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post #6 of (permalink) Old 03-27-2014, 11:36 PM
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: Denmark, Ohio
Posts: 30,404
I agree with the superstitious fear -- this is not like supernatural or anything like that. You have a dog who is afraid and all the sudden he gets zapped or bitten by the prong, it makes him more afraid which makes him act out even more and sooner.

You got your puppy very young, and it is possible that he lost some valuable development within his litter. It effects a lot of stuff, like dog-body language, and bite inhibition. But there are some dynamics we should consider. A pup in the litter is not afraid because he has his dam and littermates there. For the first 8 weeks, new situations can be experienced in a very safe manner, because your dog learns from how calm his mother is, and realizes there is nothing to fear

Now, you got a dog that could barely see, and hear. His eyes had been open for about two weeks and his ears about the same. Usually about 3 weeks they start paying attention with the littermates and start playing. But most of the time they are eating and sleeping and pooping. The dog was socially undeveloped.

That huge section of time when he should have experienced things under the safety of his dam, and littermates he did not have, and then at eight weeks, when they have a pretty good feeling about lots of stuff, they get their first major check and are separated from the litter and have to transfer their allegiance to you as the great protector. Now, I am treading on some thin water here, the transference happened earlier than it should have and the dog may not have gained that intitial boost of sink or swim with changing the environment of dam and littermates to new human owner and family. Because he was too young to really be afraid of everything and anything, he found that you provided edible food, and that was enough. But that was definitely some stepping stones that really didn't go as they should have.

You cannot change that now, but your approach in dealing with this issue needs to take it into consideration that this dog may need remedial socialization, and you may need to gain a whole lot of confidence so that your dog will accept you as the great protector, like the dam in the litter.

Lots of young'ns at this stage go through some pretty fear-scary stuff. But I would definitely work with someone on this. Teach your boy that you are a fair and consistent leader, by setting him up to succeed and praising him for it, and by making rules clear and enforcing them properly. As he builds a bond with your through training and leadership, he will learn to trust you, and he won't have to act like such a nut.


I am sorry your breeder let the dog go so young. That should only happen if the bitch and the rest of the litter dies. And even then, the breeder should try and find a substitute female to try to bond with the dog and teach the dog during that period.

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