Behaviour issues following baby(2 Posts)
Hi all. I have a 4 year old crossbreed who has always had amazing behaviour. We have passes the good citizen silver award and she has an amazing temperament. She was the absolute centre of our world and my pils world.
Then I had dc1 now 16 months. And naturally we had less time for her, although she is still very much adored. Pils also give her less attention which I think she finds even harder.
Her behaviour has been generally worse since I gave birth, but its not really her fault so we kinda overlooked it. Probably a mistake. But the last week shes been disobedient and destructive which is totally out of character. Recall has gone and if left alone (which she was used to for up to a couple of hours) she will raid the bin or anything she can find (on su day my knitting! ).
Since Sunday we have added an extra daily walk and bought some treats for if we leave her but I was wondering if anyone else has been through this and has any advice. Shes still my baby and I dont want her feeling low!
I would try engaging her more. It doesn't have to be massive concerted training sessions, just fitting in short clicker sessions here and there throughout the day, when you have chance, will give her chance to work her brain and also help to rebuild your bond.
I can recommend Kikopup's videos for ideas, either on YouTube or her own website.
Keep the sessions short and upbeat, always end on a high and use them to reinforce things she's already learned but has lapsed with. Training is an ongoing process for all dogs and needs to be refreshed and reinforced throughout their lives.
If you make yourself the most fun thing to be with then her recall will improve, but you will probably have to go right back to basics and retrain it from the beginning if she's developed bad habits there.
As for when you have to leave her, stuffed kongs, kong wobblers, treat dispensing balls, buster cubes etc are all good ways of keeping her busy.
You could also have a look at some of the Nina Ottosson puzzles if you really want to stretch her brain.
Finally, don't beat yourself up about it. Lots of people end up focussing more on a new baby than they do their dog/s for a while, especially with their PFB. After all, we're programmed to focus on our offspring, it's inbuilt and totally normal. It's not ideal, but very common and it can be rectified. The fact that you've realised what's going on and are keen to do something about it means you're likely to get back on track with her very quickly.
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