I am in need of advice. I have a 7 1/2 month old tri-colored male pup (Ziggy) who has not had the same intensitiy of training as his older 'sister' who is 5 years old due to a variety of cirmcumstances. We got him in June and he is neutered and very kind in a lot of ways.
He has become very aggressive when you attempt to do anything regarding his feet! We are having a very wet day here in Colorado and when the dogs came in from their roaming I wanted to wipe those now black feet. He basically just went balistic. This has been a 'pet peeve" of his for a bit, but today was over the top.
Needless to say, I did not let him get away with it and amongst the snarling and gnashing of teeth, continued to wipe his feet and reprimand his bad behavior even though he did get me one time.
Do I continue to work with his feet in a variation of desensitzing him even if it means putting on a muzzle to keep from getting bitten? Is this just a part of that teenage defiant phase?
I know that this breed isn't very happy about their feet and I will admit that he has not had a routine of nail clipping at all. The last time they were done was when he was neutered in September and of course, he was under the influence of drugs.:)
Our girl ,Zoe,would NEVER even think of curling a lip at anything and this guy, while very submissive to her, has me a bit worried.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated as I don't want anyone to get bitten, especially my grandsons who are used to Zoe's great personality. That's one of the reasons that we added Ziggy to our family.Thanks so much.

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spend 15 mins each day with him and give him belly rubs, when he's flipped over on his back, he's more relaxed and the more you touch his feet without clipping or wiping, he'll get used to it eventually, takes practice :)
I'm no behaviorist but I'd suggest still persisting in wiping his feet but leaving off the scolding. It's probably just making him more nervous about what's going on.
Hi, wow, that is very sad that he is doing that! OK, what I would recommend is clicker training. Do you know anyone who does this? Basically you would either use a cricket clicker to "mark" good behavior, followed by a tiny treat. You must "load the clicker" first, at least the first few times that you try this, by just clicking and giving the "free" food. Do that about 20 times. Then what you want to do is reward him each time he makes some effort to allow you to touch his foot. This must be done slowly and over a period of time. It may not be a fast solution since he is obviously so freaked out by it. Sit on the floor (put his sister, Zoe, away so it's just you and him). Have the treats nearby. You can also use a word such as "yes" or "good" to use as the marker word. First, you will just look at his foot. Use the same foot to start with. "click" (or marker word) followed by a treat. You don't need to give the marker and the treat at exactly the same time. All the "click" or marker means is "that's what I wanted, good dog, end of behavior". Then try just putting your hand down on the floor kind of near his foot but not touching it. It may be close or far, depending on what he is comfortable with. Eventually you move closer and then eventually you will just touch his foot, every so lightly, all the time clicking and treating.
I like to use the diced ham they sell at WalMart. They are cut up about 1/8 of an inch wide and make the perfect treat for training. You can use cheerios or cheese or whatever you wish but make it a high value treat for a behavior such as this. The value of the treat has to overcome the fear he feels about his feet being touched.
You can find clickers jsut about anywhere nowadays. Is there a petsmart or some kind of store like that nearby? You can also Google "clicker trainers Colorado" and should come up with some names that can help you. Obedience training would be very good for this pup, to get him out and around and socialized.
I can add more if you want me to but don't want this to get too long. Good luck!
WalMart has clickers also. Pretty cheap
Clickers are great!!
Thank you all for the awesome suggestions. He is such a good pup otherwise, that this behavior really is saddening me. I will take all of your ideas into consideration and see what we can come up with. Even tho he has had quite a bit of socialization, I also think that it's time to get him into a puppy class. Thanks again. I'll keep you posted. I know that he will do just about anything for food (as most of our fur babies will)!

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