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Jekyll & Hyde puppy

(11 Posts)
cansleepanywhere Sat 18-May-13 21:08:41


Long time listener...first time caller lol.

We've had our new lab puppy for just over a week now, she's brilliant in every way aside from her split personality. She's so mellow most of the time and then all of a sudden...wham... personality change!! She swings off the curtains, anyone's trousers, rugs, arms, fingers and there's no getting her off!

As I say, most of the time she's great, even with my two kids (18mths & 4.5yrs) but in these 'episodes' as I like to call them, she's just plain crazy. I've tried distracting her with her toys, her training (she's doing great for just a week with us) and giving her time out. I've also tried peanut butter on a spoon, congratulating her when she licks and taking the spoon away when she bites. All with the 'no bite command' which thankfully my 4.5yr old is very good at giving. She takes treats
from my kids hands so gently and I think 'ohshe gets it' and then....wham...she's off again!!!

I know it will pass. But I also know it only takes a second for her to damage the kids (not bothered about me lol).

I was wondering what experiences you have had with young kids and puppies???

I don't want to go down the route of separating them, the baby gates are there for when I'm not watching but in supervised play I'm wondering what you all did to distract the puppy??

Many thanks in advance - excuse my spelling. I've had two glasses of wine------Long day :-D

HoneyDragon Sat 18-May-13 21:10:40

Erm. That's not Jeckell and Hyde you've got, just a perfectly well rounded, normal average Labrador personality. That is what they do grin

cansleepanywhere Sat 18-May-13 21:33:06

Thank you HoneyDragon.

I've had dogs all my life (German Shepherd and Springer) but never had a pup this young before, never a lab and never with kids. I'm basically just wanting reassurance and advice. I knew they were mouthy and most of the time she's great (not nearly as bad as I'd expected). It's just sometimes it seems like there's a 'psycho trigger switch' that I'm not aware I've pushed lol.

idirdog Sat 18-May-13 21:40:25

Puppies do have psycho pup moments smile Sometimes it is when they get overstimulated and tired. If she is happy in her crate I would pop her in there with a kong and give her time to chill a bit.

If she is just burning off puppy energy then I would try to direct the behaviour in reasonable play eg a game of tuggy for a few minutes.

Does it happen at the same time of day.

fanoftheinvisibleman Sat 18-May-13 21:49:54

It's not just labs honestly, it us just puppies. I think it must be hard with very small children, my ds was very nearly 7 when we got our Border Terrier pup so didn't seem so fragile.

I'd go with directing more approriate play, ignoring and encouraging cool down ad and when appropriate.

It will pass honestly. My pup is nearly 10 months and I now have fond smiles when ironing and I see the mending tape all over ds's shredded pj's. It stopped ahes ago now.

littlewhitebag Sat 18-May-13 22:15:57

Our lab pup was proper mental at that age and our clothes were all shredded. Her worst time was early evening as she seemed to be over tired and over stimulated then. She has just turned 1 now and is a big docile lump now but i would never have believed it if you had told me then what she would be like now.

Booboostoo Sun 19-May-13 10:58:33

Seems like normal puppy behaviour to me. I would help her use up her energy by playing with her, taking her for a walk, etc. This aspect of puppyhood is going to get worse before it gets better so you need coping strategies that work for everyone in the house, e.g. baby gates or room dividers so that she can go bonkers without knocking over the children.

CaramelLatte Sun 19-May-13 11:04:58

We have a 6 month old chocolate lab - she is bonkers but gorgeous. Perfectly normal behaviour you are describing. Already plenty of good advice, but also bear in mind that sometimes the hyperactive behaviour is because the pup is tired, so never worry about using the crate for a nap.

ILikeToClean Sun 19-May-13 11:47:44

You should read my thread from April posting about the exact same thing! Our labradoodle was great all day then every evening would go mental, biting everyone and everything, getting aggressive and just being crazy at the time when we wanted to settle down and relax! I presume she can't go for walks yet? Once he could go out walking he calmed down a lot, he is 16 weeks old now and already that seems a long time ago, so it does pass quickly! He still has times when he dashes around like a mad thing (we call it his "doodle dash") but he's definitely calmer now we can walk him and just with him getting older. It may be over tiredness so don't be afraid to put pup in her crate to calm her down, we got our pup a stag bar which keeps him occupied chewing on the evenings. My DDs are 10 and 8 so able to withstand pup but with younger children I would separate them when she's being like this as it will pass, honestly!

cansleepanywhere Sun 19-May-13 13:36:37

Thank you all for your suggestions. We're stuck in the house and garden at the moment until she's able to go out. We have baby gates to separate her from the kids when she flips. It's so good to know that it does get better (though I do realise when she starts teething it will probably get worse first!!!). I'm looking forward to taking her out and showing her the world and starting puppy classes. In the meantime apart from the odd visit to relatives/'carry round' pets at home we're a bit limited. I've been avoiding the crate as I didn't want to associate it with punishment as she does so well when left on her own in there (an hour tops).
She actually has two main times, once mid morning and once early evening - both when she's overtired. Thankfully my kids go to bed at 6pm so they miss out on one of them :-)

ILikeToClean Sun 19-May-13 15:19:33

It will get better once she can go for walks, honestly!

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