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Hi all,
I adopted a jack Russell/beagle puppy (Ellie) at the beginning of this summer at the age of 5 months. She had already been through 4 homes before I got her and the day I brought her home I understood why. She was nippy, hyper, had food aggression issues, extreme separation anxiety, the list goes on. Although she had many issues she was cute as hell and most of all, EXTREMELY smart. I've always wanted a smart dog and didn't want to put her through another home so I took on the challenge. I've put in countless hours of training since then, completed a dog obedience course with her (the trainer even commented on what an exceptional team we were after class), and play with her very regularly. I am a full time college student and live in a high rise, which I know is not ideal for jack Russell's, but every day I make sure Ellie has time to go to the dog park twice for an hour, and take her on a late night walk (which is hell because of her pulling). Even with all of this training and vigorous exercise with big dogs, she immediately comes home and shreds everything unless I out her in her crate where she will sleep for 2 hours max before uncontrollably barking. It's getting to the point where I cannot live my own life because if she is in her crate or tethered to a lease in the living area with me, she barks uncontrollably, but if she is free to roam no matter how small of an area, I have to focus 100% of my attention on her to make sure she doesn't chew up my couch, backpack etc, or steal anything she can get her teeth on. As of right now, it seems the negatives outweigh the positives, but I still love her way too much and have put in far too many hours working with her to give her away. I'm running out of options at this point because I cannot even get 6 hours of sleep or do homework. This is my first post so sorry that it's so long, but I could really use some tips on how to approach this.

Thanks
 

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I'll preface this by saying that puppies are tough and JRTs are really, really tough. Like really. Like people who own GSDs and border collies are all, "nah, I'd rather set my gums on fire, thanks!" when asked if they'd like a JRT puppy.

That being said, this is pretty extreme for a dog that's getting that much exercise and attention. I suspect it may be anxiety and I think you should have a talk with your vet about medication. I could be totally off base. Maybe this is just a high octane puppy and you just have to survive it, but it feels like anxiety to me.
 

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So, I'm going to ask a question. I apologize in advance if the answer is yes, because then it's likely this will seem condescending, but I promise it's not meant that way. I only ask because you were so detailed mentioning everything else, so I have to check. Do you have other options for her to chew on?

My understanding is that JRTs are intense, intense chewers. Chewing is common in most dogs, but JRTs take it to the extreme. So, she needs to have lots of chew toys. Yes, you'll have to constantly watch her to get the chew toy habit established, but ever time she picks a chew toy instead of your backpack, give her a treat! Or, go for all treat-filled kongs so that she gets a treat just by using the kong. This also applies when she's in the crate--make sure she's got chew toys in there to keep her occupied. Out of the crate, if she goes for a chew toy on her own, praise and treat her for it. Go absolutely nuts and give lots and lots of positive attention for her picking the chew toys.

If you already have that, then I apologize, and very much agree with amaryllis.
 

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I'm going to reinforce the kong thing! JRTs are tough dogs -- all the ones I know have absolutely NOT been for novice dog owners, and YET, because they're so adorable, it seems like (in my country at least) the only ones who have them are amateur dog owners not wanting to put in the training time, which results in an aggressive little terror of a dog. A friend of mine had a JRT called Kidd that used to chase us all out of the house biting and screaming!

That being said, a well trained JRT is a gift from GOD. They're such clever little dogs! If you don't already have a kong, invest in two or three and stuff them. My border collie used to be terrified of her crate. I started stuffing kongs (I do yogurt with honey and blueberries, some cheerios, maybe some bits of chicken... there's loads of things to try!) and giving them to her only in her crate -- first with the lid and gate off, so it was basically just a dog cradle. After a few days, I introduced the roof of the crate. After a week, I put the door on (made sure it was open at all times), and then finally, after another week, I was able to close the crate door. She started associating the crate almost immediately with the kong and the great smelly snacks inside it, and went from being completely terrified and whining and crying to the point where she never wanted to lay down anywhere else. Maybe something like that could help with your dog, at least crate-wise so you have some kind of break?

A behaviourist may not be a bad idea either, especially if one is accessible. It's nice to have a second, objective pair of eyes to lend new views and opinions to a tough situation!
 

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Just a quick post , sometimes diet can make a dog hyper so check you feed a good quality diet with no additives that is suitable for this pup.

Well done for giving her a home , Get the right advice and I;m sure she will turn into a great dog .
I love jack russels !
 

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Between the two breeds exercise will be your only friend. Lots of 5 to 10 minute training sessions during the day to exercise the brain. Have you thought of using a pen instead of the crate during the day. It would give the pup more freedom and maybe you too. We have friends with a JRT that can play soccer maybe that would be a good game to teach your pup to get rid of some of that negative energy. A flirt pole is another.
The Flirt Pole: Dog Toy or Life Changer? | notes from a dog walker
 

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You take your puppy to the dog park twice a day for an hour? I think she may be getting overstimulated and doesn't know how to switch off and relax.
 

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don't overdo it with training and exercise.
they need mental and physical activity, but it's still a young dog and should learn to be calm.
i never had a jackie myself, but I suspect using a house-leash (like, having your dog on a leash and the leassh bound to your belt or her "Place" in the house) could help with control, more frequent leash-training with that calming her down. of course only use a houseleash when you'Re at home to supervise.
chewing toys can also help her to settle down. My dogs both love(d) the Kong.
 
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