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My wife's family kept asking us to bring our puppy (Tallulah) over because they all love dogs and everyone brings their dogs for get togethers. So at Christmas we finally did. They were shocked at how big our "puppy" was (she is 8 months old and 23" and 65-ish #'s) There were 4 other dogs there all older and all mixes in the 40-60 pound range.She got along with everyone, including children very very well. But with the other dogs, its another story.

She has been socialized well, we take her to the dog parks and to friends houses and she plays with other dogs often. Today she kept trying play with the other dogs, and when the other dogs didnt want to play she slapped their head with her paw. This irritated the other dogs who growled and snapped at her. After many times of being snapped at she finally started snapping back, and the dogs had to be seperated.

Tallulah seems to have a very high play drive, and because of her intense desire to play it irritates other dogs (espeically older and smaller dogs) and doggie arguments occur. Also she does well on the leash until she sees another dog and then she just wants to get to the other dog. She isn't aggressive at all, she does bark but it seems all she wants to do is play. We took her to puppy kindergarten and will hopefully sign her up for another obediance class this month, but I am afraid she will just want to play in class and she will be a distraction for everyone. What should we do?
 

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Sign her up for the obedience classes. With training and maturity, she'll learn when she can go to other dogs and when she can't.

IMO, and it's only an opinion :), you should have stepped in and separated the dogs as soon as you realized they didn't want to play with her and they started snapping at her. The last thing you want is for her to learn to develop fear aggression. Just putting her on a leash, or putting her in a crate when you needed both your hands, would have been sufficient.
 

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She is young and playful, my dog does the same thing with her paw. There is no strength behind it. Don't worry about it because other dogs don't like it. Some will take her cue and play with her, some won't. Dogs have many personalities like people. Everybody doesn't want to play just because WE do.
I agree with Jax
 

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First, congrats on completing a puppy class with Tallulah and for working to socialize her with adults, kids, and other dogs. You are on the right track! Definitely sign her up for the next training class, usually a beginner class at her age and experience. In this class you can learn how to get and keep her attention and encourage her to ignore distractions while responding properly to your commands. The big dog/little dog experience you had at Christmas is not uncommon, and when you add the fact that she seems to be the only youngster in the pack, it made things a little worse for her. At 8 months most dogs will no longer see her a puppy, she is reaching her "teenage" stage and adult dogs will have less patience with her. Kinda like a "right of passage". Take her to the training class, work on her manners (with people and with other dogs), and hopefully you will be able to find friends for Tallulah to play with more readily once she understands how to mix with them as adult dogs do. Good Luck!
 

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Thanks, for all the quick responses. We have some good friends with a 3-4 month old st. bernard puppy. They have played a couple times and once she is a little bigger, they will play alot.

My question about the obediance class is that they are done in groups with your dog on a leash, and she when she is on the leash and sees other dogs she just wants to get to them and play. Will that be worked on in the class? I want to sign her up for this next class, but I don't want to get kicked out if all she wants to do is play.
 

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If it is a good trainer then controlling the dog should be part of it. I would call and talk to the trainer, see what they think, and go from there. Do you have a place where lots of dogs go that you can work with her around? Dogs that are on leash so it won't distract from what you are trying to do?
 

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From what i have heard the trainer is good, and when i talked to her she asked me questions about her behaviors and asked me specifically about this behavior. She seemed to know her stuff, but she also seemed to be really excited and a bit pushy about the prospect of private (aka expensive) lessons.

There are a few dog parks around, but those dogs will be unleashed. There are some other parks where there are usually dogs on leashes, but because its winter its hit or miss.

Do you have any tips for getting your dogs attention when on the leash, telling her to sit and offering her food/toys don't seem to work.
 

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During obedience class, sometime my dog's personality changes. One day Texas wants to be with the other dogs and others she despises them and wants to bark at them all day during class. If she lunges or barks at another dog, I simply move her body around where she can't look at them. This frustrates her, since she wants to be part of the group or look at the other dogs. Only when she is calm can she turn around. But you have to be strict about. If you have to turn her entire body then do it. If she turns her head, correct her and have her looking at the other way till you say its ok. Its worked for me every time she gets rowdy in class. Think of it as timeout.
 

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I have always preferred private lessons when I am trying to train complex new behaviors. I think both you and the dog progress faster. Yes they are more expensive but I think you get more bang for your buck. If you are in a group class and struggling with the on leash behavior, the instructor may be occupied with another student and you are not getting the attention you need at the moment. Your dog continues to mis-behave and is unintentionally rewarded becasue you can't seem to stop it.

I like group classes for the social skills the dog gets from them. Every dog needs to know how to behave politely in public.

Here is what I would do - I would opt in for a few private lessons to learn the skills needed to teach and redirect Tallulah when she is faced with other dogs while on leash. Then I would join a group class to work with her on those skills as she will need to practice them in amore controlled setting for awhile.

It sounds like you got off to a good start and she has a good social foundation. At 8 months pups are beginning to test boundaries just like human teenagers, it is important for you to continue to train with her so she can move through her 'teens years' and emerge as a confident young lady dog.
 
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