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The Signs Of Teenage Adolescence(4 Posts)
Milly, my mini Labradoodle, is just over 7 months old now. I've read that this is around the age they enter the teenage adolescence stage and their behaviour can change to being more independent, rebellious and all the training can seemingly fly out the window amongst other changes.
She has changed a little in some respects but not too drastically (yet). She's ruining the lawn by digging it up and eating the dirt/grass and at the same time her appetite for the proper stuff has diminished. This is something she's only really started doing. I'm just finding that I'm telling her off a little more than I have been about things.
Interested in what others experienced when their dog became a teenage adolescent and how they coped with it.
We have a beagle who is just finishing coming out of the other side at almost two years old (he'll be two in February)
For us, the main problems were:
- increased stubbornness and ignoring commands he knew perfectly beforehand. So you'd ask for a sit/stay and he would totally ignore it.
- his recall vanished completely and he was stuck on lead/a longline for months because of his tendency to just vanish or stay just far enough away that we couldn't grab him back. This didn't last too long - maybe 3-4 months?
- he got a bit mouthy again and definitely pushed the boundaries of what was acceptable behaviour - eg. jumping at people, pulling on the lead, barking.
- his hormones kicked in and he started pining after bitches in heat. Our neighbours dog went into heat when he was about 7 months and all he did was pace, whine and howl at the window! We've had no problem with this since he got neutered at 18 months.
However he's pretty much grown out of all those problems now. He's still full of energy and pulls on the lead when he gets excited but generally as long as he's fed and walked he's a happy boy and spends the rest of his time snoring under a blanket on the sofa!
Yep, Battendog was the same. Perhaps also...
- he was more easily spooked or scared of new things, or things he'd experienced as a puppy but not extensively. Only as a teenager he would deeply bark at them rather than run away as he had when younger.
- his mood was unpredictable . One day we'd be commentating on how quiet and calm he'd been and the next he was on the look out for mischief all day long and it felt like a full time job again just to stop him damaging himself, someone else or the house.
- he also became much bolder in terms of being away from me on a walk. As a puppy he would follow me everywhere, staying close naturally. As a teenager he would run off to the other side of the (secure) field if given the chance and stay there. We used a long trailing line also for months and as an adult he's back to sticking close again.
- on the 'bad' days his play had an edge to it. Not an aggressive edge, more of a "I'm having fun and don't give a shit if I hurt you" edge. With is humanising him but is the best way I can describe it. The difference was subtle but things like as an older puppy (and again as an adult) if his teeth touched my hand on a toy then he would automatically adjust himself so I didn't get hurt. Sometimes as a teenager he just didn't bother and so nipping became a thing again. As did just jumping on you if you were playing on the floor - which hurt alot more when he was 23kg than when he was 5kg.
- everyone else lost patience with him. Family and friends who indulged him as a puppy suddenly found him a lot less cute as a physically grown dog who behaved like a bugger. e.g. people who had encouraged him to jump up to greet them when he was small and cute (despite my rather stern lecture) suddenly started commentating how bad he was for jumping up at them as an adult. It was about this time I simply stropped trying to explain anything to people and instead tightly controlled all greetings by using a lead, even in the house.
- he started to test out ways he could get what he wanted. During this time he learned how to lick the cheese sauce off a lasagne on the side and how to open all the doors in the house.
It lasted from about 10 months old until about 18/20 months, though we occassionally had very short bouts up until about 2 years.
My cocker started around 6 months of age. His recall went from 100 to 0 and he was just more defiant and deaf when it came to training.
His arseness peaked at 8-9 months of age but started to behave again around the age of 1.