Need some help. MOVED TO PUPPY BEHAVIOR - German Shepherd Dog Forums

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Old 06-18-2014, 05:55 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Arrow Need some help. MOVED TO PUPPY BEHAVIOR

Alright people, I'll start by saying that I have a pup named Nuke(from Bull Durham) and he is about 14 to 15 weeks old. He is a great dog and has been amazing so far! Nothing to really complain about(other than normal puppy behavior). He has GREAT bite inhibition and has never even come close to drawing blood and has barely scratched the skin. His bite inhibition is so good that he does not bite anyone while playing and does not even try to "mouth" hardly at all when I play with him. That sounds all fairytale and whatnot but here is the ONLY problem I have had with him, when he wants attention from my 4 year old or anyone who comes over to visit, he wont bite them but he will "snap" at them once the second they stop petting him or he will do it when he first walks up to them. He hasnt hurt anyone but the snappin definitely frightens people and is not good at all. He is not aggressive, has a huge yard to play in when im at work, he has a full grown black lab to play with(they are now BFF's)lol, when my girlfriend and I get home we let both dogs in the house and spend the rest of the day with them, the lab is not aggressive at all but actually very submissive, I do not discipline him physically. I do not know how to correct him when he does this. He listens to what I say and when I call his name he almost always drops to full attention and will even do that when we are all sitting there, he gets excited and snaps at someone, then I stand up and say "hey"(our version of stop and listen) and he will stop, but like i said he only does it once so when I correct him it seems like it is already too late. My main problem is that I'm just not shure how to correct it. I know it sounds like im one of those parents that only sees the good in thier kids or dogs but he really is a gem except for the snapping! Specifically, I need suggestions on how to correct this and what exactly I should do in that moment. We are going to his second obedience session tomorrow but I want many opinions!
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Old 06-18-2014, 06:19 PM   #2 (permalink)
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There are a couple things you could do.

You could have him sit or lie down when people are coming in - engage his brain so he doesn't get so excited he wants to snap.

You could teach him to carry a ball or toy in his mouth (can't snap with his mouth full) when people are visiting or before he can be pet. I trained mine to hold a ball when greeting people because he can be particularly shark-ish.

In conjunction with teaching him good behaviors, if you keep a short lead on him, any time he snaps you can give him a negative marker, like an "Eh!" and immediately remove him to another room for ten seconds.

Puppy school and training in general will also help tremendously with his self control.
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Old 06-18-2014, 06:41 PM   #3 (permalink)
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The problem is that it doesnt happen when people enter the house, it happens when we are all sitting and talking and he comes up to people sometimes and will snap at them to get them to pet him. It is not 100 percent of the time, more like 60 percent of the time he walks up to people sitting down and snaps at them to get them to pet him and then snaps right when their hand goes away. We are a very sociable family so people come over and chill for hours at a time so I cant see him wanting to have something in his mouth for 3 to 4 hours at a time. I do like the idea of the lead but my immediate concern would be if I am in the kitchen and my friend in the living room then how do I correct him if I am not able to reach the leash immediatelly?
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Old 06-18-2014, 06:49 PM   #4 (permalink)
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If you're not monitoring his interactions with people directly, I would tether him to you. I use a carabiner to hook the handle of the leash to a belt loop or circle it around my waist.

If people are over, he interacts with them on your terms. If you move into the kitchen where you don't have immediate control over him, there's no sense in giving him the space to practice bad behavior. In puppyhood, the most effective way to discourage bad behavior is to manage their environment so they never have the chance to practice it.

As he gets better, he can earn more freedom, but as puppies my dogs are essentially on lock down until they know exactly how I expect them to behave. This way, you know that every interaction between him and others is appropriate or you have the means to remove him to show him that snapping won't be tolerated.

It works extremely well. I've even done it with adult dogs that come into the house.
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Old 06-19-2014, 06:21 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pax8 View Post
If you're not monitoring his interactions with people directly, I would tether him to you. I use a carabiner to hook the handle of the leash to a belt loop or circle it around my waist.

If people are over, he interacts with them on your terms. If you move into the kitchen where you don't have immediate control over him, there's no sense in giving him the space to practice bad behavior. In puppyhood, the most effective way to discourage bad behavior is to manage their environment so they never have the chance to practice it.

As he gets better, he can earn more freedom, but as puppies my dogs are essentially on lock down until they know exactly how I expect them to behave. This way, you know that every interaction between him and others is appropriate or you have the means to remove him to show him that snapping won't be tolerated.

It works extremely well. I've even done it with adult dogs that come into the house.
Thank you! You did a good job of explaining yourself and addressing the question directly! I will give this a try for shure!
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