Unrealistic expectations or need for intervention? - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-27-2013, 05:49 AM Thread Starter
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Unrealistic expectations or need for intervention?

Is it normal at this age (3 months) to:
  • be terrified of school buses, mail trucks, UPS trucks, etc.
  • be weary of little kids.
  • not want to walk on the leash except in very specific places (park)
  • not come when called (outside)
  • beg for food
  • beg to be picked up wherever I am sitting (yes - toilet included - LOL)
  • nip, nip, nip

I'm bummed because our kindergarten class was cancelled this week making it two weeks between the first and second class (a long time in puppydom). I'm wondering if I should try and find some private training. I've contacted a couple of people in my area (Raleigh/Triangle - if you happen to know someone) and haven't gotten a response. It's been over a decade since I've had a puppy so I don't know if these are things that pass on their own (and some books argue both ways) or if they need to be immediately addressed. I was blessed to have a very easy, what I think to be perfect dog who died in August so I'm also not sure if I just expect Ludo to fill those shoes right away.

Book recommendations, frank opinions, anything! solicited.

Thanks in advance!

Traci & Ludo

*~*~*~*~**~*~*~*~*~*~*

The dog becomes your dream come true, the very thing you wanted.
- Maurice Sendack


Last edited by tra_po; 09-27-2013 at 05:51 AM. Reason: added bullets
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-27-2013, 05:57 AM
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three months can be a bit of a "fear period" so this kind of behaviour isn't unusual. Try not to reinforce or reward behaviors you don't like, but don't punish such a young puppy either. Takes a lot of patience at this young age. At this age they are very receptive to training, so try teaching a command like "sit" and when you get a behaviour you don't like give the command and then reward the good behavior instead.

it might be helpful to have a private session with a trainer to avoid future problems and to reassure you that this is mostly normal puppy behavior.


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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-27-2013, 08:30 AM
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Puppies can be trying, that's for sure. But the time and effort you put in now will pay big dividends in that "perfect" (for you) dog down the road.

I agree with Tuss, what your saying does not sound outside the realm of normal. Some puppies will definitely be more out-going and fearless, while others shier and a little more fearful. The important thing is to meet them where they are and work them through it.

And, if you can afford it, I also agree that a private lesson or two can be very beneficial (and reassuring!) until you can get back into your regular class.


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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-27-2013, 01:35 PM
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I can vouch for what Karen says. Our Sofie is soon 10 months old. She has been a challenge for us. I was determined not to cave on her training. With help from this forum, I am seeing the results of the effort. Unlike your pup, ours is very outgoing and has a bit of an independent side. As she has matured and her training continues, she has definitely mellowed and come into her own. So be patient and consistent and don 't force your pup into situations that frighten her. What helped me was to remember my personal mantra...baby steps for baby pup.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-27-2013, 04:49 PM
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I totally agree with what has been said, and I was the Queen of the "scaredy dog." Tim was afraid of a lot of things, still is to some extent, but don't coddle let him work it out and if/when he does throw a party. Don't try to throw him in a situation either like handing him to the kids to try and let them settle him. Tim has gotten way better with his fears and I think age, and consistent exposure, has helped. Just an FYI, I was talking to one of my neighbors in front of his house and he had a six inch little dog statue on his front steps and Tim was afraid of that, I told him to get over it.

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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-27-2013, 04:54 PM
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private class would help .

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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-27-2013, 06:36 PM
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My pup was just like yours at that age and still is clingy and a scaredy cat at 5 months around other dogs and young children. I signed her up for a 6 week confidence building workshop where they desensitize dogs to many things that they can be afraid of while having fun. I wonder if you can get her involved in something similar. Also like others said, she's still a baby and she may just need some time to mature.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-28-2013, 12:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tra_po View Post
Is it normal at this age (3 months) to:
[LIST][*]be terrified of school buses, mail trucks, UPS trucks, etc.[*]be weary of little kids. [*]not want to walk on the leash except in very specific places (park)[*]not come when called (outside)[*]beg for food [*]beg to be picked up wherever I am sitting (yes - toilet included - LOL)[*]nip, nip, nip

Thanks in advance!
Hi, Traci - I've had similar problems with jitters around other dogs - well, when I say "I" I mean Cuba has; at my class I've learned to be incredibly relaxed and calm myself, to let Cuba take her own time but not to remove her from the situation, to reward any attention focussed back on me for reassurance but in a very positive 'ok, this is fine, no problem' sort of way. Begging for food and being picked up can relatively easily be turned around with reinforcing the ceasing of the behaviour, never encouraging it, offering alternative activities to reward. I'm pretty 'weary' of kids sometimes myself, so I sympathise on that front!! At 3 months 'nip, nip, nip' is 'teethe teethe teethe'; try offering something chewy to help, perhaps? There are LOTS of products that help - toys that you can freeze, teething gel - type 'puppy teething' into Amazon and loads will come up. Wanting to be picked up all the time - well, only ever pick up when they've stopped nagging; reinforce the NOT wanting to be picked up by picking up. Don't share time on the toilet, shut the door!! Walking on leash and coming when called strike me as different categories; I can't believe many 3 month old pups come reliably when called - Cuba still doesn't and she's nearly 7 months old. Walking on leash again can be built up step by step, particularly if you clicker train. I don't want to be a public know-all (and anyway I'm a know-very-little) but could point you in the direction of loads of information on positive reinforcement if you wanted to email me privately. I'm sure many, many others on this forum could, too.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-29-2013, 06:39 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jabojenny View Post
I totally agree with what has been said, and I was the Queen of the "scaredy dog." Tim was afraid of a lot of things, still is to some extent, but don't coddle let him work it out and if/when he does throw a party. Don't try to throw him in a situation either like handing him to the kids to try and let them settle him. Tim has gotten way better with his fears and I think age, and consistent exposure, has helped. Just an FYI, I was talking to one of my neighbors in front of his house and he had a six inch little dog statue on his front steps and Tim was afraid of that, I told him to get over it.
LOL! The six inch dog statue! We had a similar experience with a beach ball in the backyard. I'm not sure Ludo will ever go back there again!!

Traci & Ludo

*~*~*~*~**~*~*~*~*~*~*

The dog becomes your dream come true, the very thing you wanted.
- Maurice Sendack

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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-29-2013, 06:40 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks so much everyone. I just needed some reassurance. Love this little guy and want to make sure everything is going as it should.

Traci & Ludo

*~*~*~*~**~*~*~*~*~*~*

The dog becomes your dream come true, the very thing you wanted.
- Maurice Sendack

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