This week was a frustrating week for some of my clients. It's like the dogs all caught a whiff of something in the air that made them a little extra rambunctious!
As a side note, that can be a thing! A couple of years ago, it was really windy for like two weeks straight and all the dogs lost their cool. They forgot their training. They forgot their manners. And, they acted totally nuts! Then the wind stopped, the storm passed, and the dogs settled back in to their normal (expected) behavior.
Anyways! I thought it might be a good time to share some of the things Max used to do as a puppy. My hope is that no one feels alone in their puppy training. That they know that sometimes it is hard. That things are going to be ok, even when you are trying your best and you feel like you aren't getting anywhere.
Here goes. Max used to....
We went through about five dog beds for Max. He would chew and destroy all of them. A dog bed that my first dog had for years, Max destroyed within a week. Fluff everywhere. One time, I got him one of those anxiety beds where he could curl into a ball. I took it out of the box. I went to throw out the packaging, and by the time I turned around from the trash can, Max had already destroyed it. Less than 10 seconds with my back turned only to walk to the trash!
This dog bed was the winner. He could not get through it. If he did bite it and we had to train, he still didn't get through the material. I trained "leave it" for the dog bed and that the expected behavior for the dog bed was resting.
Wake Up at 5am
Oh man, and he would choose the loudest, squeakiest toy to play with! My husband and I would switch off mornings waking up with him and going to the basement to play. It was horrible; I am not a morning person. Now, Max sleeps until 11am :)
This was the worst! When left unsupervised, he would rip apart sheets. I thought he was getting comfy, cozy under the blankets when I heard him rustling on the bed, but then I found holes in our sheets. And, it kept happening. Sheet set after sheet set.
It was really a matter of being left unattended with something he wasn't allowed to have. This was a "leave it" command, required him to be gated off from rooms when unsupervised, and lots of money on new sheets....
Jump on Counters
Oh, yeah. He smelled that food and he wanted it. We trained "off" just like everyone else! We had to get close to him after he jumped to make sure we weren't screaming across the kitchen. We had to use gates to keep him out of the kitchen so we weren't training all the time. We used the dog bed (place) to show him where he did belong.
To this day, Max is a picky eater. He eats around 9pm. He rolls around on the ground after. He will pick through the kids' foods to take only the things he likes. He is an odd duck.
As a puppy, he started showing resistance to puppy food early, around 10 months. He wanted the big boy food like his big sister! Like a bunch of you, I was so invested in him eating. I wanted him to get all his nutrients that kibble offers that I would add anything and everything to his food to entice him to eat.
His picky eating actually helped me really understand consistency with feeding, so that I can better instruct you all!
Max is a really good boy, but he didn't get there without training, patience, and consistency. He still requires training, patience and consistency!
I hope you all feel a little less alone in your puppyhood and dog training journeys. All dogs have their quirks and behaviors that you want to fine tune to better fit your lifestyle (and bank account!). Keep at it!
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