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a big thank you and a quick question

(11 Posts)
Clareandjaya Mon 19-Oct-09 17:18:29

Hi, I posted recently about the best way to housetrain our new GSD puppy. We have been enclosing him in a safe area at night and popping down to let him out and so far (fingers crossed) no accidents...so thankyou!!

He is lovely, and good company.

I do have a question-

DP and I treat him exactly the same- boundaries/ what we tolerate etc. We both feed him and DP is (or tries to be!) as affectionate as I am towards him.

However, Dexter shows a strong preference to be with me (and towards women in general). He follows me like a shadow from room to room and is always between my feet. He slinks to me when DP enters the room and cowers from him when he talks to him.

It is sad, and a shame for DP as he was anxious for a dog just as much if not more than me and to be honest, it is difficult to manage all the work when DP can't do his share without frightening dexter.

DP has done nothing to cause this. Dexter's breeder was a single woman so he may not hve had much experience of men, but he is positively terrified of DP.

Any tips how to manage/improve this as it is very important to us as a family that dexter is not a 'one man dog'?

Thanks

Lovemyshoes Mon 19-Oct-09 17:22:23

I love the name of your pup.

Someone will come along later with far more experience. But the only thing that I can think of is your DH sit on the floor and cuddle him etc and give him treats whilst playing with him.

I'm sure once he gains his confidence Dexter will realise that your DH loves him as much as you do.

Also,

I am very very envy at you having a GSD.

Clareandjaya Mon 19-Oct-09 17:27:04

Thank you smile,

He is great- so clever- which is not always a good thing- he tries to get away with murder!

My DP had GSD'S all his life and told me how clever they are and I am certainly won over!

I think thats a good idea- I guess it will take time. At the mo, if DP sits on floor and tries to coax dexter to play or to stroke him, dexter turns and hides or whines.

Poor DP!

Lovemyshoes Mon 19-Oct-09 17:31:54

Maybe try DH sitting on the floor and ignoring Dexter as such but have some treats at the side of him so that he can offer them out to him when he gets braver.

morethanyoubargainfor Mon 19-Oct-09 17:40:53

this can be a common factor with GSD and one you may never rectify totally. They often 'choose' one person as the choosen one, and for some unknown reason GSD often prefer women on the whole.

Clareandjaya Mon 19-Oct-09 18:11:14

ok, but do you think it is rectifiable in terms that DP will be able to do things with/for him eventually, even if he may prefer me overall? I know animals can show preferences, the way it is at the moment is very difficult, both for me and for DP as having a dog is only workable if we can both help and do 'dog' chores ifyswim. I need to spend some time with DD but it is difficult when poor dp is sitting with dex in the lounge and I can hear the poor dog going crazy at the door to get out.
He is a family dog but it is dp who was desperate to get one and who has put in the majority of the time with research, planning for him and
At the moment for example, if DP tries to pick Dexter up, say to take him to the garden, or to usher him to the door Dexter screams and whimpers as though he was being badly mistreated. He will just about tolerate DP putting his food bowl on the ground for him but thats about it.

morethanyoubargainfor Mon 19-Oct-09 18:38:38

i think it will be but it will take a very long time and you will al have to be totally dedicated and in it for the long term.

In the nicest possible way do you reinforce his need to be with you? As in if he wimpers do you talk to him, make eye contact etc?

Have you thought about taking your DD to the park, just you and her and leaving DP with dex, maybe to do a nice walk etc.

Who does most of his training, who gets up when he wants to go otu? who walks him, plays with him, comforts him when he is frightened? If it is mainly you then you may have to take a step back from him adn let your dd and dp do the bulk of the day to day stuff.

You could try putting away dex' favourite toy and make it a DP only toy IYKWIM.

If he refuses food from DP then he doesn't eat that meal, that kind of stuff, he will soon learn, as will you. If there is something you know he will only do for you let your DP do it instead, in some respects you have to be creul to be kind, but don't let dexter become really distressed.

I will whispher the next bit, (maybe your DP wants him too much and is trying too hard). just a suggestion.

Clareandjaya Mon 19-Oct-09 20:01:27

I think you might be spot on there wink.

Those are brilliant ideas and will give them a go!

morethanyoubargainfor Mon 19-Oct-09 20:39:53

happy to help, good luck and keep us informed on progress.

frostyfingers Tue 20-Oct-09 09:24:55

Leave your DH to feed him for a week or so, and get him to take him for walks etc. I looked after my SIL's dogs for 3 weeks, and when I took them back to her house they followed me round and then tried to get back in my car when I left. All to do with me being their carer I think, they soon settled back down with their proper mum!

minimu Tue 20-Oct-09 16:50:50

Really easy to solve - all pleasurable experiences must come from you OH. He must feed the pup, he must walk the pup, he must treat the pup. Within a few days he will be the number one in your pups live. When it settles down again then you can both take the roles.

Can OH do some training and games with the pup again all pleasurable things the pup will love.

Glad the toilet training is going well.

A little word of warning if the pup follows you everywhere (although flattering) can you try and stop this. As it tends to go onto become separation anxiety. Sometimes when pup tries to follow can you shut the door so he cannot follow. Leae him alone for a bit and then return a few minutes as if nothing had happened. Pup has to learn that he can follow you when you want him to not when he wants to.

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