I sooo love my little Mr Gatsby - he's sweet and loving, cuddly (when he decides to sit still for 10 seconds) and as cute as it's possible to be but...
He's a little heathen :-(
I don't blame him, it's our fault. Our first dog was so easy, she learned quickly and has always been pretty mellow and easy-going. Gatsby, on the other hand, is exactly the opposite. He took until 5 months old to be potty trained (which, thank goodness, he's finally really good at). but everything else is completely eluding us.
My daughter trained him to sit & lay, but he will only do it for her :-( and since she's crazy busy now with school and sports, I guess I'm going to have to step in and get him trained before he makes me lose my mind.
Right now, our biggest problem is that he and our (formerly couch potato) other dog (chi/terrier mix), chase each other through the house with very loud, aggressive play every morning and night - it's making us crazy (they'll chase each other at top speed through the house, over our laps, knocking coffee out of our hands, you name it). I try to get them to stop and even our formerly well behaved dog will not listen because they're having too much fun.
What's the best way to get the two to leave each other alone - I've resorted to leashing Gatsby every morning and evening during their "crazy hours" just to keep the peace, but holy, moly that's a pain and the other dog just teases him right out of leash reach so all it's stopping is the actual chasing.
Any suggestions before I lose my mind?
hahaha! It sounds like my two. I think you have to let them have some fun time, but somehow establish time when they need to settle down. You could put them in crates, but that won't really teach them. I haven't been successful with mine, so I don't have good advise, but it sounds familiar!
Glad I'm not alone ;-) Sometimes it gets to the point where the little one will just taunt Gatsby on the leash so unmercifully that one does have to be crated for a little bit.
Do you have a fenced yard? That's when I'd put them outside to work off their energy.
We do, but whenever they're outside the smaller dog (who is nosy and a busy-body) will find something to bark at and stop playing to bark - which means they're coming inside (I'm pretty picky about not letting them be outside barking out of respect to the neighbors).
You're right about respecting the neighbors, you'd be surprised at how many are insensitive to that issue. If I were in your shoes, I would approach it on 3 fronts. 1) I would confine the smaller dog at those times you speak of, preferably by crating him. 2) I would make sure the dogs were both exercised (meaning a good walk) to use up the energy in a good way. If you cannot walk them together, at least walk the younger one. 3) I would enroll the pup in an obedience training class, where positive methods are used, so he can learn to listen to you and not just your daughter, even in the presence of other dogs. The skills you learn with him will also help you control the home situation when the two get into it. They have to learn to respect you and you need to learn how to get the respect of those two little rascals.
Thanks, great ideas! :-)
Well, after a little more thought, I do have some small suggestions. Do your pups play fetch? Can you take them outside and throw the ball about 50 to 100 times (just kidding) to wear them out chasing it? I can play fetch with mine separately, but if I try to throw the ball when they are together, it becomes a game of keep away between them. This also serves to wear them out, but weakens the retrieving ability, which is something I want to maintain in my pups. So, anyhoo... I sometimes play fetch or frisbee with my guys to give them some excersize when I can't take them for a walk. They love it.
The other thing is just getting your new pup to 'work' for you. You'll probably have to put the other in a crate while you do some training sessions. I have to with my two. Try some simple trick training - sit, down, shake, rollover, etc. You can go on-line and get some great ideas. Kikopup or Zac George are two trainers to check out. If you work with them for just 15 minute sessions it will wear their little minds out and they will act calmer.... maybe. haha. not always. Good luck!
Gatsby will fetch, the older (little) one will not have anything to do with a toy (unless, of course, Gatsby has it :/ ) Fetch is a great alternative to a walk when I can't get out, my daughter could do that with him - love the idea! :-) I am definitely going to start working on training with Gatsby myself - hopefully with all the great ideas everyone has we can get him to be a bit more "civilized" lol! :-)
I was not aware that fetch was not okay - he loves it! I will try to keep it "light". Thanks
"Heathen"! LOL! That is definitely going to be the name of the next dog!
Take heart (...i guess...): at 9 months a dog is a teenager. Some of the zing will wear off in time.
Cassie and Ruby (Cassie is pushing 10 years) fly around the backyard like rockets. Probably because of Cassie's sedate age, this doesn't go on forever. They don't bark at each other, but they DO bark at every bum who stumbles past the back gate (we have a lot of those) and at passing children, cats, birds, coyotes, and ghosts. I don't let them stand out there and yap, for the same reason you mention: my neighbors are already crazy enough without our helping them out. :-o
They're pretty well trained, now, to knock it off when I holler "QUIET" or "KNOCK THAT OFF." The fetch game is pretty good for running off energy, except that Cassie will fetch obsessively and Ruby will not fetch at all. Have you tried agility training? You can set up some of the equipment in the yard and have them work out on that (after you've taken classes to learn how). This is an effective zing-runner-off, and it has the advantage of training the dog to focus on specific activities, which seems to have a calming effect.
Also, if your house has sturdy eaves, you might try installing a strong hook in the woodwork. Tie a sturdy toy to a lengthy of cotton clothesline, and hang this from the hook. Give it a swing in front of the dogs, and they'll usually have a great time wrestling back and forth with that: doggie tether ball! Some dogs actually will play with a real tether ball. It's a project to install such a thing, though...I found the rafter gambit is effective and they'll play with a swinging toy for quite a whille.
The shenanigans may taper off on their own, though, with age. Most puppies calm down after two or three years.
lol!! That would be a cute name ;-)
He is definitely a teenager so I'm hoping in the next couple of years his un-exhaustible energy wears down more than a bit. Gatsby isn't a barker (thank goondness) unless, of course something in the house has been moved and then he feels it is his corgi duty to make us fully aware of it lol!! The little Chi is the nosy-body barker and also barks at the same things yours barks at (and more).
I have not tried agility training of any kind - will definitely check into it.
The ball thing is a fun idea - will look into it :-)
I'm also thinking that I remember our smaller dog took a couple of years to really calm down, but dh has selective memory about that (she's his baby).
Thanks for the advice!!! :-)