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Old 04-02-2008, 11:05 AM
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Sweet72947 Sweet72947 is offline
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Originally Posted by mrose_s View Post
I think others will cover all the behaviour stuff, but you have a beagle/husky, both those breeds are stubborn, independent and hard headed, not particularily eager to please breeds. They arn't my thing because of this.
LOL you haven't met the beagles I've met. They've all been really sweet and wanted lots of pets all the time! Most of the huskies/husky mixes I've met have been really sweet too. I think the OP's pup probably did miss out on some crucial socialization at the rescuer's house. I would also suggest contacting a trainer to help with the socialization and food guarding issues.

But remember, just because the pup doesn't SHOW that he is bonded doesn't mean he isn't. It could mean he just isn't the mushy, affectionate type.
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Old 04-02-2008, 11:48 AM
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Wow.. me and my dog are normal.. well.. as normal as we'll ever be! Thanks everyone, you have no idea how "lost on a desert island" I have been feeling. Contacted a local trainer over the phone this morning, and had a long conversation with her. You are all right!! He's not had a lot of people (family) bonding, he's been shuffled around a lot in the beginning of life, and he's just not the mushy kind of dog.

She also suggested that I am not NILFing myself.. I give him far too much attention, and not enough downtime to entertain himself, or to miss me. We will be fencing some of the yard off for him to have an outside sniff/romp zone (yes he will be watched, but at this point in time, almost all of his life is leashed, as he has no outside recall ability yet).

As was suggested by the trainer, and I think I alluded to it, he needs to have his crate either covered, or moved out of the centre of attention in order to have enough sleep time. Apparently like Sweet said, he's more bonded than I think, and when he hears me doing things, he wants to participate toooooooooo!

Well.. spring is in the air today and you have all made me feel much better. I think you are all a great resource, a friendly group, and you should take this bundle of cyber daffodils, and pat yourselves on the back. Thank you, Kym, and a relaxed, mellow Bernie. Who stole my real dog? LOL
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Old 04-02-2008, 11:55 AM
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As for the bonding issue, some dogs just aren't the lovey cuddly type. Nyx, after a year old is just now beginning to show interest in being with me. Ares, at 8 years old - and I got him when he was 3 months old - is very much bonded to me, but he isn't going to come looking for petting, he isn't interested in sitting next to me, he just doesn't cuddle. He's very independant and willful and a bit stubborn.

I would definitely address the guarding issue. Not just the food, but the grumbling and biting as well. This is something that needs to be addressed immediately, before it gets worse.
IYou CAN'T pet him EVER for his wanting to bite, chew, chomp etc, at any time. He's always been a grumbly bear when he's tired and asleep and you want to move him.. sounds familiarly like me LOL.. but...
As for the recall issue, at 16 weeks old, I don't do off lead recalls. I do off lead recalls at 8 weeks old, in a controlled environment. At 16 weeks, they are on a leash This is an age where they begin to develop more independance and they simply don't feel a need to be with me all the time. They stay on a leash until they've had sufficient training that I believe they'll come when called, and then we progress to leash dragging, and then to off leash.

If he is off leash, don't call him. Set him up to want to come to you by using food and treats or go and get him. If he is coming to you, then you can use a recall command to develop word association, but you don't want to give the command unless you're sure he'll come.

As for the food, at that age, I do still use a lot of food in their training. Make sure you are rewarding him and not bribing him though.

This sounds like you're on the right track ~
As far as the "food guarding" goes.. I started him out as hand fed, now every meal is "Sit.. wait.. look(at me).. wait.. good boy".. dish down, he eats (gulps lol) while my hands are petting him, in his dish... and he's always been fine. The bone thing.. I have no idea.. "good stuff, not gonna let you have it"?? I did try to get him to "leave it", "sit (normally whatever he has in his mouth, is dropped with a sit because he knows something good is coming for a sit), nothing would detract him from the bone, so I reached for it.. and nearly lost a hand. Took the bone anyways, he sat like an angel, gave him back the bone, tried again.. slight growl, took the bone.. he sat, I gave it back.. and the third time.. he let me have it.. and hold it while he chewed on it.
Well, sometimes I like to just be left alone, and sometimes I like to receive affection. I wouldn't worry unless it's an issue of "I'm taking my treat over here where I can guard it."
We sit every night on the couch to try and get some dog/me time.. while he chews (with me holding it) a rawhide.. or greenie or whatever, so I can pet him without the teeth chewing me in puppy fashion.. and tonight he just took his greenie off to the kitchen on the mat, by himself.
Yea, moving the crate is worth a try. I did have one dog that I don't believe slept more than a couple hours a day for the first two years.
He does have his crate for downtime, but one hour of nap time is all I get before he's up and ready to go again. Maybe I should move the crate to another room, where there are less things to wake him up? Right now he's in the diningroom/kitchen.. amidst us all, but still separate in his crate.
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Old 04-02-2008, 03:48 PM
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Mine will sometimes guard bones and "special treats" from each other... but its not allowed with me. They will get quickly scruffed and threatened in a growly voice to drop it. I had to use the mean growly voice.. and scruff alot of times with Stryder to get him to do anything for me... nothing worked for this boy as a pup... and even then he still defied me.
I wouldn't recommend doing this, do you think the dog feels less worried you'll take his stuff after you shake him by the scruff? Dogs take a certain amount of pushing to growl and a certain amount after that to bite. If you punish him for growling he will probably stop growling but once you push to that biting amount he's still gonna bite, you just won't know it's coming and you'd have thought he was fine with you near his stuff, it would be one of those "he attacked without warning" things because the dog has learned, by being scruffed and yelled at, that warning you through a growl is bad. I'm not trying to criticize you, just keeping you and anyone else who reads this safe from a bite. Punishment does not get rid of the underlying "she's gonna steal my food so I want her to go away" feeling, just makes them hide what ever warning they were punished for exhibiting. Be happy your dog warns you when he's upset, then you know you have to work with him on making him comfortable with you around his food.

Check out some of these threads: <<(try and pay attention to Dr2Little's advice on Pg. 2, she knows what she's talking about).

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Old 04-02-2008, 04:45 PM
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Thumbs up Thank you everyone.. I appreciate it :)

I did ask the "rescue society" (not SPCA, but the people who round up these puppies to save them) about how they were fed as a group, and she said that they just put down a large washtub of kibble when they had the 17 puppies. Now, Bernie hasn't been showing signs of food aggression until this past week, and we're back to the hand feeding, and no bones for now. He's let me take away anything food related today, without a glint of the "gonna remove your arm at the elbow if you take this....". But I do not think the situation is resolved either, but will continue to monitor, and hope for progress.

I am wondering if some of the games he likes to play like tug, and chase the volleyball, have led up to this. I've not really been letting him win these games. Today we played, and I let him win every time, and turned my back when the "keep away" got too much. He was soon leaving the tug toy to come see what I was doing.

Thanks everyone, I truly appreciate the help. Kym
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Old 04-02-2008, 05:00 PM
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SharkBait SharkBait is offline
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my pup had the same problems...
Matisse didn't really show me if he wanted out to pee, but after a few months he would hold it in for a few hours then i would let him out. he now goes to the back door. (though he is 8 months now lol)

if he growled if i tried to take food from him he was hit on the nose (Obvs not too hard, just a warning) and i said 'NO!' i took the food, then gave it back to him agter a minute. he soon learned that sort of behaviour is not allowed.

My pup seemed to love stressing me out by not coming back to me off-leash, but i got some excellent advice here in the training forum. Even if you go to my profile, click on 'find all threads started by sharkbait' then on the 1st or 2nd page is a thread called 'recall=crap' about my problems and some solutions from members here. Also, what i found worked the best is letting him off in a safe area, if he doesn't come back within 3 calls, walk off and ignore him, don't even let him see you looking back... What happened was Matisse got so freaked out that i didnt care that he would come back and follow me! try walking different directions. it may not work the 1st couple of time just to warn you.

Oh and my pup was like that too with the food, wouldn't do anything if he wasn't getting rewarded for it. i'd suggest only giving him a treat every other time, then every couple of times, then build it up to only now and again. That way he'll do the trick cause he doesn't know if he's gonna get the treat or not.

Crates are mega handy as i left Matisse in it when i wasn't there, otherwise the house would be wrecked. Same about the toys... But he loves kongs and those soft bone things (only the safe ones, although don't leave him alone with those bone shoes, the laces made Matisse choke all the time)

Really, I think they wise up as time goes by.
And my pup used to bite me all the time (it would really hurt too!!) but they soon grow out of that stage.

Try not to worry, he's still so young. Good Luck!
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Old 04-02-2008, 06:07 PM
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Truthfully, to me it just sounds like you are describing a typical Husky puppy (minus the food posession) LOL But you have already been given some great advice, I just wanted to let you know that these behaviours really arent all that surprising especially conisdering his history!

With resource guarding when it came to OC, if he growled I simply would calmly remove what it was that he was guarding and ignored him. After a bit I would return it and touch him again. If he didnt growl I would softly praise (didnt make it huge so as not to over-stimulate him) and then reward with something I knew he liked even better! It didnt take long before I could easily take anything from him without so much as a boo out of him.

Oh ya and something to watch for, OC (and many other huskies I know) almost never wags his tail. He gives other body signals to let me know his mood (ear position, tail position, body posture...etc). Your pup could be showing excitement and happiness of your presence, but you may just be looking for the wring signals...

I second moving his crate somewhere quiet. Some pups have to be told to go take a nap because they just cant bear to miss any of the excitement. For a long time OC's crate was in the laundry room, away from people moving around or loud voices.

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