Join Date: May 2008
Location: Ferndale, MI (Metro Detroit)
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Aw, twelve weeks is so young and fortunately still a very trainable age. I don't have my Hav yet (getting her mother's day weekend at 11 1/2 weeks), but I had a yorkie for 15 years who nipped a lot as a puppy, and I've been doing a lot of reading on the topic of puppy training lately. Just finished "How To Raise a Puppy You can Live With" by Clarice Rutherford & David H. Neil, you could get it on Amazon, it covers bite inhibition and all the puppy training stages. Ian Dunbar is also a highly recommended author on positive dog training.
What I plan to do, and what I think would be recommended for the nipping is that he needs to be told in his own language that it hurts, you don't like it, and will withdraw your attention when he bites, even though in his mind he is playing. A "yelp" from you, or maybe a sharp "ah ah", then turn your back and ignore him for a short while. You may have to do that a number of times repeatedly over a period of days or weeks, and he will get the message eventually, if not immediately, that biting stops play and therefore is no longer fun. Some people will replace the hand with an acceptable chew toy and then praise so he gets the message that chewing is OK and encouraged on the right objects. I didn't know any of this when I had my yorkie as a puppy, we mostly just told her no, and she grew out of the behavior in a couple months, though possibly by our body language and putting her down because we got tired of being chew toys, she got the message.
As to the potty training, what I've read is you need to start with close confinement when you can't watch them (crate if it's not too many hours a day) or better yet at this age an ex-pen with a potty area, never letting them out of your sight when they are not confined so that you have the opportunity to catch them in the act and correct if they're using your living room rug, quickly taking him outside to show him where it is OK to go and praise. If he's getting away with it in the house, that's how he learns it's OK to go there, particularly if the area isn't thoroughly cleaned with an enzymatic product that gets all the smell out. Basically, set them up for success by being watchful, taking out often with praise for doing it right, and don't give him opportunities to go where you don't want in the house.
As to shredding the pads - what I've read is that is something particular to havanese - for some reason they love to shred paper. He might grow out of it, but I've read you can buy frames to hold the edges of the pads to deter that. You could also try dog litter in a shallow litterbox as an alternative, or the UgoDog or Wizdog like some people use here (a grate in shallow pan, you put the pad or newspapers underneath the grate). And just keep focusing on outside potty to where you won't need pads inside anymore if he never gets over the shredding urge.
Good luck! He's cute!