I brought home a new puppy

sweetchastityFebruary 26, 2012

My mom and I live together and have 2 cats and 2 dogs between us. Peanut is a Chihuahua-Terrier mix and Punkin is a Shipoo and they are both turning two this May. Now I've brought home a new puppy.

I brought this one home so she is my responsibility and with that I have certain beliefs when it comes to dogs that my mother doesn't share. She spoils and over-feeds her dogs, Peanut is 12 lbs and Punkin is 16 lbs. I believe dogs should not beg and I'll give each a bite of my food when I am finished and when they are calm and not focused on the food. I believe dogs should always come when you call them and should walk beside you on a leash, never in front. Mom lets them walk wherever they like. My mom treats all the dogs like babies and if one doesn't want to jump up on the sofa she picks them up.

I've watch the Dog Whisperer and I believe in the techniques he uses. When I walked them first thing in the morning I would not talk to them, not get them excited, made them sit and be calm before putting on their leashes, I was always the first one out and they never walked in front of me. I am going to start again first with Sheba (new puppy) then with the other two in a big pack walk.


1) Sheba is about 8 weeks old, is she too young to train to walk on a leash? I took her out today and while she hated the leash (tried an alligator roll on me to get it off) she walked with me up and down the street a bit before wanting to be picked up. I didn't use the leash to try to correct or control her, just let her deal with the feeling of it on her neck. Yes she walks like she's on the deck of a ship but I think she should still be walked daily. Am I right?

2) Sheba is a Shar Pei pit bull mix so she needs a firm leader. Her mother started disciplining her from the day she was born so I think she's not too young to be corrected when she bites, chews on things she isn't supposed to, etc. Mom babies them and lets them do whatever they want to do until they do something really bad, like chew up her glasses, then yells at them for being bad. I want to use treats/affection to reward wanted behaviour and firm correction when she displays unwanted behaviour. She's not too young for this right?

3) Sheba was not weened off her mother's milk and while there was dry food for the puppies they were still suckling off two nursing mothers. She was throwing up a lot yesterday so I've started giving her a little bit of the food she was eating before (mom still doesn't get the concept of slowly transitioning pets to new food) and milk (1%). For the first day she would not drink any water at all (even though she drank at home with her siblings) which is why I started giving milk. We've had her since Thursday night and today is the first time she drank water from the bowl.

4) Peanut and Punkin have growled at her since she first came home. She wasn't as rambunctious as she is now. I believe its part jealousy, part dominance. They can interact but there are still growls now and then. A pack walk would be good to bind them but she's too little to go for a long walk and we got dumped on with 10-15 cms of snow Friday so today was the first nice day. All can go outback and run and chase in the snow, they are safe together but there is still some issues with growling. I think that the dogs should be able to tell Sheba to back off when she's in their face but I want to make sure its not dominance just that the puppy needs some boundaries and they should be able to express this somehow.

5) Excitement. Both my parents encourage excitement because they are so cute when they jump and dance and go crazy. I rather she be calm most of the time, playful but not crazy-excited unless its an activity that we are engaged in. Its like kids, you want them to behave in the car ride and the parking lot but once they are inside Chucky's Cheese they can go knock themselves out.

6) Crate training. I'm a firm believer in this. Our two dogs have never been left home alone. Mom's retired but that doesn't mean they can't learn to be left alone for half an hour while she goes shopping. I want Sheba to grow up to be ok alone in the house and also in a crate for short periods of time. One day I hope to be on my own and Shar Peis I read can do well in an apartment as long as they have lots of exercise. I don't want her to become dependent like these two are. I understand the pack mentality aspect and that its unnatural for dogs to be alone but if trained properly they can adapt to our complicated society.

Sheba is a strong breed/mix so I want her to be better behaved than these two we have. She's shown good sense (when the cat raises her back it means don't come closer and Sheba doesn't) I've read up on her breed and Sheba will grow up to be a strong dog who needs a firm steady leader and at her size and power she needs to be trained and socialized now to be the perfect dog she was meant to be.

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Don't forget to let her have fun and not get to hung up on training methods at this age. Also do not take her out on the sidewalks till she has had all her shots as it does not take much to get Parvo. Keep her in the yard till then Please!!

    Bookmark   February 27, 2012 at 8:32AM
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It has been my experience that dog handling/training cannot be done by any method if all persons in the house do not agree and follow the same steps.

What you have described sounds unfortunately like a probable train wreck. If your Mom does not also follow the same training practices, the dog can easily learn two behaviors---which is very bad. Especially with a mix like her, since calming an aggressive/dominating dog is much more difficult than training correctly in the first place.

The steps you ask about are good ideas and good training practices. Daily walks can be across the yard at first. The feeding routine can be done as you are doing it.

I am very afraid your good intentions will not be enough, due to the situation. I hope I am wrong. For your sake as well mas the dogs.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2012 at 2:06AM
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Handymac is right. I remember when you wrote a year or so ago when you had 2 Shipoos and the Chihuahua, and the problems you had then.
If you think the new dog is rambunctious now, just give him time because it's only a fraction of what you'll see as he grows.
A relative of mine has a pitbull mix and she's a sweet, submissive dog, but you wouldn't believe her energy level. She needs lots of play time and lots of exercise......not just a walk down the block. Otherwise, she becomes destructive in the house and a ball of energy.

Make sure you don't give the puppy human milk. He should be getting commercial puppy milk mixed with canned puppy food. Over time, he can be transitioned to puppy dry food that is softened with water, and from that he can transition to dry food. I wouldn't be concerned about him not drinking water because puppies who are getting puppy milk, canned food and/or moistened dry food usually get a portion of the water they need from the milk and wet foods.
I would be concerned if he continues vomiting since he can easily become dehydrated.

Also, follow beegood's suggestions. You've brought a large mixed breed of dog into your household so I suggest you read as much as possible on both breeds.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2012 at 12:38PM
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Hey sorry I haven't gotten back sooner I was having computer issues.

We considered the possibility that she would be better in another home but decided, together, to keep her. We put her on her old food and she's not been throwing up since. We're mixing it with new food, IAMS (vet said to go with Hills but I educated my mom on who trains vets in nutrition). I was giving her the milk we drink but not to sustain her, just a small bit to keep hydrated when throwing up. Now she drinks water.

Having three 8 week old puppies was too much at the time but now that Peanut and Punkin are almost two years old they are not as dependent and are house trained (well Peanut still goes inside if you don't see her heading to the back door) and have taken more to the puppy now. They play together a lot especially outside and there is harmony in the kitchen at meal times.

I've read up on the breeds and know that early socializing and discipline are needed to have this dog's respect. I believe that she will need a long walk in the morning and evening (45 mins each time at least) and I can challenge her more if I get her a backpack when she's older.

She had her first shots two weeks ago and I really want to get her walking but beegood mentioned about sidewalks and Parvo so I was wondering if anyone knows how long before I can take her outside and when she can meet other dogs? Also she has really short soft fur and seems to get cold very easily. I bought a small jacket but its light and goes over her back mostly. Should I wait until the weather gets warmer?

    Bookmark   March 3, 2012 at 12:58PM
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"Make sure you don't give the puppy human milk."

I believe she was giving cow's milk, not human milk.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2012 at 8:30PM
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Oops.....wrong choice of words :~).

    Bookmark   March 4, 2012 at 2:23AM
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I think it's usually after their last set of Puppy shots at 4 months that you're OKed to take her outside your yard to places other dogs may have pottied and she could catch parvo - sidewalks, lawns, Petsmart, dog parks, etc. To be sure, just call your vet and ask when she'll be fully vaccinated against parvo and safe to go such places. They've taken your money for the shots, they should be happy to answer this for you over the phone.

PS - please don't go too deeply into Cesar Milan's teachings, some of his ideas like alpha rolling, etc. can be very psychologically hurtful to your dog and you can actually end up with a dog that is aggressive out of fear.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2012 at 3:33PM
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