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Thread: Puppy growls when picked up Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
01-08-2013 05:42 PM
Stevenzachsmom Don't be sorry. I saw exactly what you were saying. Just wanted to clarify.

Thanks!
01-08-2013 05:40 PM
RowdyDogs
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stevenzachsmom View Post
Rowdy, my puppy doesn't growl at me, or my husband. He growls at my kids. I think you and I are actually on the same page. I agree not to correct the growl, so the dog goes right to the bite. I want to desensitize my dog to what is being done, so he doesn't feel the need to growl. I am working with the kids to incorporate those procedures. If he is allowed to growl at the kids, he may feel the need to growl at the vet, vet tech, or petsitter. To me a growl is a warning of a possible bite. I want to alleviate the reason for the growl, thus eliminating the potential for a bite.
Yep, that's exactly what I meant. Sorry, I misinterpreted your previous post.
01-08-2013 05:39 PM
Jd414
Quote:
Originally Posted by huntergreen View Post
i am not understanding why the puppy should not be picked up. can some one explain.
Me either the dog should not be growling plain n simple


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01-08-2013 05:30 PM
Stevenzachsmom Rowdy, my puppy doesn't growl at me, or my husband. He growls at my kids. I think you and I are actually on the same page. I agree not to correct the growl, so the dog goes right to the bite. I want to desensitize my dog to what is being done, so he doesn't feel the need to growl. I am working with the kids to incorporate those procedures. If he is allowed to growl at the kids, he may feel the need to growl at the vet, vet tech, or petsitter. To me a growl is a warning of a possible bite. I want to alleviate the reason for the growl, thus eliminating the potential for a bite.
01-08-2013 04:35 PM
RowdyDogs
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stevenzachsmom View Post
I don't like growling, because the dog doesn't like something.
It doesn't actually bother me for the most part, because it's just a means of communication. I take a growl in a situation like this as a sign that I either need to figure out what's making the pup uncomfortable and fix that (for example, if he's physically uncomfortable due to the way he's being carried), or desensitize the dog to the procedure if he just doesn't like it. I'd rather a dog let me know clearly when they don't like something, rather than bottling it up until they get pushed over threshold. But as I bring up a lot, I have a dog who was always corrected for growling and so now in the 7 years I've owned him I've never heard him growl...instead he goes right to snapping at and biting people (or did, until I addressed the root causes of it), so I'm probably a little sensitive to that.

Now, there are some exceptions. When my GSD was younger and got something he wasn't supposed to have and I told him to drop it, he used to growl at me if it's something he really really wants and I'll growl right back at him, which results in him dropping whatever it is and running off. LOL But that's still just communication--him saying "Don't take this away, it's mine!" and me saying, "Um, sorry pal, I'm the boss here and I say drop it."

Just another way to look at it.
01-08-2013 04:03 PM
GsdLoverr729 I'm aware. But carrying a forty to fifty lb dog around is still a funny idea. I would know, i do it at work all the time.
01-08-2013 03:35 PM
Stevenzachsmom Kymmey, You know Zach is a border collie puppy, right? He is only going to be a medium sized dog. During puppyhood, I have to be able to pick my puppy up. When he spots that cat poop in the yard, I swoop and snatch. Puppy will eat it in a heart beat. I don't even pick him up nicely like Adam does Zach. Natty Boh is slung over my arm. I also have to pick him up to get him down off the trash can, before he climbs onto the counter. Or - pick him up to put him in the bathtub. (Puppies are sooo much fun. LOL!

Granted Natty Boh is a hound mix puppy and not very big. I wasn't often lugging around my full grown GSD, but I could if I had to. That is the important thing. I don't like growling, because the dog doesn't like something.
01-08-2013 03:29 PM
RowdyDogs I would do a couple of things. First, I might be sure I was giving him a little more hind-end support than that picture seems to indicate. Holding him more securely may make him more comfortable.

Also, be sure you're not just suddenly grabbing him and scooping him into the air. Pick him up gently and slowly, so he isn't surprised.

It does sound like he's mostly just expecting bad things to happen when you pick him up though, so what I'd do is just pick him up several times a day, give him a treat once he's stopped growling, and put him down. Try to avoid picking him up for unpleasant things during the first couple of weeks you do this (but if you have to do so, it's not a big deal, just might slow things down). It's just counter-conditioning really. You're teaching him that 99% of the time, being picked up is a good thing.

I also agree that this is one of those things that you should train your dog to accept. I'm surprised some people never pick up their dogs. I have dogs who don't care for it and so (now that I've trained them to tolerate it) I only do it when absolutely necessary, but there are times in most dogs' lives when it will be useful or even critically important to be able to carry them. I'm thinking of when one of my dogs was hit by a car and still very alert but unable to walk due to two injured legs--not sure what I would have done if he wouldn't let me carry him.
01-08-2013 03:23 PM
GsdLoverr729 I like Kyleigh's advice for dirty paws, versus lifting him.
I guess i can't get the image of Zack being full grown and still waiting to be lifted when his paws are dirty out of my head. Lmao!

Adam, maybe also support his rear a bit when lifting.
01-08-2013 02:53 PM
Stevenzachsmom Adam, You are very smart. I'm sure Zack does think he is going into the crate. We also treat my pup to get him to go in. I have also instructed my kids to leash and lead him where they want him to go, rather than being "pushy." Puppy doesn't like to be man-handled. LOL!
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