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Old 09-17-2007, 11:23 AM   #1
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Default Frustration - Regression

I'm so frustrated with Minsc that I could scream. He's such a smart puppy and he's doing so well with his training but this dependence upon me is driving me nuts and he keeps regressing.

Last week I could put him in his crate in the morning and take a shower in the quiet. He might bark and whine a minute or two while I was in the shower but he shut up quick and he's been that way for a few weeks now.

Weekends are bad. If we leave him alone at all he barks and whines. Usually on the weekend we make plans to do something, anything to get out of the house so that he has to be alone a bit and that's been helping on Monday morning. This weekend he was with us all day Saturday. We took him to the range and he chilled out in his crate in the shade while we were shooting. I'd go over every now and then and if he was quiet, which was every time, I would give him a treat and if id had been a while get him out and walk him. After we got through shooting we had social hour and he was good there too. No jumping on people, no big bother at all. He did try to eat a few rocks but I got out some of his toys and he laid around and chewed on them for the most part. He was an angel dog all day.


Sunday someone stole my angel puppy and brought a demon back. He barked and whined all day. If I got two feet from him he barked and whined. He barked at the cats, I understand this part but he just wouldn't leave it alone at all, he barked while I was fixing his food. He barked when I put him in the fence even though I was in plain site, I was actually standing at the gate and he was sitting there whining and barking.

This morning I went to get in the shower and put him in his crate, he whined and yipped and whimpered for the entire 45 minutes that I was upstairs. Now that I'm back downstairs he is sleeping in his crate. (I have him there because it's time for me to get some work done and if he's out then he gets into stuff and I can't get anything done.) He also whined and whimpered for about 20 minutes after I put him in his crate last night. He hasn't done that in I don't know how long.

He gets walks, I walk him once if not twice a day, I mean a real get moving walk. He doesn't walk he moves on and even though I walk fast it's hard for me to keep up with his pace but I do. He also gets vigorous play time in the fence chasing a ball and playing chase etc.

Any ideas, suggestions, words of encouragement? Am I dealing with SA here or is it normal puppy stuff? We travel a lot and this puppy is going to be traveling with us. He's got to be able to be left in a hotel room by himself without barking his fool head off and whining and crying for a couple of hours every now and then. We purposefully got the puppy at the time that we did so that he would have time to settle in and get used to us and his crate and get house broke and all of that good stuff before we have to start traveling a lot again. If he's not going to be able to do that then he's going to have spend a lot of miserable time in a kennel and I really don't want to do that. I'll worry about him the entire time that I'm gone.

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Old 09-17-2007, 01:32 PM   #2
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I think this thread could help you:

How to: Ease separation anxiety in dogs

For the most part, I believe you're dealing with normal puppy behaviors that should improve with time & patience. Sammys are notorious for being very boisterous & no-bark training is often difficult.

Don't give in to the whimpers, whines, and barks while Minsc is in the crate. You'll just reinforce the behavior. You might try putting a cover over the crate to see if that helps keep the calm. Have you tried putting him inside with a treat-filled Kong toy?

The best advice I've seen on how to control a barker is to train a dog to "speak". If you can train your dog to "speak", you can more easily train your dog "no speak" once you've accomplished the word association.

Good luck. Pups can be frustrating. Hang in there. Most of these things are a function of youth & should be overcome with time & consistency.
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Old 09-18-2007, 09:05 AM   #3
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He's not really a big barker. He barks at the cats and he gets excited at feeding time. I can handle the play barks and I love it when he arooos. I don't like him barking at the cats because they are actually starting to get used to him and that puts them off a bit.


It's the whining at crying and yipping that gets on my nerves so bad. He doesn't do it when I'm in the room.


I'm going to try the exercises in the thread that you linked to. They can't hurt at all. In fact, I think that we'll skip school tonight and work on this.

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Old 09-18-2007, 09:12 AM   #4
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Oh, don't skip school. That's just as important. I hope the info in that thread helps. Good luck.
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Old 09-18-2007, 09:20 AM   #5
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We can make it up later in the week and I'll do some training on our walks today.

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Old 09-18-2007, 09:47 AM   #6
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Yeah two steps forward , one step back!
Remind me again how old Minsc is?
How much crate time is he getting, and when are you putting him in there? It sounds like he is developing a dislike of the crate for some reason which needs to be adressed, at least from the sounds of it.
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Old 09-18-2007, 10:30 AM   #7
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Minsc is 4 1/2 months old. He gets about an hour in the morning of crate time and then a couple of hours in the afternoon and then night time.


He seems to regress after the weekends when he spends less time in there. I think that part of the problem is that, since the weather has gotten cooler I have been leaving the front uncovered so that he can get more air because we have turned the AC off. His crate sits right in front of an AC vent and the back is usually open to the air coming from the vent and now I have a fan at the front. He may be a little warmer than usual too. Hot dog!

I have also been feeding him out in the yard, in the fence rather than in his crate every now and then. Going to stop that for now. I can live with im not being happy in the fence better than not being happy in his crate.


He's doing better today. Not as good as he was last week but better. Of course I turned the radio on this morning too. We had weened off of that.



He's never loved his crate but he always runs and jumps in there when I tell him to. He only barked about 5 minutes last night when we got ready to go to bed of course last week there was no barking.

Last edited by CountryGirl; 09-18-2007 at 11:02 AM..

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Old 09-18-2007, 10:59 AM   #8
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Ahh the joys and challenges of puppyhood. All pups regress a bit, some become more clingy others become more independent. I would give Minsc a kong stuffed with some yummy goodies while your in the shower getting ready for work.

I don't know if they still have these things called Buster Cubes but you could get one of those and fill it with some of his kibble so that he's challenge into trying to get the kibble out and forgets about being confined while you're busy with other things.

4-1/2 months is still that lovely clingy period where pups want to be with you and this phase will pass in time. Just be patient and you'll have your old Misnsc back :-)

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Old 09-18-2007, 11:03 AM   #9
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Thanks for all the advice y'all. It's great to have people that I can run this stuff by and get input back from.

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Old 09-19-2007, 08:29 AM   #10
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Well, we've caught back up I think. Not a sound when I put him in his crate last night and he slept from 11:30 until 7:00 when I got up and took him out then brought him back in and put him back in his crate until 7:45. I wanted a few more minutes of sleep.


He's started giving the cats a wide berth and every now and then I catch them touching noses, well him and Clint, the other inside cats growl at him when he gets that close but they are getting closer too. The outside cats pay him no never mind and I believe that Toez would cuddle up with him. He's a real attention hound, uh cat, anyway though.


He hung out in the fence last night by himself for at least a few minutes while I ran in and got a new dink or got him some water and even wandered off from the gate a time or two while waiting.

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