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Discussion Starter #1
So whenever we first sit down to watch TV he thinks it's time to bother us. He jumps on the coach ontop of us with his front paws.

We tell him off, 80% of the time he doesn't listen. We nudge him after we say off and then praise him when he hits the ground. That works 30% of the time. The other time when we nudge him he thinks its wrestling time! So he bites at our feet or keeps jumping on.

This dog is out of control with the biting. He made my wife cry again last night because hes way too powerful for her, shes a small thing. So when he bites me I can remove him from the situtation by the collar if he doesn't listen but if she tries to, he just overpowers her. So she gets fed up with it and really hates the dog the rest of the day.

There really is no difference with us. We each feed him once a day with NILIF. She walks him in the morning, I walk him at night. (She can't walk him anymore starting last week since he can pull her, we are going to use the prong this week so he doesn't pull anymore). Both do obedience, together and seperate.

He bites us both when we play but if we are doing nothing with him, he'll leave me alone but always still bug the **** out of her. If I sit down alone on the couch, he whines and leaves me alone. If she sits down, he bites and jumps up.

He doesn't do it to random people that come over my house. He's a freaking angel to new guests but my good friends whom are over once a week, he does the same to them.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Can I get a muzzle and then play on the ground with him, would he get the point after a bunch of sessions? lol
 

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If you don't want to be bothered by you pup, put him in a crate or Excercise pen. If you are telling your dog off, he is getting the attention he wants even though it is negative attention.

Before you and your wife want to settle down and watch TV, how much excercise has this young dog gotten? My dogs are always very happy to settle down at night because they are tired. Walking is not excercise for a GSD, running, playing two ball, running is excercise.

This is a training thing with the pup and your wife, the pup sees her as the weaker of you two and so has designated her as a lower playmate. She needs to step up, putting a muzzle on your dog is not needed. Size has nothing to do with getting dogs to listen to someone. My mom is only 5 ft tall, all of my dogs listen to her.
 

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I'm not putting him in a crate when I want to watch TV. I'm sure he can learn not to bother us when we are watching TV. Putting him in a crate isn't a solution. He may not be tired out everyday or properly trained in some aspects but even after obedience classes and loads of playtime with another dog, he will still come "bother" us if we sit down on the ground or on the couch in the same room. He won't pass up a play time.

As for the size. I know it has nothing to do with learning but what I said is that it's a big hazard and danger to my wife to handle him when he is OUT of control because he over powers her. When he gets in his biting fits where nothing will stop him from toys, to treats, to walks, to going outside. I have to physically move him to his crate. My wife cannot do that. She has to run into another room and shut the door. What kind of life is that? So until the dog IS under control, size is very much a problem.
 

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I see Lex is eight months, and I'm curious to know if this is still the nipping stage (cause I sort of hoped it would be over by eight months) so I am watching the responses to see if someone answers that question (hint-hint)
 

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Originally Posted By: wrennyI'm not putting him in a crate when I want to watch TV. I'm sure he can learn not to bother us when we are watching TV. Putting him in a crate isn't a solution. He may not be tired out everyday or properly trained in some aspects but even after obedience classes and loads of playtime with another dog, he will still come "bother" us if we sit down on the ground or on the couch in the same room. He won't pass up a play time.
I think you may find that indeed a crate IS part of the solution.

Successfully raising a puppy is mostly habit forming. Dogs are always learning, especially puppies. We must control their environment so they learn what we want them to learn, and don't learn what we don't want them to learn.

Crates are valuable because they prevent the dog from learning bad habits. You don't want him to "bother" you when you're watching TV. Yet you have a young dog who like all young dogs is extremely exhuberant and playful, has a lot of energy, and doesn't yet have a good degree of self control. Self control comes with maturity, life experience and training... all things a young dog is lacking.

Everytime he gets to "bother" you, it reinforces his behavior. You are allowing him to form a habit that you do not want. He can't "bother" you when he's in a crate. It prevents him from building a bad habit.

By doing this as you are, you're setting the pup up to fail. He isn't yet mentally capable of behaving as you want, and you're allowing him many opportunities to form a habitual behavioral pattern that you do not want.

Put him in a crate.

It is certainly a MUCH better solution than a muzzle. A muzzle may prevent injury to your wife, but it will not help instil in the pup the behavior that you want. It is a bandaid, not a cure. The only cure is to help the dog form good habits, and prevent him from forming bad ones. This will not be accomplished with a muzzle, but can only be accomplished by controlling the dog's environment so he learns the lessons you want him to learn. Also, a muzzle will cause the dog to build up frustration and anxiety, which will lead to even more out of control behavior.
 

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Wrenny,

To expand a bit on what Chris said above, proper interaction with a young powerful dog is KEY. You cannot properly interact and shape behavior and manners positively if you are so frustrated you want to scream or your wife has to be in another room. Please please PLEASE try this for the next few days...

1. When you get home, he needs exercise and a walk will not be enough. Get a 22-30 foot long line attached to a flat collar on him and drive him to a field that is fenced or far enough away from traffic. Get a ball launcher of some kind. I like this - http://www.leerburg.com/898.htm a go frr ball. It gets a ball out a good 30-40 yards. Once he has run out to get it, turn around, call him to you (with your come command) and then run in the opposite direction. When he gets to you give him a bite on another ball or tug. Repeat about 15 times. You are working on your recall command while "blowing out" all of that energy. This takes 10 minutes or so.

2. Then, take him for a wallk to clear his mind. Put the prong on him and let him self correct. Don't yank on him with the prong, but relax and enjoy a walk with him while being in control. This will take another 15 minutes or so.

3. Then, take 5-10 minutes and work on some OB with food rewards while he's hungry. Sits, downs, comes etc.

4. Now feed him.

This 30-35 minutes of time with him will even him out some. Then, when you finally get to relax for the night when he comes up to you ignore him. DO NOT PET, SCOLD, PUSH HIM OFF, NOTHING! The only way he gets any affection or attention is on your terms. When he contains himself and sits patiently in front of you, then you pet him with slow long strokes on his chest and sides. Calm voice, calm touching. If he ignores and keeps pestering you crate him. Start over in a half hour and try again. You deserve a life and the pup deserves calm proper interaction. Neither one of you can get what you need if you and your wife are frustrated all the time.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Okay, haven't fully read everything but I just wanted to say the muzzle post was a joke. I wasn't serious.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Is there a picture of a flat collar? That's not a regular collar right?

I have a 30ft line but I always have to untangle him. Is that the point of a flat collar to prevent that?
 

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I'm trying to think of a nearby field. The only place we go is the schools on the weekends but during the week that won't happen because there is always people there. We don't have open fields unless I drive about 20-30 minutes.

Still thinking though, I'm sure I can find something and try that routine.
 

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It's a bit easier now, because all of the soccer and baseball fields are not in use. In late spring, summer and early fall finding an open field gets really challenging because they are all in use. Think if you have any industrial parks or buildings by your home. I was able to find an open industrial lot about a mile away that gets mowed. I use that when the other fields are in use. You'll end up driving around looking for enough field - I did. But I think you will be surprised at how getting his tongue wagging and then a little mental stimulation afterward combined with feeding him will clear his head. It makes my male Diesel a completely different dog.
 

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Wrenny, I do have a suggestion for your wife.......I am not even 5 feet tall and can manage fosters that are well over 100lbs....it is attitude and confidence. It isnt about strength it is about the mental game. Have your wife practice NILIF with him, also, keep a lead on in the house. just a light line that can be stepped on or used as a light correction. And yes a crate is a great solution, I call it a time out and I use it quite a bit with younger dogs. Your wife CAN manage him, honestly, have her get on here and ask some questions herself. The one thing is to turn your nose up and look away when the behavior is bad and then praise when he settles and like John said....nice soothing strokes and goooooood booooyyyy drawn out and soothing voice. Your wife may even want to go to an obedience class with him, she may be amazed at what she could learn to control him.........you never know.......you may have to get another one
 

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Wrenny,
I sounds like you have a lively, energetic puppy that needs a lot of attention. I'm sitting here with a soon to be 10 & 13 yo. I'd love to have them pestering me to play again.

One thing I remember is a correctly implemented NILIF turns the most insistent puppy right around.
 

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And now a word from the Dark Side.
I don't believe that you have to have a dog wore slap out for it to be obedient. I don't know if you have one of the European turbo models but it sounds to me like you have a little pack placement problem. I didn't see anything that indicated there were any repercussions for Lex's disobedience. I'm guessing there is no response to the word. "NO!" If not, that can only mean that he's never heard the word or you haven't praised enough, or given enough treats, or clicked enough or ignored him enough. It could also mean that he is ignoring you.
If you allow him to ignore you when you are giving commands, he will ignore you. When they go through hardheaded stages and want to ignore me, I have found using what I call a mini-alpha roll is appropriate. I grab both of their cheeks and we get eye to eye. Don't let him look away. Tell him anything you want, but my favorite is, "I'm the boss, Got it?" They will come away with a different point of view. You will not warp their little pysche. There is nothing wrong with conveying to your dog that you are displeased with his behaviour. If you really want to see NILIF work, use it after this. When the alpha reads the riot act to a pack member, they don't talk and hug it out afterwards. He doesn't apologize.

If you can't bring yourself to do any of this, at least work on obedience that you can do. A down/stay is a down/stay no matter what the circumstances. You have to be able to control something with the dog. At 8 months, however, he's really just entering the fullblown knothead stage and shouldn't really be expected to have bulletproof obedience, IMO, but every little bit helps.
You will have to exert your alpha position on him to include SWMBO.
Just as you would with the dog and kids. There can be no doubt in his mind.
I must wrap this up because it's time for me to go torture my dog but I've also found that a correction that my dog doesn't associate with me is particularly effective. Just as when a puppy trips and falls and bangs his chin on something he doesn't get up and run away, maybe a small yelp, but he does settle down, becomes less rambunctious and doesn't blame me in the slightest. Mine loved to chew on my feet when I sat down to watch TV. Without a word from me, why once in while that shoe moved very quickly and unexpectedly and popped him right in the nose. He never even glanced up at me, he just stared at the shoe like, "Well ****, that's no fun. I'm gonna go do something else."
Now where did I put that whip......
 

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Discussion Starter #16
We both do obedience with him. Wife and I both have been to 6 week puppy socialization and 2 weeks in on regular obedience classes. He is the best pup when he is there. He's the best pup when he wants to listen.

He is a great pup 90% of the time. It's just when he gets in these moods that are so random that he won't listen to anyone.

I've definately been slacking with the outside playtime since it's winter and the snow just now melted from a huge storm so walking was a pain but we did that. Playing outside was another story. So once I find a good park or area, we will be fine.

The thing is I want my wife to do this with him so they can bond more. She doesn't get home until 6:30/7pm so I'll have to nag her to maybe wake up earlier and do some bonding with him in the morning.

Chris, I like the humor but I bet some people are gonna respond to you in a negative fashion. ;p I have no problem posting what I tried with Lex. The first step we did was redirecting to toys. Hes learned the "toy" command and when he bites, this works most of the time. The yelping and ignoring him never worked. He would follow us if we ignored him and keep biting. We've tried gently holding his mouth shut and telling him no bite but that doesn't work. I've never tried a full blown alpha roll and I'm not going to because any type of rough play he sees as more games. There has been a time when he got me outta no where and I socked him outta defensive reaction. I immediately went to apologize but it didn't phase him and he wanted to keep playing. Obviously that isn't a normal occurence.

Also during his biting stuff he always has his red rocket sticking out. Is that a dominant thing or just males have that when excited for any type of play?
 

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Chris you can absolutely put some pups under your thumb and just quash their exuberance. Yank them, roll them, kick them, and they will comply out of fear eventually. But, some pups are a combination of headstrong, energetic and confident who love the fight. Conflict is fun to them if you let it be. The exercise and training is not meant to make a good dog. It's meant to take the edge off of him in order to shape manners and proper behavior. In time, the exercise is not absolutely always necessary.

And any time you are available I would love to watch your "pop him in the nose" approach with my male Diesel. The result would be quite entertaining.
 

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I am going to say something that may seem a little not dog and a little...I don't know, not nice, but here it goes anyway!

There is something that I think Adler called the power of tears. BOTH your dog and your wife are getting attention here. Both have a need for attention and both need to get it when doing good. Do that and I bet you'll get some great results.

Not that what I am suggesting is easy for you to do, no, not at all! But keep that in the back of your head as you work on the dog...because it's not always all about the dog.
 

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Yes John,
You're on to me.
I relish the time I can spend beating my dog. Nothing is quite as satisfying as having Mack crawl up to me so that I can kick him. If I could just somehow find a way to keep his ears from sticking up and looking happy and perhaps make his tail tuck all of the time. The main problem is getting him to disobey enough to satisfy my lust for abusing animals.

And the idea that you have a Leerburg bloodline dog that would bite a stranger who hit him in the nose is indeed impressive.

"The only thing two trainers agree upon is that the third one is wrong." Unkn
 
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