Hi! I am a new member. We recently obtained a Golden Retriver puppy. He is now 14 weeks old. We also have an older, 6-yr old Golden. Our only problem we are having is the puppy will occasionally growl at us. This almost always happens when he is lying down resting and one of our children lay down next to him and pet him. The kids range in age from 4-14 and are so used to doing this with the older dog that they do this with the puppy. Since the puppy has to learn to live with us, does anyone have any ideas on how to handle this? We explain to the kids to leave him alone when he's resting, but we can't always be in 2 places at one time to watch them and the dog. Other than that, he's been great. When he growls, we tell him "no!" in a firm voice, but it does'nt seem to help. Any help is appreciated!!--Thanks!
This is a dominance related thing, your puppy is trying to establish his dominance over your children. Not a good thing. Have you looked into taking him to puppy classes for beginning obedience training? Do your children help out withfeeding him and such, or is it mostly you and your spouse? If they're not helping, they need to start. Even your 4 year old can help out in some way. Start making him sit before he gets his food, before he gets let out, before he gets fed. Don't let him on the furniture or sleep in the bed.
Hello. Welcome to the Forum! I am new too. So far, I think htis is a wonderful website. At 14 weeks old your dog is still a baby. Golden Retrievers are one of my favorite dogs. 6 years is a very nice age. Growling is a sign of agression and should never be tolerated. What you need to do is first put a lead on your puppy. Next, get him into a laying position. Just because he growls at children does not mean he is not a child freindly breed. After he is in a laying position , get him to stand up and hold him still. ( Keep the Lead on.) Take your hands off the dog and let him walk around. Keep the leash tight and give you puppy on a very little bit of slack on the lead. After that have your oldest child take the leash off and get him into a lating position. Let your child give the puppy a treat. After that you must get the puppy into a sit. Then, take the puppy near the older dog. After youm let them play put the puppy in the crate. The second you let the puppy out of the crate have your youngest child tell the puppy to lay down. What you are doing is leting the puppy know that it has the lowest rankingin the pack and is not allowed to dominate anyone. Do this two times a day for one week. Your puppy will stop trying to dominate you when he sees that everybody but him is alpha.
Thanks for the suggestions. All the 4 kids do help out with the brushing, feeding, walking, training and discipline. I figured it was a dominance thing and I am confident we can get it under control. He is more dominant than the older 6-yr old dog and I guess we're just used to his gentle nature. I will look into obedience training for him. I think that would help, a lot. We have explained to the kids about the puppy having to have lowest pack status and for the most part, they get it, but they are kids and mostly just want to play with him and pet him. They are'nt used to being "the boss" since the job is delegated to my spouse and I!! Any more help is appreciated---thanks!!
keep stressing to the kids to leave him alone when resting; does the puppy have a crate? if he does and uses it, have that be another place that no one goes near him. the pup will know that is his spot to not be bothered.
Get him fixed, use a crate, make him work for everything. you roll him on his back when he growls belly up and make him stay there. the more he struggles the more weight you put on him till he submits. this is what the pack does to the puppies. they nip at the chin, belly, ears, and dont let up till the pup plays dead. I have seen this 1000 of times. i use it on mine works like a cham after you get him in line, make him do it for the kids while you are holding him tight! have the kids stay over him that is setting pack order. dont let this dog on the bed, furniture,ever. and make the kids not sit on the floor. they stay above tht dog at all times till he gets it though his head. and make sure you teach him not to be food aggressive too have everyone feed him treats by hand no throwing the food at him and tell him easy. let him know if h tries not to listen to the kids you are going to make him. all of my kids can make my dogs submit with just a word. my male is rock solid muscle european dobe bigger then the americans in bone structure and i tell you if he wanted to fight now it would be awful hard to win with him. you must start with a pup early and keep it up . down is 1 of the most import things to treach a dominate male. You must crate him when he is sleeping or someone will get bit that is reactionary and completely preventable. MJ owned by Angus(Gemm-Givvion Flaex Fox Latvia) Neveskiey Tresbers Karia Kleopatra(Russia), Ginger (Am/Can.) and BellaDonna(AKA Belladoll when she's good- BellaDeluka when she's bad!!) Am/ Can/German :) plus her nine pups :)
if you think you can not handle him and he will bite you then muzzle him first before you roll him. if you want more info JKKsDobermans @cs.com i will send you a ton of training articles from the best dog trainer in the states and europe.
I must agree with all of the other comments listed. It seems you have a Alpha on your hands. Not really a bad thing, but you better get a handle on it quickly. It is important to understand the dog knows the kids are "puppies" also. So it will try to establish it's self in the "pecking order". Be sure keep your kids from jumping or pouncing on the dog. The breed you chose is a good family dog, but sounds like you chose an Alpha. Good luck.
Thanks for all the suggestions. I am typing up (for the kids benefit) the things we are to do with the dog, such as telling the dog to sit before meals, treats, going out the door, etc. I am having them brush him twice a day as well. We will be taking him to obediance classes. The only place that does it around here is closed for winter renovations and won't open until next week. It's great to live in the mountains, but there are drawbacks such as that!! Charlie is a really sweet, beautiful puppy, but I agee, he is a definite Alpha male!! Will let you know how the classes work---thanks everyone!!
If he is growling when they sit beside him when he is resting, they could be startling him, and that will lead to growling or bitting. I don't like getting startled and i am sure he doesn't eithyer. Make sure the kids let him know they are there. that could solve the problem. my sisters Boston Terrier has snapped at people because they scared her while she was asleep.
Hi! I just wanted to let you know we signed Charlie up for obedience classes today and he starts on Feb 2nd. The only person he has growled at since Wed. A/M is my husband, and he had been away on business for a week and when he came back home tonight he layed on the floor in front of the couch and growled a little tiny growl. My husband yelled at him and he moved off. We are all practicing the sitting before meals, treats, going outside, etc. We has almost mastered SIT and he is working on giving his paw. I think he is going to turn out to be a wonderful dog and I thank everyone for their imput. We are not going to give up on his inflated ego!!! Thanks again!!
The suggestions all seemed good. In summary, it seem's you have an alpha. But an alpha Golden can't be that bad. I have a very tough collie and he is now 6 yrs old and has been a perfect collie, off leash sinc 9 months. You must remain the alpha, you , your husband, and I know it 's tough, but the kids too. OK forget the kids. FOOD. NEVER let the the dog watch you eat. And NEVER give the dog treats just for fun. When the dog comes in. treat. When you all come home ,Treat. After your coffee, for instance, treat,.. BUT NEVER WHILE YOU'RE EATING OR PREPARING FOOD. NEVER. THIS IS THE WOLF CULTURE. IT'S VERY SIMPLE! It will work, believe me. My guy is the most protective collie. OF ME. He thinks every body else is a sheep.and wants to play with them. The alpha thing might not be the case ... my collie is the beta.. I hand picked him.. the alpha bit me as a 6 week old. so I picke the other big guy and he is a great diplomat. The beta dog. Can talk to friendly dogs so sweet and gently,, or take care of a mean dog. Sound alot like your Golden. Dogs need to be led by an Alpha. That's YOU. And they will love you forever.