Vet Concerned with Growling
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    So the vet confirmed my suspicions… Basil is most likely going to be a dominant dog. I could tell from him not being any bit afraid of larger dogs and the way he'll send my older dog running as well as my dominant cat. He does not growl if you take his food away or toy but he growls or goes into "fits" at times when he wants to do something but can't because he's being held in your arms or on a leash. For example, if we're on a walk and I'm speaking with people and he wants to keep walking... he'll throw what I would call a tantrum. He looks possessed and will attack my ankles and will throw himself on the ground and show his teeth and growl. He also does this if I'm holding him while making his meal or if I'm holding him and he wants to get down to either get a slipper, another dog or eat something he shouldn't.
    I've also noticed him do this when I take a leaf, rock or something dangerous out of his mouth. The vet suggested I hold him tightly to my chest when he's having these fits so that he can't get free or bite me until he sighs and his growling/fit decreases. I've heard suggestions for tummy time, when the dog is aggressive to train them to go on their back for a tummy rub... is this safe when he's in these fits... he has literally drawn blood from me twice in these fits... once on my knee (he jumped up) and once on my foot. I'm really concerned about this behavior and don't want this to carry on in adulthood. I am seeking a puppy training class, my vet says most of them require you to have all your shots up to date so that means we're waiting at least another month. Are there any other suggestions as to what can help? I know exercise is key... although hard to do right now because he's on house arrest but we're running and playing in the mornings and evenings in the back yard (it's 40c in the day so we're inside). I've also been working on the taking his bowl away and then putting it back or moving it around the room. I'm also wondering if these fits signal that he will be a dangerous dog around children and vulnerable people and if he'll be banned from dog parks... I really hope I can correct it early.

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    Positive training works much better than force. There are a lot of great books out there. Get the ones that aren't from the dog whisper. I think there were some suggestions on anther thread on this site.

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  • There are lots of great suggestions on the Forums, just do a search.

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  • Would you be able to take video of his interactions with the older dog and cat? I'm actually curious about what you're describing. If I remember correctly, this is a very young puppy, right?

    I'd love to see the body language myself.

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    @listeme:

    Would you be able to take video of his interactions with the older dog and cat? I'm actually curious about what you're describing. If I remember correctly, this is a very young puppy, right?

    I'd love to see the body language myself.

    I can try to get a video but how do I upload it onto here?

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  • Up to date on your shots does not mean all shots completed. For young puppies most trainers will take them after their second puppy shot. Please for the sake of your puppy do not wait another month to seek out positive reinforcement trainers in your area. Read the American Veterinary Society for Animal Behavior's position statement on early puppy socialization, http://www.avsabonline.org/avsabonline/images/stories/Position_Statements/puppy%20socialization.pdf

    Your puppy needs to learn impulse control, throwing tantrums when one doesn't get what one wants shows a lack of impulse control. View the video, Its Yer Choice on YouTube,

    This is one way to start training impulse control. There are many others but you really should be in a training class so you can have someone help you see how they work and what you should expect.

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  • @lvoss:

    Up to date on your shots does not mean all shots completed. For young puppies most trainers will take them after their second puppy shot. Please for the sake of your puppy do not wait another month to seek out positive reinforcement trainers in your area. Read the American Veterinary Society for Animal Behavior's position statement on early puppy socialization, http://www.avsabonline.org/avsabonline/images/stories/Position_Statements/puppy%20socialization.pdf

    Your puppy needs to learn impulse control, throwing tantrums when one doesn't get what one wants shows a lack of impulse control. View the video, Its Yer Choice on YouTube,

    This is one way to start training impulse control. There are many others but you really should be in a training class so you can have someone help you see how they work and what you should expect.

    Great video - thanks for posting that up!

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    Please do as Ivoss recommends. Your puppy will quickly learn acceptable behaviour. Force does not work. He is young enough for this behaviour to be changed.

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  • Your dog is on the way to not dominant but dangerous behaviors. Please find a positive trainer and get on this immediately.
    http://www.apdt.com/petowners/ts/intl/default.aspx

    Some VERY good basic training including leave it etc
    http://www.clickerlessons.com/

    EDITED: OKAY, I just realized this is a TINY puppy, supposedly born May 5 but tiny and may be only 9 weeks old, not 11. Puppy tantrums not abnormal, especially since it is likely this pup taken from litter way the hell too young. So panic mode off, you need to work fast and hard on the behavior. I'd say at his size, carry a towel and wrap him up in it til he settles down during an all out tantrum if you are out. Otherwise, at home walk off and ignore. Give attention and praise when good. You don't want to get heavy handed over pretty normal puppy behaviors, you want to gently guide him to good. But I also seriously would not be out walking with this pup til all shots are done. His very tiny size and age puts him at risk.

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    Thanks Debbie. I've been holding him to my chest when he has his fits (gently) until he sighs and then he seems to have calmed down. I'm really confused with the advice I've been given. When I took him to a park right by my house and walked him for 5-10 minutes I was scolded for not walking him for an hour. And now I'm told I shouldn't walk him at all… what's the right answer?

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  • I suspect some of the conflicting advice is because some of us are unsure how old the little guy is. There's a big difference between a baby and a preadolescent in the ways you want to approach things – in dogs as well as humans.

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  • Yes, walking a baby for an hour, um no. I think others were confused as I was about the age. Lots of in home play time, starting basic obedience at home to keep mind happy.

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    @DebraDownSouth:

    Yes, walking a baby for an hour, um no. I think others were confused as I was about the age. Lots of in home play time, starting basic obedience at home to keep mind happy.

    So everyone thinks he's not 12 weeks? How come the vet hasn't said anything then?

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    What did the vet say when you asked him the dogs age?

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    @sharronhurlbut:

    What did the vet say when you asked him the dogs age?

    The vet asked me his age. I gave her Basil's papers from the breeder and she seemed satisfied with that.

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  • @basilboy7:

    The vet asked me his age. I gave her Basil's papers from the breeder and she seemed satisfied with that.

    Can you post a recent picture from the last couple of days of him? And what his age is supposed to be? And the Vet if they looked at his teeth should be able to "estimate" age… but might be off by a week or so.

    Again... I take mine out as soon as they have had one set of shots, again using common sense on where I take them and what they can "sniff" along the way.. and as already stated... I don't believe in living in that glass bubble.. but to expose them (using common sense) to living... and building their immune systems. And I have had a number of pups that I have done this with either living with me or puppy buyers

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  • It could be that he is 12 weeks old but factors like illness or poor nutrition have left him a bit behind developmentally. I have seen that happen and it can take awhile before they catch up.

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  • I can't recommend enough to trim at least one nail once a day, to get him used to it & you having him under control to tolerate it.

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    Here's some pictures from today (July 24th) and a video of Basil chasing my older dog Lulu.

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  • He's adorable! I see a wonderfully happy, curious puppy….. Lulu must love her little brother!

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    @Patty:

    He's adorable! I see a wonderfully happy, curious puppy….. Lulu must love her little brother!

    So you saw the video? lol

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