1st Time Dog Owner!

Discussion in 'Labrador behaviour' started by Josie Mit, Sep 9, 2019.

  1. Josie Mit

    Josie Mit Registered Users

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    Evening all,

    This is my first post on here and as the title says I am a first time dog owner! So, I have 2 children that begged for a dog for 2 years. I decided that I was ready for dog and thought it would complete our family. I adopted a 10 month old Lab. Now almost 11 months!

    So far what I know of Bruno is that he is a very loving and loyal dog with bags of personality and intelligent. Since being with me he has settled in very well, is pretty much following the rules around the house and follows commands and plays really well. I am so pleased I took the decision to rescue him.

    The main problem I have encountered with Bruno is being out on a lead walking. He is easier to walk now that I am using a harness but he just goes absolutely berserk when he sees another dog. Big ones, small ones! He barks like a madman. Now, I am nowhere near an expert on dog behaviour but his tail is wagging and I would like to think he is going berserk because he wants to play with the other dogs but I cant be sure. Tonight’s was the worst though, I am quite slim and it took all my strength to keep a grip on him whilst the other dog walked past with not one bark (hangs head in shame at this point)!

    Any words of advice/wisdom from you much more experienced doggy owners that would be fab! I’ve been lurking on this site now for 3 weeks trying to grab as much as I can to help me on my way.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Edp

    Edp Registered Users

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    Congratulations on your new addition, that’s wonderful. What a lucky dog. Best advice I can give you is get to an obedience class that trains positively. Training around distractions is the only thing that helped Meg and I. It was super hard work, but worth sticking at . She’s awesome now but at your dogs age she was a challenge. :)
     
  3. Ski-Patroller

    Ski-Patroller Cooper, Terminally Cute Forum Supporter

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    You are probably right that he just wants to meet and play with other dogs, but a wagging tail is not a guarantee of that. Look at the face, ears hackle and stance also. Having an experienced dog owner or trainer watch would probably sort it. If he does want to play it would be good to find some other young playful dogs his size. Do you have friends with similar dogs?
     
  4. Josie Mit

    Josie Mit Registered Users

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    Thankyou so much for your responses! Sometimes just hearing that others have been through the same and have come out of it the other side is enough to make you feel better about things! I am going to a dog school tomorrow night for a 1-1 session so hopefully that will help!

    I don’t have many friends with dogs but I have a couple although Bruno is bigger than they are. I am thinking about sending him to doggy day care aswell a day a week to ensure he gets more time socialising. Have you had any experience of doggy day cares? Do you think it would help?

    Thankyou
     
  5. Carys

    Carys Registered Users

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    I thought I would share my experience in the hope you don't feel alone.

    Cody was 14months when we got him. He is now 3.5 years.

    When we got him he didn't know how to lead walk. We got a behavourist in for a session to teach us to teach him. We had 1 further session.

    Despite his age we managed to get him on IMDT puppy training for 2 levels. He excelled in training but when we left the class he could easily revert.

    All really helpful though.

    However I have twice ended up at someone's feet!

    1st time i was half up a hill changing his lead over when he saw a dog behind me. Caused me be pulled down the hill back wards and end up at an 18 year olds feet flat on my back holding back tears. Cody couldnt have cared less.

    2nd time I ended up on my knees at someones feet as I skidded on wet grass.

    He is 35kg pure muscle and fit. I'm 8.5stone and slim (less fit).

    I laugh now but at the time I was mortified and black and blue.

    It gets better! We train on every walk. He has always been far better behaved in a group environment. He now only pulls towards big dogs he knows he is allowed to play with. Or owners he knows carry treats. I used to brace myself.

    Now i stand between them. Make him sit and hold his harness if I need to.

    He used to pull at anything and everything. Now i know the signs and it does make it easier.

    Recall is a whole different ball game.

    Goodluck! And don't be disheartened
     
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  6. Josie Mit

    Josie Mit Registered Users

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    Thank you so much! That really is reassuring!! I wasn’t quite prepared for the judging looks and embarrassment feeling that comes with your dog misbehaving!! I’ve started walking him earlier in the mornings and later at night to try and avoid bumping into too many people with their dogs! Probably not the right thing to do but it makes me feel better haha! Yep, I am waiting for the time that he actually has me over as it’s nearly happened a few times now! Sorry to hear it’s happened to you but also quite happy to hear it has.. makes me feel better haha!! I keep focusing on all his positives as he really is such a lovely dog! I’ve just got back in from capturing him after an escape through the front door, bouncing around all over the main road! Scared the life out of me! It really is like having a toddler!!

    I haven’t managed to get to the 121 session yet because I got out of work late but he’s at a trial on Tuesday for puppy day care... keep thinking he’s gonna bark like mad and unsettle the place and they won’t let him in! Has anyone any experience of doggy day cares?
     

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