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post #1 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 03:18 AM Thread Starter
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New member but with concerns

Hi Everyone!

Well, I know this is a joyful, wonderful forum & I am so sorry to introduce myself w/concerns...however, I got a darling, lovely havanese puppy almost 3 weeks ago but I just feel like he has not bonded with me properly.

He is an incredible dog and when I take him to the park every day everyone remarks on how amazing he is. He is joyful and friendly with everybody, he plays w/all the dogs, even nervous dogs - and the dogs' owners are often amazed their dog is getting along so well with another dog. He runs up to children, and causes a total commotion with how cute and delightful he is. People say he is the cutest, best dog they've ever seen and what an amazing personality he has.

HOWEVER, alone w/me he just seems sort of disinterested and it is beginning to break my heart. He is kind of independent (which is good don't get me wrong) - but he spends his time putting things together and taking them apart, wandering around and finding stuff to do (much of which is very funny). But he actually sort of ignores me. He won't sit on my lap or 'shadow' me - although he did for the first week or so, when everything was new.

I am just not sure what to do . I feel he would be happiest in a big and humming household, but at the moment it is just him and me. I got him online and I just can't help but feel that he didn't choose me. When he naps it is usually a few feet away from me and not at my feet. I feel like I have definitely made tons of mistakes these past 3 weeks but still - this is really concerning me.

Examples of mistakes are giving him a bath sort of abruptly, without much warning - not having a consistent schedule (which I am fixing) - experimenting w/different approaches to using the leash, etc. etc. In case anybody is wondering I have never yelled at him or gotten angry or anything like that. To be honest I have been sort of anxious and nervous and would not be surprised if he picked up on it and was just not drawn to the energy.

There are some people he sees and goes crazy w/excitement. With me he wags his tail and jumps up and down but it seems pretty low-key, except for the couple of times that I had him crated. Then he went berzerk from being happy to see me.

So...what do I do? I am quite sure he is capable of a deep bond with his owner but maybe I am not the right person for him?

Perhaps I should mention he is a slightly older puppy. 5 months old.

Last edited by Eloise; 01-14-2009 at 03:28 AM.
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post #2 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 06:36 AM
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How old is he?

I think puppies can wear out a bit and need lots of rest, I don't think he dislikes you, some dogs are just more independent than others and not all havs are lapdogs, plenty of them like to sleep/rest by themselves or in their beds.

You still have to do those things like baths, brushing, leash training, etc I would find a treat that he loves and make sure you train with treats so he knows that good things come from you.

Bonds aren't built overnight, they do take some time and building trust and getting to know one another, sit down and play with him, hand feed him his food, he will begin to realize that you are the boss and provide the good things to him

I'm assuming you've already taken him to the vet to have him checked out to make sure his health is straight, and he's not sick in any way, but if you haven't, I'd go get a complete check up to make sure he doesn't have an infection or something else that could be distracting him and making him feel bad.

to the forum!

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post #3 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 06:44 AM
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Puppies are interested in so many things and entertain themselves very easily. We didn't get Sophie until she was about 4 mo. old. At about 5 mo. old my friend and I signed up for puppy obedience class at the local Petsmart. I found it to be very fun and rewarding; a great way to bond with my puppy and learn good behaviors in the process!

Unconditional love!

Last edited by Perugina; 01-14-2009 at 08:25 AM.
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post #4 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 06:50 AM
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Eloise your little guy sounds very cute! Let me tell you that I have 2 havs. My first one, Seamus, very loving, lays ON me or so tight against me I can hardly move. He likes to be picked up etc. Our second, Finnegan, we just got almost 2 months ago. He was very different...very independent, lays near us on On us, etc. but I do see him getting more "snuggly" with us. When he first came home I thought he was going to bond more with Seamus than me or hubby, he was more excited to be with him than us. But the more you play with him, feed him, talk to him the closer you guys will become! He may never sleep ON you, but the fact that he sleeps near you means he does not want you too far from him, some havs are like that. Every once in a while Finnegan will "throw me a bone" and sleep up against me Relax, I think it will come, I think all that you do for him sounds like your a GREAT mom and are the steps that are leading to a terrific bond, one that will encompass both your personalities! - OH and WE WANT PICTURES!!!!!!!

Michelle - Mom to Seamus, Finnegan and Hamlet
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post #5 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 06:51 AM
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Give him time......He may know he has to back off of you, so you can relax. Be glad he is being independent in things and he still loves company of other people and other dogs.

Just play with him, train him with tricks and you will be his best friend.

Dexter & Jack
"One Hav is NOT enough to enjoy the RLH skills!"
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post #6 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 06:53 AM
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Hi and welcome to the forum. You can to the right place for help. Everyone here has great advice, especially about problems. Your dog seems to be very well balanced and will probably just take a little longer to bond since he's older. Not all Hav's are lap dogs, like to be held or will lay right at your feet. My dog sometimes sits under my chair or will lay a few feet away, always keeping his eye on me. He rarely sits on my lap, unless we're in the car waiting for my kids, and he doesn't love being held. He does follow me everywhere, but that isn't necessarily a good thing. He's so attached to me that he whines and suffers when I leave, even if my DH and kids are there. Also, he's so attached to me that he is nervous, overly protective and can't interact with other dogs or kids. I would love to make mine more like yours, because then he would be truly happy. I think your dog sounds perfect and a stronger bond will come in time. I think you have a lot of love to give so don't assume he needs a busier house. Good luck to you!

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post #7 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 07:10 AM
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I know Lucy, my 7 month old, is very different than Rico, my 3 year old is. She 's able to entertain herself. She does walk a few feet away from me and lies a few feet away, during the day when we're busy. I think she has learned to stay out from under people's feet as it may be dangerous.

Your little guy has probably been on his own for these few months of development. Kind of like a foster child that needs time to form an attachment. Give him time. I think the obedience classes are a great idea for you both!

Rory aka Rico & Lucy's mom
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post #8 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 07:38 AM
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Hi and welcome!

Just to add to what the others have said- I have 2 Havs also and neither is what you would call a lap dog. One likes to be next to us on the couch, but not on our laps. And he'll jump down and go to his bed when he's had enough closeness.
The other likes to sit on the back of a chair or under the chair which is near us.

Neither of them lets us out of sight, but they aren't "on" us at all.

Your puppy sounds wonderful to me, with his outgoing spirit and love of people. I'm sure the bond with you will grow with time.
And the suggestion that you take an obedience class is a good one.

I am doing that now with my one and a half year old to firm her bond with me.

Chico, Cali, and Finnegan
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post #9 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 07:51 AM
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I am a new fairly new Hav owner, she is 14 weeks old and have had her for 5-1/2 weeks. She is still so much of a puppy and is more interested in playing than she is me. When we are in the family room on the floor playing and she decides its nap time, she walks a few feet away and flops. I have tried to put her on my lap or right beside me but she immediately crawls off to find her comfy place. I think its just her independent personality..she wants me close by but content to lie by herself. This could all change with time but for now, if she's happy, I'm happy. Good luck and enjoy your new pup.
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post #10 of 29 (permalink) Old 01-14-2009, 08:00 AM
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When I got Milo he was 5 1/2 months old and had been very bonded to his breeder. The first day or two he followed me around closely, seeming to be afraid to let me out of his sight. However, he was not exhuberant and was certainly not like any puppy people talked about on the forum at the time. I was worried. Could there be something wrong with him? Was he sick? Did he not like me because I took him away from his home?

He always went off to rest on his own, never too near me but within sight. It went on this way for weeks and weeks until one day when he suddenly became my dog. My advice is to give him time. He's older and has more history tagging along with him. One of these days you're very likely to see the puppy you hoped he'd be. And make no mistake, they do pick up on our feelings. Try to relax and enjoy his antics and give him the time he needs.

<b>Just Milo and me, and . . . </b>Bailey makes three . . . until Ruby said, "hey, what about me?"
Geri, Milo, Bailey and HRH Princess Ruby Tuesday

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