Friday, May 10, 2013

Puppy Training

There are two things that are disconcerting to me about dog training:

1. There are so many theories out there, it's hard to figure out which one is best for your dog.
2. There are lots of theories, but not a lot of actual advice with corresponding actions.

Case in point, Cesar Millan. Not everyone agrees with his style and theories, but I do agree with his basic theory of what a dog needs: Exercise, Exercise, Exercise, followed by Discipline and then Affection, in that order. Great! I can do that! Or can I? First of all, little Piglet doesn't walk. He's by no means getting enough exercise, unless I can take him out into the middle of nowhere and let him run after me. Guiding him by a leash doesn't work. He sits his butt down and just looks at you. He also tries to play with our other dog, O, incessantly, and O does NOT want to play. He tries to put Piglet in his place, but because Piglet now outweighs him by a good 3 pounds, he's not getting the message. Cesar says that he doesn't allow any aggression in his pack. Great! So how do you do that? There are no details. I have tried "growling" at them at them and separating them. Now I am using the squirt bottle and then time outs if the issue gets really out of hand. I do NOT want Piglet to grow up and eat O.

I also have to remember that Piglet is still just 10 weeks old. I think most training books say that you shouldn't start leash training until 12 weeks, so maybe the not walking on a leash thing is okay for now. He is just so high energy, and needs the exercise before we leave work and go to bed. Cesar also says that puppies don't even need leashes until 8 months old or so. Yeah, that's great, except for cars and coyotes and bears. I have been encouraging him to follow me in and out of the house with his leash trailing behind, but only for short potty breaks in the middle of the day.

Can you tell I just read Cesar's book? The first one at least. I'm looking for insight on how to be the pack leader, since Piglet is bossier than any other pup I've had. I'm also hoping it will help O, since he has a lot of fear aggression with other dogs and just fear with humans. Maybe he doesn't trust me as his pack leader because he's been bit a couple times under my watch. I just don't know what to do about off leash dogs. How do I prevent that from happening, especially since the last time was right in front of our house? So many questions.I don't suppose I have any dog trainer readers? My blogging has been so shitty and inconsistent for the last couple of years, I'm not sure I have any readers anymore. Hahaha!

Next on the reading list: Those monks that raise shepherds - they have a couple of books. And then my future dog trainer recommended "Dog Training for Dummies."

In the meantime, Piglet just keeps putting on weight and growing taller. Still no idea what size he will end up being. I sure as hell hope he still fits in his current crate for when we celebrate my birthday at the beginning of July. I don't know that I can transport a larger crate in my little car! I'm also hoping he will be far less than 50 pounds at four months. My vet said that if he is going to be more than 50 pounds at 6 months, we don't want to neuter him until 10 months. The extra testosterone helps his hips and joint develop better. That makes me so nervous - I don't want him to develop any aggression due to him still having his balls in his body longer. So many wait-and-sees. Hoping I can get Piglet to start walking on a leash soon - I'm looking forward to running again!


  1. I forgot how hard it was to raise more than one dog. Seriously we would have about five dogs during the winters while I was growing up. Our relatives would drop off their dogs when they went to Florida for the winter. How soon we forget what it is like to make personalities mesh.

  2. I think I need to read that book and I am interested to hear if anyone has some advice.
    Sorry, I wish I had more help to offer. Is there anywhere you can go where he can be off the leash?
    My dogs pull so much when they are on the leash, they want to take off. It has been A LOT of work to try and get them to stop, and 2 years later, it's still not perfect.
    What works best is taking them to some hills close to my house that are pretty secluded. I am able to let them run freely and tire them out.


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