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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We spent months going from shelter to shelter looking for an adult male GS. Finally one popped up on a local shelter's website so we hurried down to find a gorgeous 90 lb fella. He'd been neutered the day before so he was pretty mellow. He took to our other dog and she thought he was interesting, so we adopted him and named him Duke. That was Saturday. Tues he went for his vet checkup and when she looked in his mouth she announced he was MUCH younger than the 2 years old the shelter advertised. That's when the jumping on the couch and the bed and jumping around on his leash clicked - we have a 90 lb puppy. The thought that he may continue to grow is daunting. He's already had a run in with the door on the entertainment center. It's broken off but no teeth marks so I guess Baby Huey just got tangled up in it somehow during the night.
We are having normal puppy behavior. I am waiting for the carpet to dry now. He takes laundry and spreads it throughout the house, chews everything that isn't tied down, etc. Typical puppy stuff. We've had puppies before so it's not too much of a problem; more of an inconvenience. He is a sweet fella and we're already very attached; so he's not going back. My only real question is about how long before he decides he's part of our pack and joins the family as opposed to taking over the house? He's still in that 'laying on the floor observing us' stage. It's been 4 weeks and I still feel he's not one of the family yet. The photo I'm attaching has 12" tiles in it so you can gauge his size.
 

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Very handsome boy! I'm sure it might take some time, depending on his personality. He probably spent the first 2 weeks just getting used to his new surroundings and decompressing from his previous situation. Have you had a chance to do many 1 on 1 fun outings with him yet? Once you do it will probably start to help a lot!
 

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One word, CRATE. If he is young (and it's possible that he's not, just untrained), then he, you and your belongings will benefit from some structure and limits while he learns the Rules of The House. For example, I'd not allow any puppy/dog complete freedom in the house --- especially while I'm sleeping. He has to earn the privilege and that takes time and training. Crating will facilitate the process.

Which brings me to a final point, what are you doing to train that handsome bugger? How often? Short sessions daily are most effective, IME. You have to teach him what's acceptable behavior (in the house, outside, on a lead, around strange people/dogs, etc) and what's not. He's not going to magically become part of the family without some effort and that effort requires that everyone is on board.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Just a quick update. Someone learned a new trick last night - he dropped what is left of that hard rubber crocodile into the water dish and made a big splash - TWICE. New game.

Duke has become our dog - 100%. Last week was a good week with the housebreaking.

He has not 'settled down'. He runs around here jumping for joy, throwing toys, etc. He has gotten better about barking at the singing coyotes at night. But he's also discovered he can see the Aussie next door from an upstairs window.

We do not crate dogs. Our dogs have to run of what is THEIR house. They are primarily watch dogs and I know they will protect their toys and food. I also know they couldn't care less about our stuff. So it's all theirs all the time. I understand some people believe in crates, we just do not. We want that deterrent of them sitting in the door watching out the glass.
 

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If you're not willing to crate train him and continue to give him the run of the house, then you have to be willing to put up with him treating the house as his own since there are no boundaries. Just because you crate train a young dog doesn't mean they spend the rest of their lives locked in a box. We crate train our puppies and once they reach an age where they understand the rules of the house, they pretty much have free run and we don't have to worry about them chewing or breaking things. And if someone knocks on the door, there they are.
 

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Lol my house is mine not my dogs. I share my house with them. Their house is the crate and they enjoy it. I have yet too see their name on the mortgage
 

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He has beautiful coloring. I’ve never seen that color in a long hair. I’m glad he’s settling in. It usually takes a while.
 

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Just a quick update. Someone learned a new trick last night - he dropped what is left of that hard rubber crocodile into the water dish and made a big splash - TWICE. New game.

Duke has become our dog - 100%. Last week was a good week with the housebreaking.

He has not 'settled down'. He runs around here jumping for joy, throwing toys, etc. He has gotten better about barking at the singing coyotes at night. But he's also discovered he can see the Aussie next door from an upstairs window.

We do not crate dogs. Our dogs have to run of what is THEIR house. They are primarily watch dogs and I know they will protect their toys and food. I also know they couldn't care less about our stuff. So it's all theirs all the time. I understand some people believe in crates, we just do not. We want that deterrent of them sitting in the door watching out the glass.
It's good to hear that bonding is going well; I do enjoy a joyful puppy myself. That said...I'd encourage you to limit his access to the house until he's earned the privilege and that takes training. Preferences (in training, lifestyle, etc) certainly differ, but what you've described so far is a big, handsome and growing boy, who'll only become rowdier as he gets older --- unless you get very, very lucky or change what you're apparently doing. So, how much time each day do you spend training and how? What kinds of activities do you do with him? Daily walkies, if so how far? Any leash training, how's it going? Can he settle or turn that 'joyful switch' down/off until he's outside or is he always 'on?'

These are the foci that would guide my expectations/training of any new pup/dog, no matter how old they are. They're shaped by the hopes/expectations I have for a manageable and enjoyable companion. Joyfully jumping on furniture, beds, and people, and/or hurling random objects about the house don't figure in my expectations of companionable behavior. YMMV
 
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