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Barking and Biting on walks

Discussion in 'Puppy Forum' started by VictoriaSonny, Nov 1, 2020.

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  1. VictoriaSonny

    VictoriaSonny Member Registered

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    Sonny’s recall is okay. Still needs a lot of practicing as he doesn’t come to heel or come back when called every single time. (He’s not even 4 months old so I’m not down about it.) HOWEVER, what’s getting me down is when we are out walking, he will have a personality switch and just start barking and attacking my legs and shoes. Biting hard and genuinely actually looks aggressive. He won’t listen to any commands, he won’t let me grab him to put him on the lead, he won’t do anything other than bark and bite. Today I actually had to kick him off me as his teeth were dug in my welly while he was growling. I shouted murder at him after the kick and he cowered into submission. Obviously this can’t be the way to control this. What do I do?
     
  2. JoanneF

    JoanneF Well-Known Member Registered

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    I know it looks and feels aggressive but I suspect he is trying to engage you in play. Can you try taking his favourite toy, and - importantly - before he starts doing this, get him to play with the toy instead?
     
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  3. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    It tends to be general overarousal - some dogs' brains go into overload easily, and they just don't know what to do with themselves. Have a read of this link, but do come back and ask if you have further questions: Jumping up/getting overexcited on walks
     
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  4. VictoriaSonny

    VictoriaSonny Member Registered

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    Every-time it’s happened it’s been in open spaces; field, and two parks. Bang on the money there. He has not done it walking down the high street on a lead. Thanks for the post, will give it a go of waiting it out.
     
  5. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    ... and do avoid those open spaces - the more you can stop it starting, as opposed to waiting it out when it does happen, the better.
     
  6. JacksDad

    JacksDad Active Member Registered

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    That is really the root of it all. he is still a baby. not matter how well he might be doing with some training and you should be proud of this successes (and yours), he still isn't trained and with a puppy there is A LOT to train.

    how far are you walking him?
    Are you focused on physical activity? Going for the theory "tired puppy is good puppy"?

    it is likely you are OVER stimulating him. Too much exercise. NOT ENOUGH mental stimulation. which as a puppy doesn't take much. allow more sniff time if you are overly focused on exercise.

    A common mistake with puppies is thinking you need to exercise, exercise, exercises. And exercise is important. BUT training also makes for a tired puppy that is also a calmer puppy. So for example, focus on walking without pulling, and focus on getting it right at the expense of distance. that work to "get it right" will also tire out a puppy just like physical exercise.

    a couple top reasons... he doesn't know the commands. you are asking for them in a context beyond his training. Or he is so over tired or over stimulated he can't respond correctly.

    we forget dogs do not come pre trained with all the skills and experiences we need them to have. Have you actually tried to train him to let you put on his lead? puppies start out compliant, and even when they don't like something many do not object initially. But as they get older, they do start to object and people think it is out of the blue. Older could be anything from 1 day to 1 week in this situation.

    What does moving the collar around his neck predict? what association with the experience has been created do to what it predicts? these are important questions to ask. answers are not complex or "deep". they are simple. hands moving toward head is an unpleasant experience. You might need to take it back a few steps and rebuild this skill.

    This kind of goes with the question above. I honestly do get that we too can be "triggered" by a dog putting their teeth on us. it can be unnerving so no judgement. BUT this experience goes into the "what does collar and lead predict" column. Which leads to it being just that much harder to accomplish the next time.

    So, what do you do? Answer is always train. But of course the devil is in the details.

    do you need tips for training how to put a collar on?
     
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  7. Jan Woodhall

    Jan Woodhall Active Member Registered

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    Hi, I have some difficulties with my 6/12 old puppy too! Don't despair! I think with mine it may spark from getting tired, getting over stimulated, excitement - if you eliminate all of those things, you might have a quieter, compliant puppy - so my thoughts are that I could get rid of the real dog, and by a stuffed toy -or I can quietly ride the storm which I am sure will pass given time! I too get frustrated = human trait sadly :( I have in desperation shouted at him - well screamed actually! This is only when he has lunged straight into the road taking me with him! Of course shouting does NOTHING! Well - actually it does it frightens him and exacerbates the behaviour! Again I am taken back to the stay calm bit! He will grow out of it! I am sure your puppy will do too! Best of luck.
     
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