some reassurance for you.

Oh and. I love his name!

Last edited by BennieGamali; 05-22-2013 at 07:21 AM.
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Old 05-22-2013, 09:17 AM
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He is not ready for big walks around the neighborhood. The "plopping down" is what we call a sit-down strike. Listen to him. He's an infant and is only ready to play in your own back yard at this time. Now that he knows where he lives, he wants to stay close to home because that is his instinct to stay safe. It will be at least a month until he'll want to go further. Wait until he wants to explore. Don't force this issue.

As far as house training and accidents, it sounds like you understand the basics and just need to fine tune your routine. Keep him out with you until he has had the chance to pee several times and poop more than once. That's how some puppies are.

When he is inside he is either in his crate, in a small pen (x-pen) or on a leash attached to you so he cannot wander about at all and get in trouble. Never let him loose in the house. He's not ready yet.

Keep your coffee off the floor.

Stay the course.
He will grow up and faster than you think!
Every puppy is different, so you just need to learn what works specifically with this puppy in terms of routine. You'll get there!

This is a book This is a book
that might help.
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Old 05-22-2013, 09:20 AM
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Oh, you may find the yelping thing when he bites to be too stimulating for him. Instead, make sure you do not get him excited when you play with him. Keep your hands still, and never use your hands to rough-house with him. Always move very slowly around him and use a quiet voice, so you do not get him excited.

In my experience, most problems with puppies getting too excited and bitey originate with the person stimulating the puppy without realizing it.
Forget the idea that you need to "play with him." That just teaches him a dynamic that you are a play-mate and for a puppy that means you are to be chewed on, like another puppy.

Stay super calm. Get the floor with him and give him a toy to chew on. Keep your hands still. Put the puppy on your lap and hold the toy for him. Most puppies love to chew a toy you are holding quietly, while they are cuddling on your lap.

If you want to do more with him, toss a soft toy a couple of feet for him to chase, but keep your mannerism very calm and quiet. Most people use a high pitched excited voice and this gets the puppy all wound up and soon the puppy is chewing on the person's hands or pant cuffs.
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Last edited by Tess; 05-22-2013 at 09:23 AM.
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Old 05-22-2013, 09:25 AM
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Nah, if you read the puppy help threads, you'll know you are not the only one who struggles with their puppy Sounds like you're doing alright.

Definitely crating or keeping him leashed to you will help prevent accidents, and letting him out after any of the following;
- playing
- waking up
- eating
- drinking
- sniffing specific spots
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Old 05-22-2013, 09:38 AM
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I'm on the exact same boat as your are, cobbersmom! My pup is the sweetest thing you've ever met one second, and the next he turns into demon dog! I'll let him out to potty and 5 minutes later he is peeing in the kitchen. No signs or anything!

I'm still working on it, but I know I can get past this, and I know you can too! It won't last forever and soon we'll both have the best dogs on earth.

One thing I have used for play time when he is all crazy is a flirt pole. He loves to chase it all around and the best part is it keeps his razor teeth off of me! My arm looks like I was in a brutal dog fight lol.

Good luck with everything and don't give up! You've done this before, and just think that since you're doing it alone you don't have to worry about training methods clashing.
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Old 05-22-2013, 09:56 AM
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thats what puppies do!! take a deep breath and start the pooty training since young! i got the same problem with my 1.5 month old enlglish bullterrier!!
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Old 05-22-2013, 12:34 PM
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Hahahaha just last week I was complaining that Leesi was refusing to wee outside in the mornings because the grass is wet and cold. I was also complaining that she was chewing on everything.

Today however she wentpotty outside on the cold wet grass and didn't chew anything that doesn't belong to her

It will get better!!!

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Old 05-22-2013, 12:55 PM
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Keeping him outside till he potty's two or more times will probably help, if you can't do that then bring him in, keep him right by you or in his crate, then after 5 to 10 minutes bring him back out to finisht. I wish I had known that when my boy was a puppy, he did what you describe, he'd pee outside and I'd bring him back in only to have him pee on my floor 10 minutes later. It was so frustrating!

17 years later, in the morning and especially in the evening he still pulls the I'll pee a little come back in, and want to go back out to potty within 30 minutes routine. It's such a joy in bad weather LOL.
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Old 05-22-2013, 02:25 PM
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Thank you so much, everyone!! Those are all things I really needed to hear
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