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Question
Posted by: MINI ME | 2004/01/21

DOG BEHAVIOUR

HI THERE - WONDERING IF YOU COULD HELP - I HAVE A 6 MONTH OLD MALE DOG - A RIDGEBACK - I DON'T KNOW HOW TO GET RID OF THE FOLLOWING :- HE BITES ALL THE TIME - HIS MOTHER IS ALSO WITH US AND THE WAY HE PLAYS WITH US IS LIKE WHEN HE PLAYS WITH HIS MOTHER - HE BITES HER AND GROWLS - LIKE PLAY FIGHTING - BUT I WANT TO STOP HIS BEHAVIOUR WITH US - ALSO HE CHEWS EVERYTHING - WE HAVE A BIKE OUTSIDE AND HE CHEWED THE SADDLE - HE CHEWS SHOES/INSULIN/SHAMPOO BOTTLES/DOOR STOPPERS - ANYTHING HE CAN GET HIS TEETH INTO HE DESTROYS - HOW CAN I STOP THIS AND WILL HE EVER GROW OUT OF IT - THE OTHER THING IS HE MESSES ON THE FLOOR AT NIGHT - AT THE MOMENT HE IS SLEEPING OUTSIDE IN HIS BED - AND ONLY BECAUSE EVERY MORNING WE WOKE UP TO A SURPRISE ON THE KITCHEN FLOOR - WHICH IS VERY UNHYGENIC - I AM WORRIED ABOUT WINTER NOW - WHEN IT GETS COLD AND WE LET HIM BACK IN THE HOUSE - HOW DO I STOP HIM FROM MESSING ON THE FLOOR - OR WILL HE GROW OUT OF IT WHEN HE GETS OLDER - I DO WANT TO TAKE MY PUPPY AND HIS MOTHER TO OBEDIENCE SCHOOLS BUT I CANNOT FIND ANY MENTION OF THEM - DO YOU KNOW OF ANY SCHOOLS IN THE NORTHERN SUBURBS IN CAPE TOWN - AND THE MOTHER PULLS ON THE LEASH WHEN I TAKE HER WALKING - HOW DO I STOP THIS - I AM WORRIED SHE IS GOING TO CHOKE HERSELF

SORRY ABOUT ALL THE QUESTIONS AND THANKS FOR YOUR HELP

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberVet

Hi MINI ME
First of all I would suggest you get your pup to training as soon as possible - you have already missed the puppy training age which would have helped with all these problems. Ask your vet or contact Karen Forsdick on 021 975 1580.
Biting: This is normal, but needs to be handled correctly to stop it becoming a habit. There are various ways to deal with this but the best thing to do is to play dead when he bites and as soon as he loosens his grip take your limb away slowly and ignore him. The more you react to it (e.g. smacking, shouting etc.) the worse it will get as he'll think it's a game.
Chewing: Get him lots of chewy toys like cowhooves, rawhide, pigs ears etc. When he chews something "illegal" then fetch one of his toys and replace it calmly. Again the more fuss you make the more likely he is to choose your things over his - more fun!
Messing at night: He will probably grow out of this, but to help the process try feeding him earlier in the evening, taking him for a good walk after that (at least 10 minutes outside your property on a lead), taking his water away after that and then going outside with him just before bed time. Let him out as soon as you get up in the morning. Reprimanding him in the morning won't help at all.
Pulling on lead: The easiest way is to buy a Mikki Walkrite harness (martingale harness) and a long lead (about 2m). You need to be aware of body language and when she pulls you must not jerk her or pull back, but simply change direction, dragging her with you. Walk with relaxed arms and don't look at her, but in the direction you are going. You can also simply stop walking every time she starts to pull. Wait until the lead slackens and then continue. She will soon work out that the walk only continues with a slack lead.
Karen Gray-Kilfoil
ANIMAL BEHAVIOURIST

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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