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Puppy barking when we eat

Discussion in 'Puppy Forum' started by Sean~~, Dec 29, 2019.

  1. Sean~~

    Sean~~ New Member Registered

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    Hi.

    Our puppy , who is 4 months old , barks when we have our meals. Obviously this is unacceptable but realise he is our little baby and is still so young!
    It is really hard not to give in to him and give him some little treats. I have read that we should give him one of his own treats to eat and then I have read that this isn’t the correct thing to do?!
    Also, is it right that the humans should eat first then our puppy in order to establish leadership?
    He is a little Italian Greyhound.
    Thanks everyone
     
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  3. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    No - that's old-money thinking (does that phrase make sense to US members?) with no scientific basis. If he has a full tum when you eat, he's less likely to whine, so feel free to feed him before you eat if it suits you.

    You need to be 100% consistent and never feed him from the table. If he gets a treat one time in a hundred, then he'll think it worth the effort of whining because it should, eventually, work.... You could give him his own treat while you're eating, but it would have to be a long-lasting chew or bone, or he'll just eat it and get back to whining.

    I would give him a comfortable alternative place to be, and teach him a good 'settle'. You might want to shut him out of the kitchen behind a stairgate, or it might work as well for you if he has a bed in the kitchen (if there's room). For now, keep mealtimes as short as possible.

    My dog gets plates to lick when we've finished and waits quietly till he hears our knives and forks hit the plate, then he's ready and waiting! But there might be a better chance of success if he doesn't have any expectations of good things, and leftovers are either thrown or saved to give to him another time.
     
  4. Sean~~

    Sean~~ New Member Registered

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    Thank you for the response.

    we have a conservatory that we could put him in , would that be acceptable? He has a bed in there and toys etc , plus his pee pad. He is used to staying in there when we go out.
    I guess the key is not to give him anything when he starts barking as that would mean he has been successful.
     
  5. JoanneF

    JoanneF Well-Known Member Registered

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    The word leadership has become a bit confused in dog behaviour terms. Yes, you want your dog to look to you for guidance but eating before he does won't create that. It's more of a dominance thing, but as Judy says, ideas like that and making sure you go through doors before him have been widely discredited. Sadly some old fashioned trainers still insist on sticking to them even though the ”pack leadership” theory has been shown to be based on flawed conclusions from poorly based observations. It's the flat earth theory of dog training! If you are interested you can read more here.

    Debunking the "Alpha Dog" Theory - Whole Dog Journal
     
  6. Sean~~

    Sean~~ New Member Registered

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    Thank you! I don’t like the idea of being dominant but I appreciate that there must be some “rules”. I’m afraid I’m not the best person because I just want him to be happy.
     
  7. JoanneF

    JoanneF Well-Known Member Registered

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    I was writing my reply while your one posted.

    A couple of things - I agree not to give him anything when he barks in this instance but remember barking for your attention may sometimes need you to respond. You aren't rewarding the bark, you are responding to a need - maybe he will have identified something he thinks you need to know about. Or maybe he feels nervous or anxious and needs you to be there for him.

    Of course there are rules, like don't bark or beg while you eat. And where in the house you allow or prevent him to go. But while he learns the rules, you are his teacher.

    I just wanted to pick up on the puppy pad though - these have their place for dogs who cannot go outside (usually very old or sick ones) but for puppies they teach them that toileting indoors is allowed, and that's not usually what people want. Is there a reason you can't toilet train him outside?
     
  8. Sean~~

    Sean~~ New Member Registered

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  9. Sean~~

    Sean~~ New Member Registered

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    We put the pee pad in the conservatory for the rare occasions one of us aren’t at home and also he won’t go out of the weather is bad , mainly wet or cold. Living in Lincolnshire those two things happen a lot. Maybe it’s a bad idea and having the opposite effect?
     
  10. JoanneF

    JoanneF Well-Known Member Registered

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    It will certainly slow toilet training because he is getting mixed messages. How is toilet training going - do you need any tips (apart from get a big umbrella ;))
     
  11. Sean~~

    Sean~~ New Member Registered

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    He won’t go for a wee or poo when we manage to get him outside for a walk.
    He is very reluctant to venture outside if he thinks the weather is bad!
    I think what you have said about the pee pad is correct and could most likely slowing things down.
    Thank you so much for everyone helping here!
     
  12. JoanneF

    JoanneF Well-Known Member Registered

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    Toilet training happens when two things come together - the ABILITY to hold the toilet, along with the DESIRE to hold it in order to earn the reward for doing so. Ideally you want him to not be in a position where he needs to toilet before you have him outdoors, so that every toilet is outside - as far as possible, there will be accidents! So set him up to succeed by taking him out even more than he needs; for example every 45 minutes to an hour and always after sleeping, eating, playing. The time between a puppy realising they need to toilet, and being unable to hold that toilet, is zero. So your aim is to have him outside before he can't help himself. When he toilets outdoors make a huge fuss (never mind the neighbours, act like outdoor toileting is the best thing you have ever seen) and reward him with a high value treat. Do that immediately, don't make him come to you for the treat so he is clear that it's for toileting and not for coming to you. The idea is that he eventually wants to earn the treat enough to hold the toilet until he is outside - once he is physically able to control his toileting obviously. As he is actually performing the toilet you can introduce words he can associate with it (like 'do weewee' and 'busy busy') that later when he is reliably trained you can use these to tell him when you want him to toilet. If you take him out and he doesn't toilet after five minutes, bring him in but don't take your eyes off him. Any hint of a toilet inside, scoop him up and get him out fast. If he doesn't try to toilet indoors (great!) take him out a second time and repeat until you do get outside toilets. You need the outside toilet to happen SO that you can reward SO that he learns. If he has an accident inside don't react at all. If you get annoyed he may learn to fear your reaction and avoid you if he needs to toilet - the opposite of what you want. Dogs cant make the distinction between you being annoyed at him TOILETING, as opposed to toileting INDOORS. Take a rolled up newspaper and hit yourself over the head for not having taken him outside in time. Not when he is there though in case you scare him. Then clean the area with an enzymatic cleaner to remove any trace of smell that might attract him back to the spot. Indoors if you see him circling or scratching the floor, that can sometimes precede toileting so get him out fast. Overnight he is unlikely to be able to control his toilet as his little bladder and bowel are underdeveloped and not strong enough to hold all night so set your alarm to take him out at least once if not twice during the night.
     
  13. JudyN

    JudyN Moderator Moderator Registered

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    I interpret the 'leader' thing as convincing the dog that everything you suggest the dog should do is a really good idea, till doing what you ask becomes a habit (even if it's 'stop eating that cow poo and come here now').
     
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  14. DixD

    DixD Guest

    50D8F534-B929-483B-908D-1638666BF819.jpeg I think it depends on the dogs you’ve got, and your connection with them. My little dog has his very own chair at the table, and gets little bits and pieces. He’s very polite, and just sits patiently. The big dog lies beside us, and if the wee one gets a titbit, he gets one too. Works for us, probably because we’re used to being very consistent in their day to day interactions with us, stemming from agility and obedience experience, and our recognition of consistent handling and routine creating a stable environment. That’s. My theory anyway. I might just have fantastic dogs, not that I am biased!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 29, 2019
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  15. Ari_RR

    Ari_RR Well-Known Member Registered

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    Eating first, before the puppy eats, in order to establish leadership - nonsense IMHO, :)
    :D Love this! Wouldn't work with our boy, at least not yet - being polite and patient are not among his strong points - but love this, a wonderful visual in my head!
     
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  16. DixD

    DixD Guest

    I found puppy pads a great boon. Our small dog was unable to get out for a month as a baby, due to heavy snowfall which lay for ages. Once he could get out and about, it sorted itself out pretty easily. I think timing’s pretty important, like babies. And I seem to remember there’s some kind of timing ratio for bladder fullness in relation to pup’s age. Once a pup is fed, it usually needs to go out. We had a lurcher that was like that his whole life!
     
  17. Mad Murphy

    Mad Murphy Well-Known Member Registered

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    When George arrived and years ago Benny they were awful at begging Benny actually jumped onto the dining table while we were eating.. George would drool and if I even made a cup of tea he would be sitting drooling in the kitchen. Both of them had been given table scraps as part of their daily diet and so they were used to the idea that humans preparing food meant they had a chance of getting something.

    With both Benny and now with George proper regular eating times plus no food from the table resulted in dogs who were/are still interested about our food but not active in begging. George doesnt even bother coming over to the table when we eat now and thats only a few months of being consistant in his feeding pattern.
    As for the idea of humans eating first etc .. fooey thats just old macho rubbish. My dogs always eat before us and then they have nice full tums when we eat ...
     
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  18. Rinkydinkydo

    Rinkydinkydo Active Member Registered

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    I just look at mine,wave and say 'bye' and off they go. That is if I want them to do one.
    On the other hand,being single I dont use the kitchen table very often so the dogs come in handy. Better than any Dyson and they don't miss a single crumb.
     
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  19. Biker John

    Biker John Well-Known Member Registered

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    We always saved a small bit for the dogs, (made quite a diet for me when we had five), then when the plate was taken away they got theirs. They all have been well behaved, not begging but rushing into the kitchen at the end. Even Folly my Whippet does not try to steal anything from my plate, and as she is a natural complete thief that's saying something. But agree with the cleaning, if any crumb is dropped it is cleaned up without need of a vac.
     
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  20. DixD

    DixD Guest

    It seems to me, from my dogs, that routine in their lives is the most important thing. They know the routine of out in garden first thing in the morning; before we leave them fir any reason; before they go to bed at night. With puppies, due to less bladder control, the routine needs to be more frequent.

    The other thing is being treated for “going” helps, A bit like a barter system. ;) Dogs can be trained to do the strangest things, going to the loo will happen naturally, and it’s a matter of catching and rewarding it.

    If you’re anxious about it, too, it’s liable to inhibit the pup, as well.

    I think dogs are pretty clever and, like us, can differentiate different circumstances. In the States, the breed of little dog I have is often termed an apartment dog. They love interacting, are as active indoors as outside, and can be toilet trained indoors and out. They are a bit like cats, and love to watch the world go by from the back of a sofa.
     
  21. Sean~~

    Sean~~ New Member Registered

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    Thank you for your help everyone. Our baby is a bit older now and is doing well with his potty training, a few accidents now and again indoors but that is to be expected.
     
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