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  #1  
Old 08-12-2008, 03:58 PM
roxy'smom roxy'smom is offline
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Exclamation 7 week old puppy growling at strangers

I just got a 7 week old miniature schnauzer on Saturday. She has been ok with my kids, but was nervous the first day. I assumed it was because of the stress of a new home. She is still nervous with strangers and will shake and hide behind my feet. Then today the neighbor's little girl came over to play and Roxy (my puppy) did not like it!!! She would not stop growling at her and eventually ran in to her crate and wouldn't come out. The strangest part is that she met her yesterday and was fine, just a little shaking but let her pet her and everything with no problems. I don't know what to do because I was under the impression that this is abnormal behavior for this breed. I will say that I was not happy with the breeder and the way they were caring for her so I don't know if something happened to her there or not. I just don't know how to go about correcting this behavior. I don't want her to be nervous or scared around people, especially children! I don't know what to do. Please help!!!!!!

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Old 08-12-2008, 04:12 PM
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For future reference if you don't like a breeder don't get their dogs, the last thing you want is to pay to keep a bad breeder in business

The breeder does sound like she did not socialize the pups at all. I would simply make sure the pups meets TONS of people but at a pace she is comfortable with. Have a person over every day (different people including kids and older people) and simply have them sit down near the pup and offer a treat. If the pup seems okay let them pet him for a short time and then stop. The pup is simply afraid of people, she has probably never met them so they are new and potentially dangerous, she is trying to protect herself from something she sees as a threat. It's important not to push her though, if she is afraid don't allow the person to continue petting, the idea is to make petting fun and pleasant, if you allow her to experience a large amount of fear during petting it will make things worse. Watch for signs she is uncomfortable and have the person stop before the dog growls. Also have people avoid petting on top of the head, most dogs, especially small dogs, don't like that. You should be able to fix what the breeder did to her, but please get on top of this, fear can become quite dangerous if not worked through early on. Welcome to the forum and good luck! please update us on her progress so we can help you if you have any problems or questions along the way.
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Old 08-12-2008, 04:16 PM
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Yikes ... then why did you buy her ! People make mistakes , so I won't flame you !!! If you don't have it , I would recommend that you buy the book " How to raise a puppy you can live with " And start with week one doing what the " breeder " should have done from day one . Week 8 is the fear week , so go slowly !!! Good luck ! A seven week old should not show ANY aggression toward kids or people . Let us know !!! ( Would appreciate knowing what your red flag was about the breeder ....may help other lurkers ! )
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Old 08-12-2008, 04:21 PM
roxy'smom roxy'smom is offline
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I didn't like the breeder because she had the puppies outside and they had fleas. I know that buying from a breeder that you don't like is just keeping them in business, but I sort of felt like I was rescuing her at that point. I am thinking of reporting the breeder though, because I think she just put the puppies outside and completely ignored them because she is not used to people. She is fine with me and my family, but any neighbors that come over she is nervous about. I have to add that this is the first time she has growled at anyone though. Thanks for the advice, but please don't make me feel horrible about getting the dog. That is not why I came here.
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Old 08-12-2008, 04:23 PM
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Nothing to add the Maxy's great post except to caution you to be extra careful as in the next few days your pup will be entering her first fear period.

Be sure never to correct her for growling but rather use the growl as information about what is making this baby so uncomfortable.

During this first fear period (approx. 8-11 weeks of age), it is CRITICAL that have only positive experiences with lots of sounds, sights, people..within the restrictions of exposure (immunization). Good Luck.


http://www.siriuspup.com/pdfs/BEFOREtextonly.pdf

EDIT - Forgot to add this great link....lots of information!!
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Old 08-12-2008, 04:27 PM
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I agree with Maxy24 on the socialization. Seven weeks old is extremely young and I wouldn't worry too much that this behavior will be permanent. Just take it slowly. Be the leader and it will help alleviate her fear. Introduce her to sights, sounds, surfaces, but don't overwhelm her. After she has had her vaccinations find a puppy class so she can play with other pups and they will teach her proper, friendly behavior.

Make sure that your kids do not overwhelm her either. If you have a playpen or pen she can play in there while still seeing your children. They can see her without overwhelming her.

Here is a list of socialization situations that you can introduce your pup to during the next six months or so: http://loveyourdog.com/fieldtrips.html
and some guidance for your pup's first year:http://loveyourdog.com/firstyear.html
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Old 08-12-2008, 04:44 PM
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Please don't let any negative posts bother you ! What's done is done and you are wise to look for help !!
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Old 08-12-2008, 04:47 PM
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Great advice from Maxy and Dr..

If your breeder is registered with the breed club that is who I would report it too first. If they are byb then I am not sure who you can go to. But even a visit from the local animal control people might be a wake up call.

(sorry I don't see any negative posts......)
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Old 08-12-2008, 04:55 PM
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If the pups were flea infested you can probably report them, I'd give it a try for sure! I did not intend to be negative, but i feel it my duty to educate, not just you but those who stumble on this forum and read the posts for information.
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  #10  
Old 08-12-2008, 05:45 PM
roxy'smom roxy'smom is offline
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Thanks again for the advice. I know that no one was being negative, I was just asking for it not to get that way. I have the breeder's # on our ckc registration so I will report her that way. Thanks for the advice about that too. I just don't think that her puppies are in a "healthy" environment. I will do LOTS of research on the links you gave me and I am looking into puppy classes (she has already had her shots and the vet suggested some classes) so I will let you all know how she does.
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