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Dogs and kids!(17 Posts)
I have 2 kids and a puppy who's almost a year old. It's all brilliant, we love him lots and he fits in perfectly. I expected a lot of hard work and of course I got it, but by far the hardest thing for me and the kids to deal with has been that nothing can now be on the floor or low tables, and obviously with kids toys out this is hard. The kids have to play in their rooms with the door shut, or play on the kitchen table. No toys in the living room at all, or he tries to eat them or grabs and runs and we end up chasing him around the house hoping he doesn't swallow before we get to him. It's been hard, we've lost a lot of toys and even with us all on high vigilance, the chase is still happening multiple times a day. He is obedience trained but when he's excited like this he won't listen to anything or stop!
My questions is, is this something that continues forever now, for the life of a dog? Is it a puppy thing or a dog thing? Is there anything I can do except get better at policing it and making sure the children pick up after themselves? It's not a big problem by the way, so I don't need the "you should've thought about this before you got a dog" as it's a very small price to pay for completing our family and it's only a niggle really.
It's a puppy thing. Mine no longer eats Lego or even steals socks. It did carry on until 18-24 months though.
He can't tell the difference between his balls and children's but otherwise he doesn't touch their stuff - even cuddly toys and he loves them!
Oh and try not to chase if you can avoid it - try and train him to drop it. Chasing is fun
Thank you for the reply and advice! I"m glad to hear there may be an end in sight.
Yeah he has a box full of his own toys but he's not interested. He knows the difference between his and the kids for sure and he is ONLY interested in the kid's toys! (And socks too, what is that about?)
No I know chasing isn't the right tactic, it makes him worse and he's getting fun out of it then but he will not drop them no matter how we try or what treats we offer and the longer he has the toy the longer he has to swallow it so I have to just go for the quickest option which is usually 2 of us cornering him around the coffee table! The training is ongoing though and hopefully one day he'll respect me enough to listen lol
is this something that continues forever now, for the life of a dog?
No, definitely not, but I can’t pretend the journey to training it out of them isn’t difficult ? EG Our old boy can now be trusted to not bat an eyelid at a whole cooked chicken, left at eye level (he’s big!), even if we leave the room. When he was an adolescent, however, he snaffled more than one and three packs of doughnuts in one go once. Plus all manor of books, toys and socks. I knew we’d had a breakthrough when, instead of running off with it, he picked up a dropped sock and placed it neatly on the bottom stair with the rest of the clean washing, ready for putting away! He’s a clever dog!
It does get better with age but probably varies depending on the dog. I couldn't drop anything on the floor when he was young but now BiteyDog (2 years old) mostly ignores things.
I'm afraid I allowed the swallowing of many Lego heads and then retrieved them and washed and soaked them in Milton. Anything that looked like it wouldn't do internal damage could be eaten. Otherwise, drop it training with high value treats (hotdog slices work well) works well.
Chirag Patel has a really good video (domesticated manners)
I love that you asked this! I need to know the answer too.
We have a 5 month old puppy and my kids now know if it’s on the floor it’s fair game. They use the kitchen table, tops of cupboards (he’s. Miniature poodle so not too tall) or play in the hall - which drives him mad as he really wants to join in but the door is shut on him.
I found that for the top quality toys that he will not be bribed for, picking him up works. For some reason he stops the chewing if I can pick him up. I don’t talk to him or try and get it out of his mouth. But he just freezes his mouth (almost as if he thinks he’s ‘acting cool’ and trying to convince me that he doesn’t have anything in his mouth). Then eventually gets bored or distracted and/or yawns and drops it.
You need to hammer the 'leave it/drop it' training, and it does get better. I'd say it improved a lost after one (cockers, 'puppyhood' obviously might be longer for other breeds) .Our main issue was baby socks, they must be super tasty. Though DD is only 2 so doesn't have toys with tiny swallow-able parts just yet.
Is there anywhere u can use a stair gate? We have one between kitchen and front room. And if my little girl wants small toys out we close it. Stops the dog but means we can still hear/ see what's happening?
It’s a puppy thing.
Unless you’ve got a Labrador. Then it’s a lab thing.
I can leave two year old wolfhound alone and she won’t touch a thing. As a pup she was in a pen (inside) if I couldn’t watch her. She chewed rubber off non slip mats on the floor, through a wall, all the children, took chunks out of clothes and devoured half a slipper sock.
My 15ish month old had pretty much stopped.....which means we relaxed! So of course, every now and then something will be grabbed or chewed. I made a big effort with putting chews in cardboard boxes for her to shred etc, to keep her busy if she's not involved in something, so she can do it alongside us. This is also because she likes to come and lie on whatever game we're playing!
Luckily my lab boy is good now at 4 improved ny 18 months .Though at times will pick up socks if left lying around and store in his bed
Food I not trust himwith if was out the room
Thank you guys for all the responses! I can't tell you how relieved I am at this! My husband had told me it would probably never end so I am really pleased to hear you all went through the same thing and it stopped when the dog grew up! I'm very much looking forward to there being an end in sight and I'll be cracking on with the training now to try and get there quicker.
We have got a baby gate on the living room thinking it would help, but he can jump over it now so that's not great lol .I did recently start to put him outside after every time I've eventually caught him with a toy, but I know reward training works better than "punishment" so not sure if that is working. It does give me a minute to tidy up the mess and count to 10 though so there's that.
But he's nearly 1 now though so hopefully with continued work it'll get better. Maybe my daughter's dolls will keep both their eyes from now on, and I won't find so many sequins and glitter in the dog's poo lol
At least sparkly poo is easy to find to pick up!
The puppy stage is tough. We kept kids’ toys upstairs and had a tall doggy gate. Stuffed kongs are great. Mine was on dried food so soak it, stuff Kong and freeze. Frozen carrots and nylabones too.
My 11 month old is less interested than he was. We put the xmas tree up yesterday and he is currently snoozing in the same room as it in and not knicking the baubles off the bottom branches BUT when he wants to play later he may well decide the quickest way to get my attention is mugging the tree. DD and I now play with toys on the floor only once Ddog has gone off to his bed in the evening. We have a stairgate to stop him going upstairs un-supervised, shoes are always put away (or he eats them....) He is better but still not completely trustworthy!
Obviously after saying things got better - today our older one opened a drawer and tried to eat boot polish while we were out.
(and our toddler ate a gel filled sticker at nursery)
Swap stolen item for one of the dogs toys and reward them leaving/dropping it of their volition with lots of praise.
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