Help me please!!

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Dog Help me please!!

Post by nikki96 on Tue Oct 10 2017, 00:21

I own a one year old Staffy, and at the moment his behaviour can be temperamental. His quite a good dog, he loves other people and other animals, but his a different dog at home. He can be somewhat relaxed most of the time, and normally loves to play, but sometimes things can get a little out of control. He still bites (but not hard), and he will bark for half an hour, and I'm concerned because of the neighbours. He doesn't like it when his put in his cage (which is in another room), and he will bark himself to sleep. I've tried dog training classes, and everything possible to try to control him, the only other option is to put him in a kennel if I can't cope but I really don't want to do that.

Please help me Sad

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Dog Re: Help me please!!

Post by Nifty staffy on Tue Oct 10 2017, 05:24

Hello and welcome to the board.
There are a few very knowledgeable people who will be online later on but maybe you could give a little more information on your situation ?
How long have you had your staffy ?
What is your home setup (alone or family members, always someone with your staffy or left alone for periods, etc) ?
How and why do you put him in his cage ? Could be seen as a punishment.

Good advice is on it’s way Smile
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Dog Re: Help me please!!

Post by LizP on Tue Oct 10 2017, 08:06

Hi & welcome to the forum wave

Welcome to the Staffordshire bull terrier niceboard. We are pleased you've decided to join us, and hope you enjoy your stay. We hope to see plenty of pictures of your Staffordshire bull terriers or any other breed you may have in your household.

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Dog Re: Help me please!!

Post by LizP on Tue Oct 10 2017, 08:44

Hi and welcome from me and mine.

I'm sorry to hear you're having problems but you've come to a good place for advice and support.

The first thing with any behaviour is to look for 'why'. Some of what you're describing is possibly normal staffie behaviour. They are very high energy and the mouthing can go on for a while. These aren't things to worry about but the way you react to them can help reduce/eliminate them.

Back to that in a minute. The most important thing I want to clarify is the question of the crate. Regulars here know I'm not keen on them unless used for specific reasons, such as travelling or medical, and after training. I see dogs as part of the family and that's especially true for staffies who are amongst the most human needy of breeds.

The 'why' behind the barking at night is, I'm fairly sure, because he's unhappy in his crate and is distressed at having been put in there away from you. To be honest, I'd bark too.

It's obviously really difficult to know what's what without seeing it, but my guess (and it's only that) is that your lad is a bit needy and is doing all these behaviours to seek attention from you. The key to changing things is to look at life from his point of view and set things up so he feels he's getting what he needs doing what you want.

It may also be a question of understanding and managing his energy levels, finding 'off' switches when he starts to get OTT.

Give him plenty of attention and play time so he is getting what he needs but the moment he starts getting either mouthy or over excited, stop the play and ask him to go and lie down for a reward (teaching a 'go to your place', or just 'place' command is very useful). If he won't calm down, you leave the room, go outside, whatever. In effect, his behaviour has sent you away. Just leave for a few seconds then return. If he's quiet, praise and reward, if he starts mouthing or barking, go away again, and again and again until he understands.

Another great command is 'quiet'. When he barks, ask for 'quiet' while holding a treat under his nose. He should stop barking in order to be able to take the treat. Wait for a second or two, praise, then give the treat. Remember you only ever give the treat for being quiet, not for barking. Repeat this every time he barks. You should find that he soon learns that 'quiet' means stop barking.

When that's in place, you stop showing him the treat first. With time (plenty of it), you can also stop rewarding every time. What should happen is that he learns to stop barking when you ask him to, wherever he is, so that he can come and get a reward.

That doesn't apply to the crate because I think there he has a good reason to bark and I would not want him to feel he can't express his dislike of it. My best advice - get rid of it. You can crate train dogs but given how he feels about it now to be honest it would be an uphill struggle.

I obviously don't know why you choose to put him in the crate but, whatever the reason, there is another way of dealing with the problem. At the moment it's a bit like banishing a child to the cupboard under the stairs and I'll confess to me it's not really fair on him. Before looking at alternatives, can you fill us in a bit on your situation and why you like to use it?

I hope there are some useful ideas above, and do also look at the info sheets in the links on the welcome message. Fingers crossed you're already feeling that there are things you can do to get things a bit more settled without drastic action.


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