I will start by saying, I loved our trainer! Here is a little info on him if you are interested: http://www.lollypop.org/dogObedInstructor.html The two main things I took away from class last night (was a lecture without the dogs first) is that water guns and dogs sitting on your lap are bad. First water guns were not brought up on thier own, rather in a list of ineffective training methods...he included them with hitting, scruffing, yelling, ect. He wants us all to try a method where if the dog is out of the crate, and he is being fully supervised, then let him walk around the house with a leash on, dragging it on the ground. If the dog presents an undesirable behavior, first say "no" in a non threatening tone of voice. Then if not corrected, say "no" and tug on the leash. He said just try short snappy tugs to mimic the mothers teeth when she pulls the pup away from something. The puppy will apparently quickly associate "no" with the "teeth" coming and hopefully soon the behavior will stop. Another thing I had no clue about... Is the dog sitting on your lap or feet is a show of the dog's dominance over you. In the dog's world, if his body is on top, he is in control. We had one woman in class who was completely distraught that her puppy shouldnt always be in her lap. Well those are two of the many things I learned in class. I am not saying they are the best way or the right way..I just thought I would share.
hmmm...interesting. never heard that. i had heard if you are sitting on the floor and the dogs are physically aboe you, like on the couch, that is dominance, but never if they are sitting on you. our dogs are all over us when we are watching tv. i wouldnt have it any other way!!! i have heard the leash thing though, mostly in relation to housebreaking. we did it when we were housebreaking. it's easier to grab it and ruch outside, rather than fumble for a leash, grab the dog....then clean up the puddle!
Bella is always on one of our laps too. I had even heard that when a dog sits on your feet it is a sign of affection. He said cuddled up next to you is fine, but directly on is her sign of dominance over you. I'm not sure what we are going to do yet...I just thought I would post to hear everyones reactions.
With no disrespect to you Bella, my dog WILL sit on my lap now and for the rest of his life. I don't care what that trainer says. I don't believe that. My dog is a 4lb. LAP dog. That's why I got him. However, the leash thing may be something I would like to try. I have just started using a squirt bottle to try to discourage his nipping at my ankles. It seems to work as long as I am holding the bottle but when I am bottleless, he nips away.
Wendy...its certainly no disrespect to me. I stated in my posts that this is what the instructor said...not me. Bella (and her 20lbs) has always been on our laps as well. We were shocked by this. I just thought it would be a good discussion topic, as it is something that I had never heard of before. I will state one more time. **These are training methods from a lecture given by my trainer. I am in no way stating that this is the "right" way to do things. I am just sharing for a discussion topic.**
You big sillys...you can let the dog be on your lap. Just remember you have promoted him from his subordinate position when you do this. His feet on you, and bumping you, are also body language for "I'm over you in statis" but when it is more important to establish your dominance (when they get pushy), you THEN refuse to allow their feet on you. If the dog is on your lap, and your hand is on his scruff, or face, you are still in the dominant position. Many dogs need the reasurance that some promoting gives them. Often a young dog 1st out on leash, steps on my feet, or sits and lays against them, it is nervous and seeking reassurance. A submissive dog need to be given a promoted position to boost it's self confidence. Stroking OVER the face dominates, under the chin gives them the top position. I subordinate my pushy dogs and promote my less confident dogs...just remember that they do NOT think like we do. We tend to interpret their movements in our terms, they act on instinct.
i really don't agree with the trainer either about being on laps. my pug gets on my lap a lot, and really he is a sweet little guy who is well trained. i've not had any dominance problems with him. (my mix dog might disagree, however, he intimidates her!) and i love it when they lay on my feet. i think they are just getting close.
Well, I would keep looking for different instructors, because the dude is associated with BIG dogs, not LAP dogs. I understand that you don't want a Great Dane on your lap, but I think he isn't aware of what the AKC Toy group was bred for :D ---Allie the Chihuahua http://www.dogster.com/?41063 ---Mönica the Kitty http://www.catster.com/?57596
Wendy the nipping is the way that dog shows dominance. Maybe he could use a little push off the lap once in a while. And a little face grab, now and then. Just pretend your hand is the dominant dog's mouth. Like a puppet. His head in your mouth shows you are dominant to him. Maybe if you take the chip off his shoulder he will stop the nip? My more dominant dogs will nip at me when they are excited. They don't mean to be aggressive, they don't think when they do it. Hurts if they get skin.
If that instructor shocked some people in class...all the better! He is trying to teach you how a dog THINKS...large or small, the instinct is the same. You need to think about what you are doing when you put the dog in your lap. Maybe some people think the dog is a purse, or other accessory, then don't get it when the purse bites and growls at them. Your instructor is absolutely right in how he is teaching you. I don't think you need to find someone less competant just because you have a lap dog.
the leash thing is a good idea for many instances you will find it handy. i never heard of the lap thing being a dominance issue. like allie said, aren't they bred to be lap dogs ? my big monsters think they are lap dogs. they will lay on top of you if you'd let them. but honestly, i really think they are just trying to get closer for more snuggling and petting. i really think you need to assess the other body language signals your dog gives off when he does these things. that will help in determining whether it is dominance or just snuggling. if you are willing to recognize what may cause dominance problems in a dog, and are prepared to deal with it should it ever arise then let your dog do what you like. it is when people allow animals on the furniture and then get scared one day when the dog growls or snaps at you that is the biggest problem.
Very true, Scout. The dogs on your lap, don't want to cuddle, they want to take over the human race by WANTING more snuggling.... Muahuahuahaaa!!! LOL ---Allie the Chihuahua http://www.dogster.com/?41063 ---Mönica the Kitty http://www.catster.com/?57596
Thank you all for your input. Kitty's mom explained the dominance thing better for me. My dog is not meant to be a lap dog...sure it's cute now at 4 months and 20 lbs, but she won't be this small forever. This is a required puppy obedience course for adopting an "aggressive" dog from my humane society. Bella is a lab pit mix, just a little over 20 lbs at 16 weeks.
I read once that it's ok for a dog to be on the bed, lap or sofa if he's there by invitation only. Meaning he doesn't just jump up whenever he feels like it, you have to give permission, and maybe make him performa command first to get to be able to come up. I would never banish Layla to the floor. I agree with Wendy, I wanted a lap dog, what good is a lap dog that isn't allowed on your lap? That's like saying you shouldn't let your Boarder Collie catch frisbees. It what they are bred to do. I think if you watch their temprament and if they seem to be getting too bossy or pushy, you crack down a bit, it will be ok. I am also guilty of play fighting with layla, letting her mouth and bite. I know, its bad, bad, bad. But I am the one who initiates it and I can put a stop to it just as quickly. It's a game we both enjoy, why should I stop it? She is NEVER agressive in any way. I think you just have to know your dog and what kinds of behaviors they can handle and what kinds they cant.
Lalayla you are right. Both the mouthing and being up on you, or up w/ you, are ways that you have promoted your dog's statis. Once you know the dog...promotion (on the couch WITH permission) is fine. Promote as you wish ya'll... The class was teaching us to think like a dog so misstatements like "my dog was mad at me" don't occur. Actually we act more like them than they do like us!
Bella, I know it was just your instructor's opinion and not yours. That's why I said with no disrespect to you. I just wanted to make sure ya knew I wasn't disagreeing with YOU. Toby doesn't ever nip at me when he is in my lap. Just when I'm walking and he goes for the ankles. Otherwise, he is sweetie pie. I do think I need to grab his little butt and give him a growl or a hand clamp on his head, like his doggie mommy would do. He is getting worse instead of better. He is 9 months old now, and I'm told that is the "teenage years" for dogs. Oh no!!!