Help with some behavior problems?

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Arika
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Help with some behavior problems?

Postby Arika » Sun Aug 12, 2007 11:13 pm

Okay, so our pit puppy, Bailey, is about 15 weeks, and I'm afraid that we're not training her correctly, because she doesn't seem to be catching on to some of our training.

One issue I have with her personally is that she likes to nip at me. She still chews on our hands occasionally and I find that completely unacceptable for a puppy of her age, but I don't know what we're doing wrong. But, me in particular.. she'll jump at me aggressively or nip at me in a mean way. She doesn't do that to my boyfriend, because I think she's scared of him.

She also begs. She'll sit on the floor and stare at us, barking occasionally.. we say "No!" Then, she'll jump up right next to us. Sometimes she'll lunge at the food in our hands and try to bite at it. I have no idea what to do about this behavior.

She's so nice to strangers.. she loves them. She gets all excited out on walks when unfamiliar people walk by. I've never, ever seen her even growl or nip at a stranger. So, why does she get nasty with me sometimes when I'm so nice to her and I'm the one who feeds her, gives her treats, etc.?

This is my first dog and I just don't want her to wind up being aggressive because we did something wrong with her. Any advice?

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picara
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Postby picara » Sun Aug 12, 2007 11:18 pm

Okay, 15 weeks. She's a wee baby still. Remember that. I think there's a sticky called "got a mouthy pup?" Read that. You don't want to over-correct the biting but rather you want her to practice bite inhibition. You can also start with NILIF, which is a sticky on this forum too. Don't be so "nice" to her, make her work for food, treats, etc. LOADS of information on this board, so relax and have fun. Start reading!

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Arika
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Postby Arika » Sun Aug 12, 2007 11:55 pm

Thanks Picara. I'll definitely check that out.. there's so much information on this forum, I didn't really know where to start.. but I'll look at those stickys you recommended.. thanks a lot!

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Postby hwillm1977 » Mon Aug 13, 2007 12:19 am

Marley used to do that to me too, not my bf, just me (he drew blood once biting my arm at a few weeks older than your pup, that's when I cracked down on him)

I took over EVERYTHING to do with him for a while, hand feeding his dinners to him (do a sit, get a few pieces of kibble, do a down, get a few more pieces, and so on until he had eaten his entire dinner from my hand and had to work for it), used NILF constantly, tethered him to my waist any time he was out, he lost all freedoms and fun stuff for quite a while...

Fast forward to now: both dogs listen better to me than my bf now :thumbsup:

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Postby meginok » Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:14 am

NILIF is a GREAT place to start, and the mouthy pup sticky sounds like a good piece for you to read, as well.

NILIF was a big part of being able to bring a second dog into my home, and with two bit hyper goofy mutts to manage, NILIF has helped us put rules in place that make life much more enjoyable and SAFER for everyone. For example, my dogs don't rush out the doors, they know to sit and wait. They don't just jump out of our boat when we pull to shore, or our vehicles when we open the door.

While mine are a far cry from perfect little doggy angels, NILIF is PRICELESS in helping us maintain some order and respect in the household.

Good luck! And remember to take a deep breath, and know she's pretty "normal" for a puppy.

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izapitty
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Read Sticky

Postby izapitty » Mon Aug 13, 2007 3:00 pm

There is a sticky that is titled "So you got a Mouthy Puppy" this is an EXCELLENT article and should be re-read. Mouthieness in a pup is a great educator, they are exploring thier world with thier mouth and NOW is the time to instill in the DOG just how sensative our human flesh is.

:peace:

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Postby Kingsgurl » Mon Aug 13, 2007 10:35 pm

You take her outside to meet strangers in DENVER, CO? Did you ever look into the laws in your town like was suggested to you? It is NO JOKE. They can and they will come right into your house and take your dog.

I think the pup has pegged you as 'soft' already. Puppies and dogs should EARN praise, treats, toys. They like to have structure. Rather than seeing you as benevolent, she sees you as a source of free goodies, goodies she can demand on a whim. The mouthy puppy sticky is a great place to start, and, as was already suggested, start practicing NILF (nothing in life is free) Simple things like making her sit to eat make a huge difference

Good luck

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Re: Help with some behavior problems?

Postby Julie K » Mon Aug 13, 2007 11:48 pm

Arika wrote:Okay, so our pit puppy, Bailey, is about 15 weeks, and I'm afraid that we're not training her correctly, because she doesn't seem to be catching on to some of our training.

One issue I have with her personally is that she likes to nip at me. She still chews on our hands occasionally and I find that completely unacceptable for a puppy of her age, but I don't know what we're doing wrong. But, me in particular.. she'll jump at me aggressively or nip at me in a mean way. She doesn't do that to my boyfriend, because I think she's scared of him.

She also begs. She'll sit on the floor and stare at us, barking occasionally.. we say "No!" Then, she'll jump up right next to us. Sometimes she'll lunge at the food in our hands and try to bite at it. I have no idea what to do about this behavior.

She's so nice to strangers.. she loves them. She gets all excited out on walks when unfamiliar people walk by. I've never, ever seen her even growl or nip at a stranger. So, why does she get nasty with me sometimes when I'm so nice to her and I'm the one who feeds her, gives her treats, etc.?

This is my first dog and I just don't want her to wind up being aggressive because we did something wrong with her. Any advice?


Hi Arika,
I invite you to try reading the bridge and target thread and its sticky here in the training section.
Your puppy is still very young. She needs to learn to use her mouth appropriately, not be inhibited from using it altogether. It is her main tool, the equivalent of our hands. You can teach her about it and teach her bite inhibition at this age.
It's not good for a pup to be scared of people, there are other ways of dealing with behavior besides giving verbal or physical negatives. She needs to learn appropriate alternative behaviors, and in fact, sitting and staring is not a bad behavior to foster, since it beats jumping at you. Reinforce it!
She's not being nasty to you, she's playing as she would play with another puppy.
Consider taking her to an obedience training class where you will learn how to teach her and be in a supportive group.
Julie K

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Arika
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Postby Arika » Tue Aug 14, 2007 2:01 am

Kingsgurl wrote:You take her outside to meet strangers in DENVER, CO? Did you ever look into the laws in your town like was suggested to you? It is NO JOKE. They can and they will come right into your house and take your dog.


I sure did look into those laws and I've also talked to several other people with pit bulls in my area.. one person has three older pits who have lived here all of their lives and takes them out all the time. You'd be surprised at how many people are pit bull owners here and how little of them have gotten in trouble for it. I think it was something like four dogs that were confiscated since the ban was set and these were a result of attacks due to poor training. It's kind of necessary that we take Bailey out to use the bathroom and people walk by all the time, there's really no way of avoiding it. I understand that we have to use caution with her more so than in other areas, but we do all that we can to protect her short of locking her inside 24/7- we even tell people she is a different breed.

Fortunately, we are moving to Pennsylvania very soon where there will be absolutely no chance of Bailey being discriminated against.

I realize that it may have been a poor decision to take in a pit bull when there are laws against it, but the way I look at it is.. if not me, who? Maybe some owner who just wanted her for some kind of image.. who would mistreat her and make her angry and violent. I admire pit bulls, because I think they are beautiful and intelligent. If she wasn't with me right now, she'd just be with someone else in Denver. And I'm sure most of you know it's hard to turn away from a puppy after you've already fallen in love with them. At least I can get her away from this city soon.

Thanks for your comment, I really appreciate you looking out for my dog and I.

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Postby merriterrier » Tue Aug 14, 2007 8:07 pm

NILF is a great place to start.

I just wanted to mention about Denver, Your pup might be safe now, but when she gets bigger watch out. Some friends of mine lost their PB to AC when another "friend" called AC while they were having a disagreement. Their next PB got it when they had a noise complaint (not the brightest people). Just be careful.

I think it was something like four dogs that were confiscated since the ban was set and these were a result of attacks due to poor training.


Actually something like 1500+ dogs have been confiscated and euthanized (many of them little puppies), and many more have been confiscated and exiled/rehomed. I saw a picture the other day of one days worth of PB executions from Denver AC; a whole whopping pile crybaby . I know first hand that even a pit bull with her CGC, TT, and TDI can be taken from her home by a bunch of AC Nazis. Not to be mean or anything, but the threat is very real, and your denial is endangering your dog.

Are you a member of the The Pit Bull BAND? It is a Denver group fighting BSL. Check out their yahoo group (ThePitBullBAND). If you do get in trouble they know how to help.

Sorry to go off topic. Hijack is over.

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Arika
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Postby Arika » Fri Aug 17, 2007 12:52 am

Wow.. I guess someone gave me some wrong information.

Thanks for that.. and I will look into The Pit Bull BAND. Thanks a lot, I appreciate it.

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Postby Kingsgurl » Fri Aug 17, 2007 1:24 am

I'm glad you are moving. Denver BSL is NO JOKE. I would not live in a town ruled by crazy people like Kory Nelson. Scary, scary man.

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Postby crazy4pits » Fri Aug 17, 2007 3:09 am

Off topic but where are you moving too in PA?

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Arika
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Postby Arika » Fri May 23, 2008 1:59 am

I just wanted to give an update.. I know it's been a long time since I've been on the site.. but since, we've moved to PA [in December] and Bailey is safe, but we are having a hard time finding an apartment that accepts her.

Crazy4pits, we live in the Lehigh Valley [Allentown area].

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Postby merriterrier » Fri May 23, 2008 4:09 pm

Good Luck with apartment finding!!

Glad to hear Bailey is safe!


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