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Does anyone else's puppy have a seemingly bad temper...? If we don't let Noodle do something that she wants to do but isn't allowed (chew the carpet, get up on the sofa etc) and tell her "no" and gently pull her away she'll try and bite hard. She's pretty aware of her biting when she's playing as is very gentle - but when she's "angry" she bites hard and wriggles and wriggles and tries to snap at you if you try to pick her up to give her a time out (which does seem to calm her down - temporarily!).

She also does this thing when she's almost stalking you, almost army crawls along the floor, growling and then barks and pounces and bites. She does this when she's playing - but also if she's been told off - she'll watch you and then start growling and stalking you! I don't like it - and am scared she'll do it to someone else.

She's a clever little pup - housetrained, sleeps through the night, sits, gives paw, stays etc. And when she's a bit worn out she's so cute and cuddly and gazes at you adoringly.

Is this normal puppy behaviour? Or some sort of dominance struggle? Can it be solved by tellings off and time outs?

Thanks!!
 

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i would keep a short light lead on her, that way you dont have to phisicly touch her to correct her.


she is testing the boundrys we got a lot of back chat from Delta.

keep working in it and it should pass, thisngs will get easier, lol she sounds like a cheeky wee girl.

just makesure se doeant get away with it. she doesnt understand why she isnt alowed to do what she wants so is just protesting. be strong and you will get there.
 

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yeah hust let her drag it, that way insted of having to pick her up to take her away from somthing, you just take her by the lead(meaning no hands near her mouth)
 

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Is this normal puppy behaviour? Or some sort of dominance struggle? Can it be solved by tellings off and time outs?
I would say that all puppy behaviours are just instinctive behaviours that they use, try out and practice as they are growing up and you just need to show her that some things are good/right behaviours and some are wrong/not appropriate. If she were still with her mum and litter the mum would maybe stop some behaviours and mum and the other puppies might join in so she was practising her animal skills. They do so many things out of instinct not out of careful, pre-planned actions to dominant - you just have to watch a puppy pick up a soft toy and shake their head furiously, they are instinctively trying to kill what they have caught!!

Flo used to lunge and grab with her mouth but not in an out right dominant, aggressive way, always in a play context as she play bowed first and her tail was wagging. Watch to see if she is play bowing (signalling that what she is about to do isn't serious and a game) and also look at her body language (clearest signal is a wagging tail).

That said it isn't desirable behaviour.

With Flo I would quickly catch her and remove her to a seperate room for a few minutes time out then let her back in then make her sit for a treat to establish I was in charge. I never kept a long line on, I think Flo would have just chewed it so I used a rope slip lead as you can 'catch' them easily by throwing the loop over their head, you don't actually need to get them by hand and risk getting nipped. I got quite skilled at 'lassoing' her in the end. I also made sure that I put the slip lead on briefly when good things happened so she didn't run away as soon as she saw it.

Flo is now 16 months and the most gentle, loving dog so don't worry that your little puppy is turning into a monster she's just doing what comes naturally. Flo is so gentle now that I found her in the garden trying to 'play' with a fledgling bird. It had fallen from it's nest, not quite able to fly and Flo had seen it on the ground and was just play bowing and bouncing around it and not one feather was harmed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks Mandy.

Yes, when she does the stalking and biting game, she does bow down and wag her tail like it's the most fun game ever. She's definitely using less force than even a week ago when she could draw blood. However, it's more the aggressive responses to us not letting her have or do things she wants that definitely doesn't seem like play.

We're being very strict with her - so hopefully will see an improvement soon! She's changed so much over the 3 weeks we've had her!! It's really interesting and fun and I can't wait until we're able to take her for walks. Just a phase - but don't like her being aggressive with me. Preferred it when all she wanted to do was have cuddles and cover me in licks!!
 

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I had a dreadful time with Izzy biting when she was little - I even sat sobbing on the sofa one morning wondering why my puppy was such a little monster! Patience and consistency paid off and now at 11 months she is amazing! Still a pickle at times, she takes socks, gloves etc and runs rings round me (literally) and is impossible to catch, but she never ever nips, bites, mouths anymore and eventually 'drops it'. It seems interminable when you are going through this, but it will pass and be so rewarding - the problems just keep changing as they get older and I am really looking forward to her reaching Flo's age when most of the problems seem to have passed. xx
 

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Gosh, I had forgotten completely until I read your post, but Rosie had a few moments like that. She's only 4 months now, but I do think she's already grown out of them.

I never let her get away with being stroppy and if she did anything that frightened me (I think it was more the fear that if she did this when she was fully grown, it would be horrific), I would pick her up and put her in another room to calm down and to learn that she couldn't be near me if she was going to act like that. I do think that helped.
 

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I am really looking forward to her reaching Flo's age when most of the problems seem to have passed. xx
I would say by 16 months that Flo is getting really quite settled and stuff that was an issue is mostly gone with patience, consistency and lots of training. Flo has been a challenge at times with jumping up at people, greeting other dogs over enthusiastically and with lead pulling but is now really well behaved and a joy. She still has the occasional lapse into puppy behaviour/responses but I reckon that by age 2 years she will be 100% there.
 
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