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pup growly with dc

(7 Posts)
minkersmum Tue 11-Feb-14 21:40:08

Our 14 week old bc pup has settled in well. He is calm and happy with dh and I and never grumbles about being handled.

Dc are 5, 7 and 9. I have noticed a definite pattern of puppy being much more 'growly' with them. Ranging from being more boisterous and bitey and playful as if they are his playmates but also when the dc lift him/move him he will make a growly objecting noise sometimes accompanied with attempts to bite. They are not lifting him up willy nilly just removing him from sofa (not allowed up but will jump up) or goes in their rooms again he isn't allowed (because he hoovers up anything he finds playmobil included!)

Is this fairly common or do we have a delinquent on our hands?
Is the best way forward lots of treats whilst dc stroke/handle him and turn it into something he loves...hopefully...

Whoknowswhocares Tue 11-Feb-14 21:58:52

I wouldn't be letting my kids pick him up at all tbh. Whether he growls or not! Pups do tend to be more bitey with kids and it will improve, as he is very young still, just be consistent in either ignoring/yelping/time out (whichever you have found works best)
If he gets on the sofa, lure him off with a treat rather than physically move him, or he learns nothing. Once he gets the idea, introduce the word 'off' as a command and he will soon learn.
Keep him from going in their bedrooms by shutting doors or getting a gate fixed to the kitchen or stairway. They deserve some space for their stuff not to get chewed and he could easily swallow the bits and end up needing an operation to remove them. Dangerous and expensive!

minkersmum Tue 11-Feb-14 22:11:46

He knows the 'off' command but wont always get off for the kids and they can't lure him with the treat as he is too snappy taking it from them. If they drop it on the floor the older dog will scoff it.

I do try and avoid him going into bedrooms but he is small and quick so if he slips through we sometimes have to quickly grab him, by the time I go get treats he could easily have hoovered up a bead or something so at times we do have to scoop him up. Obviously I have noticed when dh/myself scoops him he is quiet but when dc do it he is growly so I try hard to avoid them having to do it.

I am trying hard with his training and he is bright and responsive. But I find it hard not to compare him yo our 7yo dog who loves nothing more than attention from the dc and has never grumbled once since we rescued him 3 yrs ago. I so want this new dog to be as kind and I do appreciate that he is only a baby himself.

Whoknowswhocares Tue 11-Feb-14 22:22:43

I think you are asking way too much of the pup to expect it to understand and obey commands from 5 different people, 3 of them children, at such a young age! There is no way you are all going to be consistent enough not to confuse him
The children are too young to be involved with training imo at this stage and shouldn't be left 'minding the pup' while you are not in the room to enforce commands

minkersmum Tue 11-Feb-14 22:33:55

I don't leave him unattended with the dc. I think as long as everyone gives the same commands and are consistent then he will know exactly what is expected of him. He is a very bright dog. I really don't think I am asking too much at all. He knows the command 'off'. For me/dh 100%, for eldest dc about 80%, 2 youngest dc 50%. I think this in itself shows how clever pups are! The 'clever' dogs I have had were not always the easiest to train because they ask questions! My great dane was a simple girl and easy peasy, nae much between the ears but very lovely.

Whoknowswhocares Tue 11-Feb-14 22:51:11

But by allowing him to learn to only pay heed to commands some of the time, you are teaching him they are optional!
If you are in the room, what is the problem with you giving the command and getting the 100% reaction? And if you get a 100% hit rate why would anyone need to pick him up in the first place?

mintchocchick Tue 11-Feb-14 23:01:40

We had this a bit when our old English sheepdog was a puppy, he started growling slightly at kids moving him from the sofa or taking one of their slippers back from him.

Very quickly we changed the house rules so the kids weren't allowed to move the dog or remove something from him - they always had to get me or DH to sort whatever problem out. That stopped the growling.

I think now he's 6 months and much more settled, they could possibly get away with more physical stuff with the dog but I won't risk it. They still ask me to help and I launch in quickly so they're not tempted to do their own thing.

Stairgates and really limiting a puppy's space helped us too.

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