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Old 08-26-2006, 06:10 PM   #1
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Default Pup causing havoc!

Hi all, i need some advice please.
My little lab pup, Sonny, is 12 weeks old and has a facination with collars, not his own, but other animals!
when out on walks he keeps attaching himself to my older dogs (Emma)collar and will just walk along gumming it! he also does this with my 5 month old kittys collar, to the extent that he drags him around the house by his collar.
the kitten (James) and Emma dont mind at all but obviously its behaviour I dont want to encourage and Id quite like it to stop.
Also he chases James constantly, around the house and garden and I keep calling him back, if he doesnt come, although most of the time he does, I go and get him, tell him 'no' and to 'sit' then wait til he has settled down (whilst holding his collar) say 'good boy' and let go of his collar, sometimes if James has left the room/garden he will settle or find something else to do, but if James is still around or comes into the room again it will start all over again!
I've been doing this consistently but dont see any let-up. What am I doing wrong?

When he is very naughty and literally will not stop chasing James I get cross and say 'very bad boy' He looks sad like he has let me down but then the temptation is too great and off he goes again, with me following behind calling him back.
its exhausting! The thing is James will come to him and start of a play thing and sometimes they just sort of wrestle together on the floor.
Im not too worried about them playing but, sometimes through the night they are under the bed chasing each other and its impossible to sleep.

Sorry for the long post,
any suggestions would be great!

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Old 08-27-2006, 12:45 AM   #2
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Firstly congratulations of your little lab. I think there are a few things you can do which should help:

Firstly, at night as pup is so young it may be a good idea to confine him to an area where he is separated from the cat. If you all sleep in one bedroom you could crate him overnight so that he learns that it is not playtime.

Secondly, working on some basic obedience training with pup will help you manage the situation when you want the chasing to stop. For example training a good recall so that he always comes back when you call means the cat chasing ends. I also think that training a 'leave' or 'drop' cue might be really useful as far as the collar chewing goes. You pup won't learn these things when he is in the middle of a fun cat chase, you will need to put quiet one-one-one time aside to work at forming good habits so that obeying your requests becomes second nature even when there are distractions. Are you feeding him dry food? If so, skip one meal entirely and use the food throughout the day to reinforce his training. Leave the food somewhere you can easily grab it so that every time you ask him to 'come' or 'sit' etc he can earn some of his dinner. The benefit of this is that your puppy will very quickly become much more 'tuned in' to you and getting his attention in distracting situations will be easier.

If you haven't already joined a training class this would be a great opportunity to practice his new talents in a distracting environment - if he can focus on what you are asking him to do with many other puppies around, you should have no trouble distracting him from the other animals at home when you need to.

Thirdly, just like a small child it is often a good idea to direct his behaviour towards a more acceptable activity. So instead of calling him away from chasing the cat and ending his fun, you could try calling him away and having a game with his favourite squeeky toy or giving him a kong stuffed with something yummy.

Would love to hear how you get on.

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