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when are young dogs at their most boisterous?

(43 Posts)
hatwoman Sun 27-Jul-08 21:17:47

Our 14 week old lab is ace. pretty much house-trained instantly, has learnt all the basic commands, plus a couple of others, doesn;t chew the kitchen units (the only thing he gets unsupervised access to) and doesn't jump up at us, getting better about strangers (who I wish would bloody well stop smiling and saying "oh it's ok, I don;t mind" when I tell him to get down and ask them not to stroke him if he jumps up,) but people keep saying stuff hinting that he well get much more of a handful as he gets older...is this right? I'm not worried, just interested.

NutterlyUts Sun 27-Jul-08 21:27:49

6-12m ime is the typical OMG WHY DID WE GET A DOG?!?! stage, and is often when pups get rehomed. They begin to test boundaries, and things like a previously good recall go completely out the window. I am just coming out of this stage with my border collie and if I had a penny for every time I had to say to myself "its just a phase" I'd be very rich!!

Doodle2U Sun 27-Jul-08 21:30:41

Labs reach maturity at about 18 months. He'll go through a teenage stage at about 12.

Smaller breeds reach maturity earlier, for example, a border will be full grown & considered an adult at between 8 and 12 months.

hatwoman Sun 27-Jul-08 21:55:39

my previous dog was a cocker (not technically mine but my brother's when we both lived at home) and my memory of him is that he was utterly bonkers from the minute we got him and gradually calmed down (took about 8 years iirc). but he progressed all in one direction, iyswim - he didn;t have a noticeable teenage rebellion stage. given how bonkers he was I am stunned by how trainable and calm a young lab can be. but clearly that's premature of me and the worst is yet to come. bring on the puppy classes...

RusselBrussel Sun 27-Jul-08 21:58:07

I have a Cocker. He is utterly and completely bonkers. He is now 3, and is finally showing signs of maybe perhaps calming down. He has a long long long way to go, but I can see the end of hte tunnel far far away grin

hatwoman Sun 27-Jul-08 21:59:50

if our's is anything to go by only another 5 years...grin.

hatwoman Sun 27-Jul-08 22:00:37

blush who put that apostrophe there...

RusselBrussel Sun 27-Jul-08 22:01:31

Ouch, another five years shock

He is lovely though, and great fun grin

But my word.... madder than a box of frogs and then some!

hatwoman Sun 27-Jul-08 22:48:30

I love cockers. but was over-ruled by dh and dds who wanted a lab. I'm contemplating suggesting we go for no. 2.

I was (half) joking about 8 years. T was still mistaken for a puppy then but he wasn;t naughty - just utterly full of life. couldn;t get enough of the world

RusselBrussel Sun 27-Jul-08 22:51:12

That's what Dill is like. Just a verrrry happy, jumpy, lively, odd, brown hairy thing.

Dh categorically refuses to believe that 'that thing' is a dog. As Dill just does not behave like a dog!

But we love him smile

Alambil Mon 28-Jul-08 10:17:32

6-12months is their adolescence; it's when the real boundary pushing comes in. Beware!

WorzselMummage Tue 29-Jul-08 14:07:57

Labs mature late, ours is 2 and has only started calming down recently. He was fucking hard work between 6 and 18 months and every day was a 'why did i get a dog' day'. Labs, especially working bred labs like mine wont be mature till at least 2.

hatwoman Tue 29-Jul-08 17:13:17

hmm ours, if of any line, is working - got a couple of ft champs in his family tree...has to be said I do suspect this must be partly why he's been quick to learn. but i expect to have to work hard to stop him unlearning.

we're reasonably used to labs - my dad's on his 4th and 5th and fil is on his 3rd (but I accept fully that growing up with them as a kid is not the same as owning and being responsible for one. but I hope too that the fact I realise that and am not taking stuff for granted is a positive)

out of interest worzsel - how much exercise did you give him/her in his first year? it seems like a fine balance to get right between using up energy and socialising while protecting their growing legs

WorzselMummage Wed 30-Jul-08 08:32:49

Erm he had a potter round the park when he was tiny, 10 minutes probably then as he got older we increased it gradually to now and some days he gets 20 minutes and some days he gets 2 hours he has to fit in with us.

I think we were told that it was 5 minutes per month of age but we found that if he didnt get a decent run then he was just a pain in the arse round the house.

I'm sure you know what i mean grin

Our dogs great now but I hated his puppyhood.

newpup Wed 30-Jul-08 08:56:45

Hi. We just had our third night with our lab puppy and she only cried once at 4.30am for 10 mins. Thank god after 2 nights of howling! I am finding half of this page reassuring and half scary!! I can see what you mean about the working breed. Ours comes from a long line of champion working dogs but I met the mother dog and she was so good natured and lovely I wanted a dog like her. Our puppy is really intelligent at 9 weeks. She asks to go out and does all her business during the day in the garden. She responds really well to commands already, well so far! However I can see that this intelligence could be hard work later!!

woodstock3 Wed 30-Jul-08 20:35:52

our lab is one and probably has more energy now than as a tiny puppy, but on the plus side is more disciplined. there is a phase around six months where you feel like you're going abckwards and things they did before, eg coming back when called, go into reverse as they discover they can run away from you. you have to be v firm during this period about bad habits.
and there is a bit around now when adult territorial behaviour kicks in that you have to be very careful of. eg when the puppy was little he'd chew anything that moved, including people and their clothes - but now we come down like a ton of bricks on any mouthing involving showing teeth, however friendly and playful, because if you dont there is a tendency especially in male labs to bite later (strangers rather than you). they need to learn that all use of teeth is banned.
exercise is also key. we worked on rule of five minutes per month old proper hard exercise (running about) a day, eg by now he needs a good hour a day or is too boisterous but at three months it's only a 15 minute walk. you can do a bit more than that gentle exercise, like playing in the garden. without that he's a pain. boredom also make labs boisterous - they want your attention quite a lot.
labs REALLY want to please their owners and that's half the battle but they are big dogs and even a loving, gentle but over enthusiastic lab can be scary to small children (and nervous adults) when it's bombing towards you.
our hardest lesson has also been to teach him not to bounce up to strange children - there is mutual adoration between him and our ds and he assumes he will get an equally joyful reaction from any other small child. not....

bella29 Fri 01-Aug-08 08:25:25

I've just got a lab puppy & he's now 12 weeks. My last pup was a Jack Russell & so far I've been amazed at how eager to please the lab is, plus how docile & laid back he seems. I'm sure that will all change in a few months but it might be interesting to compare notes, especially with you, newpup, as mine is from show lines and wasn't bred for intelligence hmm

Good luck to us all!

newpup Fri 01-Aug-08 13:05:26

Hello Bella. Do you have children? Asking because we had our first 'incident' this morning! Puppy jumped at my 6 year old knocked her over and nipped her. I explained that puppies do this she was only playing but we have to teach her not to do this by shouting 'no' at her and pushing her away. My dd was so upset and cried for ages, I had anticiapated that this would happen and had told them how puppies behave but it was such a shock for her. Any tips? What colour is your lab?

bella29 Fri 01-Aug-08 13:36:24

Hi there! My boy is black and very cute (of course!). As for the children, I have a dd who is 4 and a ds who is 6. The puppy does try to bite playfully and I have told the children to say 'no' loudly & firmly, but I don't think there's much else we can do, is there? He (puppy) is getting better at not biting - taking it out on my plants instead shock

newpup Fri 01-Aug-08 13:51:28

No I don't think there is. Good to know he is getting better at 12 weeks as ours is 10 weeks. She does sleep alot during the day though. I keep checking on her but she will still be snoozing away! How long do you leave your boy for? We went out for an hour yesterday and I felt so guilty!! My dds are 9 and 6 and do love her.

hatwoman Fri 01-Aug-08 16:04:07

hello again. ours (black lab) is 15 weeks now - and like you bella I've been stunned by his behaviour to date - I'm more used to spaniels and my memory is of utter madness. I think one thing you can do with biting is stop playing when they do it. - ie as well as shouting no make it clear that the gane has ended. Apparently that mimics what their siblings/other dogs do. They are so quick to learn cause and effect that if bite=end of game I'm sure they get the message pretty quickly. has to be said I've been the strictest in our house about this (compared with dds and dh) and same thing re jumping up and he already treats me differently. he knows who to respect grin

newpup Fri 01-Aug-08 16:13:24

Thanks hatwoman. Our lab is yellow. My parents have 2 elderly black labs who are lovely and we had a yellow lab from when I was a toddler. I think that is why I went for yellow really she reminded me of the lovely dog I grew up with. She died when I was 16 and I was devastated! I shout at pup and ignore her when she jumps up and reward her by lots of attention when she is sitting or lieing down. However it is hard to get two excited DDs to ignore her when she jumps or nips. They do tell her off though quite forcefully!!! She then lies down on her back in front of them so she obviously understands. Interestingly she treats me and Dh with more deference, she has not nipped either of us. She has been fab (so far - it has only been 6 days) to toilet train. Always goes outside and holds on until she goes out. Was your boy like that?

bella29 Fri 01-Aug-08 17:19:23

Hello Hatwoman. Yes, I remember reading somewhere about stopping playing to teach them not to bite - I'm sure that does work. Newpup - I leave my pup for 2 hours (sometimes 2 1/4 hours) and he's fine, but he is in a crate. Are you using one? He's so good about it & just goes in without a murmur (we did have a few sleepless nights at the start but it was worth it). Took him for his first walk today but we had to keep stop for people to admire him! Is your daughter okay now after your pup knocked her over? I'm afraid we're definitely behind you on the toilet training - still having a few accidents but I have just started giving him treats when he does it outside so maybe that'll help - bribery is always a good option, I reckon!

newpup Fri 01-Aug-08 17:42:17

Hello Bella. We have a crate and I leave her in it at night and when we go out. She goes in fine but I have a treat in my hand and say 'bed' she climbs in and gets a treat.. I am hoping she thinks it is a nice place to be, not a place to go when she is in trouble! She has managed to hold on to wee for the hour we have been out. At night I put a 'puppy pad' in the corner of the crate for her to wee on as she could not possibly hold on all night and so far the last three nights she has held on to her 'nasty' business and rushes out to do it in the garden first thing in the morning. I give her loads of praise every time she goes out there. Had one accident on the kitchen floor while I was in the shower, nice wet patch!! During the day she is in the laundry room with the door open to the garden and she wanders in and out, playing with the dds and snoozing!! I have been getting up at quarter to six though as I figure she is holding on to her 'business' all night, she starts to cry about then obviously desparate to go out. Hopefully as she gets older she will be able to hang on to a more reasonable hour!

newpup Fri 01-Aug-08 17:45:21

DD is fine after this morning, thanks for asking . She recovered quickly and is playing with pup as I type. I have just talked to them about stopping playing if she nips and will see how we get on. To be honest it has only happened a few times! Would like to nip (ha ha) it in the bud though, if possible!

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