10 weeks old - doesn't like toys, biting and general training - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-30-2018, 09:42 AM Thread Starter
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10 weeks old - doesn't like toys, biting and general training

Hi all,

First time GSD owner. Probably a common theme here but a little stressed with our new girl. We got her at 8 weeks, and she is now 10 weeks. Got a few questions below:

1. A lot of people use toys in their training eg. Drop items, fetch, bite redirection. Trouble is my pup doesn't really show much interest in toys. She much rather bite people or slippers. Even when she's calm she doesn't really show much interest in toys other than a long rope we have or a Kong if it's filled. Is this something we need to train her to be interested in?

2. Regarding biting - she tends to have an uncontrollable attraction to biting my dad, especially when over excited. She'll just constantly go for him when he is nearby. We have started to get my dad to give her her feeding bowl for meals but so far no improvement. How do I stop this targeting?

3. We have taught her to sit, stay, and come here. She is quite good at responding to these when calm, but when she's excited she doesn't listen to anything (eg. Especially when biting). Any tips for getting a puppy to listen at all times, or is this something that comes when they mature? I can't imagine ever having her off leash in public if she can't reliably listen.

4. I'm trying to train the lie down command by starting her in a sit position and using a treat to lure her down. Trouble is she chews on my hand whilst going down which makes it difficult to teach this command. Keep in mind she is a rather bitey pup.

Sorry for the long post. My wife and I spend a lot of time with her and are pretty drained lately. We are mainly concerned with biting as it has increased a little, as has sudden bursts of over excitedness (resulting in more biting).

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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-30-2018, 10:16 AM
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Welcome to the landsharks phase of a GSD puppy! They will outgrow it at some point, but the trick is to stay consistent in redirecting the bite until they learn.

Remember this puppy is only 70 DAYS old and 14 of those days she mostly blind and deaf! So to expect consistency in obedience, especially when excited is like asking a 6mos old baby to wait quietly when hungry, scared, excited, and not poop in diapers.... Not going to happen 😉... You have done a good job teaching foundational obedience, nice job! But remember, physically a puppy may look capable and we can train it to perform, mentally the puppy may be able to understand and obey and we can train it, emotionally takes longer but we can also train to not act out when over stimulated.. BUT! The glue that holds the three together is maturity and we can't make maturity happen.. It happens when it happens... Which can be frustrating...

Do keep engaging her, some pups require human interaction to learn to play with toys, others do not.
Get squeaky toys, make it fun for the dog
. Yes, it is exhausting at times but they grow up fast and you will miss some aspects... Pics please 😊
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-30-2018, 10:28 AM
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1. Yes, mostly. She's primarily going to like interacting with people, and can busy herself with toys but they have to be interesting. The filled Kong, well that's food. Food is ALWAYS interesting to a dog but you don't want them to get fat. You can always take a portion of her food or the whole meal and hide it in spots or get one of those puzzle toys and fill it with her kibble. That's a good distraction. An empty plastic water bottle makes a fun crunchy noise that she'll like and will satisfy her teething urges.

2. I don't know what makes Dad a fun target. Wild guess... she associates him with food, so if she bites, it means feeding is gonna happen soon? Dad will have to redirect her to toys. Or walk away if biting starts. Or, show her that biting means she has to go in the kennel for 5-10 minutes. repeat as needed. You can start teaching your pup what "toy" is. Also, if she's excited enough to bite Dad, maybe she's interested enough for some training? Good opportunity for reinforcing basic commands, learning "go find it", etc.

3. When my dog (1 yr old) gets overly excited his ears shut down too. This issue takes time to solve, including more maturity on the dog's part and patience/persistence from the trainer. Most people say if their dog has great recall as a pup, it goes out the window around 6 months when the dog starts getting into "teenager phase". She's a 10 week old pup, the equivalent of a human toddler. Be patient. She will not be ready for off-leash in public activities until you train a solid no-fail recall and that's a ways off. ENJOY YOUR PUPPY while she's still a puppy.

4. Try getting her to crawl under your leg. That may get her into a "down" position. Click as soon as she's down and shape the behavior that way. Lots of great videos on YouTube for positive training.

Puppies are EXHAUSTING, but this is THE TIME to start building the foundation of trust and loving patience that will turn your pup into an awesome amazing dog.

Biting... that's what they do as pups. They're teething. People call them "landsharks" because of biting biting biting. You have to redirect and kennel if redirection doesn't work. Just NEVER hit the pup or frighten it too much for what it feels an urge to do naturally. You have to show it more appropriate ways of satisfying the urge to chew and play and be a puppy.

Do not be shy about kenneling the pup when you guys need a break! Better than getting angry at the pup. Don't forget that toddlers never want naps but need them anyway, and your pup is a toddler.

Good luck!
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-30-2018, 11:16 AM
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If you get a toy that holds treats or food she should get redirected. Fat USA made bully sticks were always my go to, because they couldn't devour them at such a young age.,

As far as being naughty thats what they do until being corrected and if you want to correct/control a crazy eyed dog you must put a leash on it.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-02-2018, 07:48 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replies everyone. I guess I'll have to persevere and see how she matures.
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