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Mom to Ricky and Sammy
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Discussion Starter #1
I need some advice.....

Ricky loves to play fetch and because he's so smart - aren't all Havs smart? ;) - he has learned fairly quickly to drop the toy when I say 'give' so that we can continue the game.

He is sneaky though and will sometimes drop it a bit away from me and close to him so that when I reach for it, he lunges at the toy, with all his teeth and bites down HARD on it so that I can't get it! Sometimes, a little too often, our hand is there and we get bit. We've stopped grabbing the toy quickly so that he doesn't feel threatened, but rather slowly so that allows us to simply pick it up and keep playing... and he will do this, but not usually at first, only after a couple of tries at getting the toy from him.

What I worry about, besides us getting bit, is that visitors, such as my young nephew might get bit because they don't know how Ricky plays. When he bites me by trying to get at his toy that he's 'dropped', I say 'OW' loudly and turn away from him for a few minutes. Inevitably, I'm back to playing with him until the next time it happens.

If we're sitting on the floor and playing fetch with Ricky, he will sometimes lunge at the toy that is in our hand above our head - as we get ready to throw it yet again. Well THAT is right close to our face!! I don't like that!

I've tried to make him do a 'sit' once I have the toy and that usually keeps him calm and down enough to wait for me to throw it... but it doesn't solve the lunging at the toy when I want to pick it up from the floor.

Any ideas?

I have a clicker and usually treat-train him, but I'm not sure how to get rid of this biting/aggressive behavior when we play fetch.
 

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Marg, I bet if you were Tigger he wouldn't try it. :D :D Only kidding.

I don't know about Hav because as everyone knows I am just stalking this website until I get my own. But, my Terrorist (Terrier) used to do the same thing. We would just say, "No, Not playing until you are NICE" with stressing the NICE and would stop playing with her. Then she would bring us the toy and we would just ignore her. We would try it again, and say "Nice, Nice," as we reached for the toy. If she wasn't, we would stop playing again. After a while she figured it out and realized that "NICE" meant not lunging after our hands, and if she didn't play nice, we weren't interested in playing.

I have also known people who trained there dog to respond to "BACK" and the dog would continue to back up until they were a clear distance to allow you to pick up the toy. Then they would say "STAY" until they threw the object and the dog would stay until they said "GO."

I am not much of a dog trainer so I would love to hear other people's ideas.
 

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Samson & Delilah's Mom
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When Sam & I play fetch, he usually holds the toy in his mouth until I tell him to "give" and I take it from his mouth. I encourage him to hold it, for future obedience training. In your case maybe use two toys. As he drops one throw the other. That would save your fingers and any thing else that might be in the way. Just another suggestion when you say "ow" make it sound like a puppy yelp. That might get his attention more.
 

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Mom to Ricky and Sammy
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Discussion Starter #4
"Marg, I bet if you were Tigger he wouldn't try it. Only kidding."

**** LMBO! Good one, Rita! ;)

When Ricky brings the toy back, he's learned to place it at our feet or in our lap - not always at first, sometimes he wants us to play tug with it/him, which is o.k. for a bit too - and we say 'give' either when he's just let it drop or when we're about to go for it. I say 'no bite' when he lunges but misses and say it sternly. When he does bite a finger/hand, we say 'OW' quite loudly and then 'no bite' even more sternly and in a low growl. At this point, we'll usually turn away and ignore him for a minute or so.

We started telling him to 'sit' before we try for the toy, but you should see him... he's ready to pounce at the slightest motion from us! lol Little bugger..... ;)

I could use two toys, Debbie, and we have done that a few times, but I'd still worry if someone else that isn't familiar with our 'ways' plays fetch with Ricky and ends up being bit hard.

As to having him 'stay' and wait until we release with a 'go' once the toy has been thrown..... well....... we're not there quiet yet! lol Maybe one day.
 

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Karen
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Brady is a bit of a rough player as well. He loves to play fetch with his toys. He loves to drop them at your feet and wait for you to try to pick it up and snag it again. He is actually here at my feet doing it right now. If I ignore him dropping it, he starts nudging my leg with his nose. As soon as I go to pick it up, he grabs it. (sneeky little guy) I usually keep a few toys near by and switch back and forth. He always wants the one I throw, so we don't usually end up playing the keep away game.
 

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I read a solution somewhere that has worked well for us. When Miss Daisy bites down too hard we YELP like an injured puppy. That really upsets her, she starts licking to appologize and is very careful for quite some time. I have also learned not to try to pull my hand/finger out of her mouth. Instead I push it further in and she immediately releases, to avoid choking.
 

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Just reading this thread from Marj from way back before I joined the forum and since this is the summer season it seeem appropriate that we would also have playtime outdoors where the possibility of our Havs playing better with us than indoors would be better for them.

Radar seems to be more energetic in places like backyards than in the apartment but of course why wouldn't he be. I find that he would be a little more focused indoors but would have too much pent up energy becuase he was unable to expend it in a ravishing display of RLH. Thus inabolity to release this energy would sometimes cause him to lunge at the toy and I did get nipped once before. He responds to the NO BITE command pretty much all the time....once again consistency is the key.

After he would expend some energy he would be more suitable to commands since he has released some energy which might be used to get into mischief and would be less prone to biting when we are reaching for the toy because he may be more relaxed and calm. I watched Cesar and he was saying during one of his shows that when the dogs have nothing to do and they are trapped inside all day they find stuff to get into which is their release and this is how they get it out. It's not that they are being mischevious or bad it's just that they are expending some energy.


Derek
 

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Mom to Ricky and Sammy
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Discussion Starter #8
Derek, it is true what they say, "a tired dog, is a happy and well-behaved dog".

I wrote this in Jan. and yet we still have the same problem to an extent. Ricky is better at waiting for us to pick the toy and throw it again in our game of fetch, but there are times, he can't seem to contain himself and just HAS to have that toy while we are reaching for it.

I've been teaching my 5 yr. old nephew how to hold Ricky's toys away from his own face, way up high and not to wait too long to throw it. Ricky has nipped him a couple of times, but just enough to scare. Lucca, though, is not at all afraid and so we have to keep an eye on things when he decides he wants a go at Ricky's toys. sigh.....

I've been very, VERY vocal about letting my oldest teen boy know that playing aggressively is not how we do things here. Ricky loves roughing it up of course, but grabbing the toys from him quickly and as if my son is an aggressor does not help Ricky relax and allow an easier game of fetch. I cant' imagine training toddlers AND pups - so glad my kids are older! lol
 

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Hi Marj. Yeah I figured I would Revisit this topic because sometimes the problems don't get resolved and they become bigger and then you don't know what to do. I always try and be consistent with my Wife with the biting thing by "Reminding" Her that if he happens to bite a small child then it'll be "Her" Fault and I will have nothing to do with defending her actions when she lets radar get physical with her fingers when she lets him bite.

I have this immense fear that Radar will one of these days bite a Child and I am trying to really preven that from happening.

Derek
 

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Derek..
When you see your wife doing this, look her straight in the eyes and give her a firm 'NO!' while pointing at her. It might work,... thats what I do with my wife.. lol
:whoo:
 

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Hey Ryan have you guys got a spare room at your house? I just was wondering so I have a place to go when My Wife Steel Toes my Arse off the ninth floor balcony when I attempt that.....:pound: :pound:

Too Funny...

Derek
 

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Mom to Ricky and Sammy
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Discussion Starter #12
Now, now, boys. Behave!!!

I just might have to give your wives a call! ;)

From day one, we tried to avoid any kind of finger play in the puppy's mouth. It can only lead to trouble if you don't stop it from the first weeks. It's tempting, I know! Nothing cuter than a 3 lb. pup nipping at your fingertips. But then, that 3 lb-er grows into a 12-15 lb. dog and it aint' so cute anymore.
 

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Havee has responded to a spray of water in the face with a firm, loud,"NO BITE" at the same time. You just have to have a spray bottle available all the time...
 
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